Accelerate the collection of check payments
Whether or not you subscribe to the theory that the Digital Age is upon on us, Americans still stubbornly cling to a means of making payments that's been around, in one form or other, for hundreds of years: writing checks on paper. According to the Federal Reserve, we still rely on checks more than any other industrialized nation.
Handling all of these checks (about 16 billion of them annually, the Federal Reserve reports), takes its toll on businesses - large and small - and even on the environment.
Checks won't be going away anytime soon, but a growing selection of check-processing technologies can save you time, improve your cash position, and boost your confidence in the checks you accept.
Deposit Checks without Making a Trip to the Bank with Remote Deposit
A relatively new business banking tool is remote deposit, which enables you to deposit checks in your business checking account electronically. Ever since a 2003 federal law permitted banks to handle more checks electronically, banks have been introducing services that enable you to deposit checks without leaving your place of business. Depending on how often you typically visit your bank to deposit checks, remote deposit can save you several hours a week.
Here's how it works:
Once the checks are in the system, you can view your deposit history, access images of individual checks, or review transaction details online, at will. And your data is encrypted for online security.
More and more banks now are offering remote deposit services. Many banks offer solutions compatible with standard business accounting software, such as QuickBooks®, or even scanners free of charge to their small business customers.
Make Every Check an E-Check
Another technology that is becoming increasingly popular among efficiency- and security-conscious businesses is check conversion, which transforms a paper check into an electronic transaction (or "e-check") that's processed as soon as a customer presents it for payment at the cash register.
According to Jason Marshall of First Data Corp., the advantages of check conversion - also known as Electronic Check Acceptance (ECA) - can best be summed up with the acronym "BEES":
|B stands for the bank fees that you'll save -
for depositing, processing and managing returned paper checks, explains Marshall.
|E is for easy.
Just take the check, run it through your e-check terminal, and hand it back it to the customer. No more scribbling phone numbers, driver's license numbers, and other identification information on the check.
|E The next E is for efficiency.
You don't have to balance all of those checks manually. Funding, reconciliation and reporting are automated.
|S And S is for safety.
Our front-end authorization system protects you from fraud. We also offer check conversion combined with warranty services, so you don't have to worry about returned checks.
One of the leading ECA providers is TeleCheck, a First Data Corp subsidiary. In return for a subscription fee, TeleCheck empowers business owners to accept checks with as much peace of mind as they do credit cards. You can arrange TeleCheck services through your Merchant Services representative.
When you get right down to it, the best argument for applying new technology to the old headache of paper checks is time ? trading routine chores for time to run your business, for example, or reducing the time it takes for checks to clear.
Chances are, you're already taking advantage of many of the time-saving features of electronic banking in the Digital Age. Maybe it's time you brought technology to bear on that last holdout, the paper check.
Find out more about PNC check processing solutions for your business:
Or, give PNC a call at 800-762-5684 between 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m., ET, Monday through Friday and 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., ET, Saturday and Sunday. We'll be happy to discuss your check processing needs and help determine the best solution for your business.
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Merchant Services provided by PNC Merchant Services Company and are subject to credit approval.
PNC Merchant Services® is the registered trademark of PNC Merchant Services Company.