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You don't have to pay that much if you do this:
I prefer to go with a third party provider. They'll handle all bank card transactions for you. There is little or no set up cost and no monthly costs. It is true that a commission percentage you pay them is higher than your own arrangements would be. Third party providers will usually ask around fifteen percent of sale price. But you only pay if you are actually selling your products or services. You can quickly see how much less you have to sell to break even, or just "catch up". Even when business does get going, you may want to stay with third party provider, because...
You can start your own affiliate program at no cost too.
Think how fast your business can grow with others selling for you. A two tier afiliate program is another benefit given to you and managed for you by some third party providers. They will update stats for both you and your affiliates and pay them out of proceeds that they'll generate for you. If you think about how much time and money, plus expertise, it would take for you to implement all this, you realize: Not only can a good third party provider do all this for you at a low cost, it frees you up to promote your business and affiliate programs.
Who are they? My favorite third party providers are:
For tangibles, www.ccnow.com is my choice, which does have a monthly fee of about nine dollars. Their commission is lower, only about nine percent, which compensates. They give a full shopping cart and handle auction sales as well. There is not an affiliate program provided for their merchants yet. There are no set up fees.
For intangibles, there is a third party provider that has a set up fee of about fifty dollars, but no monthly fee. You can have up to fifty products, or more by special arrangement. Commission is about fifteen percent. They'll handle an affiliate program too. Clickbank: http://www.clickbank.com
For intangibles, like downloadable ebooks and recurring billing (subscriptions), like Right Stuff Co PrivateSite for webmaster information, we use GloBill. There is no set up and no monthly fee. The Commission is about fifteen percent. They do provide an excellent two tier affiliate program. Support is good & their service is great. They have no minimum payout for affiliates; if they earn it, they get paid, twice per month. It is motivating for affiliates to get money into their hands quickly. This is true, even if it is only a small amount in beginning. www.globill-systems.com/
I'm not suggesting you do this forever, just until your business is stable; can pay for your own merchant account and affiliate arrangements and show a nice profit over costs. There will be more profit then, since your commission percentage outlay will be lower. You should be able to get where you want to be much faster without worrying about having to recoup huge getting started expenses.
Plus (heaven forbid) if business does not work out in long run, you have not lost much more than time & advertising. Other capital investment money you have is still available for promotion or additional ventures. Maybe, down road you will want to have several businesses up and running when you take leap into managing your own customer payment and affiliate programs. Accepting credit cards is one success key.
Helen Raymond has an entrepreneural background, both offline and online. Marketing promotions include the NetSearch eZine, http://www.rightstuffco.com/netsearch/ and wholesale ebook sales at http://www.rightstuffco.com/freetosell/ She is active in business help for members at http://www.RightStuffCo.com