The Top 5 Benefits of Merchant Processing for Your Business

processingDebating whether or not it’s worth your time, expense, or effort to offer credit and debit card payments at your school by setting up a merchant account?

Most who do so find it’s more than worth it! Here are the top five reasons why.

1. Finally begin accepting credit cards and debit cards

While this may seem obvious, the greatest benefit a merchant account delivers is the ability to accept credit cards and debit cards instead of just cash or checks.

Today, it’s pretty much the “norm” that your customers expect to use the plastic in their card_terminalwallets (, rather than cash or check) for all kinds of transactions. Therefore, to remain competitive as a business, it’s important to provide that payment option to them.

2. Increase enrollment and sales

There was a study performed by The Sloan School of Management at MIT which revealed that customers spend more when given the option to use credit cards over cash. In fact, their research shows that customers can spend up to 100% more!

Think about the impact of this at your school. Such an increase in financial transactions would directly impact sales and overall growth of your business.

3. Enjoy the benefits of better Money management

Accepting credit cards and enabling customers to make online payments for classes significantly streamlines the way your business handles transactions. Instead of counting cash, chasing late payments, and dealing with deposits, electronic payments keep you better organized and allow for better cash flow management and budget forecasting.

Credit card transactions also help prevent customers from building large balances due to your school because of their personal fluctuating income. Instead of you carrying these due balances on their behalf, such parents can now pay their full balance to you and go into a payment program with their credit card company. After all, it’s not your business to act as their personal bank.

4. Avoid bad checks

By using merchant account services and accepting electronic payments, your business completely avoids the hassle and costs associated with bounced checks.

5. Please your customers with the added convenience

A merchant account generates happy (and family_at_computerreturning) customers simply because it gives them the flexibility to make purchases in different ways. Whether it’s with credit or debit cards, online payments or recurring billing, your customer can be at ease knowing the payment process is fast and easy!

Texting for Businesses

If you are a business, it’s important to be able to get messages quickly to your customers. For example:

  • When weather forces a class cancellation
  • To send a reminder for performers regarding which costume they need for today’s appointment
  • To make a last-minute schedule change
    Texting can be an ideal way to do this. It’s something that many business text-hand - LOWsoftware services, such as ClassJuggler, enable business owners or managers to do.

But doing it right –  using smart business  practices  for texting –  can be extremely important to make sure that the recipient  doesn’t tag your text messages as spam, which may result in the recipient or the recipient’s mobile carrier blocking all future messages you send that person. To prevent getting tagged by a customer or mobile carrier as spam, follow these…

Business Texting Best Practices

  1. Don’t include a dollar sign ($49) or percentage sign (15% off) or other finance related marketing language, such as, “Purchase today!” Doing so can get your text message blocked by the mobile carrier as marketing spam mail. Avoid using the phrase free, sale, or buy.
  2. Generally avoid using the text messaging service for marketing purposes at all. Certain government organizations have laws against using text messaging for marketing in order to protect consumers.
  3. Instead, consider texting customers as a great way to send important and timely messages to an individual or group of individuals To help with this, ClassJuggler’s texting feature allows you to filter your recipient list by class, parents versus students, date of class, and many other factors, so you can limit text messages to just those who really need to receive it.
  4. Go easy on the frequency of messages you send out. In today’s busy world, you can quickly annoy your customers by bombarding their phone with messages, which could motivate them to block your messages altogether.
  5. Also to avoid annoying customers, who may be in the middle of other important business, make sure the content of what you’re sending is actually relevant and timely to them. If it isn’t both timely and relevant, it’s better to send messages by email.
  6. Don’t use the phrase “reply STOP”
  7. Make sure to get permission from your customer to send the messages this way. An easy way to do this in ClassJuggler is to include information about your intention to do so when parents are signing up in the Parent Portal to request classes or make payments online. They will pass through screens that require the parent to click a checkmark box indicating their agreement with whatever you have written.

Following these good business practices for SMS/texting will help ensure that your phone number is not blocked by an individual recipient or by the recipient’s mobile carrier.

Learn more about the SMS text messaging in ClassJuggler’s Help. The SMS text messaging features are available in the following ClassJuggler products:

The New ClassJuggler Is Here!

In case you haven’t heard, a plethora of improvements are now live at ClassJuggler.com. Among the new features in our September release are:

  • Class > eMail Multiple Classes – This new feature lets you select one or many classes to email. Each class will be evaluated for enrollees, duplicate enrollees will be removed, and then the parent (customer) account and secondary contacts (if provided) will be emailed the selected email template. The customer Communications Tracker will also log these emails with all details of the classes selected.
  • Tools > Mass Delete Classes – This new tool allows you to select one or more expired, canceled, or inactive classes for mass deletion.
  • Reports > Financial > Deposit Summary – This new report makes generating a daily or monthly deposit summary list simple. These summary reports can be used for deposits to your bank for cash and checks, and will be extremely useful allowing you to easily reconcile ClassJuggler with your bank and merchant account statements and your accounting software

Some notable enhancements to existing features include:

  • Customer > Transactions > Input Charge – We’ve added a new button to the Input Charge screen to allow for payment collection immediately after creating a new charge. We wonder why we waited so long to add this simple enhancement?
  • Customer Transactions – You’ll find updated the credit card indicator icon from the old [c] icon to a modern credit card icon. This new icon make it much easier to determine credit card transactions.
  • Customer > Communications Tracker – There’s new tracker items for customers included in a mass emailing multiple classes.
  • Customer > Maintenance Page 2 – Notice the modified listing of policies and agreements to display the text “MAN” and “OPT” to differentiate mandatory and optional policies. The answers for optional polices are displayed as “Yes” or “No” just before the title of the policy.
  • Customer > Policy and Agreement Management – On the edit screen for policies, the mandatory and optional type of each acknowledged policy Ð and the optional answer Ð is now displayed under each policy where the “date added” is displayed. Added a date picker to the pop-up window when adding a new policy to a customer. If the policy is optional, you now must select to agree or not agree to the added policy, based on your customer’s wishes.
  • Class > List Classes – Greatly improved the sorting of class information presented in this report. By default, the listing will show classes sorted by the primary sort option and then day of week and start time Ð for example, when selecting class name it will sort by “class name, then day and start time”. The only exception to this rule is for the sort option “Day, time, name” which sorts first by day and time, then by name. Eliminated the sort option “Begin Time (special)” which was an old workaround to the sorting issue by day and time. (thanks to many suggestions from our clients)
  • Events > List Scheduled Events – Improved the speed of the list scheduled events and calendar of scheduled events screens by over 460%.
  • Events > Enroll Existing Student – Updated policies functionality to include new optional policies.
  • Tools > Self-Service Manager – Made settings for all credit card types “on” by default for new client setup. Added more robust and useful default messages for the sign-in page and My Messages page. This also includes a prompt to customize this boilerplate text.
  • Tools > Inactive Record Manager – Updated this screen to include a date picker button and modified the confirmation to show on a screen of its own for easier processing. Also re-wrote the help page to include much more information on how the tool works and instructions for backing up your data prior to running the tool.
  • Customer Self-Service: My Information – The Policies & Agreements screen now shows the status and response of policies so that mandatory and optional policies will have correct identification. Acknowledged policies will also be displayed in most recent agreed order by family, and then by child names for student policies.

That’s not all! – There are over 40 updates in this release. To get even more information on the new release and what’s changed, you can peruse the full “Change Log” notes, which you’ll find on your Home Base screen after you log in to your ClassJuggler account:

change log

Here, you will find all of the details on each and every new feature, enhancement, and bug fix. In fact, you may even see your own name listed beside one of the features or fixes if you suggested it to us!

These improvements affect our customers who are using any of these ClassJuggler products:

Kudos from Cheer Camps & Gymnastics School Customers

It’s always a joy to receive testimonials from our customers, because YOU can say it much better than we can.

Here are five from cheer school and gymnastics studio owners and managers who have chosen Cheer ClassJuggler online business management software for schools to help them manage their classes, students, instructors, and studio bookkeeping.

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We really appreciate your words of praise for our cheer/gymnastics studio software.

If you’re not yet using Cheer ClassJuggler for your gymnastics or cheer school, get one month free now!

Kudos from Dance School Customers

It’s always a joy to receive testimonials from our customers, because YOU can say it much better than we can.

Here are five from dance studio owners and managers who have chosen ClassJuggler Dance to help them manage their dance classes, students, instructors, and dance studio bookkeeping.

dance studio testimonials 1

Their words about our dance studio software:

  • “I love everything about it – Great product!” (Shannon of Rising Stars Cheer & Dance)
  • “I am VERY satisfied with their system!” (Dominic of Philadelphia Dance Theater)
  • “I highly recommend this to anyone!” (Natale of The Dance Center)
  • “I did free trails for three different companies, and ClassJuggler was head-and-shoulders better than the others!” (Robert of Just for Kicks Dance)

If you’re not yet using ClassJuggler Dance for your dance school, get one month free now!

Great new improvements for ClassJuggler in September

Coming this month is the new release ClassJuggler 6.6.2. In it, you’ll find improvements to existing features, as well as several new features. Here’s a teaser of what to expect.

New Features:

  • Mass-Delete Classes: dance - so excited
    ClassJuggler already saves you time by auto-archiving old classes when their end dates pass while keeping the class history available – useful when you need to research prior enrollment or attendance history. But if you’ve built up dozens or hundreds of expired, canceled or inactive classes that you no longer want tracked, the new Mass Class Delete tool makes it easy to select one, dozens, or hundreds of classes to delete in one fell swoop!
  • Mass E-mail Multiple Classes:
    It’s so easy to send an e-mail in ClassJuggler to all parents who have a child in a chosen class. But there are times when you need to send the same email to the parents of multiple classes. Now you can e-mail one class or dozens of classes, all at the same time, using the new e-mail Multiple Classes communications tool.
  • Deposit Summary Report:
    This new report makes generating a daily or monthly deposit summary list drop-dead easy. These summary reports can be used for deposits to your bank for cash and checks, and will be useful for reconciling ClassJuggler with your bank and merchant account statements and your accounting software.

Improvements:

  • Class Listings
    The Class Listing screen shows a lot of information at a glance about all of your scheduled classes. You also have a bevy of filters for searching for a specific class in dozens of ways. With the new release, the class list screen will also be able to show happyChick-orig - Copyclasses sorted in the order of day and time.

    By default, all classes now will be sorted by the primary sort field you choose, such as “class name,” and then by day and start time. You can even choose a new sort option that allows you to look at your class listing by day, time, and then name to see your entire weekly class schedule at a glance. We know you’re gonna love this new requested feature.

  • Quick Payment Input After Charge
    We’ve added a new button to the Input Charge screen to allow for payment collection immediately after creating a new charge – a simple enhancement that will save you time!

And remember: since ClassJuggler school software is online, the entire upgrade happens seamlessly – no work on your part!