Over a third (31%) of SMEs are not aware of alternative payment solutions for their business needs. This comes from a study conducted by Curiosity Box on behalf of Sage Pay.
According to a press release sent to Ventureburn, SMEs are losing significant time and resources by not streamlining their business payment needs.
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The SMEs polled are frustrated by high costs, low levels of automation, and a lack of customisation in their payment solutions. These flaws can make payments a time-consuming process prone to human error.
Managing Director of Sage Pay, Charles Pittaway, says most businesses are still relying on banks as payment partners:
A choice of payment providers remains a passive decision because most accountants and owners at small businesses think that a bank is the natural choice of a payment partner. And since they perceive all banks to be much the same, they’ll simply use the institution that handles most of their banking needs already.
When asked what SMEs are looking for in a payment solution, 20% answered less room for error, 20% wanted time-saving features, 19% look to only capture data once, a further 19% want cost savings solutions, and 18% want integration with other software packages.
The study also found that SMEs struggle with manual supplier payments and the range of suppliers that need to be paid. These errors include mistakes on invoices, typing errors, and late invoices. These issues can be addressed with more automated systems in place.
Other solutions, such as internet banking and batch file uploads, can be expensive and cumbersome for many smaller companies. These solutions require specialised software, the movement of data, as well as manual reconciliations.
“For these reasons, SMEs should look to alternatives that make it safe and simple to capture details for recurring and one-off payments directly on one system which is accessible anywhere at any time,” says Pittaway. Systems should be integrated with payroll and accounting software to eliminate the need to capture data.
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