Retailers that sell goods exclusively or predominantly through the Internet are a growing part of the mix for merchant acquirers and processors, according to a survey by First Annapolis Consulting.
Nearly three-quarters of 33 companies contacted in the fourth quarter said they plan to increase their Internet acquiring and processing services, and 26% planned to maintain current services.
The companies said their top concerns in this business were fraud and the viability of on-line merchants. Though 88% of acquirers said they had not had an increase in fraud from on-line transactions, they did express fear that fraud would rise.
Andre Stokes, the First Annapolis consultant who compiled the survey, said acquirers fall into two categories: those that offer Internet services to merchants "because they have to" and those that "really focus on the business."
The latter group, he said, is less worried about Internet merchants' going out of business or posting high fraud rates.