While cashless transactions like credit cards and debit cards are the most commonly used mode of payments today, many businesses across the US still accept checks and ACH payments as well. Why are businesses still accepting checks and ACH? Is there an advantage to accepting checks?
Around the beginning of 2017, The Washing Post reported that 97% of small businesses still accept checks as payments. (The Washington Post)
ACH payment processing is not the outdated dinosaur that many young business owners and consumers may believe. The advantages of accepting checks are still relevant today through consumer transactions or even in B2B transactions.
Why should you consider accepting checks and ACH payments for your business? Take a look at these key benefits and decide for yourself:
Even though more consumers are using credit cards instead of cash or checks, not all customers have debit cards or credit cards while others are not comfortable using this type of payment. A check or ACH payment option allows your business to reach a wider target market in addition to those who prefer cash and electronic banking.
Though these customers are definitely in the minority today, they still exist and their money is still valid. One of the advantages of accepting checks for industries such as credit repair or debt collection lies in the paper trail, which can be comforting for certain clients, the proof that they made a payment. Other customers with credit troubles may only be able to use checks to complete transactions, particularly online.
If your business goal is to reach a wide audience, and your target market consists of a large population who prefer and are accustomed to paying with checks or ACH, you should consider adding these payment options. As older generations start shopping online, especially in light of recent events, many may be delighted to find out your business accepts checks and ACH payments. This also improves customer relationships as these types of customers are most likely to purchase from your business again knowing their preferred payment method is available.
Consumers who prefer ACH payments will most likely purchase from your business again since the process is convenient for them. Returning consumers can just shop and have the payment cleared automatically from their bank accounts; they don’t have to worry about making sure they make a credit card payment on time.
Accepting checks and ACH payments is not only beneficial for your business but your customers as well. Accepting checks as a payment method gives potential consumers other options that they are more comfortable with, converting these leads into a sale.
High-risk merchant accounts with low processing fees tend to do better than the competition, trust us we know! Business owners know how fast processing fees can add up. What starts as a few crumbs can become a large piece of the pie.
Personal checks require minimal to no interchange fee compared to credit card transaction fees which are typically 1% to 4% of the total purchase amount. Besides, credit card merchant accounts are charged 10 to 30 cents per transaction, which can quickly accumulate considering how many people use credit cards every day.
In addition to processing fees, there are also set-up and operational fees to think about. Small businesses or start-up organizations should consider accepting checks and ACH payments until the business grows. Payments by check and ACH are practical solutions for small businesses that cannot afford the expensive merchant account fees for credit card processing.
Despite the popularity of credit cards or debit cards, some customers are not comfortable giving out their credit card information online or over the phone due to identity theft. Customers or businesses that make large purchases may be more inclined to take advantage of checks because they’re likely uncomfortable making large payments online. It’s in your best interest to find a payment processing company that offers ACH processing in order to give your customers additional payment options.
ACH payments and electronic checks still allow customers to complete their purchases and pay remotely with the peace of mind that their information is protected. Even customers who shop in physical stores can use checks as electronic checks are processed like credit cards but with lower processing costs, which is another one of the advantages of accepting checks and ACH payments. On top of that, ACH and check payments allow customers to shop physically without bringing cash.