It’s common practice for freelancers to accept only one or two payment methods. Those are most commonly bank transfer and PayPal (or other popular eWallets). However, you could be leaving money on the table by not diversifying the payment methods you accept.
We’re going to share the various advantages and things you need to know about why offering multiple payment options as a freelancer can increase your income.
The Difference Between Individuals and Businesses
Freelancers work with both individuals and businesses. An individual may prefer to pay by one method but a business another.
North American businesses regularly prefer to create remotely created checks because it allows them to have more control over their finances. Yet two-thirds of Canadians would like to ditch the check by phone and the check by fax entirely.
Regardless of where you stand as a freelancer, you must adapt to the needs of both individuals and businesses. Some businesses may refuse to hire you if you don’t accept checks, for example.
International Freelancers Must Adapt to Different Landscapes
The way we do business here in the US is not how people do business in Europe. Freelancers are used to receiving checks here, but in Europe it’s practically unheard of. Many European Union (EU) countries no longer consider remotely created checks a form of payment and don’t have the facilities to accept them.
A bank transfer from Europe would be incredibly expensive for a freelancer. Plus, wiring the money is out of the question due to costs. Do you see the problems you’re likely to encounter when you offer your services internationally?
If you’re targeting other markets, you must adapt to their rules.
Making Payments Easier for You
Unfortunately, freelancers often don’t qualify for discounts from card providers. That means accepting and making payments for a freelancer can turn into a major business expense.
The art of spreading your money around can make meeting your business goals easier. Think about it like this. You want to buy something from Europe online. The other business only accepts PayPal.
PayPal charges you 2.5% above the wholesale exchange rate, which is already worse than the interbank exchange rate you see when you search for exchange rates online. That’s a large amount of money to send money from your bank account.
But if you accepted PayPal as a payment method for Europeans you would already have a Euro balance so no need to transfer money around at your expense.
It’s just a simple example of the benefits of having multiple balances through multiple payment methods. Your business expenses go down.
New Technology is Coming Fast
The rise of new payment technology has left many businesses behind. Many of these companies will only accept check by fax, which alienates a significant number of potential customers. The chances are you accept basic payment methods, but are thinking about going one step further.
A particularly interesting possibility is Bitcoin. The power of Bitcoin is just an example of how cryptocurrencies are starting to take the world by storm.
You may wonder whether there’s any point in setting up the facilities for this now.
All signs point towards cryptocurrencies eventually taking off and becoming a mainstream option. They don’t have the same costs as traditional currency transfers and there’s a strong level of privacy associated with them.
Even if you don’t get a lot of business with cryptocurrencies right now, it’s going to become more popular and by becoming an early adopter you’re best placed to get a piece of the pie.
But there’s also other new technology you can take advantage of now.
Some freelancers, such as consultants and software developers, may meet clients in-house. Accepting payments via mobile card apps from your smartphone makes things easier on them and allows you to get paid instantly. It removes traditional payment delays that freelancers have had had to deal with for years.
Last Word – It’s in Your Best Interest
Offering as many payment methods as possible gives you maximum exposure to individuals and businesses across the world. The more diverse you are the more of a competitive edge you have over freelancers who don’t offer the same flexibility.
Do you think there are any other payment methods everyone should accept?