One of the many lessons we learned in 2020 is how convenient and safe it is to shop and pay digitally, using a laptop, mobile phone, tablet, or other device. But when it comes to the contractor, accountant, lawn service, and the multitude of other services we use in our daily lives, digital transactions are not always an option. We’ll either send a check or wait for them to pick up a check.
If service providers don’t offer a digital solution for payments, invoicing, and customer service, their customers are missing out on some key benefits that could make their lives easier.
Here are seven reasons why service providers should offer you digital payment options:
- To provide a safe customer experience. Service providers who accept credit card and ACH payments online and via mobile app minimize face-to-face contact with in-person payments and reduce security concerns for you and them. An online payment link or contactless payment eliminates the need for the service provider to collect a check or swipe a credit card.
- So that you can use the payment method of your choice. Digital payment solutions give you the flexibility to use whichever payment method you choose, whether it’s a stored card, credit card, or ACH payment. Paying by credit card is also preferable if you are earning rewards or paying back money using your credit card account.
- To help you manage your expenses. Paying by credit card can be an especially important option during uncertain times when your cash flow may be tight. It can also help with routine budgeting management.
- To give you better access to your account. A key feature of digital payment solutions is that they can include a customer portal that gives you 24/7 online access to your account information. A customer portal allows you to review your payment history, update your payment method and contact information, make service requests and communicate other information without having to call or spend time on hold.
- Simplification of invoicing and billing. Instead of leaving an invoice in the door or getting lost in the mail, digital solutions with electronic billing can send invoices to your email address and online account. Invoices can be generated automatically for recurring services so you can plan and budget payments when it’s convenient for you.
- To ensure security with encrypted payment information. Digital payments use SSL, an online security encryption method that secures data transferred by the customer to the service provider’s website or payment gateway. Using SSL helps encrypt the information so that card details and all other sensitive data are protected.
- To send you automated reminders. Digital payment solutions can automatically generate notifications for payments due, upcoming scheduled appointments, service upgrades, or other customer account information so you can stay up to date.
Before the pandemic, you may have been willing to settle for traditional payment methods for services. With all types of businesses moving to digital payments since the COVID crisis, you should expect the same from the service-based businesses you serve. When hiring a service provider, it is important to ask if their company uses a digital payments platform so that you can enjoy the best possible customer experience.