Use cases for Direct Debit


Due to the nature of this payment method, Direct Debit can lends itself to being the preferred option in some use cases whilst in others it is not the best solution.

Direct Debit is suitable for…

  • Recurring or regular payments, for instance gym memberships or hosting subscriptions.
  • Invoice payments, such as accountancy businesses or agencies who do not always require instant payment.
  • Ad-hoc payments for customers with whom you have an ongoing relationship, like vendors.

In these cases, Direct Debit automates the payment process whilst avoiding the need to chase customers. It can also be a cheaper alternative to cards and alleviates the worry of high customer churn through card expiry dates.

Direct Debit is less suitable for…

  • Payments requiring immediate settlement. See our Direct Debit timings section for more information about how long it takes to get paid.
  • Goods that are high in value or liquid assets. If funds are withdrawn from an account without authorisation, it leaves the account owner open to risk of fraud and financial loss.

Direct Debit payments through GoCardless

Using GoCardless through our simple dashboard, API or partner software gives you easier access to Direct Debit without the need to apply through the banks.

  • Online businesses: GoCardless offers a modern REST API that can be quickly integrated with your website and CRM, automating previously manual processes.
  • Invoice payments: The GoCardless API will let you build automatic reconciliation into any invoicing software or connect to our existing accounting partners.
  • Small businesses: You can avoid the need to negotiate with your bank as GoCardless will manage this process on your behalf.
‹ View table of contents Next page ›

Latest features

5 strategies for reducing delinquent loans with better payments

Delinquent loans are a constant concern for lenders of all sizes. If your level of loan delinquency becomes too high it can have serious negative effects on your business, including increased collection costs and reputational risk. This article explores 5 ways to reduce loan delinquency with better payments.

What I wish I had known: Cash flow edition

We spoke to small business owners about how they took control of cash flow – and the lessons they learned along the way.

How to drive business impact with payments: A guide for financial services providers

The ultimate guide to driving and measuring business with payments, complete with four strategies for building a scalable payments advantage.

View all


Reference guides

View all