Bank of America Merchant Services Review
BAMS is an ancillary of Bank of America and offers merchant processing services as a reseller of Fiserv, previously known as First Data Corporation and TSYS. It provides payment processing for credit and debit cards, checks, keyed-in transactions, MOTO, and direct-transfer staff salaries. The company’s POS solutions are available through Clover. BAMS also has a security suite offering fraud protection through the Telecheck and MobilePay apps.
|Swipe Rate||2.50% + $0.20|
|Keyed-in Rate||3.50% + $0.15|
|Early Termination Fee||$500|
|Contract Terms||3 Years|
Bank of America Merchant Services Overview
In 2009, Bank of America and First Data (now Fiserv) founded the Bank of America Merchant Services as a joint venture. The joint venture contract ran through June 2020, which the companies did not renew. The company is mainly a reseller of products and services from Fiserv, TSYS, and Clover. It provides both hardware and software solutions for processing cashless transactions. BAMS facilitates the merchants in the integration of their POS with its card processing mechanism. It also provides its own POS terminals from Clover readily compatible with their payment processing solution.
Currently, Bank of America assists approximately 66 million small and medium-sized businesses. It is known to serve individuals, private and public companies, and the government sector. Given Bank of America’s banking reach and its partnerships with third-party merchant processing providers, the BAMS division ensures payments processed through its service are cleared into merchant accounts one day sooner than peers. As a result, BAMS is one of the largest payment processors in the U.S., according to The Nilson Report.
The company provides pricing plans for customers with a three-year contract on auto-renewal and a $500 early termination fee. Based on the BAMS website, the company offers tiered pricing, which is less transparent than the Interchange-plus pricing plan. The company also provides long-term non-cancelable equipment leasing through one of its POS equipment partners.
There have been some complaints against BAMS regarding hidden fees, and we found mislabeling of charges in our research. Regardless, the number of complaints against BAMS is relatively low compared to their transaction volume and the merchants they serve.
Bank of America Merchant Services Pros & Cons
Multiple hardware/software options available
Poor customer support reported
Binding lease agreement for hardware
Limited pricing disclosed online
Bank of America Merchant Services Products & Services
BAMS utilizes Fiserv for back-end payment processing for debit and credit cards. The company also offers a PCI compliant global payment gateway integrated with merchant websites for e-commerce through Compass. Through the BAMS and MobilePay partnership, merchants can integrate mobile payment processing.
BAMS offers POS solutions through partnerships with Clover POS and First Data Global Leasing. Their POS offering includes tablets, cash drawers, LCD touchscreens, check readers, USB ports, credit card machines, and other required hardware compatible with those systems.
BAMS has numerous service offerings, including TransArmor for data protection and paper and e-check processing through Telecheck. Additionally, the company markets its time-tracking, payroll, inventory management, and reporting solutions for the retail sector.
Bank of America Merchant Services Advertising & Sales
A detailed analysis of BAMS pricing shows it confusing and unclear regarding many of their fees. BAMS does not employ an independent sales team but instead hires them internally. Nonetheless, the relatively few complaints that BAMS has been consistently about hidden charges or not being forthcoming about its various fees.
Another sales practice merchants should be aware of is BAMS bundling leasing equipment into its payment processing services. These leases are costly and lock in merchants into a four-year contract.
Truth in Marketing
|Advertises Deceptive Rates||No|
|Discloses All Important Terms||No|
|Public Pricing Available||Yes|
Bank of America Merchant Services Pricing, Rates & Fees
BAMS pricing varies based on the merchant’s transaction volume and type of business. Some fees include:
Transaction volume less than $5,000/ month – 2.5% + $0.20/ transaction
Transaction volume less than $5,000 and $9,999/ month – 2.3% + $0.20/ transaction
Transaction volume less than $10,000 and $24,999/ month – 2.05% + $0.20/ transaction
Transaction volume more than $25,000/ month – 1.89% + $0.20/ transaction
Keyed-in transactions rate – 3.50% + $0.15/ transaction
The company offers POS equipment leasing through either Clover POS or First Data Global Leasing. Merchants should keep in mind that the leases are four years long and are non-cancelable.
There are other fees associated with BAMS’ e-commerce processing, such as payment gateway and virtual terminal services, along with batch fees and tech support fees. None of these service fees are available on the company’s website.
Pricing At A Glance
|Pricing Model||Flat Rate|
|Swiped Rate||2.50% + $0.20|
|Keyed-in Rate||3.50% + $0.15|
|Mobile Payment Rate||Undisclosed|
|Virtual Terminal Rate||1.00% - 4.99%|
|Payment Gateway Fee||Undisclosed|
|Early Termination Fee||$500|
|PCI Compliance Fee||Up To $95 Per Year|
|Equipment Lease Terms||48 Month (locked)|
|Address Verification Service (AVS)|
|Account Setup Fee||$0|
|Gateway Setup Fee||Undisclosed|
Bank of America Merchant Services Contract & Terms
BAMS offers a 3-year contract with auto-renewal and an early termination fee of $500. The company’s pricing includes software payment plans with additional charges and non-terminable leasing contracts for procuring hardware. BAMS offers monthly swipe rates and standard rates for cashless transactions. The company’s website displays a tiered pricing plan and unclear additional charges and outsourced processing charges for customers.
Bank of America Merchant Services Setup & Support
BAMS setup is sufficiently simple. The overall experience is simplified, combining Bank of America’s banking reach to expedite processed funds transfers.
The company offers 24/7 email, live chat, and phone support with a relatively low complaint rate. BAMS continuously invests in specialized consultants for ongoing support team training.
Bank of America Merchant Services Complaints, Ratings & Reviews
BAMS does not have a registered profile with the Better Business Bureau (BBB). Instead, BBB provides a rating for the parent company, Bank of America, mainly for its banking solutions, technically rendering it unusable for BAMS. There were no outstanding lawsuits or FTC complaints found against BAMS. Based on our research of multiple only platforms and forums, we believe that BAMS is sufficiently consumer-friendly.
|BBB||A+ (5,639 complaints)|
|Yelp||1 Star / 11 Reviews|
|Total Online Reviews||200+|
|Total Online Complaints||100+|