November 12, 2011
Intuit GoPayment's Invasive Signup Procedure
There are some minor differences in the general fee schedule with GoPayment offering slightly better rates for those who pay a recurring monthly fee but slightly worse rates than SquareUp for those who do not. GoPayment's American Express fee is also higher than that of SquareUp. In terms of fees, I think businesses with more volume that primarily this as their payment method would come out ahead with GoPayment.
However I strongly advise against any business actually signing up with GoPayment.
The GoPayment web site has a signup flow but it only works for individuals. It will ask for your personal social security number. I wanted to open a business account with them using my Federal EIN and business banking accounts. That's when things got ugly.
In order to sign up my business with my EIN there were two primary requirements which were that I own at least 50% of the business and that I am over 18 years of age. I'm not entirely sure how Intuit will handle some businesses where there are multiple owners. Maybe it won't be a problem as long as a majority stake signs some paperwork and they use the business' EIN. However that turned out to only be the tip of the iceberg.
First, even though I was opening a business account, they wanted my personal SSN. To do a credit check. Sorry, that's not okay. I told them I wanted to use my EIN and not my SSN for tax purposes. After the customer rep spoke to someone else he came back and said okay, but instead they would need additional documentation. That additional documentation turned out to be my profit and loss statements and tax returns for the past two years (or how long the business had been operational whichever is shorter). Sorry, that's even more not okay. I am not handing over my private company's P&L statements or tax returns to a merchant processing company.
I should close by saying I am so far very happy with SquareUp and it was extremely easy to sign up with them. I was able to do it from their web site, and I did not have to provide sensitive personal or business financial information to do so. And I have never had to provide that sort of information to any of the other merchant processing companies I have used in the past or for Google Checkout, PayPal, or Amazon Payments.