Does your business accept electronic payments from business customers? If not, now may be the time to start. As the Financial Post1 recently reported, more businesses are making their payments electronically than ever before. Indeed, small and medium-sized businesses want the same convenience consumers have when it comes to paying electronically.
If you're on the fence about this increasingly popular payment method, consider these four good reasons to start accepting electronic payments today.
1. Quicker Payment
If you accept electronic payments from customers, whether credit card or some form of virtual payment, you're generally getting your money within two days. This beats waiting for your customer to receive an invoice, approve it, have the cheque cut, and then mail it out.
2. Enhanced Efficiency
Accepting electronic payments improves processing and reconciliation times dramatically and frees up your accounts receivable team to work on more strategic initiatives. Not to mention the added environmental benefit of reduced paper waste.
3. Reduces Your Risk
Accepting electronic payments lets you grow your business faster because it minimizes the risk of fraud associated with cash sales to unknown purchasers. The lack of paper records also minimizes the risk of sensitive financial information (such as your customers' credit card numbers) falling into the wrong hands.
Perhaps the biggest benefit to your businesses is the assurance that you will receive your money. When you accept an electronic payment from your customer on their American Express card, for example, you can be sure Amex will pay you. Any risk of non-payment associated with that purchase is transferred to Amex.
Your customers will also enjoy additional security when using a virtual payment product. A payment solution like American Express' vPayment, for instance, lets you assign a specific-use virtual account number to each transaction that can't be reused for future transactions and verifies the charges against pre-authorized controls set by the customer.
4. Helps Improve Your Business Cash Flow
Being able to predict when your customers will pay you is important. It allows you to better forecast when you'll have money available to make purchases for inventory, pay staff, or make a big investment to grow your business. Accepting electronic payments can go a long way in having this laser focus on how and when cash is flowing in and out of your business since you can predict exactly when a payment is being made and money is deposited into your account.
It's time to take advantage of today's technology and offer electronic payment options to your business customers. It benefits your bottom line and also helps improve efficiency, minimizes your risk, and gives you more control over cash flow.
Electronic payments and one-use payment programs like American Express' vPayment offer B2B organizations greater opportunities for both buyers and suppliers. Ask American Express about how making and receiving B2B payments electronically can help your business.\
This article is intended for general informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or an opinion on any issue. It should not be regarded as comprehensive or a substitute for professional advice.