The new era of convenience for the customer carries with it a loss of profit for the small business. Paying at the pump with a credit card is faster and easier for the customer, but cuts into the profit of the location. In return for the privilege of accepting plastic, credit card companies charge retailers a processing fee for every card swipe. This swipe fee can range from 2% – 4% of the total purchase price. When fuel prices go up, credit card companies receive a windfall without providing any additional services, while the station owner sees margins shrink. What are station owners to do? It is not practical to refuse payment by credit card. Many stations are actively promoting their brand’s credit card. With lower processing fees than standard credit cards, branded gas credit cards provide the self serve convenience for the customer without the high credit card fees. Research has shown that when a consumer purchases a brand gas card, they become loyal to that brand, make more frequent stops to their favorite brand station and inevitably spend more money inside the convenience store. By using their brand credit card shoppers are also providing important data that the station can use to influence their marketing strategies and the merchandise they offer.