Cam Sites Merchant Account

high risk merchant account payment gateway
cam site merchant account

Adult cam sites have become increasingly popular and easier for people to use over the last several years. The webcams, microphones and other equipment needed to start channels on cam sites don’t cost much money. Adult entertainers can often get started with just a few hundred dollars.

While individual adult performers may not worry much about issues like credit card processing that supports multiple currencies, website administrators have faced difficult challenges since they started their businesses.

The good news is that business is booming for adult cam sites. The bad news is that many businesses don’t know how to find merchant accounts from providers willing to work in high-risk industries.

Bankcard offers high-risk merchant accounts that process payments for businesses most credit card companies consider too risky. Get started today to resolve your payment processing issues for adult cam sites.

Adult Cam Modeling Has Grown Quickly Over the Last Few Years

In 2020, most people found themselves struggling to live through COVID-19 quarantine mandates that separated them from others. Luckily, the Internet provided solutions for just about everyone, including students and lonely hearts longing for companionship.

Many websites that provide adult content saw significant boosts in traffic. Some adult cam sites say that their traffic jumped by 30 percent. Other sites in the adult entertainment industry saw similar increases, including those for gentleman’s clubs, adult toys and online dating.

Even some strip clubs started adult sites where viewers could pay to watch performers dance. The most competitive adult sites added VR and other innovative technologies to their guest services.

The amount of money that an individual performer can make with a webcam and an adult website varies significantly. The popular cam site AdultWork says that it could have up to 50,000 professionals working at any time. One performer charges £4 (about $5.25) per minute (more for femdom performances) and gives AdultWork 35 percent of her earnings.

High earners are known to make £5,000 to £7,000 (about $6,600 to $9,250) per week.

The Challenge of Making Money With an Adult Website

Adult cam sites have huge audiences and plenty of performers willing to fill the demand. Unfortunately, they often struggle to accept online payments, even when online business owners show that they have responsible plans. Any online store selling adult products will likely find it difficult to process credit and debit cards, even when they want to accept major cards like Visa and Mastercard.

Payment solutions like PayPal and e-checks also fail often fail to solve the problem, too. Plenty of business owners in the adult entertainment industry struggle to so much as open bank accounts. They just don’t have many options available to them because underwriters and merchant account providers consider them high-risk clients.

What Defines “High Risk” for Merchant Account Services and Payment Processors?

A lot of businesses get listed as high-risk accounts by merchant account service providers and payment processors. It isn’t just the adult industry. Other industries considered high-risk include:

  • CBD

  • Credit repair

  • Payday lending

  • Private airlines

  • E-cigarettes

Operating online makes a business look like an even bigger risk to most payment processors.

Why do so many banks and payment processors want to avoid doing business with these industries? To some extent, it’s because they don’t want the risk of tarnishing their reputations by working with “unsavory” businesses. It’s impossible to deny that plenty of consumers see the sex industry (even the legal aspects of the sex industry) as an unwanted stain. Of course, plenty of those people say that in public before going home and watching performances on their computers…

There are also financial reasons for merchant services to avoid companies in the adult entertainment industry and other high-risk industries.

Why Some Merchant Accounts Don’t Process Credit Card Payments for the Adult Industry

There are also financial reasons for merchant services to avoid companies in the adult entertainment industry and other high-risk industries. Understanding these reasons should make it easier for your online business to find a payment processing solution that meets your unique needs.

Bankcard can make it easier for you to start an adult merchant account, but it’s still important to know why the “high-risk” label gets applied to the adult industry.

Regulatory Requirements

No one likes to deal with regulatory requirements. They slow down businesses and introduce a lot of unknowns to the decision-making process.

The stakes also seem much higher when you work in an industry with a lot of regulations. What happens if an adult website lets a child view inappropriate content? Could parents or the government hold the payment processor partially responsible?

Many merchant account service providers and payment processors just don’t want to get involved. They could work with you. They’d just rather avoid the potential headache. They’re playing it safe, which is what their investors expect them to do.

The Threat of Friendly Fraud

“Friendly fraud” also looks like a high-risk possibility within the adult industry. The term “friendly fraud” probably sounds a bit funny. How could any type of fraud be friendly?

Friendly fraud, which also goes by the phrase “chargeback fraud,” happens when someone makes a purchase and then disputes the charge.

Friendly fraud happens for all sorts of reasons. Not surprisingly, some people just want access to adult cam performers without paying for the services. They will provide their payment info, watch the performance and then tell their credit card or debit card provider that they never requested the service.

It’s hard to see this form of friendly fraud as anything other than outright theft. Regardless, it happens and payment processors often return the consumer’s money.

Adult industry websites can also experience friendly fraud because people feel embarrassed by their activities. Maybe a spouse or parent sees the charge on a credit card statement. Instead of admitting that they watching a webcam performance, they claim ignorance. “Someone must have used my credit card number!” they’ll say.

(More on chargebacks a couple of sections down.)

Fraudulent Cam Websites

Unfortunately, the adult entertainment industry has more than its share of bad actors. Underwriters and payment processors know that websites that offer adult content have bad reputations for stealing information from visitors. The number of fraudulent cam websites is high enough that a lot of companies just don’t want to bother with anyone in the industry.

The Problems With Chargebacks

The biggest problem with chargebacks is that credit card companies almost always side with consumers. You might imagine that customers can only use chargebacks when a mistake happens (they get billed for something they didn’t order) or fraud happens (someone steals their credit card information and uses it to shop online). In reality, credit card companies will often reverse charges just because customers complain that they didn’t like a product or service.

Chargebacks happen in some industries more than others. Unfortunately, websites that sell adult entertainment and adult toys have higher-than-normal chargeback rates. When the average merchant account service provider looks at the industry’s high chargeback rate, most of them back off. They don’t want to deal with it.

When you think about the impact of chargebacks, it’s easier to see why most companies don’t want to get involved. Payment processing, after all, costs money. When a customer asks for their money back, you and the online payment processor lose more than the cost of the product (in this case, the product is usually access to a cam stream). They also lose the money required to process the initial payment and then they lose the money it takes to reverse the payment.

Case by case, these are small losses. When your industry has enough chargebacks, though, the losses become considerable enough that payment processors avoid you.

Do you need a more reliable way to process payments for your adult cam site? Bankcard’s payment API can improve your success rate by integrating with nearly all payment systems and software options. Get started today by answering a few simple questions.

Ways To Minimize the Threat of Chargebacks

You can’t control what your customers do, but you can take some steps to help minimize the number of chargebacks your adult cam site gets. Doing so will make it easier for some merchant account service providers to consider accepting you as a client (although there are no guarantees. They can choose to do business with you or not for any reason.).

Send Trial Members Emails Before Their Paid Subscriptions Start

It’s common for membership websites to offer free trial members. People want to see what they’re getting before they pay for it. It makes sense.

Consumers don’t always think very far ahead, though.At the end of a new member’s free trial, the account switches over to a paid subscription and charges the credit card used to open the account. You can probably see where this is going because your site has probably experienced this plenty of times. The moment a person checks their credit card statement, they see the charge and either:

  • Contact you about reversing credit card transactions.

  • Contact their credit card or debit card providers for chargebacks.

While you can’t eliminate this problem, you can help control this number of chargebacks by sending members reminder emails before their accounts switch from the free version to the paid version.

Additionally, if the credit card company reaches out to you about a chargeback, you can show evidence that you contacted the consumer about the upcoming charge. That could help the credit company provider take your side instead of issuing the chargeback.

Require New Members To Verify Their Contact Information

What happens when a new member gives you a fake email address that makes it impossible for you to contact them? Yes, that’s a problem. It’s also very easy to prevent!

Require every new member to verify their contact information before you give them full access to your site. Your easiest option is to send a message to the provided email address and ask the member to click a link that verifies the address. If you don’t get a response within 24 to 48 hours, you just cancel the account.

The customer never has a chance to ask for a chargeback because they never successfully create an account with your business. This helps weed out fraudsters who want to access your site’s webcam streams without paying for it.

Make It Easy for Subscribers To Cancel Their Memberships

The easier you make it for people to cancel their memberships, the less likely they are to ask for chargebacks. When a free trial membership expires, a lot of people will accept the initial payment as long as they can close their accounts and avoid future charges. Some of them don’t know they can ask their card companies to reverse the charges. Others just accept that they’re partially responsible for letting the trial membership expire, so they pay the first month and move on with their lives.

Payment Processing Options for Adult Entertainment

Since so many payment processors, including PayPal and credit card companies, don’t want to work with “high-risk” businesses, you might as well avoid the headache of trying to convince them to help you.

You can save a lot of time and effort by going straight to Bankcard, where you can start an adult merchant account that serves adult cam sites, dating apps, gentleman’s clubs, strip clubs, adult toy eCommerce sites, and other adult websites. Bankcard specializes in serving high-risk businesses, so you have a much higher chance of getting approved.

Common High-Risk Account Fees for Adult Businesses

How much you will pay for a high-risk account? That depends on the company you choose. Common fees include charges for:

  • Setting up the account

  • Registering credit card accounts

  • Issuing refunds

  • Security monitoring

  • Insurance

  • Chargebacks

Everyone pays fees for these and similar services. High-risk businesses tend to pay higher prices, though. To make matters worse, many companies don’t provide a straightforward way for you to find how much fees and services cost.

Bankcard gives you transparent pricing so you know precisely how much you will spend.

Get a Reliable, Hassle-Free Adult Payment Processor With Help From Bankcard

Take a big step toward making your adult cam site more successful than ever. Start an adult merchant account through Bankcard to get the services you need at reasonable prices.

Bankcard was referred to me by my developer. From the jump, they were impressive. They were super responsive, they asked great questions and their solution was really robust. Also, working with Katherine and Hanna is a dream!
High risk merchant account
Emily Wallace
CEO

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Integrations

Bankcard Connect plays nice with others

Bankcard Connect integrates seamlessly with ISV software to simplify payment processing for merchants: any payment type, on any device, anywhere. 

Bankcard integrates with over 99% of the tools you are already using, including popular accounting software and e-commerce apps, regardless of your industry. Our payment services were designed to be adaptable to provide seamless integrations for our customers.

merchant account integrations c

BigCommerce
Formsite
Infusionsoft
Keap
Magento
Microsoft Dynamics
Network Solutions
SalesForce
Shopify
Volusion
Web.com
Weebly
WIX
WooCommerce
WordPress
Yola

Cart66
Checkfront
EASYCART
eShop
Event Espresso
events manager
GetShopped.org
GRAVITY
Jigoshop
Paid Memberships Pro
Shopp
SHOPPERPRESS
templatic
TheCartPress
WishList MEMBER
WooCommerce
WORDPRESS eSTORE
WP GATEWAYS
WpInvoice
wpmudev

Drupal Commerce
Ubercart

HikaShop
Miwisoft
VirtueMart

911 Software, Inc.
ACR Systems
Activant
Aldelo Systems, Inc.
Applied Micro Technology
Advanced Retail Management Solutions (ARMs)
Auto star
Cantaloupe Systems
Data Business Systems
Datacap Systems, Inc.
DataTech Corp
DataVantage
Edgil Associates
Elavon*
Epicor (CRS, NSB)
Freedom Pay
Gateway Ticketing Systems
Idalica Corp
IJN Systems
IT Retail
KWI
Main Street Softworks
MBS Textbook Exchange
Medasyst, Inc.
Microsoft
/n Software, Inc.
PC America
POSiFlex
RATEX Business Solutions
Retail Data Systems
RTL Payment Systems
ScanSource, Inc.
Sicom Systems, Inc.
Slim CD
Tempus Technologies
Tender Retail Systems
The Software Mills
Tomax Corporation
Total Computing Solutions
TouchNet Information Systems
XProtean, Inc. (C-Payment Software)
XPient Solutions
Vista Entertainment Systems

911 Software, Inc.
Data Business Systems
Dinerware
Datacap Systems, Inc.
Main Street Softworks
Menusoft Systems Corp.
Micros Systems
Midnite Express, Inc.
/n Software Inc.
NCR
onePOS.com
Ordyx
Radiant Systems
Revel Systems
Sicom Systems, Inc.
Squirrel Systems
Tempus Technologies
XPient Solutions
XProtean, Inc. (C-Payment Software)
Elavon (previously Southern DataComm and Global Card Services)

Dresser Wayne
Excentus
Fuel Links
Fiscal Systems, Inc.
Gilbarco
LOC Software
Main Street Softworks
Petro RX
PetroVend
Radiant Systems
Retalix
VeriFone Ruby System

Datacap Systems
JPMA
LOC Software
Logivision
MTX/EPS
RORC
StoreNext
Torex

911 Software, Inc.
Hotel Software Systems
Slim CD
Elavon
Tempus Technologies

Government organizations face a growing need for secure payment processing services while managing highly specific needs for content management and security. 

We can work with popular technology products government agencies prefer, like Ciber and Cubic, to create an integrated solution that meets all your needs for processing payments, managing information, and more.

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High risk merchant account payment gateway

We partnered with Bankcard in 2017 and they've been there for us every time. Everything is super fast and I love how well they communicate with our staff. They really know their stuff, and we work in a very complex industry! My account executive knows our business inside and out.

Alexandria, CMO

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FAQs: Table of Contents

Accepted Industries and Countries​

The industries we accept for high risk merchant accounts include, but are not limited to the below industries.

  • Adult merchant account
  • Bad credit
  • CBD
  • Credit Repair
  • MLM
  • Nutraceuticals
  • Payday loans
  • Private airlines
  • Subscriptions
  • Travel
  • Vape & eCig
  • Illegal business activity
  • Businesses without the proper license
  • Illegal drugs (CBD with less than 0.30% THC is acceptable)

Bankcard can provide merchant accounts to customers in the below countries. Kindly note that many payment solutions are regulated based on location.

  • Andorra
  • Austria
  • Bear Island 
  • Belgium
  • Bulgaria
  • Canada
  • Channel Island
  • Croatia
  • Cyprus
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Estonia
  • Faroe Islands
  • Finland
  • France
  • Gibraltar
  • Greece
  • Greenland
  • Hungry
  • Iceland
  • Ireland
  • Isle of Man
  • Israel
  • Italy
  • Latvia
  • Liechtenstein
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Malta
  • Monaco
  • Germany
  • Netherlands
  • Norway
  • Portugal
  • Romania
  • San Marino
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Turkey
  • United Kingdom
  • United States
  • Vatican City

Being a start-up business will not hinder a business from getting approved for a merchant account. While having a processing history helps your likelihood of getting approved,  the lack of processing will not necessarily stop you from getting an approval. Consult an experienced Account Executive today to learn more. 

There are never guarantees when it comes to the approval of a merchant account. However, we do work with merchants that have low credit scores. Reach out to an Account Executive today for a consultation. 

If you’re a United States citizen applying for a merchant account for a United States registered business, a social security number is required. 

A merchant account can be labeled high risk for many reasons. You can be labeled as such due to high average tickets, being in an industry that historically has high chargebacks, or an industry that tier one banks do not support.

Applying for a merchant account

To apply for a high-risk merchant account, you need to complete our pre-qualification form and upload all required documentation. Once the pre-qualification is complete your Account Executive will locate the best placement for your account, and send you a final agreement. Once that final agreement is signed, underwriting will complete a full package review for approval. 

There is no fee to apply for a merchant services account with Bankcard. However, If you get approved with us there may be a small setup fee for your gateway account.

Square, Stripe, and Paypal are all payment facilitators and do not accept high-risk merchant accounts. Signing up with Bankcard gives you a direct merchant relationship with a sponsor bank. The approval process requires more documentation, but you’re at a significantly lower risk of getting terminated.

This depends upon how quickly you, the merchant, completes our pre-qualification form. Once we have all of your documentation, we get to work. We can typically locate placement for your merchant services account in 48 hours.  

Once you get an approval, you’ll be able to accept credit card payments within 24 business hours. 

Depending upon the program, you will receive your funds anywhere from 24 to 72 hours after the batch is settled. 

The industry type is a major determining factor when it comes to risk levels of merchant services. But, other factors such as credit, card-present vs not present, and chargeback ratios can also push an account into the high-risk category as well. 

Completing the Application

Your legal business name should match the business name on the state business registration or licensure. However, if you are a sole proprietor, your name would be the legal business name. 

If you’re not sure how much processing you’ll do, we recommend applying for $5,000 to $10,000 monthly. You don’t need to hit that number each month, but if you’re close to going over, reach out to your Account Executive for assistance. 

Your average transaction amount should be the average of all transactions you would accept with your merchant account. Your maximum transaction should be the anticipated maximum amount accepted in one transaction. If you attempt to process a transaction that is higher than the maximum amount provided, additional proof of purchase may be requested. 

You may provide personal bank statements in lieu of bank statements if your business bank account is new or does not have any activity. 

If you’re applying for a merchant account for ecommerce processing you will need a fully functional website with products or services listed with associated pricing. 

Yes, a credit check is required in order to obtain a high-risk merchant account. Once a final agreement is signed, a hard credit pull is done.  Credit scores are taken into consideration when underwriting reviews a full application for merchant services. 

If you’re a United States citizen applying for a merchant account for a business registered in the United States, your social security number will be required to apply. 

Documents

The first step to applying for a high-risk merchant account is completing the pre-qualification form. Three months bank statements, three months processing statements (if applicable), a voided check or bank letter, and driver’s license or passport will be required to apply. 

If your business does not utilize checks, we can accept a bank letter that includes your full account and routing number as well as the business or account holder’s name. The letter should be on bank letterhead, be dated within the last 30 days, and be signed by a bank representative. 

If you don’t have three months of business bank statements, don’t fret. We can accept three months’ personal bank statements from a business owner, or director. 

Bank statements show a lot about a prospective merchant, namely, processing activity, and the average monthly ending balance. If a merchant is currently processing, we want to know why they’re switching, if we know a merchant’s pain points we can find better solutions for their needs. The average monthly ending balance is also relevant to show financial stability within the business as well as validating the monthly volume requested.

If a merchant is currently processing credit card payments and successfully managing a merchant account this can increase the likelihood of getting approved. Some payment facilitators such as Paypal, Stripe, and Square might not supply monthly processing statements. Underwriting may request login credentials so they can get an overview of the processing activities. 

Equipment and Gateways

For in-person retail card acceptance, Bankcard can provide equipment that will arrive programmed and ready to accept payments. Discuss your equipment options with your experienced Account Executive.

Here at Bankcard, we do offer our own gateway solution that’s exclusive to merchants that sign up with us. Of course, if there’s a gateway you prefer we are willing to work with you as long as integration is possible. Please reach out to your dedicated Account Executive for details. 

Bankcard integrates with NMI, Authorize.net, and more. For specific gateway integration questions reach out to an experienced Account Executive. 

Your merchant account will be set up to accept Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover, and ATM cards. 

Load balancing is the strategy of spreading transactions over more than one MID. It’s not necessary for all high-risk accounts, but can be considered as a way to manage chargeback ratios with high-risk merchants. 

Existing Merchant Accounts

Not to worry, this number can be increased as needed. However, the bank underwriting your merchant account needs to be aware of the expected monthly volume to ensure they have capacity available for all merchants processing with that bank. 

If you go over by a small amount you might be asked for a copy of the invoice or receipt. However, if you go over the monthly limit by a large amount there is a chance your excess funds might be held temporarily. 

When it comes to high-risk accounts, banks ideally want chargeback ratios below the 3% threshold. If you can provide long term processing history the bank may take this into consideration. Lower chargeback ratios are ideal. Consult your knowledgeable Account Executive for assistance in lowering your chargeback ratio. 

Rolling reserves are a way to financially protect the processing bank from potential losses from chargebacks or refunds. Not all high-risk merchant accounts require a rolling reserve. The risk department will determine if and when a rolling reserve is required. 

Interchange fees refer to the issuing credit card brand fees such as Mastercard, Visa, Discover, and American express. These fees vary depending on the card type, American Express tends to be the most expensive card to process. Interchange rates can range from 1% to 2.5%. 

Of course! Once you’ve established a healthy processing history, you may reach out to your Account Executive for a rate review. We recommend only doing this if your processing history shows low chargeback ratios and relatively low refund activity. 

You may request an increase in your monthly volume at any time. However, it’s recommended to wait until your merchant account reflects healthy processing history as well as financial stability from your bank statements. 

Reach out to our support team, or your dedicated Account Executive for any account-related updates you may need. 

Depending on the program your merchant account fees are either taken at the beginning of each month. Some programs require daily discounts. Program details will be notated on your final agreement and if you have further questions you can always consult your Account Executive. 

ACH payments

Bankcard can assist with ACH or eCheck services. An application and approval process still applies to this service, or it can be an added service with your processing account. Reach out to your Account Executive for details. 

The approval process requires less documentation than applying for a merchant services account. And if you’re already processing with Bankcard an approval can be expedited. 

Every account is different, however, most programs allow next-day settlements for ACH transactions. 

ACH payment acceptance can be integrated into most website platforms. Reach out to a dedicated Account Executive for more information. 

Pricing and Approval

High-risk merchant accounts are priced higher than low-risk accounts because fewer banks are willing to work with businesses labeled “high risk”. Banks also need additional financial protections from loss on these accounts.  

Bankcard will always provide fair pricing based on the risk level of every merchant. And if a current processing statement is provided we’ll do everything in our power to beat the merchant’s current rates. 

While we love working with merchants that are considered high risk. There are limitations put in place by bank and card brand rules. If a merchant does not abide by the specific program rules described by the Account Executive assisting them we cannot ensure an approval.

Think of merchant accounts as a loan or a line of credit. And processing banks take on the risk of transactions getting charged back. Banks can end up liable for the actions of merchants, a problematic merchant can damage the reputation of the bank funding and processing the transactions.