August 13, 2009, 12:00 AM

Cred-Ex launches as an alternative online payment method for retailers

Cred-Ex offers instant credit to qualified online shoppers and sends them a bill via mail or e-mail. Participating merchants can earn commissions when shoppers who sign up for Cred-Ex on their web sites continue purchasing with it on other retail sites.

Emerging Payments Technology Inc. has launched the Cred-Ex Merchant Advantage Program as an alternative payment method that offers instant credit and flexible payment terms to qualified online shoppers and sends them a bill via mail or e-mail. Participating merchants can earn commissions when shoppers who sign up for Cred-Ex on their web sites continue using it to make purchases on other retail sites, says chief operating officer Coleen Barbiere.

Cred-Ex, based in Secaucus, NJ, also provides its client merchants with data on the online shopping activity of customers who continue purchasing with Cred-Ex on other retail sites, she adds.

The payments processing company is making its technology available directly to merchants or through the Centinel e-commerce platform offered by CardinalCommerce Corp., which also can connect merchants to several other payment systems including major credit cards and more than a dozen alternative methods.

"Merchants continually tell us that using non-bankcard payment options leads to increased sales and appeals to those customers who wouldn`t purchase from their sites otherwise,” says Matt McDowell, CardinalCommerce`s vice president of merchant services. “Today, new payment options are essential for e-commerce growth, and Cred-Ex`s Merchant Advantage Program is the type of tool that will make a difference for our current, and future, Centinel customers."

Cred-Ex is currently setting up its first two online merchants, including a household goods retailer and a small business services firm, says Eric Gelb, director of business development.

To start using Cred-Ex, shoppers on a retail site that accepts it as the payment method fill out a brief online form with their name, the last four digits of their Social Security number and e-mail address. The credit approval process then takes between five and 10 seconds, Gelb says.

Once approved, web shoppers who want to pay with Cred-Ex enter their Cred-Ex I.D. number and their e-mail address during the online checkout process.

Merchants pay fees that start at 1.5% of transaction value, but there are no set-up fees, Gelb says. The set-up process can take 24-48 hours, he adds.

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