Elavon Review

Elavon Review Elavon Logo

As a major payment processor, Elavon has a lot of things going for it — customers can make use of a great many financial products, including online, in-person and mobile payments. That’s why we’d say Elavon is best suited to businesses who want a full-service partner, to process all revenue channels through the same provider.

However, there is a catch. With lack of detail around fees and very disappointing customer reviews, Elavon’s service may not be as good as it sounds…

Things we like:
  • No early termination fees.
  • Wide range of products and services.
  • Access to Elavon Connect — an online customer portal for support and payment information.
Things we don't like:
  • Long 3 year contracts on many products.
  • Reviewers report higher transaction fees than other options and very poor customer support.
  • Wide range of additional fees, including minimum service charges and chargeback fees.

Company background

Elavon, previously known as NOVA, is one of the largest processors in the world. It is responsible for processing over $450 billion per year, making it the 6th largest credit card processor in Europe. Elavon is also part of U.S. Bank, the fifth-largest commercial bank in the US.

In recent years, Elavon has been aggressively expanding in Europe through partnerships and acquisitions, so you might already be using Elavon without knowing it!

For example:

  • In 2000, Elavon entered a partnership with the Bank of Ireland to provide services through EuroConex
  • In 2004, it acquired Polish card processor CardPoint and began a partnership with Santander to provide credit card processing services for Santander business customers
  • In November 2019, it acquired one of the most popular online payment processors in the UK, Sage Pay.

So, Elevon may be one of the biggest payment processor services, but how does it stack up compared to other options on the market? We’ve analysed their entire offering and condensed it into this handy review.

Products & services offered

As you’d expect from one of the largest companies in payment processing, Elavon’s product line is expansive and thorough:

  • In-Person Payments: Elavon will lease you an Ingenico payment terminal to use in your store and payment processing to take the transaction.
  • Online Payment Gateways: If you want to take payments online, you’ll need a payment gateway. Elavon provides either a hosted payment page, where customers can complete their purchase, or an API, enabling you to process payments directly on your website. Both options support currency conversions, instant order notifications and are compatible with over 60 third-party platforms.
  • eShop: Through Elavon eShop, you can run an entire ecommerce operation. This includes the website, inventory management and payment processing. 
  • Mobile Payments: Elavon offers a card reader which connects to your phone to take payments on the go. 
  • ePOS: Elavon has a range of ePOS solutions available for hospitality and retail. It also supports a loyalty card system called Fanfare.

Fees

Unfortunately, Elavon does not publish all their UK fees on its website and you’ll need to contact a customer service rep to get an accurate quote for the service. 

To give you a sense of how much you may pay as an Elavon customer, these are the fees which are published online:

Mobile payments fees

To use Elavon’s mobile payments product, you’ll pay £29+ VAT for the card reader. You’ll then be charged per transaction, ranging from 1.75% for VISA and MasterCard to 2.5% for Discover and JCB. American Express can be accepted for a 1.9% transaction fee. 

eShop fees

An Elavon eShop will cost £100 for setup, followed by a monthly fee of £40. Your first 350 transactions are free, then £0.15 per transaction

Cancellation fees

There is no fee for cancelling your partnership with Elavon. Nevertheless, you’ll still need to agree to a contract before using the service, so be sure that all other relevant fees work for your business before signing on the dotted line. 

Sales & advertising transparency

Resellers and partners

Elavon sells its solutions through independent resellers and partnerships. These have separate fee structures, sales departments and product offerings, which has lead to problems expressed by frustrated customers on online review sites like Trustpilot.

Website

Elavon has the type of website you’d expect from a corporate — it’s well designed and easy to navigate, with simple downloadable brochures for most of their products and services.

However, it’s missing critical information you need to make an informed buying decision. For example, you won’t find fee structures for most of their products. Instead, you must contact a sales representative via telephone or email.

We’d love to see Elavon publishing a single page which outlines all their fees to enable customers to compare solutions without speaking to a sales representative. However, it seems these are individually set for each customer depending upon your requirements. 

Customer service and technical support

It’s essential to have quality customer support, especially when things go awry. With Elavon, your first stop is its self-serve support options.

This includes in-depth documentation and well-produced videos. These resources walkthrough common issues and the tougher bits of the setup process. Elavon has also invested in an easy-to-use customer portal, providing instant access to key information, like transaction logs.

When you need to escalate an issue, Elavon offers customer support 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Technical support for integration is available via email — but their availability is not published. 

Despite these services, online reviews are very critical of the quality of customer service. According to customers on Trustpilot, replies are slow and operations are disorganised, leading to incorrect fines and fees. 

Typical user reviews

The reviews posted on Trustpilot do not make pleasant reading, with Elavon receiving a rating of just 1.4/5. 

Positive Reviews

  • Smooth migrations from other services.
  • PCI compliant solution.
  • Helpful sales representatives (if not supportive customer service post-purchase!).

Negative Reviews

  • Money held “for security reasons” without notice.
  • Unclear transactions fees.
  • Poor customer support when things go wrong with chargebacks and fraud.

See how Elavon compares in our guide to the best merchant account providers for UK SMEs.  

Elavon Verdict: 4/10

Elavon has a wide-ranging offering, making it a one-stop-shop for small and large businesses. However, despite some impressive products, Elavon loses points for not publishing more information about their fee structure and only offering long (3 year) contracts.

We were also disappointed with the quality of their customer service. If you are not confident with payment technology, or need to take risky payments, we’d recommend looking elsewhere. Reviews flagged that balances can be held for review and getting access to these balances can be difficult — not ideal, in any business scenario!

If you are considering Elavon contact us to see what discounted rates we can get you from them and other payment processors.

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