Firearm Merchant Processing and Payment Gateway for Your Business

Firearm merchant processing and payment gateway

Gun and ammunition is a profitable industry, with 43% of Americans living in houses with guns. However, it can be challenging to find a suitable firearm merchant processing system and payment gateway for your business. Gun-related companies are deemed high-risk and most card processing service providers refuse to work with firearm dealers. This can impact your bottom line and limit the number of payment options online customers have access to.

However, High Risk Pay is a reputable firearm merchant processing company that has been serving the industry for years. As a payment processor, we are committed to providing  high-risk merchants with the support they need to operate their business efficiently. We will work with you to set up a merchant account even when other providers refuse, all while still offering you great pricing. Contact us today to get your account set up!

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Why choose High Risk Pay as your merchant services provider ?

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SPECIALIZED IN HIGH RISK

We offer high risk merchant accounts to all business types in high risk categories.

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99% approval

Having trouble getting approved for your high risk merchant account? Did you know HighRiskPay approves 99% of all applicants!

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FAST APPROVAL GUARANTEED

HighRiskPay understands that time is money. Entrust us yours and we’ll be sure to make it worthwhile! Apply Today and Be in Business Tomorrow!

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Benefits of Working with High Risk Pay

At High Risk Pay, we make firearm merchant processing easy! Unlike most card processing providers, we specialize in working with high-risk vendors such as firearm merchants and provide payment gateways for your customers to use. Doing so enables you to give your customers choice, opening up your client base and ultimately improving your bottom line.

Unbeatable Service

We have partnered with some of the leading gun-friendly credit card processors in the United States. This means you receive incredible service, with no interruptions, payout freezes, or other payment-related issues. These technological issues could turn your customers away, but with our firearm merchant processing options, this is never an issue. 

Competitively Priced

Merchants within a high-risk industry, such as ecommerce and the weapons and firearms market, are often subjected to high payment fees by their service provider. However, our position in the gun and ammunition industry allows us to offer our firearm merchant processing service at a competitive price. You can keep your customers happy by passing on the savings to your products.

Multiple Firearm Merchant Processing Options

High Risk Pay can provide firearm merchant processing services and payment gateways to a wide range of gun-related businesses. This includes retail, e-commerce, and mobile app-based weapon and ammunition sales. Moreover, we work with manufacturers, distributors, licensed firearm vendors, and gun resellers.

Simplified Application Process

We understand it can be difficult for firearm merchants to find payment processors and gateways to help the growth of their business. Therefore, we make our application process as simple as possible, with no application fee, no setup fee, and no contract to sign. Plus, our firearm payment processing services have a 99% approval rate.

Why Are Firearm Processing Providers hard to Find?

The firearms industry is treated differently than most other sectors. Most businesses struggle to find firearm merchant processing services for gun sales. Some payment processing systems and payment gateways charge high fees and are extremely selective with the companies they work with. Others refuse to work with a firearms business entirely. This can be confusing: as such a lucrative industry, why are ammunition businesses considered a high-risk option?

These businesses are considered high-risk as they tend to generate more chargebacks, experience a higher number of credit card fraud cases, and have high credit card transactions. The reluctance to accept your business is also based on the legal, political, and ethical standpoints on guns. Together these six factors limit the number of firearm merchant processing accounts available.

Higher Chance of Chargebacks

Chargebacks occur when customers request a refund for their purchase after closing the sale by raising a dispute directly with their credit card company to get their money back. Oftentimes, this is due to a legitimate issue with the item they purchased. However, chargebacks are particularly common within the weapons industry.

This is down to two main reasons. Firstly, the laws surrounding gun ownership mean there is a higher number of illegal purchases of guns, and victims recover the money from their bank when the money comes out of their account. And secondly, guns are expensive. All too often, consumers realize they cannot afford the repayment after making a purchase and file an illegitimate chargeback request with their bank. At High Risk Pay, we have systems in place to offer some protection from chargebacks which can positively impact your business. 

Increased Risk of Credit Card Fraud

Firearm merchant processing providers typically avoid working with businesses that have an increased risk of fraud. Unfortunately, this is a common problem within the weapons industry. According to US law, anyone with a felony conviction on their record cannot purchase a firearm. Therefore, felons frequently obtain credit cards illegally to make a gun purchase from an unbeknown merchant. 

The innocent credit card fraud victim then initiates a chargeback with their bank, which feeds into the previous issue providers have with gun vendors. Therefore, huge issues like fraud have ripple effects and are damaging to business, lowering the acceptance rate from payment service providers.

High Credit Card Transaction

Firearms are notoriously expensive, with the average gun costing between $800 and $1,400 depending on the precise version, features, and specification. Any business with an average credit card transaction amount of $500 or greater is considered high risk by most payment service providers.

Moreover, businesses with annual sales of $20,000 or greater are considered a higher risk to payment providers and banks. Many large firearm merchants or even smaller private sellers can easily hit this limit thanks to the high cost of guns. Therefore, both these factors contribute to the difficulty in finding firearm merchant processing and payment gateway options. However,  High Risk Pay can help you process high volume payments. 

Legalities of Gun Sales

Laws surrounding the sale and purchase of firearms and gun control have been brought to light in recent years due to the increased number of gun-related murders and mass shootings. While firearm merchants do remain legal under current US law, the payment provider is usually required to have additional insurance underwriting as gun sales are regulated by the federal US government. Many service providers bypass this requirement by avoiding the firearms industry entirely.

Moreover, the laws surrounding the sale of firearms are confusing and there are a lot of legal ambiguities. Firstly, people can only sell firearms if they have obtained a Federal Firearms License (FFL). This license is obtained from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF). Laws also prohibit the sale of guns to customers located outside of the US.

However, the legalities are not consistent throughout the United States, with individual states adopting their own laws and policies on the sale and purchase of weapons. While other merchant providers may seek to save themselves the headache, at High Risk Pay we make sure we take these steps and more so that we are able to be the virtual processor to this invaluable industry. 

Political Issues Surrounding Firearms

There are huge political debates surrounding the use of guns. It has been a hot button political issue for decades. There are service providers out there that want to distance themselves from the issue, especially in times when the issue is being hotly debated in the traditional media and over social media. Therefore, most card processing companies choose to take an anti-second amendment stance and refuse to provide services for any business that sells firearms. The company also doesn’t want to seem controversial and potentially damage its relationship with other low-risk merchants, so they refuse to offer firearm merchant processing and payment gateways. However, a study order by the CDC showed that guns are used defensively between 500,000 to 3 million times a year. Therefore, High Risk Pay will continue providing merchant services to firearm providers as long as it remains legal. 

Ethics and Personal Values

In addition, credit card processing companies can choose which types of businesses they want to work with. People with strong personal views related to the ethics of selling firearms might simply choose not to accept firearm merchants.

Many also fear a damaged reputation if they were to provide a service to an illegitimate firearms business that operates overseas or a business found to engage in fraudulent transactions with felons. Therefore, this also impacts the number of firearm merchant processing providers that are available for weapons businesses.

Considerations Before Applying to a Processing Provider

Sourcing firearm merchant processing services can make business within the weapons and ammunition industry difficult to navigate. However, finding a reputable provider such as High Risk Pay is possible. Here are some factors to consider about your business if you want to increase your chances of being approved.

Types of Firearm Sales

Weapons can be sold both in-person at retail vendors or online via e-commerce websites and mobile apps. Online sales are a great way to gain access to a wider market and help businesses grow rapidly. However, although not generally considered more high-risk than retail sales, chargebacks and credit card fraud are much more common when shopping online as opposed to in person. This could impact your acceptance rate when looking for firearm merchant processing options, which leads us to the next point.

Low Chargeback Rate

It is recommended that your chargeback ratio needs to be less than 0.9% of the total transactions for your business when approaching firearm merchant processing service providers. It is possible to reduce the number of chargebacks, even if you are selling weapons, ammunition, and gun-related accessories online, with some smart business practices as outlined below.

  • Clear Business Name

Ensure you have clearly named your business so that customers recognize your company on their credit card statements. Many chargebacks occur as customers are unsure where the charge on their card came from, so effective labeling can see a huge improvement in your chargeback rates and make securing firearm merchant processing options easier. It’s a simple but effective solution! 

  • Current Contact Information

Make sure your business contact information is clearly displayed on your website so customers can contact you directly if they have any issues regarding their purchase. This can bypass the need for customers to liaise directly with their credit card provider and initiate a chargeback against you. You will need to have a friendly customer service team set up to handle all enquiries, but this is a worthwhile investment for your business.

  • Effective Refund Policy

Always have a privacy and refund policy on your website that is easy for your customers to understand. Although frustrating and somewhat disheartening, refunds happen in all industries and many are valid. For example, perhaps the user doesn’t like the weight or feel of the gun. A clear policy that makes refunds simple means fewer damaging chargebacks are made to the customer’s card provider. Instead, customers will come to you directly and bypass the dispute with their bank or card provider. 

Effective Security Measures

All firearm merchant processing providers require any business engaging in online sales to have thorough security measures in place. This is important for all online businesses, but it is even more crucial for anyone selling guns and weapons to prevent criminals from obtaining illegal access to their weapons.

Standard security technology such as SSL encryption is a must to ensure that all information passing between you and your customers is kept private. However, security is also a top priority if you have a retail store as well as an online presence. If any criminal activity occurred at your dealership, this would still reflect badly on the online payment solution provider you are using.

Therefore, some of the minimum security measures you should have in place to prevent criminal access to your gun and ammunition store include:

  • Exterior lighting and other external perimeter measures such as security fences and bollards;
  • Smash-resistant windows and doors and high-quality, commercial-grade locks and key-way controlled access points;
  • Internal and external alarm systems including panel contact and panic buttons;
  • Publicly displayed security cameras around the perimeter and inside the firearms store.

Federal Firearms License (FFL)

It is a legal requirement in the United States for all firearms dealers to hold a Federal Firearms License (FFL). You will not be able to obtain access to firearm merchant processing systems and payment gateways without a valid FFL confirming you are a licensed dealer. Obtain this license before conducting any business and applying for a merchant account, otherwise you’re simply setting yourself up for failure!

Frequently Asked Questions

Why are firearm merchants and businesses considered high risk by payment processors?

Firearms businesses are considered high risk largely down to the reputation of the gun and ammunition industry. The topic of weapons is highly controversial and has been at the center of legal, political, and ethical debates for years. Therefore, there are few firearm merchant processing options available to dealers.