Years ago, merchant services meant selling a terminal and writing the merchant account. It seemed easy, right? The problem is that some of us are still trapped there.

With the advancement of technology, businesses have changed the way they operate, and the market’s increased competition can become overwhelming. With that in mind, sales reps should be aware of how we are approaching businesses.

The fact that you’ve written merchant accounts for 10-plus years is irrelevant. What makes you relevant in this industry is your ability to accommodate businesses and how resourceful you can be.

Part of that is knowing what you are selling. Ask yourself: How well do you know your products? Are you keeping up with today’s approaches to business? If you are not keeping up, you will be left behind.

Familiarize yourself with products and services, and learn how imperative they are to a merchants’ day-to-day operation. Whether it’s working capital, loans or consumer financing, what are you selling? Who are you selling it to? Are you offering services other than a merchant account? Are you offering more than one product? How are you constructing a solid relationship with your merchant? The answers to those questions may reflect how successful you are in achieving your goals.

The sooner you realize you play a part in the life of your merchants, the sooner you will wise up and think of ways to bind the merchant closer to you. Almost every merchant in your portfolio should be set up with more than one product. Lock in your deal.

If you push a product to a merchant without proper training, you lessen your ability to overcome an objection. That can prevent closing a deal and could discourage your from selling that product in the future.

Your position as a rep is to qualify your merchants and stay well-informed to overcome rebuttal. Training on a number of products and services heightens your ability to close more sales as well as broadening your reach for more prospects. 

Don’t be intimidated by the fast changing industry. Is there truth to the saying, “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks?” I’d say it depends on the dog. Start expanding your services, and you can succeed.

Lucy Diggs is vice president of business development at Meramak Bankcard.