NMA Educates

Nutra Website Guidelines

NMA Educates

Nutraceutical Website Guidelines

At National Merchants Association (NMA), we are deeply committed to advocating for merchants and partners of all types, and providing them with the tools and resources they need to thrive in an ever-evolving payments ecosystem.

The NMA Educates Series is designed to provide helpful, insightful and informative materials to assist the businesses we serve in navigating the world of payments. This is part 1 of 2 in a series related to web site content.

Troubling Website Trends

National Merchants Association has identified some trends on Nutraceutical merchant websites that can delay the acceptance of merchant account applications.

Frequent Website Changes

Merchants not notifying NMA prior to making changes to websites.

Name Inconsistency

Legal name and DBA names inconsistent across submitted documents and website.

Nutra Site Inconsistency

FDA disclaimers and ingredient lists are noncompliant.

Card Brand Noncompliance

Site not meeting requirements for the card brand logos and drop boxes.

Website Compliance

Means faster approvals

Corporate
Names

  

Legal
Stuff

  

Nutra
Specifics

  

Billing
Compliance

  

Other
Specifics

  

Corporate Names
Should be consistent across the site

Must reflect similar name

Potential chargeback issue when  the company name is not remotely  close to the descriptor

Corporate names must match!

  • Ensure that the DBA and legal names match on the website
  • The addresses on the site match the DBA/corp/legal

Nutra Specifics
functional food specific policies

FDA Statement must be included.

Pressure Sales Tactics

FTC guidance has determined that the following are not acceptable for the merchant to have on their website or checkout page*:

  • Quantity limited
  • Limited time only

*Please check latest FTC guidelines for most up-to-date best practices.

Clear Billing
Stick with best practices

Clear Billing

21 day trial with subsequent billing schedule described

Rebilling Compliance

  • Occurring 30 days
  • Notify via email prior to each billing

Other Specifics
to keep in mind

ship within 24 hours of billing

If the website does not specify the time frame that the product will be shipped then the bank requires that the product is shipped within 24 hours of billing

trial period 21 days after shipping date

In order for the consumer to experience the true benefits of the product, some banks require that the trial period is extended to 21 days from the date of shipping

continuity lasts for 12 months

Banks require that any continuity program that occurs for a timeframe greater than 12 months MUST BE RE-AUTHORIZED

no upselling or cross selling

An up-selling Merchant must comply with all of the following:

    • Clearly disclose to the Cardholder all of the following:
      • The name of the up-selling Merchant offering the goods and services in a manner that clearly differentiates the up-selling Merchant from the initial Merchant
      • A description of the goods and services
      • The length of any trial period, including clear disclosure that the Cardholder will be charged unless the Cardholder takes steps to cancel the subsequent transaction
      • The Transaction amount and Transaction Date
      • The cancellation policy
    • Obtain the Cardholder’s express informed consent for any subsequent Transactions by requiring the Cardholder to do all of the following:
      • Enter the Cardholder’s Account Number for the subsequent Transactions
      • Enter the Cardholder’s name, address, and contact information
      • Perform an additional confirmatory action to indicate consent to the Transaction (for example: clicking a confirmation button)
      • Comply with all other Transaction processing requirements
      • This does not apply in the Europe Region.

no restricting refunds

To minimize any potential chargeback and provide the consumer with a good experience, the refunds cannot be restricted.  The refunds cannot be contingent on returning the product, return codes etc.

disclose descriptor and continuity billing

The merchant name is the most important factor in cardholder recognition of transactions. Correct use helps to minimize copy requests resulting from unrecognizable merchant names and reduces costs to acquirers, issuers and merchants.

The merchant name must be the name most prominently displayed by the merchant and by which cardholders recognize the merchant (while also reflecting the merchant’s “Doing Business As” (DBA) name).

no price negotiation

What we have is this – Price points cannot be negotiated (discounted at will) or variable and “decline salvaging.” The bank wants to see consistency with transaction amounts equaling that which is listed on the website.

no decline salvaging

When a credit card is declined, the merchant attempts to process lesser and lesser amounts until the credit card is approved. This practice is not aligned with the card brand best practices.