Small business owners are faced with a variety of different decisions, from finding the right customer base to implementing effective advertising campaigns. One decision that business owners often neglect is their payment methods. It’s no secret that technology is constantly changing the way consumers go about purchasing and paying for things, calling on the need to adapt to new methods. Analyzing the different payment methods will be critical to meeting consumer needs, making it important to revisit and implement new methods as technology changes.


The most common payment method that business owners implement is cash. Customer payments in cash are not ideal for online stores with no physical presence since sending cash through the mail is never advised. However, when payments are made in cash, there are no collectability issues and you can have access to immediate cash flow.


Another common payment method that businesses choose to implement is checks. Customers who are businesses frequently revert to payments in checks. This means if you commonly engage in business-to-business transactions, you will need to offer this payment method. Additionally, many customers still choose to remit checks despite the lengthy process. However, business owners refrain from checks because it takes a significant amount of time to collect and deposit the funds.

Credit and Debit Cards

Credit and debit cards are an alternative payment method that customers may request. If your business is primarily e-commerce based, you won’t have a choice but to offer credit and debit cards. These payment methods provide both you and your customers with added flexibility. Moreover, instant payments lead to stronger cash flow management.

Electronic Fund Transfers

Recent advancements in technology have made electronic transfers possible. Electronic fund transfers are great for customers who are a business or make large purchases. These types of transfers are not ideal when you are dealing with the average consumer and small value purchases because you will need to remit sensitive bank information.

Wire Transfers

Wire transfers are similar to electronic fund transfers. This is a bank-to-bank transaction, requiring your customer to remit their bank information to you. Wire transfers are often instant, pulling the funds out of your client’s account and directly depositing them into your account.

Third-Party Payment Apps

Third-party payment apps are becoming increasingly more popular. Apps like Venmo, PayPal, and Zelle allow users to transfer money with the use of a third party. The fees are minimal, but can range anywhere from 1% to 3% based on your transaction level. These apps can often connect with your e-commerce store, allowing customers to easily make payments.

Virtual Cards

The usage of virtual cards is ramping up with new online storefronts opening. Customers can connect their credit card or bank account to the virtual wallet and allow for transactions without a physical card. In addition, businesses use virtual cards to delegate accounts to different employee personnel with the added ease of account maintenance.


Understanding the different payment methods consumers are using should be a top priority as a business owner to appeal to various demographic groups. Choosing the right payment methods for your business is a difficult decision for many business owners, calling on the need to enlist expert help from Online Accountant. We’ve helped many business owners work through complex business decisions, making us an expert resource to have on your side. Contact a team member for more information.

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