Cannabis Merchants Pivot Payment Processing to Adapt to COVID-19

Jun 26, 2020

So much has changed in such a short time. Just a few months ago, everything was business as usual. Today, the operations of businesses across all industries is dramatically different. As the COVID-19 pandemic has swept the nation, the daily lives of people have been altered and the workplace and business itself has shifted.

Without a doubt, the pandemic has affected every business type and industry. However, it has hit some companies harder than others and in different ways. The cannabis industry, for example, has always struggled with payment processing, but COVID-19 has presented a whole new set of challenges.

In the past, it has been difficult for these businesses to secure payment processing. Banks and traditional financial institutions simply will not work with cannabis companies because of the risk involved. As a result, many of these entrepreneurs have been forced to operate in cash only – incredibly inconvenient, not to mention dangerous.

To operate smoothly, many cannabis merchants have turned to high risk processors like The coronavirus has presented a new set of obstacles like shifting to a remote work environment. Thus far, the cannabis industry has shown that it is up for the challenge.

Turning Lemons into Lemonade

As shelter-in-place went into effect, cannabis companies quickly adapted to ensure the safety and health of their teams and customers. Employees began working from home, and collaboration tools and equipment were invested in to support them. As companies began to implement new technology, training also shifted to virtual demos and Zoom.

It has helped that dispensaries have been designated as essential businesses in many states. In fact, this designation has increased demand from consumers to be able to purchase products during these tough times – which has also put pressure on merchants. With everyone at home, merchants have had to do their research and find ways to sell their products to customers and transact electronically. They have had to pivot to order ahead options, curbside and delivery and e-commerce.

Cannabis Payment Processors

The only way cannabis businesses can provide their customers with credit and debit card processing is to create a CBD merchant account with a processor that specializes in high-risk accounts, such as EMB. Thankfully, payment processors like have made it much easier for cannabis merchants to enjoy quality services for marijuana payment processing. Considered the nation’s top high risk credit card processor, EMB is committed to offering the most affordable and secure merchant services.

If you are struggling to find the best cannabis merchant services to keep operations running smoothly during these uncertain times, consider partnering with the team of experts at

Let us help you get a high risk merchant account today!

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Having a merchant account allows an account holder to take advantage of merchant cash advances. When a merchant is approved for an advance, the business agrees to receive a lump sum of cash in exchange for an agreed-upon percentage of future credit card sales.

Pricing varies depending on the merchant’s industry, past credit card processing history, the type of business seeking the account, average ticket sales, and average transaction volumes.

Yes, EMB works with merchants who are building their credit, as well as those who have poor credit. EMB also approves merchants that have no credit card processing history and businesses that have lost their merchant accounts due to high chargebacks.

Several factors influence a merchant’s risk level. Though only one factor likely will not get a merchant classified as high risk, a combination of these may: business size, location, and industry, credit score, credit card processing history, a industry’s reputation for excessive chargebacks, a prior history of high chargeback ratios, and whether a merchant exclusively sells online.

Virtual terminals are stationed on a merchant’s website, making it easy for customers to make a payment or purchase online. Merchants or a payment processor can easily set up virtual terminals, so online businesses can accept credit and debit card and e-check transactions.

A merchant account is a business account with an acquiring bank. Without this business account, which actually works more like a line of credit, a merchant cannot accept and process credit and debit card transactions. Businesses need a merchant account to accept major credit cards via a static point-of-sale terminal, mobile card reader, or through a virtual payment gateway.

After filling out EMB’s simple online application and submitting any necessary, requested documents, many merchants get approved within 24 and 48 hours.

EMB specializes in working with high-risk merchants. EMB works with many merchants, including but not limited to businesses in these industries: gambling and gaming, adult entertainment, nutraceuticals, vaping and e-cigarettes, electronics, tech support, travel, high-end furniture, weight loss programs, calling cards, e-books and software, and telecommunications.