You have this site…it’s got great content, a rockin’ design, and it all works flawlessly. You have your banners, and your advertising in place.
So how do you bring in the money? How do you process passwords, credit cards, and all of the other good stuff – good for you financially, and good for the member in that they can finally see what’s beyond the flashy curtain and teaser clips.
The main company that the majority of adult paysites use is CCBill. Epoch is another processor – in fact, they’ve won a few XBiz awards for their services. They can handle all of your credit card processing for you, including rebills, so that it’s one less thing for you to worry about. The extra nice thing is that it also records the email address of any members that, say, join and then leave, you basically have a built-in email list to let them know of any new content or feature that you may have implemented on your site that might bring them back. Remember, though – no spamming! No one, including members, likes spam.
As far as payment processors go, you can’t beat either of those companies – I’ll list them at the bottom for easy checking. But in any case, your site is going to have to be approved for processing. It usually takes about a week, so you should start the process early, while you’re still working on your content.
Both companies also handle the big credit card companies – and for the best income potential, I would seriously suggest that you get approved for VISA/Mastercard through the processors as well. There is a cost, though – $750 to set it up, and $350 for each following year. That’s per-master-account/per-processor, so if you have multiple sites through a gateway (such as a network of several sites), we’re not talking about $750 per site.
VISA/Mastercard approvals are where a lot of companies hit a glitch. VISA/Mastercard is, by definition, family-friendly. Even though CCBill and Epoch/Paycom are adult paysite processors, they only handle VISA/Mastercard. Your site is still going to have to go through a secondary approval process by them, otherwise you will only be restricted to the other payment options offered by CCBill or Epoch/Paycom. It’s a stricter approval process – for instance, they don’t like to approve specific fetishes that involve body fluids, nor do they like to approve sites that include scenes of gratuitous violence, rape, or anything else that may look like one of the people on the site wasn’t consenting to the scene depicted. I’m not going to be specific here about what will and what won’t be approved, but usually, their compliance department will send you an email with a list of corrections that will need to be made prior to approval. The correction may just be a “hey, you forgot to include the 2257 Compliance Statement on every page”, or it may be more elaborate, depending on the type of site you are submitting.
The VISA/Mastercard approval will take from 2 weeks to a month, so be prepared for that as well.
The last post on this series will be about content management and password protection…please stay tuned, and I promise it won’t be that long a break this time between posts!
Here’s the list of payment processors that handle adult websites. Please do your due diligence in finding your own processor – some are for Europe only, or are relatively new to the scene. Obviously, don’t go for the cheapest option here – there is a reason why CCBill and Epoch have the reputations they do.
*NOTE* I do NOT recommend PayPal for adult membership site payment processing. It’s ok if you’re selling DVDs or signed pics…simple, single-unit sales. Recurring membership billing, or any site that you hope to be making money on through any sort of membership, runs the risk of being shut down if it is through PayPal. The huge problem with this is that rather than fault the processor, members will fault you for having a site that doesn’t work…best not to potentially mess with your reputation as a reliable site.