Payment Links: What They Are and How to Use Them in Your Business

Payment Links: What They Are and How to Use Them in Your Business

Letting customers pay for goods on their own terms can significantly bolster sales. This is particularly important for small business owners as every single sale makes a big difference.

85% of consumers have abandoned an online purchase because they didn’t have the option to pay in their preferred fashion. So, as you can see, it’s essential to offer customers a wide range of payment options to ensure your SMB doesn’t miss out on sales.

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However, payment links aren’t just for your online checkout or payment page. You can send customers a payment link to request payment directly from your smartphone for fast and secure payment processing. You can also use email to do this. But, since most businesses that use payment links are SMBs, the mobile payment option is more convenient for business owners.

Payment links are a secure payment alternative for small businesses. They’re a form of online payment that is usually used in B2B transactions, and the benefits are numerous.

Have you been wondering how to use payment links, or whether they’re right for your unique business workflow? If so, this article is for you.

What Are Payment Links and How Do They Work?

Payment links are sent to your customers via emails or text messages. Your customer clicks on the link or QR code to enter their credit card or debit card information and, voila! Your payment is en route. Payment links are often used in lieu of automation or less secure payment methods like card processing over the phone.

There’s a misconception that payment links only work for eCommerce or social media transactions but this is not the case. You don’t even need a formal checkout page to process payments with payment links––anyone can use them. So, they’re a great way for SMBs to forego setting up a merchant account.

Why Should You Use Payment Links in Your Small Business?

Security is one of the main reasons small business owners create payment links. Sharing sensitive credit card data over the phone and over emails is an API security issue. But payment links offer a highly secure, customizable alternative. Customers are sent a notification when it’s time to pay and simply click the link in your SMS text or email to enter their payment information.

The pricing of payment links is more affordable than using a payment gateway. Customers can use different currencies or payment methods with a payment link. So, they’re safer, more flexible, and more affordable than alternative payment options.

What Types of Businesses Are Payment Links Most Suitable For?

Payment links work for a wide variety of business types. However, they work best for small businesses that need to collect payments outside of a traditional point-of-sale system. They’re great for businesses that need B2B payment processing to pay for services such as contractors. They’re also great for paying suppliers outside of your organization.

With that said, a wide variety of businesses can benefit from paying by link, particularly businesses that offer remote services. These include, but aren’t limited to telehealth providers and doctors, accounting firms, consultancies, contractors, and legal service providers. Really any business where customers don’t check out at a POS or payment gateway can benefit from payment links.

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Which Are the Leading Payment Link Providers?

There’s a lot of data out there about the leading payment gateway providers out there. But, when you start to talk about payment links, the available data becomes a lot more obtuse. Because of this, we’ve done the research to provide you with four of the leading payment link providers, so you can weigh your options and make the best decision for your SMB.

1. Payment Depot

Whether you sell products or services online, accept donations, or offer subscriptions, Payment Depot allows you to create payment links in just a few clicks with absolutely no need for any coding or development. You can support multiple products (or services) within the same link and easily share them via email, text messages, social media, website, or blog. 

Our payment links allow you to accept payments anywhere using credit cards, ACH payments, and digital wallets. Simply enable or disable your preferred payment methods right from your dashboard. 

What’s more, you can even set up recurring billing and tokenize (save) a payment method for future use, so customers don’t need to enter their payment info every time. And as an added bonus, each payment link generates an HTML “Pay Now” button that can be embedded on websites and emails, or a QR code that can be used on mailers, signage, at events, etc.

2. Stripe

Stripe is a rather pricey, but highly trusted payment link provider. Prices are similar to PayPal, which is a payment aggregator. However, Stripe is simply a payment processing company that works with customer banks and credit card companies (Visa, Mastercard, etc.). Like Payment Depot, Stripe handles PCI compliance and offers security that’s better than PayPal.

3. Apple Pay

Apple Pay is a mobile payments platform. It saves customers’ payment details for seamless checkout with the touch of a button. Customers can send secure payment links through Apple Cash. While convenient, Apple Cash was built to send money to “people you know,” not outside businesses or service providers.

4. PayPal

PayPal is famous for its ease of adoption, which has made it the most used payment aggregator in the world. It takes only minutes to get set up on PayPal and begin processing payment links. However, since PayPal is a payment aggregator, accounts are less secure and can be shut down without forewarning.

5. WorldPay

WorldPay is one of the oldest payment link providers around. It works for international businesses that use different currencies. Because of this, it’s great for SMBs that do global business. It’s highly rated by global consumers––in fact, it’s the number one global fintech provider. However, its rates can be a bit pricey for U.S.-based businesses.

How to Set up a Payment Link

Setting up a payment link is easy if you work with a payment processor that offers payment links. Some payment service providers will let you send pre-built payment link text messages right in their app.

If you’re an SMB/startup owner, consider whether you’ll want to send payment links before choosing a payment services provider. Otherwise, you may have to use a payment link provider that’s separate from your payment processor which can be costly and time intensive.

The Bottom Line

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Payment links are a convenient way to accept payments outside of your payment gateway or POS station. While WorldPay is a great option for international businesses, it’s too expensive for those that are focused on the U.S. However, SMB owners like you are already saving an average of $400 a month on payment processing with Payment Depot.

Payment Depot has an A+ BBB rating, award-winning customer service, and the ability to help your business maximize profits. Connect with our knowledgeable sales reps to begin saving your business money, today!

Want to save 40% on payment processing? Let's Talk!