One good thing to come out of the Covid-19 crisis is that many small business owners are waking up to the benefits of collecting customer payments remotely. The pandemic has changed consumer behaviour, perhaps permanently. Do not be fooled by the term ‘remote’, as it shouldn’t imply a detached service. On the contrary, dealing remotely with customers for once-off or recurring payments opens up a host of customer touch points that add value to the overall B2C experience and customer relationship, and can improve your bottom line.

While there are many reasons why remote collections make more sense, we’ve identified three primary pain points that bring businesses to our doorstep.

Pain point #1: Restricted customer onboarding process

Opportunities to see customers face-to-face are dwindling. Intensified by social distancing, businesses that have relied in the past on physical channels to verify their customers are now faced with consumers who would prefer to interact from the comfort and safety of their couch. So, how can businesses verify customer banking details and set up automated, authenticated collections remotely?

Solution: BankTech gives business owners the ability to onboard new and existing customers remotely, either through their company website, or by using the BankTech console. There are many ways to reach customers such as sending a web link via SMS, WhatsApp or email. Customers are asked to input their details or opt in, at which point their response is verified by BankTech through DebiCheck authentication. Businesses will then have an authenticated mandate to allow for recurring billing.

Pain point #2: Cumbersome payment processing

We’re surprised at the number of businesses that continue to collect customer payments manually, month in, month out, inputting repetitive debit order mandates and physically chasing up unsuccessful or failed payments individually. While many business owners think that collections automation is out of reach due to prohibitive set-up costs and tech infrastructure, this belief couldn’t be further from the truth.

Solution: Businesses can use the BankTech console to make individual collections every month, or alternatively they can make use of our future invoicing service to set up recurring collections with specific rules relating to amounts and frequency. Once in place, BankTech takes over the reins to ensure that all future collections occur at the frequency predicted, using least-cost routing so that businesses don’t overpay to collect from reliable customers, but pay more to secure payment from risky customers.

Pain point #3: Limited customer engagement

When things go wrong with customer payments, it can be time-consuming and costly for small businesses to resolve manually, especially when relying solely on physical channels. Even when things are going right, being able to communicate with customers in more convenient ways is key to developing long-term customer satisfaction and retention.

Solution: BankTech allows businesses to create their own automated communication process using our console’s API keys. Businesses can trigger personalised responses in-app and offer customers the benefits of self-service through WhatsApp, SMS, Facebook Messenger or USSD push. And what’s more, you’ll have extra time to spend on nurturing customer relationships, while we make sure the banking integration runs smoothly.

Case study: Going Remote with Business Collections

A local retail chain recently contacted BankTech to see if we could set up a remote verification process for customers who voiced concerns about coming in-store to settle accounts, as well as the ability to create once-off “promise-to-pay”. Unable to verify these clients remotely, this retailer expressed concern about an imminent increase in unpaid accounts which would negatively impact company cash flow and require costly administrative resources to resolve. All this at a time when operational capacity was already compromised due to lockdown restrictions!

Using BankTech’s collections technology, the retailer was able to solve their problem by implementing a remote customer onboarding and collections process.

  • Step 1: Retailer call centre agent calls all new and existing customers, and if they opt in, they then request bank details telephonically.
  • Step 2: Bank details are approved using the BankTech console.
  • Step 3: Verification/authentication check is run over the phone and a ‘promise to pay’ (or mandate) is created.
  • Step 4: A multi-signatory process is followed where managers approve all collections.
  • Step 5: BankTech submits the mandate to the bank and collects the payment – same day if required – on behalf of the retailer.

To learn more about setting up recurring billing for your business, get in touch with the BankTech sales team.