Once your business reaches a certain size, accepting credit cards almost becomes a must in order to keep up with how your customers have become accustomed to paying for their purchases.

Being able to accept credit cards can benefit both your customers and your business for a variety of reasons. Whether you’re just starting out and debating which payment methods you’d like to accept, or you have a more established business that has been able to avoid accepting credit cards up until now, there is certainly a strong case to be made for the benefit of accepting credit cards.

Here are five ways that accepting credit cards can help your business:

  1. More sales opportunities 

    Accepting credit cards gives your customers more options to pay for purchases and actually increases the likelihood that they will make a larger purchase. It’s been shown that customers are more comfortable making larger purchases using their credit card, likely due to bank cardholder protections and the physical detachment from cash. Accepting credit cards also allows your business to set up an online store where customers from around the world can shop for your products and services 24/7, giving your business significantly more opportunities to make sales.

  2. Improve your cash flow

    Accepting credit cards affords you the ability to receive your deposits as quickly as a few hours or a few business days. Compared to checks which can take up to 30 days to clear and invoices that can take up to 90 days to be paid (if they’re paid at all!), accepting credit cards gets money into your business’s bank account faster.

  3. Speed up your transactions

    Authorizing a credit card takes only a few seconds, giving you more time to manage the rest of your business and help more customers. If your business accepts tap and NFC (Near Field Communication) payments, then the entire transaction can be reduced to a few seconds. This means faster checkouts and shorter lines for your customers, and more sales in less time for your business.

  4. Expand your market while staying competitive

    Visa and Mastercard are international brands. By accepting these card types, you have access to customers in over 170 countries who are able to pay for your products or services with just a few clicks. Accepting credit cards also helps you keep up with your competition by meeting customer expectations for payment options – if you don’t offer the payment type that they’re expecting, then there’s a greater chance they will go to another business that does. People are carrying less cash than ever before, and it’s unlikely your business can afford to ignore this trend.

  5. Trade Green for Going Green

    As people seek out environmentally friendly practices for all aspects of their lives, accepting credit cards is one-way businesses can reduce their environmental footprint. Going paperless helps businesses reduce their reliance on cash and paper for receipts, inventory lists, booking sheets, invoices, and spreadsheets. Since credit card transactions are essentially just data being passed back and forth, it’s possible to feed that data through an ever-growing number of business software applications and processes that allow you to send paperless receipts and invoices through e-mail, do all your accounting from the cloud, manage your inventory and customer data all from your computer or phone, all while gaining valuable sales insights from the aggregation and organizing of all this data.