There are literally dozens of industries that can benefit from accepting online payments. As a consumer, it’s a real bummer when a business (large or small) that I frequent is not setup for online payments or online anything for that matter! With a busy work life, travel, and hobbies, when I need to pay for a service I’ve consumed, I want it to be easy and convenient.
Here are five industries that can benefit the most from accepting online payments. If you own a business in one of these industries, consider adding online payments to your payment collection arsenal. If you frequent these types of businesses, consider asking them to add online payment processing to make things easier for you.
1) Fitness Centers
It’s hard enough to get motivated to go to the gym. If you have to think about writing a check and mailing in your bill every month, you’re more likely to cancel. Setting customers up on a recurring billing schedule can be a huge help in retaining members, reducing spend on collections, and ensuring customers have a great experience. The ability to take one-off online payments for things like locker rentals, merchandise sales, personal training, and towels fees is also a great plus.
With tax time right around the corner (are you procrastinating like me??) accountants are likely working 100 hour weeks to keep up. The last thing you should be thinking about is how you’re going to get paid for services rendered. Getting prior approval from customers through a paper authorization form and keying in future payments to an online payment gateway can drastically cut the amount of time spent tracking down payments in late April when you should be on that much needed vacation!
My landscaper (Pete – are you reading this?) sends me an invoice via email every month. I have to print out the invoice, write a check, stuff it in an envelope, address the envelope, find a stamp, and then find a mailbox. That takes way too much time, and I often find the envelope a week later sitting under a pile of papers on my desk (which means he didn’t get paid, and now I’m late). I would be much more satisfied if I was debited automatically every month (say on the 1st or the 15th). Just send me a receipt!
We just wrapped up a month dedicate to non-profits here at PaySimple. Speaking with many non-profits and their patrons, we confirmed that many people want to donate to your organization, but often don’t out of sheer convenience. The next time you send out a direct mail piece soliciting annual gifts, consider an email (it saves money and is more environmentally friendly) with a link to an online donation form. It’s easier, cheaper, more professional in many cases, and more secure!
5) Child Care
How responsible could a five year old be? How many times have you heard the phrase “just look for the check in Johnny’s backpack?” Parents are busy, and sometimes they forget to pay on time, so they end up stuffing the check in their child’s backpack, hoping you will receive it when they get to day care after school. By offering these parents the ability to make online or automatic payments for child care related services, you’re providing a better customer experience and improving your cash flow! That means less lost payments, less time thinking about or following up on that late check, and more time doing what you love – taking care of kids!
Online payment acceptance will make your business more efficient, help you retain customers, and provide a valuable selling point when acquiring new ones (like me!).