Starting a business is a major commitment with an endless list of things to think about. Payment processing is just one of those many items to consider. Here is a brief overview of the different payment methods you may choose to accept and how you can process them.
Payment Cards and Systems
Card payments are the most popular form of payment used by consumers today. Not offering this payment option could be detrimental to your business’ sales potential. Here are a few options businesses use today for credit card processing services:
Payment gateways allow businesses to accept card payments online and in person. They facilitate the transaction between your payment processing bank and your customer’s card-issuing bank to transfer the funds from their account to yours.
This type of payment allows customers to use their mobile device and digital wallet or eWallet to complete transactions without having a physical card present. This requires the merchant to have the software application and accompanying hardware to complete the transaction.
Point of Sale (POS).
A POS is the traditional payment processing system in which a customer inserts or swipes their card at a physical terminal in the store. There are also mobile POS systems on the market, which are handheld wireless devices that can process card payments.
Credit Card Terminal.
Credit card terminals are similar to POS systems in that they are physical pieces of hardware that can dip and swipe credit or debit cards. However, many vendors also offer virtual terminals that allow you to take card information via a computer, rather than a card reader and keypad.
Some processing services offer email invoicing to allow businesses to send invoices to their clients. The clients then have the ability to click on the link and pay their invoice through a variety of methods including credit/debit cards and ACH.
If your business accepts ACH or eCheck payments, the options are similar, but not identical.
Online payment gateways can be used to complete ACH or eCheck payments. When the customer lands on the payment screen, they simply select this option instead of credit or debit card, enter their banking information and submit the payment.
Subscription services and repeat billing can also be accommodated through an online payment gateway and directly debit funds from your customer’s checking account. Depending on how your eCommerce selections are set up, a customer can choose to make a one-time purchase, or sign up for recurring purchases on a weekly, monthly, annual, or another timeframe basis.
If your customers prefer a personal touch, you can offer to take payments over the phone. You can use your online payment portal to collect their information and process the payment without the customer ever logging in to a computer or mobile device.
Remote Deposit Capture.
This service basically turns paper checks into electronic ones. Much like the mobile deposit feature in your banking app, businesses can capture images of physical checks and convert them to electronic payments.
If your business decides to accept cryptocurrency as payment for your goods or services, you will need a crypto terminal to process it.
A crypto terminal is a device that can be either digital software or physical hardware. It allows customers to connect to your virtual wallet and transfer funds there to pay for the goods and services you are providing.
Virtual Crypto Terminal.
If your crypto terminal is virtual, it will basically be a page on your website. When customers go to their shopping cart to pay for their items, they will choose crypto and it will take them to a different pay screen than what is used for other forms of payment.
Physical Crypto Terminal.
For a brick-and-mortar store, merchants can purchase a physical device that can be connected to their existing POS system. This allows your cashiers to accept crypto for payment, in addition to more traditional forms of payment.
As more and more payment systems, services and currencies become available, merchants have many different payment options to offer customers. More and more businesses have turned to offer online and alternative payments to grow their customer base. From payment cards to electronic checks to cryptocurrency, businesses have many different options for accepting customer payments.