Last editedNov 20222 min read
Do you sell to customers based in the US? If so, you could benefit from ACH payment processing. Third-party ACH processors facilitate bank-to-bank payments sent using the US’s Automated Clearing House network. Put simply, customers can pay you by directly transferring funds from a US bank account. They’re fast, secure, and convenient for both customer and merchant – particularly when used for recurring or subscription payments. However, UK businesses need a third-party processor to handle the technicalities of these transfers. Here are our picks of the best third-party ACH processors out there today.
Naturally, we’ll kick off the list with GoCardless. Our ACH Debit solution lets you take payments from US-based customers in US dollars. It functions the same way as Direct Debit in the UK, with a pull-based function ideal for recurring payments. The payment is processed and settled into your bank account in UK pounds. The transaction takes place using real-time currency conversion rates powered by Wise for a better deal - while some payment providers charge extra fees for international transactions, GoCardless charges a flat 2% + 20p per transaction with no hidden costs. There’s also no need to set up a separate US bank account like with others on this list.
Stripe comes in second for the best third-party ACH processors. Similarly to GoCardless, there aren’t any long-term contracts to sign, giving you month-to-month flexibility. This global payment processor can handle US-to-UK transactions with ease, offering flat-rate pricing for its ACH processing. One benefit of Stripe is its customisability, but this does require some technical skills to fully take advantage of. It’s also not available to certain industries deemed high-risk, and due to its size, it offers limited customer support.
If you do need to accept ACH payments from customers in high-risk industries, PaymentCloud is an option. This payment processor specialises in risk, both for ACH payments as well as a selection of other payment methods. Additional services include credit card terminals, virtual terminals, shopping cart integration, and chargeback protection. There’s no fee to get started, but one downside is that it doesn’t publicly publish its rates. You’ll need to get in touch to obtain a personalised quote and may need to open a US bank account for your application to qualify.
Square doesn’t offer US-UK ACH transfers, but you can accept US card payments using their technology. This can get expensive though, with 2.9% charged per transaction for non-European cards. However, you benefit from the well-known name.
How to choose the best third-party ACH payment processor
To find the best fit for your business, you should compare both monthly and per-transaction rates for the payment processors, as well as what their strengths are. You should also look at the platform’s specific features. Will it integrate with your existing accounting system? Will you need a virtual terminal or website builder? Do you want to collect recurring payments, like subscriptions? Is it user-friendly for your customers and employees? The best processors make payments as simple as possible.
It’s also important to look at the requirements for getting started. Some ACH processors require a US bank account to enable these international transactions. This puts GoCardless at the head of the class, with its automatic currency conversions a treal-time rates. We also integrate with over 300 partners, including major invoicing and accounting software like Xero,QuickBooks, Chargebee and others for full control over payments.
We can help
GoCardless is a global payments solution that helps you automate payment collection, cutting down on the amount of financial admin your team needs to deal with. Find out how GoCardless can help you with one-off or recurring payments.