in Business

Recurring Payment Services in 4 numbers

We have put a lot of work recently into creating our Recurring Payments Guide. Here is a round-up of the key facts in four numbers.


  • It takes 20x the amount of time per week to administer a Do It Yourself Credit Card or Direct Debit solution than a payment processor or GoCardless.

  • There is 20x more churn using a credit card solution than using GoCardless.


  • You will need to take at least £10,000 a month in transactions to obtain an SUN number or a merchant account from a bank.

  • Banks will typically keep £10,000 as a bond from you when you set up a merchant account or an SUN number, in case you have any payment problems in the future.


  • The minimum amount of time it takes to obtain an SUN number and get set up with most Direct Debit solutions is 4 months.

  • It takes roughly 4 weeks to set up a merchant account and integrate it into a Do It Yourself Credit Card service.


  • Credit Card chargebacks will cost you around £15.

  • Direct Debit bureaus may hold 15% of each transaction you make to cover potential chargebacks.

  • You may be charged £15 per month to take payments in another currency when using certain Do It Yourself Credit Card solutions.

Want to find out more?

You can find out more in our Recurring Payments Guide, or sign up for GoCardless here.

in Business

10 reasons to start using Direct Debit today

1. No more late payments.

With Direct Debit you’re in control – once authorised you can collect payments whenever they’re due without needing your customer to do anything else. So no more chasing customers for payments - they'll be on time every time.

2. Direct Debit reduces your admin time.

Once a Direct Debit has been set up the whole process can be automated. Payments can be automatically taken and tracked each month which significantly reduces the time needed to manage them.

3. It lets you set and forget.

If you’re collecting fixed amounts at regular intervals, you can set up Direct Debit payments then forget about them as they’ll automatically be taken each time they’re due without you or your customer needing to do anything more.

4. Direct Debit is more cost effective than card payments.

Using the card networks usually costs around 3-5% per transaction. Direct Debit is typically much cheaper. GoCardless only charges 1% per payment up to a maximum of £2, and even less if you’re collecting over 500 payments.

5. It reduces payment failures.

Roughly 3-5% of card payments fail each month due to card expiry or cancellation. Direct Debit payments use a customer’s bank details, which rarely expire or change so failure rates are less than 1%.

6. Direct Debit is flexible.

With Direct Debit, you can change the amount and frequency of payments without needing your customer to re-authorise. This means you can take variable amounts or increase prices whenever you need to without administrative hassle.

7. It improves cashflow.

Late payments impact your cash flow as you won’t know when to expect payments and therefore when you can pay your own bills or buy new stock. With Direct Debit, you'll always know when payments will be arriving so you can plan accordingly.

8. Direct Debit is great for recurring, variable and one off payments.

While Direct Debit is usually associated with regular and recurring payments, it can also be a great option for one-off payments (as long as you don’t need the money immediately).

9. It’s environmentally friendly.

Using paperless Direct Debit is not only great for the environment (no more paper, printing or postage) but it also saves you time and money helping you to streamline your business.

10. Direct Debit is easy to set up and get started.

Direct Debit is often seen as just for big businesses or expensive and difficult to set up but with Direct Debit providers like GoCardless you can use Direct Debit no matter the size of your business or your income. In fact - with GoCardless you can get set up instantly and for free.

To find out more about how Direct Debit could help your business, check out our beginner's guide to Direct Debit for industry specific benefits and examples.

Interested in switching to Direct Debit?
Watch a demo
in Business

Merchant of the Month: Toothpick logo

Last week, one of our merchants, Toothpick, was nominated as the Best Health Startup in the Europas (GC are also up for Best Fintech Startup and Best Co-founders!). This followed Toothpick's other exciting announcement that they had surpassed 100,000 bookings – or £17m worth of dentistry - in their first year. With all of this fantastic news it seems only right that Toothpick is May’s Merchant of the Month.

Toothpick is the UK’s first, and leading, nationwide service for live, online dental appointment booking. Using Toothpick, patients can book straight into a dentist’s calendar, making it easy to find a dental appointment when you really need one regardless of the time of day.

Toothpick has been using GoCardless since September 2012 via Xero and Directli to collect payments from their customers conveniently and affordably.

Toothpick Co-founder Jozef Wallis explains why they chose GoCardless:

“We found out about GoCardless and realised that it was revolutionary compared to how we were doing it. It just seemed simpler and more convenient than any other option. It also gives us the streamlined, paperless process we wanted and makes it incredibly easy to collect payments even as we grow.”

Interested in discovering all the great benefits of GoCardless for yourself? Simply sign up today in just 60 seconds!

Interested in collecting Direct Debits?
Watch a demo