While you may be familiar with the benefits of GoCardless, both for your business and your customers, it can sometimes take a little incentive to convince your existing customers to change the way they pay you.
The benefits of paying you via GoCardless alone might be enough incentive to persuade your customers to switch, so try explaining these to them first. The benefits to them include:
Time savings - By paying via GoCardless, your customers only need to authorise the first payment. Future payments are taken automatically (but your customer is always protected if a payment is ever taken in error).
Less hassle - Credit cards and debit cards expire, or get lost or stolen. Bank transfers, cash, and cheques require a lot of manual processing. Payments via GoCardless, however, only need a short, upfront setup from your customer, then they don’t need to lift a finger.
Avoiding service interruptions - If a payment from your customer is late or fails, it could disrupt their service from you. Payments via GoCardless are processed automatically on the due date, and failure rates tend to be low compared to other payment methods, so your customer minimises their risk of losing access to your service.
Spreading out large costs - Does your customer currently pay you, say, one large sum annually? If they switch to paying you via GoCardless, you can easily split that payment out across the year, and they can pay you on the day that suits them.
However, if the benefits above don’t seem to resonate with your customers, you can try more tangible incentives like offering a discount.
The small, upfront cost of offering an incentive is likely to be much lower than the costs you’d spend chasing up late payments. Some great incentive ideas we’ve seen be successful are:
Offering a one-off charitable donation for every customer who switches to Direct Debit. You could even ask customers to vote on their preferred charity to receive it.
Giving a free gift - UK conservation charity, The National Trust, offered a free pair of binoculars to people who pay by Direct Debit.
Try a discount on your product or service - Some energy providers, including EDF in the UK and Origin in Australia, offer a percentage off their customers’ bill if they choose to pay via Direct Debit. While UK gallery, The Tate, offered £10 off membership fees.
Consider waiving any admin fees - Norwich Residential Management (NRM) in the UK encourages their residents to pay service charges by Direct Debit in an instalment plan, rather than by cheque or bank transfer. If they do, NRM waive the £25 payment administration fee.
Try a limited time offer - Window cleaning firm Premier Clean offered customers who chose to pay via GoCardless 10% off their next clean for a limited period.