All About ISOs

May 10, 2022

All About ISOs

One of the biggest decisions to make for an E-commerce business is how to take payments and facilitate transactions. There are many options that can be used to take debit or credit card payments, and Independent Sales Organisations (ISOs) can be a popular option.

What are ISOs?

ISO stands for Independent Sales Organisation. This is a third-party payment processing company that is authorised to deal with merchant accounts for businesses.

ISOs are able to provide services due to the partnerships they form with acquiring banks. As a result, ISOs are usually more flexible and easier to work with than large banks, whilst being just as secure.

The acquiring banks that ISOs form relationships with are large banking institutes such as TrustPayments and Elavon. This provides the ISO with the facility to accept transactions from Visa, Mastercard, or other card associations.

How Does a Company Become an ISO?

Prior to becoming an Independent Sales Organisation, a company or individual will go through a rigorous vetting process by the acquiring bank. This is a way to establish authenticity and ensure the ISO is able to meet the strict security requirements of payment processors.

Once the required checks have been successfully completed, the ISO is considered “registered” and is subsequently authorised and sponsored by the partnered bank. As well as being sponsored by the partnered banks, ISOs must be part of a Mastercard or Visa association.

Benefits of an ISO

ISOs facilitate the application, managing the relationship between the acquiring bank and the merchant. This allows the separate institutions involved in the transaction to operate at their full potential, focused on their specific area of expertise.

With banks able to focus on their unique responsibilities, ISOs can dedicate the time and resources to deliver your merchant the best customer service.

To learn more about how Cardstream can help, contact us.