Can someone recommend how to go about selecting the merchant account/gateway/cart combination for a website that will take deposits, a good portion of which will be released back? For example,
1) To reserve a product, the user provides his credit card and the amount (say $100) is blocked off/authorized
2) Within 1-3 weeks, in 50% of the cases the product becomes available and the credit card is charged the $100. In the other 50% however, the product is deemed unavailable and the site automatically releases the $100 (i.e. the user is not charged anything).
In a nut shell, they are simply reserving their spot in a first-come-first-serve scenario for something that may or may not happen.
Firstly, after speaking to several providers I'm still unclear whether this would have to be a $100 charge and a refund, or if it'd be possible to reserve the right to charge at a later date (with a pre-auth?) and then either charge or reverse. Obviously the goal is to reduce my costs, so how would you go about searching for an account/gateway/cart combination? Where does one even start with the listing of options (except Googleing)? Finally, would you advise different approaches while the volume is still building versus when the business gains some traction?
By way of background, while I've been in the online solutions for quite some time, this is somehow the first time I'm tackling online credit card payments so am pretty much a newbee...
Many thanks for any advice you can provide!
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