2 min read
The digital revolution of the past few years has impacted virtually every aspect of society. From the entertainment we enjoy to communications and shopping, digital technology has made it possible to exchange everything from ideas and products to music and television with a speed and simplicity that would once have seemed impossible.
For any business, the digital revolution has also seen the rise of digital payments, utilising the power of technology to shift away from the use of cash or traditional methods such as cheques and on to methods which have transformed the payment landscape.
If your business is not yet ready to work with digital payments, partnering with a payment platform like GoCardless could make all the difference. We’re experts in the field, working with the latest developments such as open banking to deliver an experience that harnesses all of the advantages of digital payments.
The advantages of digital payments
Below are the four main groups of advantages of taking digital rather than physical payments.
Online retail provides an additional sales channel
Even before the pandemic and the lockdowns it prompted during 2020 and 2021, online retail was booming. As a new normal becomes established, it’s clear that the switch to shopping online has largely become embedded as a permanent development.
According to Statista, the UK has the most advanced e-commerce market in the world, with nearly 60 million e-commerce users, which means that only a minority of the country now doesn’t use e-commerce. The same figures also show that total e-commerce revenue in the UK is now reaching £110 billion, and e-commerce takes up 38% of the total retail in the UK.
Put simply, if you can’t access a digital payment system, you can’t tap into this market, and the customers you rely on are likely to take their business elsewhere. The benefits of a digital payments system include making it possible for your customers to make online purchases quickly and securely.
Improved cash flow
Another of the key advantages of taking digital payments is that it makes it easier for your business to control and monitor cash flow. Physical cash – the usual alternative to digital payments – is much harder to track as it moves through your business, and you usually only notice any shortfall or slowing in income after the event (such as when monitoring monthly bank statements). Digital payments, on the other hand, are tracked in real time, so that any shifts in income can be noted and dealt with as and when they occur.
Security at the forefront
If you deal with cash there’s no getting away from the fact that you could be vulnerable in terms of security. Cash kept on your business premises – particularly overnight – represents a target for criminal activity, and the same is true when physical cash is being taken to be deposited in a bank.
Digital payments, on the other hand, are completely secure, with cybersecurity built into platforms such as GoCardless, and payment cards and digital wallets boasting their own digital security infrastructure.
Digital payments are also much easier to trace than cash payments, making it simpler to settle disputes, such as when a customer claims to have made a payment but you haven’t received any money.
Improved payment options for your customers
Another benefit of digital payment systems is that you can offer the fullest range of online payment methods to your customers. From digital wallets or direct debit to payments via smartphones or instant paylink, customers expect to be able to use their preferred digital payment method when making a purchase – with a payments partner like GoCardless, they’ll always be able to.
We can help
GoCardless is a global payments solution, setting people and businesses free from the frustrations and cost of outdated payment methods. Find out how GoCardless can help you with one-off or recurring payments.