Boost Timely Remittance by Offering Multichannel Invoicing and Payment Options
October 30, 2018 Categories: Billing, Industry News Tags: billing, invoicing, multi-channel invoicing, multi-channel payments, payment options, payments, remittance, remittance payments, timely remittance
As a business, getting paid on time is paramount to the success and health of your company. Most businesses provide a service, bill their customers, and await a remittance payment. When a payment is delayed, oftentimes, the problem may be out of your control. According to nbcnews.com, “25 percent of adults aren’t paying their bills on time.” This number may seem overwhelming, but all hope is not lost. Why not help the process by making it as convenient as possible to pay on time? Encourage timely remittance from your customers by pairing a multichannel billing statement and payments option with incentives to pay.
Bank Transfers and Remittance Payments Are Evolving
Remittance payments and the way that money is transferred has changed. Here are some ways to help improve your customers pay their bills, and allow them to send and receive money easier.
Provide Your Customers with Payment Options
The majority of bills are now viewed and paid online. However, that doesn’t mean it is time to make a full switch to mobile and electronic billing and payments. Don’t forget about the customers who prefer traditional or alternative approaches for remittance. You may find that older customers tend to favor receiving and paying their bills via mail. Also, take time to consider your customers who may not have access to banking and remit payments through third-party vendors. While it is important to have digital and mobile billing and payment options available, it’s also important to be mindful of the people who might not want to make that switch.
Below are some different options for multichannel billing and payments:
Mobile and Electronic Payment Methods
Mobile and electronic options for billing and payments are opportune for both you and your customers. Communication and remittance can happen in an instant in the digital world. The convenience of communication at our fingertips has led to measurable success. Email has a 20 percent open rate and SMS texting has an impressive 98 percent open rate within three minutes or less of being delivered. Not only is the process faster, but you can easily view and track whether or not your customers have opened their billing statement when using mobile and electronic communications. Both email and SMS are communication options your customers will have to opt-in to receive.
Despite the rumors, print communication is surely not dead and there are still people who enjoy receiving mail. Many older customers prefer receiving a bill or invoice through the mail and mailing a check back to remit their payment. Surprisingly enough, print is experiencing a renaissance amongst younger generations as well, who businesses would assume are going paperless. Millennials prefer a combination of print and electronic communication when it comes to receiving bills. However, every bill is not created equal. Adding color to your customer documents will improve response rates by 24 percent. Color helps our eyes jump to information deemed important on a page. Adding color to your customers’ “Amount Due” and “Due Dates” can be a real game changer. To find out more information on adding color to variable data, read FSSI’s blog “Why Job Appropriate Color is Just Enough."
Third-Party Payment Processing Vendors
Unfortunately, not all of your customers may have access to bank accounts. This could happen for a number of reasons that can be as complicated as fixing identity theft or as simple as not wanting one. Retailers such as CVS, 7-Eleven, and Family Dollar all work with third-party vendors to provide a channel for customers without access to banking to pay their bills via cash. Partnering with these vendors adds an extra convenience for customers who once had to trek to brick-and-mortar storefronts to pay their bills on time because they didn’t have an account to link up to for electronic payments.
Your Punctuality Feeds Their Punctuality
No matter what channel is being utilized, your company’s delivery and billing must be punctual and, if possible, early, to give your customer ample time to send in a remittance. During this process of waiting for payment, a reminder and follow-up may be all the customer needs to send off the remittance and avoid late fees. Offer support, and kindly remind them of the due date, and if for some reason the payment will not be on time, respond with a solution on how to eliminate this problem in the future.
Create Clear Expectations and Incentives
There are several ways to discourage late repayments, but that starts with the contract and terms. It is of the utmost importance to relay to your customer well in advance the expectations regarding the payment schedule, and penalties in place if they fail to comply with these rules. Additionally, offering incentives for early remittance encourages the regularity of on-time payments. Some companies offer a small discount for paying early or offer a reward system such as cash back when a bill is paid. Late fees are applied to many payments as well to discourage failure to pay.
Find the multichannel remittance options that work best for your company and your customers by visiting fssi-ca.com or call 714.436.3300 to set up a consultation.