How is COVID-19 impacting B2B payment trends?
The payments industry is trending towards cashless and electronic payments along with the rise of eCommerce, mobile transactions, and more. In this past year, many companies have faced new challenges because of COVID-19 and need to transform their payment systems in the “new normal” of remote work.
Although the trend towards digital payments has been steadily increasing, the coronavirus pandemic of 2020 is accelerating the shift to a cashless society. Merchants of all kinds are asking not only how to adapt to the current needs of the market, but also what this means for their financial future. How will the events of this year affect 2021 and beyond?
In this blog, we will detail the implications for merchants in a cashless economy, the benefits for B2B businesses, and how omni-channel and digital payment solutions help maintain cash flow, increase efficiency, and save money.
The implications of "going cashless" for merchants
In the United States, 40 million customers went online for groceries in April.
This trend doesn’t end with individual consumers. B2B company decision makers are also staying home and looking for safe, secure, and easy ways to process business-to-business transactions remotely. Maintaining transaction volume can be expensive and complicated, but it doesn’t have to be. Small business managers making hasty decisions during the COVID-19 pandemic could miss out on the best solutions for digital payments for their payment needs.
Leveraging the right solutions and even partnering with payments companies could be the best way for B2B and tech companies to adapt. Savings on payment transactions can offset new investments in other remote work technology, and partnering brings recurring revenue for future success. COVID-19 is creating short-term spending pain for many payment providers, but it’s also driving new purchasing habits that could leave the companies in a stronger position once the crisis is over. Developing a relationship with the right payments provider now is simply good business strategy.
Visa’s domestic card-present volumes—basically in-person spending—improved to a year-over-year decline of 20% exiting May, compared with a nearly 50% decline for much of April. Still, as in-person shopping trends got better, e-commerce volumes continued to grow as well, up nearly 40% exiting May for its highest weekly growth rate of the pandemic.
Source: Market Watch
Global payments, digital payments, and cashless B2B payments are the future. The question is not whether or not businesses need cashless processing, but which solutions provide the omni-channel, automated, and seamlessly-integrated payment software they need.
Types of cashless payments
- ACH or other bank-to-bank transfer
- Mobile payments
- Online web portal
- Digital wallets
- Contactless payments
Benefits of cashless payments:
Reduce costs and business risks: automated payments get money directly into your bank account without manual entry, thus saving on labor, reducing the risk of entry errors as well as limiting the scope of liability on the profits your business earns.
Customer satisfaction & retention: Customers who are able to pay how they want to are more likely to remain loyal customers. Your customers will appreciate any steps that you take to make their lives easier in uncertain times, and omni-channel payment processing will provide that.
Faster reconciliation: relying on traditional, paper-based A/R processing methods is frustratingly slow with an overloaded postal system
Efficiently leverage integrations: Seamlessly integrated solutions connect your software solutions all together (ERP, AR, shopping cart, POS, etc.) with shared tokens for easy reconciliation. By using shared tokens, this creates a seamless experience for customer and business users as information flows between the integrations.
Automation: Integrated payments providers can provide a wide array of features and automation to help your company streamline operations and reduce manual entry.
Improved cash flow: Online payment portals, like APS ClickToPay, ensure payments can be made remotely, even if checks aren't able to be written or signed at this time. Customers who can safely save their information off your servers and pay their bill with the click of a button will be more likely to pay faster.
B2B transactions can also qualify for up to a 43% reduction in processing fees. Automating B2B transactions can result in thousands of dollars saved every year. Level 3 B2B payment processing collects key transaction data to garner lower processing rates and reduce costs for qualifying business to business transactions. Integrated and automated Level 3 processing pulls the necessary data points for you with no extra man hours or manual data digging to maximize savings.
Key features to look for in a payments provider:
When considering the best payment solution for your business, there are key payment feature considerations, such as: tokenized credit card data, next-day funding, and multi-currency capabilities should be a part of any good payment solution. 24/7 live customer support, all-in-one payment solution providers, and line-item detail on merchant statements are other key features to look for.
Need further help adapting your B2B company to remote work during COVID-19? As the B2B payment industry evolves, APS Payments is here to help!
APS Payments, a REPAY company, has a team of payments experts standing by to educate you on integrated payment processing. APS Payments offers omni-channel B2C and B2B integrated payment solutions and is a gateway and processor that is trusted by thousands of merchants daily to process payments. With payment integrations to many leading ERP and eCommerce platforms like Acumatica, AccountMate, Adagio, Sage, SAP Business One, Magento, WooCommerce, BigCommerce, Miva, and more, APS Payments is leading the way in the payments industry by providing omni-channel integrated payment solutions and 24/7 live customer support.