Understanding Credit Card Processing Pricing Models

The payment processing industry can be complex to navigate for small business owners, and when you’re shopping for the right merchant services, every penny counts. There are so many different credit card processing pricing models out there that it can be difficult to determine which one offers the best value for your needs.

Here, we’ll take a look at some of the most common credit card processing pricing models to help you understand a bit more about how they work, their advantages and disadvantages:

Tiered or Bundled Pricing

One of the most common models, the tiered or bundled pricing structure does not break down the separate fees for your transactions. Instead, the payment processor will typically create three “tiers” of transactions, each of which has its own rate. The tiers are often referred to as “qualified”, “mid-qualified”, and “non-qualified”, with non-qualified having the highest fees. Unfortunately, your payment processor could end up processing most of your transactions at the higher priced tiers. This pricing model makes it difficult for business owners to understand and plan ahead for future processing costs.

Interchange Plus Pricing

In an interchange plus credit card processing pricing model, your payment processor charges you the cost of interchange as set out by the card issuing banks, plus a small markup fee. This flexible model offers a clear payment breakdown on your statement, avoiding the confusion of other complex pricing structures.

Zero Fee Pricing

In some regions, zero fee credit card processing pricing models are available. Zero fee processors pass on the cost of the transaction directly to your customer, adding a surcharge to their purchase of up to 4% of their total.

Flat-Rate Pricing

While flat-rate payment processing pricing is easy to understand, and can eliminate surprise charges, it is not usually the most cost effective for small businesses. In this model, the processor charges a flat fee for each credit or debit card transaction to cover interchange fees, assessment fees and any other markups.

At Swift Payments, we offer transparent Cost + Pricing, which is often referred to as interchange plus pricing. This credit card processing pricing model is one of the most cost-effective in the industry. Our easy to understand pricing means there are no hidden fees to surprise you. We also guarantee that your markup rate will never increase over the lifetime of your account!

To find out more about Swift Payments’s Cost + Pricing Package and how it will benefit your small business, get in touch with us today!



295 Waterloo Street.
London, Ontario. N6B 2N5


Toll Free:


BBB Accredited

Click for the BBB Business Review of this Credit Card - Merchant Services in London ON


Monday: 9am to 5pm
Tuesday: 9am to 5pm
Wednesday: 9am to 5pm
Thursday: 9am to 5pm
Friday:9am to 5pm
Saturday: Closed
Sunday: Closed


Swift Payments is a registered MSP/ISO of the Canadian branch of U.S. Bank National Association and Elavon. New applicants are subject to conditions and approval of the application by Swift Payments and its partnering banks.



We offer technical support for all your business needs in London, Windsor, Montreal, Kitchener, Toronto, and Ottawa.