30 September 2009

9 Good Reasons Why It is Worth Accepting Credit Card Payments to Improve Your Business

The reasons why it is advantageous for your business to accept credit card payments is that it increases your sales; it promotes better cash flow; it involves fast and easy processing; it helps you keep up with the competition in the industry; it keeps your funds secure; it continually presents better features; it helps you save on some costs; it promotes positive image of your business; and it ensures full support from your provider.

You may be wondering if it is even worth spending a penny from your business to be able to accept credit card payments considering the costs involved.  Well in the truth is, its advantages will supersede the expenses you incur.  Here are the main benefits of accepting credit card payments:

It increases your sales

The best advantage in accepting credit card payments is that it gives you great opportunity to increase in your sales.  It expands customer base, attracts and retains customers, automatically converts foreign currencies, and allows installment payments for your customers, which all lead to the enhancement on your sales.

  • Expands customer base.  If you accept credit cards on your online store, you are able to cater to more clients in your area as well as international clients, thus expanding your customer base and increasing your sales as a result.  You can even accept different currencies if you prefer to open an offshore merchant account, making it more enticing for international customers to purchase from you.

  • Attracts and retains customers.  Aside from the quality goods and services you offer, acceptance of credit card payments is really a big deal for your clients who give importance to convenience as it does not require them to bring the cash they need for their expenditures.  It would now be safer for them especially when making big purchases from your retail store.  In addition, accepting credit card is another payment option for them, making your store more attractive for them to shop.   Finally, with credit card payments, your customers can also choose which payment channel to make use of when purchasing, such as online, retail, mobile, or mail order/telephone order (MOTO), giving them more freedom, thus promoting customer retention and loyalty.

  • Automatically converts foreign currencies.  With wider customer base, you should expect to receive purchases from all over the world.  One of the greatest features of credit card processing is that it automatically converts foreign currencies for your international clients.  You and international customers do not have to deal with the problem of converting the amount.  This makes it more attractive for customers, encouraging them to shop from you more; thus increasing your sales.

  • Allows installment payments for your customers.   Credit card holders can opt to make installment payments for their purchases that allow them to buy more expensive items from your store, thus enhancing your sales and profits.  Your customers do not anymore need to save a bulk of cash to purchase their dream TV from your shop, for example; rather, they can avail of the installment plan from their credit card issuer and purchase their TV from you right away.

It promotes better cash flow

Credit card processing involves fast turnaround time, which promotes better cash flow.  You do not need to wait for weeks since it usually takes only between 1-3 days for the funds to be credited to your merchant account.  A better cash flow would mean that your business is liquid enough to serve the operational needs of your business, making your business more efficient.

It involves fast and easy processing

With check payments, the check needs to go through clearing to know whether the customer's account is funded or not.  Conversely, approval is done almost instantly with credit card payments.  Once a transaction is approved in your retail store using a point-of-sale (POS) terminal, transaction slips are then generated requiring customer's signatures.  For online shops, you do not even have to intervene in the payment process.  The customer who makes the credit card payment is the one who inputs the relevant information and gets response from the credit card processor whether his transaction is approved or declined.  All these make it more convenient to do business on your part and more convenient for your customers to shop.

It helps you keep up with the competition in your industry

Look around and notice that your competitors may be employing this strategy already.  Accepting credit card purchases helps you keep up with the competition and thrive in the industry.  If your competitors do not accept credit cards yet, then you have a good  advantage over them as to customer base and sales.

It keeps your funds secure

As opposed to receiving cash payments in your retail stores, accepting credit cards reduces the risks that go with keeping cash in your drawers.    It keeps your fund secure in your merchant account until you decide to withdraw it.

It continually presents better features

When you accept credit card payments, you would find it good to know that along with the costs, better security and other processing features are constantly improved and introduced to make credit card processing safer and more efficient for you and your customers.  Heavy competition in the industry plays a great role in effecting this benefit with the effort of the processing companies to making them more attractive to retailers like you.  These companies also try to make their fees more competitive.  In other words, such competition lets you take advantage of the many benefits that go with accepting credit cards in your store. The strict policies that govern processors are also important to protect your interests as well as the interest of the consumers.

It helps you save on some costs

Just when you think you incur more costs when accepting credit cards, there are other expenses you can actually minimize.  You do not have to spend for managing receivables as well as sending bills to some clients.  There are also other value-added products and services that credit card processors offer, which help you save on expenses, such as integrated payment gateway and integrated shopping carts for your online store.

It promotes positive image of your business

Accepting credit cards increases your credibility.  Customers who learn that you accept credit cards think that you conform with the latest trend in business as well as in technology.  That is a great plus for them.  Furthermore, according to some surveys, credit card logos that are posted on your stores also create some sort of confidence in consumers' mind as you are affiliated with the legitimate and trusted credit card networks.

It ensures full support from your provider

Even if you're not a tech person, you will not find it hard to set up a terminal to accept credit card payments, nor will you have difficulty getting through the whole credit card process.  Credit card processors and merchant account providers guide you with the whole process and provide you with 24/7 customer service support for all your needs, from basic inquiries to technical suppport.

In order to fully benefit from all these advantages of accepting credit card payments for your online or retail store, you have to make sure that you deal with the right parties.  Look for a reliable and credible merchant account provider and credit card processor who can provide you with the service you want, who charge you with reasonable fees, and provide you with great customer service.  Then, as long as you put your heart into your business, provide your customers with quality products and services, and keep up with the latest trend in the industry, you are sure to have a very promising business ahead of you.

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