Accepting payments online

For many small businesses, selling online provides some major benefits. Customers incre­asingly expect this type of facility and it can improve your cash flow signi­fic­antly.

It's easy to accept cheques or invoices for your online sales and to process payments in the traditional way. However, because buyers often use the Internet for a speedy service, most sales are paid for with credit and debit cards. To accept cards online, you will have to make arran­gements over and above those already in place for your traditional business banking.

Online payments using cards are "customer not present" transac­tions. There are higher risks of fraud with this type of payment and banks require you to operate within a well-defined set of rules and accept a higher level of commercial risk than a conven­tional swiped card transaction in a shop. This guide will help you to understand these requ­ire­ments in order to take advantage of online payments.