The Insanity of Letting Payment Processors Have Your Givers

Download this entire series

This is part 8 of 10 in a series called INSANITY: 10 Crazy Things Churches Do That Hinder Online Giving. When it comes to online giving, we’ve identified 10 ways your expectations don’t line up with most online giving vendors’ practices and platforms.

You can download a copy of the entire series for free and we’ll notify you as new information is published.


Imagine your intelligent 18-year old son is studying for the SATs. A lot is riding on top scores, so you hire your florist to tutor him. It’s not working. He’s on his third try and his scores aren’t improving. Even worse, the “tutor” has somehow managed to lock you out of your son’s account, so you can’t access his scores. This is almost too insane to imagine, isn’t it?

In a similar way, when it comes to online giving, insanity is trusting a CREDIT CARD PROCESSOR with members of your congregation and expecting giving to increase.

Payment Processors’ Rights

Every online financial transaction goes through a payment processor, a third-party organization that has gone to great lengths and expense to ensure payments are secure. A church may choose an online giving platform built by people of faith that you trust, but the payment processor, which doesn’t know anything about church, still has a pretty big say in every gift processed. It has the right to:

  • Tack on transaction fees above the standard, non-negotiable bank and card network (i.e. Visa, Mastercard) fees. 
  • Charge the church an additional monthly fee for its services. 
  • Charge the church for any equipment used to process gifts. 
  • Delay getting your gifts into the church’s bank account.
  • Set gift amount limits.
  • Refuse to refund accidental payments.

Why Does Your Payment Processor Have a Relationship with Your Giver?

You might think that the payment processor’s relationship is solely with your church. But the truth is, the organization facilitating the transaction technically owns your givers, which means:

  • In the case of a payment issue such as an accidental gift, your givers can’t get help from the church or even the online giving vendor. They have to take it up with the credit card processor.
  • If your church wants to change online giving platforms, the payment processor can refuse to give the church your giving data. (It technically belongs to the giver and the processor, not the church).
  • The payment processor’s giving form may contain fine print or links to a user agreement that applies to the giver whether they know about it or not. Simply completing a gift can bind your giver to the terms and conditions of the processor, whether they see the fine print or not.

How Vision2 Solves the Payment Processing Problem

Vision2 has made the sizable investment to meet the rigorous standards required to process payments, which is rare among online giving platforms. This allows us to:

  • Oversee every gift throughout the entire process and fix any issue.
  • Shield churches from the complexity of payment processing while still giving them total control over the relationship with givers and their data.
  • Eliminate unnecessary giving limits, onerous contracts and stifling monthly fees.
  • Give you your data should you ever want to switch giving platforms.

Plus, our patented technology enables us to securely embed the giving form in your website, which allows us to operate invisibly so your givers don’t even know about us. All of your givers’ dealings, including completion of their gift on your website, are with the church they trust. 

We use our dual role of online giving platform and payment processor in one to serve the church by removing the limiting practices of traditional payment processors. We use it to empower trust with givers.

<< Previous Chapter | Next Chapter >>

Stop the Insanity and Boost your Giving Now

REMINDER: You can download a copy of this entire series for free. In the guide we show you how to easily fix each insane issue so you can dramatically improve your online giving returns.