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#Moderate Surcharging is now pretty normal *(1%-2%)

With legislation passed in the last few years, allowing businesses in most states to surcharge processing fees, combined with the rising costs of doing business, credit card surcharging for businesses has become more common. No longer is a small surcharge considered aggressive or customer unfriendly. Certainly, there are parameters each business owner must assess if they intend to implement a surcharge. With that in mind, it is vital to be able to set each merchants' surcharge rate independently, *and to scale it accordingly.

As a small business, controlling your costs and simultaneously providing a positive customer experience on top of all your other responsibilities, can feel like a juggling act, but our goal is always to help businesses like yours find some balance.


First off, we understand the value of controlling your costs, operating efficiently, and reinvesting in your business – all of which are more important than ever when it comes to competition and growth.

In an effort to help control costs, Clearent’s Empower program allows you to pass along up to 4% of your processing costs to your customers. This can create savings, depending on the program you choose, from 10% to nearly 100% of processing costs that your business would otherwise have to pay out of pocket. Small businesses save an average of $9,500 per year with our Empower program and are actively reinvesting those savings into their businesses. But you don't have to surcharge the maximum!


We also understand the importance of building and maintaining your customer’s loyalty. They are the heart and soul of your business. And while consumers have many options – you want to be their first choice.

Over the years, we have learned that many small business owners are concerned about negatively impacting customer loyalty when they pass processing costs to them, but time and time again, research proves this is not the case. Empower creates complete transparency, and our customers participating in Empower have not lost sales or customers.

In addition, consumers are used to paying for the convenience of using a credit card. Whether they’re paying a utility bill online or paying to check their baggage on a flight, these types of fees have become commonplace.

The key to success with cash discounting and surcharging is transparency. By making it simple to display the proper signage, training your staff on the rules and benefits, and allowing your customers to use their preferred payment method – all things the Empower Program does for your business – we can create a positive customer experience.

All of this said, we still understand the hesitancy you may have as a business owner to pass along your full processing costs to your customers and this, my friends, is how Empower Lite was born!


Empower Lite is a flexible surcharging program that allows you to pass along just 1% – 3% of your processing costs to customers – instead of the 4% passed along with traditional surcharging. This offsets a portion of processing costs and allows you to reinvest those savings back into your business – all while reducing any risk to customer loyalty.

As we worked with merchants, we found that 50% of business owners who started using Empower Lite moved to a traditional cash discounting program within just 3 months – increasing the percentage they pass on to their customers after they quickly discovered the value of the cost savings without sacrificing customer loyalty. The remaining 50% are still active in Empower Lite and they are finding great success and savings as well. That’s the beauty of our Empower Program – we have cost saving solutions that fit a wide variety of needs, so you can feel empowered to make the best choice for you and your business.


To learn more about how our Empower Lite program works, watch the video below. It will show you how you can start significantly saving on your credit card processing costs. Contact us to get started!

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