online credit card payments

Accept Payments For Adult Goods & Services – Best Options

Processing credit cards and taking payments from your visitors is one of the most satisfying feelings you will have as an entrepreneur working in the adult industry. That is what makes all of the hard work worth it.

Fun fact; the very first credit card transaction online was to purchase adult content.

Before You Get Started

There is no doubt about it, the adult entertainment industry is by far one of the most lucrative sectors online today, with billions and billions of dollars being spent online every single year. Each year that number continues to rise.

Before you can start taking payments on your adult website, you will need to find a suitable merchant to process those payments. The problem is, not all merchants will allow transactions to be performed on adult websites, or to purchase adult-oriented material.

The reason why most of the merchants out there don’t allow adult related transactions is because sales of pornographic material are considered “high risk” to a lot of these companies.

The good news is; however, there are a lot of merchants who will process adult related material. The bad news, they usually charge much more.

I’ve put together a list of adult merchants below, that would be worth your time checking out.

accept credit cards online

Why Are Adult Websites Considered “High Risk”?

There are various reasons why an adult website is considered to be high risk, but the main reason is that there seems to be a high rate of charge-backs.

Some of the reasons for the charge-backs could be:

  • Card, not present transactions.
  • Stolen credit cards being used.
  • Buyers remorse, after the wife, finds the credit card bill.
  • They are used with the purpose of funding an illegal business.

Whatever the excuses are, a lot of merchants don’t want to take the risk processing those orders.

High-Risk Merchant Account Providers

As mentioned earlier, there is a list of reputable merchants who welcome the chance to work with you and process your pornographic orders. Below is a list of websites that I have checked out and looked into for you. Some of these websites I have had personal experience with that I will share in the comments.

#1. Instabill

instabill logoInstabill has been in business since 2001, processing high-risk adult transactions. I have been using this company on an adult toy/lingerie e-commerce site that I own. I’m happy with the service they provide, and any time I have to call them I can get someone on the phone fairly quickly.

Instabill will process transactions for the following:

  • Streaming videos
  • Adult toys
  • Gentlemen’s clubs
  • Online dating
  • Escorts

Instabill will not process payments for live webcam sites.

Instabill Fees

  • Instabill charges a one-time setup fee of $199 (payable only after your application has been approved)
  • On each transaction, they charge a 2.9% processing fee
  • There is also a $0.25 per transaction fee
  • On top of everything else, Visa and Master Card each charge an annual fee of $500

The whole sign up process will take anywhere from 3-15 business days. To get started you can visit their website here.

#2. CC Bill

ccbill logoCC Bill has been around since 1998. One of their specialties is dealing with high-risk adult websites.  I have used CC Bill twice in the past on two different adult websites that I owned many years ago. I remember the experience with them was pleasant, and customer service was always there to help when I needed it.

They will process transactions for the following:

  • Streaming videos
  • Subscriptions
  • Adult toys
  • Gentlemen’s clubs
  • Online dating
  • Live webcams

CC Bill Fees

  • CC Bill does not charge a setup fee or any transaction fees
  • They do charge a 10.8 – 14.5% processing fee
  • Both Visa and Master Card each charge an annual fee of $500

Although CC Bill does cost a lot more than the other merchants I have listed here, I include them because they do offer an excellent service, and they’re a company I have had a lot of experience using in the past.

The whole sign up process can take anywhere from 2-3 weeks. If you would like more information or if you would want to get started with CC Bill you can visit their website here.

#3. eMerchant Broker

emb logoEMB (eMerchant Broker) is a merchant I have set up on a clients website. The whole set up process I remember was smooth and didn’t take too long. We had this merchant set up and making payments within a week.

EMB will process transactions for the following:

  • Streaming videos
  • Subscriptions
  • Adult toys
  • Gentlemen’s clubs
  • Online dating
  • Live webcams

EMB Fees

  • This merchant charges a $15 per month fee
  • A 2.99% processing fee
  • With a $0.25 per transaction fee
  • You will also need a gateway processor like Authorize.net to go along with this merchant, and those gateway processors charge an additional $19.95 per month
  • Both Visa and Master Card each charge an annual fee of $500.

The whole sign up process is said to take anywhere from 3-15 business days. To get started you can visit their website here.

#4. NETbilling

netbilling logoNetbilling has been around since 1998, and they are one of the most recognized adult merchants in the business. I’ve never personally used this company, but I have worked with clients who used them.

They will process transactions for the following:

  • Streaming videos
  • Subscriptions
  • Adult toys
  • Gentlemen’s clubs
  • Online dating
  • Live webcams

NETbilling Fees

  • Netbilling has a one-time application fee of $99.00, which they might be able to waive if you ask
  • They charge a 3.29% processing fee
  • Plus a $0.30 per transaction fee
  • There is a monthly statement fee of $10.00
  • Again both Visa and Master Card each charge an annual fee of $500

Netbilling also offers a Call Center Service for its customers. With the call service, your customers can call into the phone number and ask different questions about your service. The Netbilling staff will answer those customers questions on your behalf, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

For the Call Center Service, Netbilling charges you a flat rate only when someone contacts them. For a phone call, it is $0.70/minute, and an email is $1.30 per email answered.

Getting set up with Netbilling takes about 10 to 12 business days. To visit their website and to get started you can click here.

#5. Payline Data

payline logoPayline Data is a new one for me. I didn’t even know they were around until I began to do some research on adult merchants. I think I’m going to start using them for a new project I’ll be starting soon. Their rates are much better than everyone else.

They will process transactions for the following:

  • Streaming videos
  • Subscriptions
  • Adult toys
  • Gentlemen’s clubs
  • Online dating
  • Live webcams

Payline Data Fees

  • Payline Data charges a $20 per month fee
  • Plus a $0.20 per transaction fee
  • There is also a 2% processing fee that Payline charges
  • As well as an additional 1.5% – 2% interchange fee that is charged by the gateway.

Although those prices might seem a little high, I like the fact that both Visa and Master Card do not charge a $500 fee each per year.

Getting set up and started will normally take about 1.5-2 weeks for the high-risk account. To get started you can visit the website here.

Why Do Visa and Master Card Each Charge $500 Per Year?

Handing credit card overThe reason that Visa and Master Card are both charging an annual $500 service fee is that they consider the adult industry as being ‘high risk.’ (That’s $1000 per year to accept Visa and Master Card)

Throughout the year Visa and Master Card both have a bot that will scan your website looking for keywords that they deem unsuitable. When they find one of these keywords on your site they will immediately contact your credit card processing company and have them get in contact with you. Visa and Master Card say the $500/year fee goes towards paying their employees to ensure you are following the rules.

Can I Accept Other Types Of Credit Cards?

Unfortunately, no. Only Visa and Master Card will allow you to process sales for pornographic or adult related material.

All of the other types of credit card providers such as; American Express, Chase, Discover, Citibank, Capital One, and so on, will not allow for “high risk” transactions.