A Guide to Electronic Payment Services for Small Business Owners

If you own one of the over 30 million small businesses in the US or plan on launching one, you face some real challenges. You face all the normal challenges of any other business, such as staffing, funding woes, and logistics.

You also face the prospect of operating in a world where e-commerce often creates a significant portion of your revenue. That means you can't just accept cash or checks. You need at least one of the electronic payment services ready for credit cards or other electronic payment methods.

So, keep reading and we'll give you a walkthrough of some essential information you need to make a choice.

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Common Electronic Payment Services

The truth of the matter is that there are many payment services out there that you could use. A few of the more widely-used services include:

  • Stripe

  • Square

  • Paypal

All of these companies have a solid track record. Paypal, however, is one of the oldest of the payment processing companies out there at over 20 years old. If you worry about the uncertain future of tech companies, Paypal is past that shaky startup phase. 

Pros and Cons of Electronic Payment Services

On the pro side of things, electronic payment services make it a lot easier for you to get into the e-commerce game. Most of these services integrate with popular e-commerce platforms. It also cuts down on dealing with cash or checks.

If you only deal with in-person sales occasionally, you may only need mobile payment processing. That typically entails connecting a card swipe device directly to your mobile device. Many companies offer these at little or no cost.

On the con side, these services often issue physical hardware for in-store purchasing. The hardware typically includes a monthly or annual fee. You might even need a contract for some service providers. 

Choosing the Right Payment Service for Your Business

There's a truism in creative fields that the right tool is the one you already have. It's not always true, but there's a kernel of truth hiding in it for payment service selection. If you already use a service like Stripe, for example, there's less hoop jumping to go through. 

You set up your account already. That means you can usually just upgrade that account to a professional or merchant account. You also know how the platform works, which can simplify your life.

All the same, you should explore your options. Compare fees, leasing prices for equipment, and any contract terms. You don't want a contract that locks you in for a year if the service doesn't work for you.

Parting Thoughts

Businesses today can't rely solely on banks or credit card companies for financial transactions. E-commerce has made electronic payment services a necessity for businesses of all sizes. 

From time-to-time, you may find that payment processing isn't your problem, but rather that you lack the free capital for a project or expansion.

Capfront specializes in providing businesses a variety of funding options. For more information, contact Captfront today.