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B2B Payment Processing: 7 Biggest Challenges in

By: Jenna Cyprus

 

b2b payment processing

B2B payment processing is crucial for your organization to operate smoothly. You need to be able to make payments and receive payments fluidly, and reliably, if you want to maintain adequate cash flow and keep your company in good financial health.

You also need to do this in an efficient and inexpensive way, or else the monetary and labor costs associated with B2B payment processing will quickly eat into your profits.

So what are the biggest challenges in B2B payment processing? And what can you do to resolve them?

Biggest Challenges

These are some of the biggest challenges that B2B companies face in payment processing:

  1.       Manual effort/labor. One of the key challenges to overcome is the amount of manual effort or labor involved in processing payments. In a traditional environment, there are many stages of this process, including creating invoices, submitting purchase orders, manually logging transactions, approving payments, and reconciling accounts. Depending on the skill of your operation, this could cost you hundreds of hours in the long term. And if there are mistakes or hiccups in the process, you’ll be forced to spend even more time on this portion of the process. B2B payment automation has the power to fix this problem – at least, most of the problem. With automation, most of the stages of this process happen completely automatically, with no need for human intervention. You can dramatically decrease your labor costs and free up your most talented accounting staff members to focus on more important tasks.
  2.       Human error. We also need to acknowledge the challenge of human error. When you process payments manually, there’s always a risk of something going wrong. A human being can miss type something, send payment to the wrong place, or log the transaction incorrectly, ultimately creating more complex problems and costing the business both time and money. Again, automation has the power to solve most of this problem, as machines aren’t capable of making mistakes the same way human beings are. Better training and education, along with review processes and checks and balances within the department can help resolve this.
  3.       Transaction fees. Digital payments are much faster, more convenient, and more secure than making payments traditionally – but they also come with transaction fees, typically paid by the vendor. Individually, these transaction fees are typically minor, but if you’re paying transaction fees for every transaction, they quickly add up to be problematic. Shopping around for better payment processing options can help you find lower transaction fees, and you can consider offering partial discounts for payment methods that are favorable to you. You could also increase the prices of your products and services to compensate for transaction fees, at the risk of alienating your customers or being outcompeted.
  4.       Security. Modern B2B businesses also need to be mindful of security. Processing payments is sometimes a risky action, since you’ll be handling customer and/or vendor data and sensitive information. Choosing the right payment processing services and products can help you establish a better security foundation. It’s also important to have strict, formally documented policies for keeping data secure and minimizing the risk of digital interception.
  5.       Timing and delays. Businesses want to move quickly. The faster you submit and reconcile payments, and the faster you receive payments, the smoother your business is going to run. You’ll have more transparency into your current finances and your cash flow will be superior. Unfortunately, delays and poor timing can create havoc for you. Automation software can expedite this process, but you’ll still need to optimize workflows to minimize the possibility of impediments.
  6.       Payment options. There are dozens of different payment methods, from traditional paper checks to cryptocurrency. Some of your vendors and clients may have limitations on which payment methods are accessible to them or preferences on payment methods. If there’s a disconnect here, it could cause a significant delay or even cost you business. The best solution is to accept and use a wide variety of payment methods, so you can adapt to any situation. However, this is sometimes easier said than done.
  7.       Visibility and reporting. B2B businesses also need to improve visibility and reporting, so decision-makers have access to real-time financial data. Better payment processing and accounting software, complete with automatic reporting, can fundamentally resolve this problem.

Solving the Problems of B2B Payment Processing 

There are many challenges associated with B2B payment processing, but as you can see, many of them are resolvable with the right software and the right workflows. With a better payment processor, payment automation solutions, and optimized workflows, most of these problems will disappear before your eyes – and you’ll process payments much faster, more inexpensively, and more efficiently.

Published: September 5, 2023
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Jenna Cyprus

Jenna Cyprus is a freelance writer and business consultant who covers business, technology, and entrepreneurship. She's lectured for several universities, and worked with over 100 businesses over the course of the last 15 years. She's a mother of two kids, and loves to go camping, hiking, and skiing with her family.

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