If you have two independent locations, you’ll need two independent merchant accounts. The reason for this is two-fold:
- It helps avoid chargebacks from customers who don’t recognize a location on their bank statement. Many banks now post detailed information about charges, and seeing the wrong address associated with a charge may initiate a costly and time consuming chargeback.
- Visa/Mastercard/Amex make the rules, and one of their rules is that each independent location has to have their own separate merchant account.
In addition to the above reasons, there’s a third, more practical reason. Merchant accounts can’t connect to more than one bank account at a time. As such – if you want your deposits to be split by location, you’ll have a harder time with accounting reconciliation if you’re depositing from two locations into one account. Having two merchant accounts allows you to open a bank account for each location, which can alleviate accounting frustrations.