Figuring out how you’ll accept payments is a must for business owners, and it’s more complicated than you might think. You want to provide whichever options your customers use most, but this isn’t just about convenience. Accepting a variety of payment types can actually help your enterprise make more money. Consider these five types of payment forms that businesses need to accept and how doing so can increase revenue potential.
Cash may not be a preferred payment method anymore, but it’s still important that you offer it. Many customers like to use cash whenever possible, and you run the risk of losing sales if shoppers have any issues with their cards and don’t have another way to pay. Also, outside of taxes, you don’t pay anything for accepting cash. Credit and debit cards, for example, require things like processing fees and using merchant services.
Credit and Debit Cards:
Image via Flickr by Yu. Samoilov
Credit and debit cards are musts for any business. If you don’t accept this essential plastic, customers will show up and ultimately be turned away because they have no other way to pay. So, you need to accept credit and debit cards. Unfortunately, this means working with a merchant service and paying every time you authorize debit or credit card charges. It’s roughly 21 cents and .05 percent of the total transaction to run a debit card. Credit is more expensive at up to 3 percent of each transaction, depending on the merchant you’re working with.
Think about your industry, too, and what extras you’ll need to accept these payments. Restaurant credit card processing, for example, benefits greatly from point-of-sale hardware. Small or niche businesses that don’t process dozens of payments in an hour may find a solution such as a mobile processor, to be more affordable and efficient.
Whether you only take debit and credit or want to expand and accept services like PayPal and other digital wallets, you’ll need a way to process mobile payments. In fact, finding a company that offers a mobile reader should be one of your criteria for selecting the best credit card processing company for your business.
The mobile reader will connect to a smartphone or tablet, enabling you to accept payments on the go. This gives you the option to take your business on the road or to local events, providing an excellent customer experience while increasing sales.
If you have an online shop in addition to or instead of a brick-and-mortar store, you’ll need to accept payments virtually. You can do this with a merchant account that offers digital purchasing services — just pick a merchant that doesn’t charge excessive fees for this. Set up a digital storefront, and you can accept payments 24/7 from around the nation or even internationally.
Offering whatever payment options are relevant to your customers will drive sales by making it easy for them to make a purchase. Don’t just go with the essentials, such as cash and credit. Expand to meet your customers where they are and make getting paid a seamless process.
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