EVO Payments Review for 2020

EVO Payments is a New York-based merchant services provider with a global presence. On their website, they say they operate in 50 different markets around the world, and can process payments in over 130 different currencies. EVO Payments currently maintain divisions in the United States, Canada, Mexico, and a variety of European countries—including England, Ireland, Germany, Spain, Poland, and the Czech Republic.

What can EVO Payments offer your business in terms of merchant services? We’re here to help you find out.

In this EVO Payments review, we’ll break down the capabilities, pricing, and pros and cons of this global processor. Plus, we’ll compare EVO Payments to other top solutions on the market—so you have all the information you need to decide what’s right for your business.

What Is EVO Payments?

EVO Payments is a merchant acquirer that offers a range of products and services including merchant accounts, payment gateways, POS tools, and developer tools. With these services, EVO can offer you the products and tools you need to accept payments in a way that works best for your business.

This being said, as EVO Payments operates internationally, it’s important to note that this review will only focus on the products and services offered to U.S.-based merchants.

Along these lines, it’s not only worth mentioning that the product and services offered by EVO Payments will vary significantly based on your country, but also that EVO Payments is less than transparent with the information they provide on their website.

On the whole, there is very limited information about the details around their product offerings. Additionally, EVO Payments distributes products and services through a large network of third-party independent sales organizations (ISOs), sales agents, and developers.

In essence, this means your pricing terms, contract terms, and product offerings could vary greatly depending on the reseller you work with. Generally, we don’t recommend using resellers for merchant services solutions, as these types of organizations often lack transparency and aren’t always upfront with their customers. 

Therefore, if you are going to consider using EVO, you’ll want to go through them directly to learn more about their products and services.

EVO Payments Pricing

First and foremost, you might be wondering about EVO Payments pricing.

Unfortunately, as we’ll also discuss below in regards to their capabilities, EVO Payments doesn’t provide much pricing information on their website.

In fact, they simply write:

“Open an all-in-one EVO merchant account and take advantage of simple pricing, free setup and global payment processing.”

This being said, based on customer reviews (which, again, we’ll discuss below) and the way that merchant service providers like EVO Payments typically work with resellers—this essentially means that EVO Payments operates on a quote-based pricing structure.

In this case, if you apply for an account through EVO, an EVO sales representative will price their services based on the specifics of your business and the particular products you need. Similarly, this means that if you work with a reseller, the pricing you receive will be up to the discretion of that company.

Estimating the Cost of EVO Payments

Although it’s impossible to determine EVO Payments pricing without working directly with their team or with a reseller, there are some things you can keep in mind with regard to the cost for your business.

First, EVO will likely quote your business by taking into account the size of your business, your sales volume, your industry, and more. Then, your pricing will also be determined based on the products and services you need. These costs might include software costs, hardware costs, and of course, the cost of credit card processing.

As an example, if you need to purchase a full POS system from EVO, you’ll likely have to pay a monthly fee for the POS software, a one-time fee (or monthly lease fee) for the hardware you need, as well as per-transaction fees for credit card processing.

In addition, EVO might charge you a range of recurring, one-time, or incidental fees. In fact, as a more traditional merchant account provider, you’re more likely to see some of these types of fees than you are with newer payment service providers, like Square or Stripe. Some fees you might encounter are:

  • Monthly account fees
  • Setup fees
  • Cancellation fees
  • PCI-compliance fees
  • Chargeback fees
  • Payment gateway fees
  • Statement fees
  • Batch fees, and more

Features of EVO Payments 

With this pricing information in mind, let’s break down the information that EVO Payments does make available on their website. As we mentioned, EVO Payments gives a general sense of the merchant services they offer, but don’t go into very many specifics.

Payment Processing

EVO Payments is a direct processor, meaning they will provide you with a dedicated merchant account and manage your credit card processing.

Merchant accounts are provided via either Deutsche Bank Trust Company Americas or Wells Fargo. In terms of applying for your merchant account, EVO aims to make the process as seamless as possible through what they call “On-Time Approval.” With On-Time Approval, EVO evaluates applicants in real-time via an online portal, making it possible to receive same-day acceptance.

Once onboard, EVO Payments will allow you to process magstripe, EMV (chip card), and NFC (digital wallet) payment methods, as well as ecommerce transactions (more on that later).

As previously mentioned, EVO Payments can also accept payment in over 130 different currencies. Credit card types accepted include Accept Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover, Diners Club International, EBT, and debit cards. Other accepted payment methods include echecks and ACH transfers

evo payments review, dashboard

EVO Payments dashboard. Image source: EVO Snap* Developer Documentation

Point of Sale (POS)

EVO Payments does not sell any proprietary POS hardware, but does partner with major providers in the industry. On the EVO Payments Developer website, they say that you can acquire a variety of different types of credit card terminals from leading brands like Dejavoo, Verifone, and Ingenico. You can also process mobile payments using your smartphone.

Again, EVO isn’t particularly specific about the POS solutions they offer, but it does seem like you can use EVO Payments with a variety of different kinds of POS terminals and software. If you want more information, therefore, you’ll need to work directly with an EVO sales representative.

Ecommerce

If you need a payments solution for your ecommerce website, you can use one of the many online-based solutions offered by EVO Payments.

EVO offers payment gateways, virtual terminals, and recurring payments—plus the omnichannel EVO Snap* platform that allows developers to integrate an all-in-one online payment solution for ecommerce businesses.

Developer Tools

Perhaps the most information-rich section of the EVO Payments U.S. website is the section on EVO’s developer tools. And when we say developer tools, we really mean EVO Snap* (the asterisk is part of the name).

EVO Snap* provides payment APIs and toolkits that make it possible to integrate EVO Payments into a broad array of third-party apps, POS systems, shopping carts, and other software. 

Marketing Tools

EVO’s description of their marketing services is brief. According to the website, EVO Marketing allows you to “connect consumer data with payment and marketing services to create and enhance customized loyalty programs, card-linked offers, and real-time rewards at the point-of-sale.”

There is also a service that allows you to create branded gift cards and process them via your EVO Payments merchant account.

Reporting

Another area without a lot of specific information is EVO’s reporting tools.

On the website, it says EVO provides their merchants with a web portal where they can “easily track sales and customer spending patterns, measure marketing effectiveness, process returns and voids, and a lot more.”

Merchant Cash Advances

EVO Payments say they can provide merchants with short-term capital in as little as 24 hours.

Merchants would repay EVO Payments with a percentage of their sales each month.

Security

EVO says they provide merchants with data protection and fraud-fighting tools.

On the website, they say “EVO’s sophisticated fraud-fighting tools reduce the time, cost, and complexity of PCI compliance.”

Customer Service

For U.S.-based merchants, EVO Payments offer 24/7 technical support by phone. In terms of other resources, perhaps the best information can be found within the developer’s tools on the EVO Snap* website.

EVO Payments Review: Pros and Cons

Based on everything we’ve discussed thus far in our EVO Payments review, let’s explore the possible advantages and drawbacks of using this merchant service provider for your business.

Pros

First, here are a few benefits to consider:

  • Variety of services: Although EVO Payments fails to provide a lot of information on their products and services, they do seem to offer a lot of options for businesses. This is typically one of the benefits of working with a large merchant acquirer—they’ve usually scaled to the point where they can be an end-to-end solution for their merchants. Any business that works with EVO Payments will have the flexibility to pick and choose the products they need to create a truly bespoke payments service. And because EVO operates around the world, they can be a reliable partner as your business scales.
  • International reach: If your business operates outside of the U.S., or if you are an ecommerce merchant, EVO Payments makes it easy for you to process a broad range of currencies. Furthermore, EVO can provide merchant accounts in 50 different markets around the world, meaning you won’t have to find a new merchant account provider if and when you begin operating abroad.

Cons

Of course, there are drawbacks to keep in mind as well:

  • Lack of information and transparency: Even for a merchant service provider, EVO’s website is sorely lacking in information. In an industry that is already rife with transparency issues, this is certainly troublesome. There are already enough merchant services providers out there that don’t offer specific pricing information and rely on third-party resellers. But on top of all that, EVO also doesn’t give a sufficient amount of information on the products they offer. It may be difficult to trust a vendor that gives you so little to work with.
  • Negative customer reviews: As we’ll discuss in greater detail below, the majority of online customer reviews written about EVO Payments merchant services are extremely negative.

EVO Payments Customer Reviews

Unfortunately, despite having an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau, EVO Payments has had a total of 166 in the past three years on that site.

Additionally, the other online reviews available about this merchant service provider are generally negative.

Although there are some more positive reviews discussing the service in the U.K., U.S. business owners have a number of complaints about the service they received from EVO.

More specifically, these negative reviews typically focus on:

  • Held payments
  • Steep cancellation fees
  • Hidden or unclear fees
  • Unauthorized charges
  • Unhelpful customer service

Of course, it’s always important to take negative reviews with a grain of salt, as customers with a poor experience are more likely to leave reviews than those with a positive one. This being said, however, considering the number of BBB complaints and generally negative sentiment toward EVO Payments, these reviews are certainly worth keeping in mind.

EVO Payments Alternatives

At this point, whether or not you think EVO Payments merchant services are right for your business, it’s important to consider top alternatives—and determine whether there are other options out there that can better serve your business’s needs.

Square

There are a lot of differences between Square and EVO.

For example, Square is a payment service provider, meaning you get an aggregated merchant account with a built-in gateway. Square also offers a transparent processing rate of 2.6% + $0.10 for in-person transactions and 2.9% + $0.30 for online transactions (on all credit card types).

Furthermore, with Square, you get free add-ons like POS software and a mobile magstripe reader. Perhaps most importantly, the Square website is loaded with information on all its products and services, including pricing details.

Read our full Square review here.

CDGcommerce

If you’d prefer a dedicated merchant account, you might look into CDGcommerce.

This merchant acquirer offers a pricing model based on your transaction volume. If you process under $10,000 in monthly volume, you’ll only have to pay for the price of credit card processing—2.75%+ $0.30 per transaction for in-person payments and 2.90%+ $0.30 per transaction for online payments.

There are no monthly fees, annual fees, or other extraneous fees—plus, CDGcommerce includes a free payment gateway, free mobile application, and they’re compatible with a handful of POS systems.

Read our full review of CDGcommerce here.

Is EVO Payments Right for Your Business?

At the end of the day, based on the lack of available information and negative customer reviews, it’s hard to recommend using EVO Payments as your merchant service provider.

Although EVO Payments seems to offer a variety of products and services that would be particularly appealing to businesses participating in international commerce, it’s impossible to know exactly what EVO offers without working with one of their sales representatives. Additionally, EVO doesn’t offer any transparent pricing information—making it difficult not only to estimate your costs, but know if you’re getting a good deal from their services.

Therefore, if you do decide to learn more about EVO, we’d advise that you do so with caution.

This being said, perhaps the best course of action is to explore alternatives—like Square and CDGcommerce—that are much more upfront about the services they provide and how they can help your business accept and process payments.

Compare more solutions with our list of top payment processing companies.

Matthew Speiser

Matthew is a former staff writer at Fundera. He has written extensively about ecommerce, marketing and sales, and payroll and HR solutions, but is particularly knowledgeable about merchant services. Matthew's writing has been published in Business Insider, The Fiscal Times, Best Company, and NJ.com, among others. Matthew was also a co-author for Startup Guide—a series of guidebooks designed to assist entrepreneurs in different cities around the world. He has a degree in journalism from the University of Delaware. Email: matthew.speiser@fundera.com.
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