Much more goes into the processing of credit cards than just the exchange of money. To protect funds and help with accounting functions, additional information is attached to the card transactions. This comes in level 1 data for consumer cards, and then level 2 and 3 data for business card transactions. If you can process and collect data for these transactions, your business can benefit from more transactions and larger accounts in B2B transactions. You will pay lower fees and generate more business--a win any way you look at it.
Level 2 and Level 3 Data
Level 2 and 3 data is included on corporate or government cards to help with accounting functions and to help prevent fraud. Level 2 data includes some basic information with the transaction:
- Merchant name
- Transaction amount
- Tax amount
- PO number
- Merchant zip code
Level 3 data includes all of the above and a lot more information that not only tracks the information at the point of purchase but also the following.
- Shipping and destination zip codes
- Invoice number
- Order number
- Product codes
- Item description
- Item quantity
- Freight and duty information
All of this helps the purchaser by connecting transactions to accounting and business records.
Benefits for Buyer and Seller
Many governments and large corporate entities require vendors to be able to collect level 3 data. The benefits to them start with protecting their purchases. It is much harder for identity thieves to make fraudulent purchases on cards that transmit all of this data. Beyond this, it also makes all of their accounting processes easier to automate. By connecting transactional data directly to the purchase, they can export that data, track it, and improve their own recordkeeping efficiency.
It also creates significant benefits for the seller who collects that data.. One is the sheer opportunity gained. If you are equipped to collect level 3 data, it becomes a gateway to large accounts. You can take bulk orders and do business with customers who, once they know and trust you, will keep you busy and profitable for a long time to come. You can take on the kinds of accounts that you cannot handle without these capabilities.
While you gain volume, you will pay less in transactional fees. Your card processing fees decrease when you collect level 2 and 3 data. For the processing company, the fees charged help cover the risk of fraudulent transactions. More data means less risk, and your financial institution and merchant services provider reward you for the safety net it provides.
Card processing already serves as a turning point for businesses; taking credit and debit payments is critical to being able to do business in the 21st century. When you set up level 2 and level 3 data collection, it can lift your profitability immensely. Working with the right merchant services provider can take your business to new heights.