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7 reasons why you should be collecting Direct Debit with GoCardless

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Last editedJul 20234 min read

Direct Debit is an excellent payment collection option for any business that needs to automate payment collection, eliminate late payments and save time and money on the payment process. Despite there being several options when choosing a provider, GoCardless offers plenty of features that extend the benefits of Direct Debit for our merchants.

GoCardless at a glance


GoCardless makes it simple to get started with Direct Debit. With no contract or upfront commitment required, you can try GoCardless risk-free.


Set up payments quickly and easily in the user-friendly online merchant dashboard with just a few clicks. You can be up and running and accepting payments on the same day.


With over 350 partner apps, such as Xero and Quickbooks, available to connect to GoCardless, you can effortlessly integrate elements of your current payments stack.


Get started with no sign up costs, no commitments and no hidden fees. See pricing.

Get paid on time

With GoCardless, you can significantly reduce late and failed payments and automate tedious financial admin, saving you time, money and stress.


GoCardless Direct Debit is more secure and convenient for your customers, so they’ll prefer it too.

Reduce transaction fees, late and failed payments and tiresome manual admin.

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1) Direct Debit payments collected on time

It's quick and easy to collect payments on time, every time, with Direct Debit via GoCardless.

You can set up an account with GoCardless for free without a contract or any up-front commitment. Through the easy-to-use merchant dashboard, it's fast and straightforward to set up payments meaning you can be up and running in minutes.

How to collect Direct Debit payments with GoCardless


Create your free GoCardless account, access your user-friendly payments dashboard & connect your accounting software (if you use one).


Easily set up & schedule Direct Debit payments via payment pages on your website checkout or secure payment links.


From now on you'll get paid on time, every time, as GoCardless automatically collects payment on the scheduled date. Simple.

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Inside the dashboard, you can schedule payment collection for the required amounts and dates. GoCardless will send the relevant authorisation forms to your customer. Once authorised, those payments are regularly pulled from your customer's bank account on the due dates you set without any further action from you or your customer.

"We were ready to go within 24 - 48 hours, it was very, very easy." - Lee Drayton, Managing Director, LD Fitness

2) Say goodbye to late payments

With payment collection automated, there's no more chasing late payments.

Surveys show three in five UK businesses are owed money from late payments, fuelling stress and cash flow problems. GoCardless provides a solution for this issue by eliminating late payments almost entirely.

By enabling businesses to collect payments automatically on pre-scheduled dates, 78% of GoCardless merchants have reduced average debtor days and get paid 47% faster than the average SME.

Direct Debit is a 'pull' payment, which are controlled by the payee. In contrast, manual bank transfers, often used to settle invoices, are 'push' payments controlled by the payer. Customer authorisation is only required once to enable recurring payments to be debited from the customer and credited to your business.

With GoCardless, you can schedule the payment and notify your customer using the merchant dashboard in just a few clicks. Once your customer has approved the mandate, no further action is required. The funds will be pulled automatically from the customer's account on the scheduled date, meaning you get paid on time every time.

"Overdue invoices are virtually non-existent, and that makes us happy!" - George Ford Director, Veriphy.

3) Save time chasing late payments

No more time wasted chasing late payments

While the core issue of late payments causes cashflow concerns for small businesses, that is not the only problem businesses-owners face due to late payments.

Late payments also inflict a significant time cost on SMEs. Research studies highlight that the average UK SME spends 30 hours a month chasing these late payments.

However, thanks to automated on-time payment collection, GoCardless merchants only need to spend 2.6 hours each month dealing with late or failed payments - that works out as 90% less time than the average business spends chasing late payments.

"This has saved us a whole person's salary." - James McGlade, Founder, Growth Alliance

4) Cheaper than card payments

GoCardless merchants enjoy low transaction fees

Credit card transaction fees can be over 3x more expensive than GoCardless.

On average, credit card fees range between 1.5% and 3%, but how much you'll pay will depend on your card network and specific fee structure.

Not only is GoCardless cheaper, but we also provide pricing transparency.

Accepting a £500 payment by credit or debit card will cost a merchant between £7.50 and £15.

However, with GoCardless that same transaction costs just £4.

"Not only has GoCardless given us much more freedom when it comes to collections, but it has also saved us money." - Lee Drayton, Managing Director, LD Fitness

5) Higher success rate than cards

High success, low failure rate

One of the significant issues for businesses that accept recurring card payments is the relatively high payment failure rate. Card payments fail at a rate of around 10 - 15%, and the main reasons for these failures are lost, cancelled, and expired cards.

In contrast, Direct Debit is an account-to-account payment. As a result, because bank accounts cannot be lost or expire, Direct Debit via GoCardless enjoys a payment success rate of 97.3% on the first try and up to 99.5% with the 'intelligent retry' technology of Success+.

"For ongoing monthly payments GoCardless is perfect. You can easily adjust the subscription amounts and don’t suffer from the problem of expired cards." - Charles Cridland, Technical Director, YourParkingSpace

6) Spend less time on financial admin

Save time on manual payments admin

Payments admin such as raising and sending invoices, bank reconciliation, and credit control are time-consuming and expensive for businesses.

A recent YouGov survey found that small businesses spend over 12 hours a month on regular payments admin, such as invoicing, accounting, expenses, budgeting, and forecasting.

However, businesses using GoCardless can automate payment collection, reconciliation, and other tasks, spending 59% less time than the average business managing payment admin.

"Automating payments for a fraction of the cost of card payments is a massive win for us." - Lee Mellon, Head of IT, Cripps & Co

7) Free to get started, easy to set up payments

Super-simple to start using GoCardless

With no upfront commitment and no requirements for contracts to start using GoCardless, there is no risk in trying it out. The merchant dashboard is easy-to-use and makes it super simple to set up payments with a few clicks.

You can take advantage of our pay-as-you-go pricing to create your account and start onboarding customers today. Click here to get started.

Eliminate late payments and save time, money & stress collecting payments from your customers with Direct Debit via GoCardless.

Direct Debit case study

GrowFactor, an award-winning digital chartered accountancy practice, moved from card payments to bank payments via GoCardless, resulting in substantial improvements in cash flow and payment efficiency. The shift to GoCardless has saved the company plenty of time and money and continues to do so, Simon Kallu, a Managing Partner, said,

Using GoCardless has saved us £5,000 in time costs and £50,000 in reduced receivables every month.

The firm faced issues with time-consuming manual administration and difficulties collecting late client payments. They also struggled with standing orders that could not be integrated efficiently into their cloud-based accounting workflow. GoCardless helped resolve these challenges, automating invoice dispatch and payment collection, eliminating the need to chase late payments. Simon is now less stressed about collecting payments,

Now, with GoCardless, our invoices are sent out and payments are automatically collected without the hassle of chasing clients for late payments.

The integration of GoCardless with Xero, a popular cloud-based accounting software, was simple and quick. It offered GrowFactor automatic reconciliation and allowed customers to sign up online within minutes from any device. Simon notes

GoCardless is fundamental to the way we run our business. Xero and QuickBooks integrations allow us to remain a paperless practice while also providing the security that invoices will be sent and collected. Plus, using GoCardless saves us two days in administration each month!

GoCardless has also been a hit with GrowFactor's clients, says Simon,

Our clients love GoCardless as it saves them more time and gives them more transparency.

Eliminate late payments and save time, money and stress collecting payments from your customers with Direct Debit via GoCardless

Interested in automating the way you get paid? GoCardless can help
Interested in automating the way you get paid? GoCardless can help

Interested in automating the way you get paid? GoCardless can help

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Try a better way to collect payments, with GoCardless. It's free to get started.

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