Erratic cashflow? Too many customer complaints? An ever-growing debtors’ list?
If any of these success-compromising issues are affecting your IT business, it’s time to think smart.
While you’re offering your clients the latest tech to transform how their businesses work, it’s easy to forget that some of your own problems can also be solved with a little digital help.
Here we explore how accepting payment by Bacs by setting up a Direct Debit scheme can ease the pressure. Four simple and very common business challenges solved with just one simple change.
The Misery of Missed Payments
You’ve done the work, you’ve issued the invoice. Your credit control system is ready to accept payment and keep your cashflow ticking over healthily.
But the money doesn’t arrive. And as these missed payments start stacking up, their impact begins to creep through your business.
This financial frustration doesn’t need to be an unavoidable part of running an IT business. The culprits here are old-fashioned payment methods such as Standing Orders, credit cards and cheques – and there is an alternative.
Swapping your traditional invoicing system for Bacs Direct Debit can help to banish the missed payment problem thanks to its flexibility and reliability.
You sign up to a Direct Debit bureau, such as FastPay, and your customers sign a Direct Debit Instruction. This means they agree to your business collecting a regular amount from their account for services delivered.
This automation will make missed payments a rarity not a regular occurrence.
Uncertainty is replaced by reassurance that payments will be predictably and securely made. Chasing tardy clients and anticipating cashflow problems will become a thing of the past as you enjoy predictable revenue and peace of mind.
Replace Complaints with Compliments
If you’re relying on a variety of different payment methods, it’s more likely that errors and issues are going to crop up. A cheque gets “lost in the post”, credit card details unexpectedly expire or a Standing Order is cancelled without your knowledge.
The result? Disgruntled clients who don’t want to deal with awkward phone calls and the admin involved in paying you correctly and on time. Equally, your staff morale will also suffer as they have to deal with the fall-out of unnecessarily complicated accounting.
Payment by Bacs using Direct Debit simplifies the process for everyone. Everything is taken care of by your bureau who will manage the submission of payments to Bacs and provide real-time updates via regular reporting.
Once your clients have signed a mandate, either online, by phone or on paper, they can sit back and relax knowing that their payments are being made accurately.
The chances of them phoning to complain about invoicing issues are drastically reduced, boosting customer satisfaction levels and easing the admin burden for your team.
Keep Your Clients Close
Your marketing strategy might be working flawlessly to attract new clients but are you investing as much thought into retaining them?
Your IT services may be the very best in the business but if your payment options are more antiquated than automated, clients will soon get fed up with the hassle and could look elsewhere.
By following the Bacs rules and offering the most efficient and flexible payment method available they see you as a helpful, customer-centric company that does all it can to make their lives easier.
Paying by Bacs Direct Debit means one less piece of financial admin for them to deal with. They trust that you’ll take the right amount from their account on the date they’ve agreed. And, following the Bacs rules, that you’ll inform them in advance of any changes.
You can build on these good business vibes by offering a discount for those opting to pay by monthly Direct Debit or the opportunity to clear arrears by breaking down overdue fees into manageable instalments.
This trust and readiness to adapt will bolster your overall client relationship, giving it a positive focus that will add extra value to your existing services. And of course, conversations can now shift to more customer-friendly topics rather than possibly embarrassing money matters.
Supercharged customer service inevitably leads to increased loyalty.
When they’re satisfied with every aspect of your business, they’ll become brand ambassadors, spreading the word about your fantastic company and boosting your profits.
Solve the Cashflow Challenge
Erratic cashflow can spell disaster for any business, large or small. Its effects are so all-consuming that it accounts for the demise of many hundreds of businesses each year.
Getting a grip on it is crucial for continued success. One of the easiest ways to take control is to accept regular payments by Bacs Direct Debit.
When it comes to forecasting, it replaces educated guesswork with accuracy by reducing the number of late payments and bad debt.
Payment by Bacs means you’ll know that invoices will be paid on a certain date and, through analysing your automated reports, can factor in the likelihood of cancelled or bounced payments. Its adaptability will make it much easier to see which months you can expect to see a surplus and in which you can expect to see a deficit.
With a Direct Debit scheme in place with your bureau, you’ll spend less time chasing cash and wondering (or panicking) how non-payment is going to affect your cashflow.
You’ll no longer have to rely on unpredictable payments made by Standing Order, cheque or credit card. Instead, the whole process is simplified and streamlined to get the best results for you and your clients.
Profits will naturally increase and cashflow will do what it’s meant to do – flow.
When it comes to tackling some of the everyday business challenges faced by your IT company, Direct Debit can step in to be your saviour. Instead of dealing with payment problems, you’ll be free to concentrate on building your business to make it more successful than ever before.