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Automated Payments: A Proven Way to Trim Costs and Soothe the Burn of Inflation

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Denial is not an option for any CEO, so let’s face facts: Inflation of the sort not seen in decades shows no signs of slowing. As a CEO, giving up is not in the manual. And your customers might not be prepared to simply pay higher and higher priceshigh unemployment rates and stagnant wages are decimating consumer purchasing power as prices continue to soar.

This leads us to the clear directive that all CEOs face: trimming costs. This is a mission-critical task, and every option must be in play. First, consider the options that will cause the least pain for employees and customers alike.

Toby Guinn Sr., Founder & Director of Business Development, Global Merchant Partners

A Pain-Free Way of Insulating Your Organization from Inflation
There is one cost-cutting option that doesn’t necessarily require laying off employees or scaling back features of your business that customers enjoy, making it a logical launching point as you work to make your business lean. This option is automated payments.

When implemented intelligently, automated payments can improve the customer experience, make your organization financially dynamic, and liberate employees who were once tethered to the checkout lane.

The Benefits of Automated Payments in an Inflationary Economy
CEOs who’ve yet to invest in robust automated payment systems might consider:

1. Cash in Hand Is Always King, Especially as Prices Rise
In today’s economic climate, receiving payment now—not later—is imperative. Each passing minute means a rise in the cost of doing business, whether you’re restocking inventory, fueling your delivery vehicles, or funding other critical aspects of your business. 

Goods and services today will cost less than goods and services tomorrow, and remaining liquid allows you to purchase what you need right now. The near-instantaneous nature of automated payments, then, is far preferable to waiting hours, days, weeks, or even months for payment to arrive.

By incentivizing customers and suppliers to use your automated payment infrastructure, you’ll cut down your days sales outstanding (DSO) number, shrink accounts receivable, and keep as much cash on hand as possible—maintaining autonomy over your business decisions instead of being held prisoner by payment delays.

2. Customers Are Always Right, Even When It Comes to Automated Payments
One of the greatest crimes a business can commit is giving the customer a reason to spend their money elsewhere. As any CEO reviews their payment options, they must ask: Am I guilty of this offense?

Younger generations of tech-swaddled shoppers already see little use for cash. They may even ditch traditional wallets altogether in lieu of digital alternatives—this is the way consumer habits are trending. Increasingly, merchants who don’t offer Apple Pay, PayPal, Google Pay, and similar services may find themselves boxed out of the modern payment landscape.

58% of shoppers reported using two or more digital payment methods…all the way back in 2020. This figure will only increase with time, as familiarity with digital payment services grows.

At a time when the customer’s dollar is at a premium, can you really afford to turn away those who want to pay with their phone? 

3. Enterprise Management Systems Are Built for Automated Payments, Minimizing the Cost of Implementation
Too many businesses put off investment in automated payments because of the perceived cost. The truth is, most modern EMS systems are built for automated payments of all kinds, and the cost of implementing digital payments may be closer to zero than you suspect.

Furthermore, automated payments may streamline seamlessly with your billing and invoicing processes, reducing the time-cost of your in-house accounting practices. When you lean into digital payments, you simply take full advantage of your investment in EMS—an investment that, without comprehensive digital payment options, you may be taking limited advantage of.

Automated Payments Are a Low-Cost, High-Reward Inflationary Remedy
Inflation appears to be a given, at least for now, but your response to inflation can be dynamic. This response will determine your organization’s longevity. There is no time like right now to embrace a low-cost, high-value inflationary remedy like automated payments.

While overhauling your payments certainly won’t be the last step you take to combat rising costs, it’s one that no CEO should skip.

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