Payment gateways for high risk merchants

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Libby James
Merchant Services Expert

Libby James is co-founder, director and an expert in all things merchant services. Libby is the go-to specialist for business with more complex requirements or businesses that are struggling to find a provider that will accept them. Libby is regularly cited in trade, national and international media.

High-Risk Industries: Navigating Payment Gateways and Merchant Accounts

In today’s business landscape, finding the right payment processing solutions is crucial, especially for high-risk industries. These sectors face increased financial risk and regulatory scrutiny, making securing payment gateways and merchant accounts a specialised endeavour. This article provides insights into high-risk industries, payment gateways, and merchant accounts to help navigate this complex landscape.


What Are High-Risk Industries?

High-risk industries entail elevated financial risk and regulatory scrutiny, dissuading traditional financial institutions from servicing them due to increased chargebacks and fraudulent activities.

Tech Support Companies: These face challenges with chargebacks and fraud, requiring robust prevention mechanisms. 

Tobacco Sales: Heavily regulated, demanding specialised payment solutions. 

Offshore Businesses: Subject to additional scrutiny for potential money laundering. 

Call Centres: High call volume poses unique challenges for payment processors. 

Travel Agents: Numerous cancellations and chargebacks necessitate advanced payment solutions. 

Health and Supplements: High chargeback rates require fraud detection measures.

 Online Gaming: Common fraudulent activities and chargebacks. 

Debt Collection: Sensitive financial transactions heighten dispute risks. 

Pharmacies: Heavily regulated, requiring secure payment processing. 

High Ticket Items: Larger transactions increase financial disputes. 

Adult Entertainment: Nature of industry poses payment processing challenges. 

Payday Loan Companies: Dealing with high-risk transactions. 

Gaming/Gambling: Regulatory challenges and high chargeback likelihood. 

Jewellery: High-value items increase dispute and fraud risks. 

Furniture: Large transactions result in increased chargeback rates. 

Kitchen and Bathroom: Unique challenges related to returns and disputes.

These industries require specialised payment processing solutions to mitigate risks effectively. It’s essential to explore dedicated payment gateways and merchant accounts to ensure secure and compliant transactions.


The Role of Payment Gateways and Merchant Accounts

Understanding payment gateways and merchant accounts is vital in high-risk industries.

Payment Gateways: Interface between your website or POS system and the payment processing network, ensuring secure transmission of transaction data. 

Merchant Accounts: Hold funds from customer transactions before depositing into your business bank account. Obtaining reliable merchant accounts can be challenging due to the financial risk associated with high-risk transactions.

Benefits of High-Risk Gateways

High-risk payment gateways offer several benefits:

Enhanced Security: Employ advanced security measures to protect against fraudulent transactions and data breaches. 

Global Reach: Provide international payment processing solutions, expanding business reach. 

Chargeback Management: Include tools for effectively managing and reducing chargebacks. 

Compliance: Well-versed in industry-specific regulations to ensure compliance.

High-Risk Gateways and Multiple Merchant Accounts

Having multiple merchant account options is advantageous in high-risk industries, enhancing financial stability and flexibility by distributing risk across providers.



Limiting Chargebacks with High-Risk Payment Gateways

High-risk payment gateways employ tools and strategies to limit chargebacks:

Robust Fraud Prevention: Advanced mechanisms to reduce fraudulent transactions. 

Effective Dispute Resolution: Streamlined process to minimise chargebacks. 

Regulatory Compliance: Ensure transactions align with industry regulations.

How Merchant Advice Service Can Help

Merchant Advice Service specialises in payment gateways and merchant accounts for high-risk businesses, offering tailored solutions and support. We can assist in securing high-risk payment gateways in the UK, exploring international options, and navigating the intricacies of high-risk merchant accounts.

High-Risk Payment Gateways in the UK

Our knowledge extends to high-risk payment gateways available in the UK, ensuring your transactions are secure and compliant. 

International High-Risk Payment Gateways: For businesses with international operations, we can assist in exploring payment gateway options across borders. 

Merchant Accounts for High-Risk Businesses: We understand the specific challenges high-risk businesses face when securing merchant accounts. Our team can help you find reliable options.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Commonly Asked Questions
Is it possible for high-risk businesses to obtain secure payment processing solutions?
Yes, high-risk businesses can secure reliable payment processing solutions by choosing high-risk payment gateways and merchant accounts designed to meet their specific needs.
How can high-risk payment gateways help reduce fraud and chargebacks?
High-risk payment gateways employ advanced fraud prevention mechanisms and chargeback management tools to mitigate the risk of fraudulent transactions and disputes.
Why is it important for high-risk businesses to explore multiple merchant account options?
Diversifying merchant account options allows high-risk businesses to distribute risk, enhance financial stability, and reduce reliance on a single provider.
How do high-risk payment gateways ensure compliance with industry-specific regulations?
High-risk payment gateways are well-versed in industry-specific regulations and implement compliance measures to ensure that transactions align with these regulations.
Can high-risk businesses expand internationally with the help of high-risk payment gateways?
Yes, high-risk payment gateways often provide international payment processing solutions, enabling high-risk businesses to expand their global reach.
Are high-risk payment gateways suitable for online businesses in high-risk industries?
Yes, high-risk payment gateways are suitable for both online and brick-and-mortar businesses operating in high-risk industries.
How can high-risk payment gateways help streamline dispute resolution?
High-risk payment gateways offer tools and strategies that streamline the dispute resolution process, reducing the likelihood of chargebacks.
What is the role of merchant accounts in high-risk transactions?
Merchant accounts are where the funds from high-risk transactions are initially held before being deposited into the business bank account, and merchant account providers assume the financial risk associated with processing these transactions.

How Merchant Advice Service Can Help

For businesses in high-risk industries, securing specialised payment gateways and merchant accounts is essential. These sectors face unique challenges, necessitating robust fraud prevention and advanced security measures. High-risk gateways offer enhanced security, global reach, chargeback management, and compliance assurance. Diversifying merchant accounts enhances financial stability and flexibility. Merchant Advice Service provides expert guidance and solutions for both local and international high-risk payment processing, ensuring secure transactions for businesses in these industries.


For businesses in high-risk industries, securing specialised payment gateways and merchant accounts is essential. High-risk sectors face challenges such as an increased likelihood of chargebacks and stricter regulatory scrutiny, necessitating robust fraud prevention and advanced security measures. Payment gateways play a key role in safeguarding transactions, while merchant accounts handle the funds from customer transactions. 


Benefits of high-risk gateways include enhanced security, global reach, chargeback management, and compliance assurance. Diversifying merchant accounts is also strategic, offering financial stability and flexibility. Merchant Advice Service (MAS) provides expert guidance in these areas, with solutions for both local and international high-risk payment processing. Small businesses looking to accept credit cards, manage sales volume, and utilise shopping carts can benefit from these tailored services, ensuring that all product or service transactions are secure. 


Whether dealing with credit card payments online or through bricks and mortar stores, businesses must consider the right payment options, including American Express, to facilitate smooth credit card transactions. To open a merchant account or explore payment methods, MAS is a resourceful ally for high-risk industry entities.



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Libby James

Libby James Co-founded Merchant Advice Service alongside David Bird in 2016. Her finance background, coupled with retail and customer service experience, gave Libby the drive to bring transparency and non-biased advice to the world of merchant services. Having come from the heavily regulated mortgage and insurance industry, Libby found it puzzling that other financial sectors lacked regulation and transparency leaving customers confused and unable to make informed decisions when it came to accepting card payments. This was soon to become Libby’s obsession!

With the help of some of the industry’s best, Libby began to research acquiring banks, complex terminology/regulation, and the problems customers experience within merchant services and payment gateway markets. She spent years on sourcing solutions for complex clients, which previously others were unable to assist with. Libby established relationships with brokers and banks which would soon form the cornerstone of Merchant Advice Service. As a result Libby has been featured in high-profile publications across the web.

Libby is proud to be the entrepreneur’s champion, supporting start-up businesses regularly. Her industry insights can often be found on LinkedIn where she provides free of charge advice and money saving pointers. It’s safe to say she has her finger on the pulse of everything card payments related.

Libby speaks of her experience in founding and running Merchant Advice Service…

‘Merchant Advice Service is one of my greatest achievements to date. We help business owners to overcome card processing issues which can become detrimental to their business. We assist SME’s in finding suitable card payments solutions, helping them create their vision. Each and every day is different, exciting and fore filling. As technology advances I can’t wait to see the way in which the merchant services market advances, and I’m pleased that our business will play a part in educating company owners along the way.’

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