In a shocking article published this morning on Vaping360.com, we learned that MasterCard has joined in the nightmare of regulations that is becoming the norm in our industry. As of January 15, 2017, without warning, MasterCard will begin enforcing harsh regulations on payments for ENDS products. Due to the Deeming Regulations passed by the FDA on August 8th, 2016, MasterCard's Business Risk Assessment and Mitigation compliance program has deemed tobacco products sold online or by phone a high risk category. Therefore, transactions made with MasterCard will soon become a huge pain for vendors and consumers alike.
One solution for customers could be to whip out your Visa or Amex to pay for your favorite juice, but this option will only work for a limited time. Typically, when one company makes a move like this, their competitors follow suit shortly after. Therefore, it is to be expected that companies like Visa, American Express, and Discover will file similar regulations soon.
By January 15, 2017, all online transactions for vaping products will be subject to the following requirements:
- Age Verification of all customers
- Compliance with FDA's rules for labeling, marketing, advertising, promotion, and manufacturing
- Compliance with state and federal requirements (verified by attorney letter)
- $500 registration with MasterCard through payment gateway
- Nicotine health warning displayed prominently on website
- Disclosed billing terms on website
- Required adult signature on delivery
Many of these requirements have already been implemented by Smoke Crossroads and most other online retailers. The most troublesome item on that list is the adult signature. This small detail could potentially double consumer end shipping rates. We at Smoke Crossroads will do everything in our power to prevent these increases from translating to higher prices for our customers.
To conclude, we would greatly appreciate feedback on this topic. We would like to facilitate your purchases and make them as convenient as possible. We would like to hear your answers to questions like:
- Would you still shop at Smoke Crossroads if shipping rates increased?
- Are there other payment options you would like to see on our site?
- Would being present to accept shipments cause an inconvenience?
- How can we best facilitate your experience at Smoke Crossroads.com?
Please send your feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org or comment on this blog post!