Why Every Small Business Should Accept Credit Cards
“Do you take cards?” As a small business owner, your answer should never be no. Here are six reasons why it’s a no-brainer for every small business to accept credit cards:
You’ll make more sales.
Cash isn’t going away, but people are carrying it around less and less. In fact, a recently released Nilson Report projects that cash and check payment volume will decline by 24 percent and 46 percent (respectively) in the United States by 2018. At the same time, card-payment volume is set to grow by over 50 percent. So if you aren’t set up to accept credit cards soon, you’re going to lose out on a lot of sales.
You’ll improve your cash flow.
Checks can take a while to clear. Credit card transactions, on the other hand, are usually deposited within a few business days. Payments taken through the Square credit card reader, for example, are deposited within 36 hours of the transaction. Square also offers something called Instant Deposits, where payments show up in your account within seconds.
You’ll bring in more customers.
People want convenience. And if shopping at your store means a trip to the ATM, they may skip you over and opt for the competition. Accepting credit cards will ensure that you have the best customer experience possible — which will make people more likely to recommend your business to friends.
Your customers will spend more.
Perhaps it’s because you can’t actually see the money being exchanged in a credit card transaction (as opposed to cash), but people tend to spend more when they swipe. In fact, a recent study found that people spend 12 to 18 percent more when using credit cards instead of cash. That means more impulse buys at the counter.
You’ll instill a sense of trust.
It’s important to show customers that your business is legitimate. And that’s especially true when it comes to accepting payments. If you have logos at your register of all the major cards you accept, that’s likely to instill a sense of trust with people. There’s also an increasing association with cash-only businesses as sketchy, so not accepting credit cards could actually hurt your brand.
You won’t have to deal with bounced checks.
Dealing with bounced checks is a pain — not to mention awkward. Credit card transactions, on the other hand, are heavily screened to reduce the risk of fraud. Square monitors every single transaction from swipe to payment to help make sure sellers don’t have to deal with any (major or minor) headaches. (You can read more about security at Square here). Square also offers Chargeback Protection, which covers your liability for payment disputes, or chargebacks, up to a total of $250 a month.
You don’t have to spend much.
Even if you’re on a shoestring budget, it’s easy to get set up to accept credit cards. Square’s magnetic stripe credit card reader is free if you order it online and offers a competitive rate of just 2.75% per swipe.
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