Meeting Expectations of the Millennial Generation for Mobility and Immediate Results; Billers Paid by VerifiedACH™ Avoid Costly Fees and Get Real-time Payment Updates
July 28, 2015 01:27 PM Eastern Daylight Time
“Millennials, especially, are turning away from debit and credit cards and seeking out mobile payment methods. We’ve seen that trend take hold in Europe, and it’s happening now in America”
Consumers who use AcceptEmail enjoy a quick, easy and intuitive bill payment experience from either their mobile devices or desktops: within an AcceptEmail dynamic email from a biller, consumers choose among the payment options offered, and authorize payment. With PayWithMyBank’s VerifiedACH™ now available as an AcceptEmail payment type, consumers can also pay their bills with online banking.
VerifiedACH lets consumers pay directly from their bank accounts by simply signing into their online banking. There’s no card, bank account or routing numbers to provide, no account to create or new password to remember. Consumers avoid the convenience fees that often come with card-based online bill payment services, as well as the interest associated with credit cards. Payments are protected by the same bank-grade security that consumers trust daily for online banking.
“This is the best of both worlds,” said AcceptEmail CEO Peter Kwakernaak. “Billers who take advantage of the combination of AcceptEmail and PayWithMyBank need not make adjustments to their systems, website or Apps in order to get VerifiedACH with real-time confirmations. They will reap substantial savings too. ACH is far less expensive to transact than credit card payments, which often take a percentage of the invoice amount.”
Meeting Demands of Millennials for Mobility, Speed, and Convenience
Consumers of the Millennial Generation, some 76 million Americans born in the two decades before the year 2000, will welcome the AcceptEmail-PayWithMyBank method of direct payments. As digital natives, they grew up in a networked, online world.
“Millennials, especially, are turning away from debit and credit cards and seeking out mobile payment methods. We’ve seen that trend take hold in Europe, and it’s happening now in America,” said Kwakernaak.
“But it’s not just the Millennials,” added Alexandre Gonthier, PayWithMyBank CEO. “50% of Americans either do not have a credit card, or prefer not to use one. The majority of adults, however, have a bank account and use email.”
PayWithMyBank already enables approximately 90% of US online banking customers to use its service.
AcceptEmail generates payment requests on behalf of billers, displays the payment options that the billers offer to their customers, delivers essential data to the chosen payment method, and obtains authorization of the payment.
When the authorization arrives, the consumer gets notified immediately. The AcceptEmail payment request changes color on screen – from blue (payment due) to green (payment received).
Billers who use AcceptEmail typically experience reductions of up to 70 percent in collection costs. They also receive instant proof of bill delivery. AcceptEmail customers pay their bills faster – between ten and 14 days – than those who use paper bills.
Close to 30% of the millions of AcceptEmails sent out in the past twelve months were opened on mobile devices. Kwakernaak maintains that the percentage of mobile bill payers will continue to grow rapidly, as will the use of mobile-ready payment methods such as PayWithMyBank’s VerifiedACH, Amazon and PayPal.
“’Synergy’ is a frequently overused word, but it is entirely appropriate here,” Kwakernaak concluded.
PayWithMyBank allows consumers to pay or get paid easily by connecting to their online banking account without leaving the merchant’s site or app. Using a secure portal, consumers simply log into their online banking with the bank login information they know by heart. Login details are never seen or stored by the biller. There is no account to create, no card, bank numbers or billing information to provide, and no new password to remember. The bank verifies the consumer’s identity, and provides the same security consumers trust daily for online banking.
PayWithMyBank is available to anyone with a US bank account. Online merchants and billers save on payment fees, nonprofits put more donation dollars to their cause, and insurance companies and other paper check issuers move disbursements online. PayWithMyBank is headquartered in Redwood City, CA.
AcceptEmail is the easiest way to receive and pay bills and reminders for consumers and SMEs. Rather than a notification to log in to a biller portal, customers receive real-time payment requests via various messaging solutions: email, mobile, QR code or social media. In a few clicks, bills can be paid directly from the inbox, using online or mobile payment methods. No manual data (re)entry is involved, and the customer does not need to register or log-in. Customers experience more convenience, with fewer steps to take and with real-time updates that show the current status of the bill in the message itself.
AcceptEmail is the market leader for consumer remittances in Western Europe, serving approximately 600 clients. IntelligentHQ.com named the company one of Europe’s 50 Hottest FinTech Companies in 2014. Headquartered in Amsterdam, AcceptEmail has offices in Belgium, the UK, and its recently opened (May 2015) location in New York.
Peter Kwakernaak, +1 404-259-2506
Tom Burke, +1 617-326-7471
Louise Austin, +1 650-241-0017
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One of the largest U.S. banks is expanding the digital tools it offers small businesses, a customer category whose needs are attracting the attention of a flurry of software developers. PNC Bank, the sixth-largest bank by assets, announced Monday a partnership with Bill.com. The relationship has allowed the Pittsburgh bank to expand its tech offerings for small businesses to help them manage their cash flow management, in the hopes of deepening customer relationships and gaining fee income. The announcement comes at a time when many banks are rethinking the way they serve small business clients. Industry analysts have identified the small business category as ripe for innovation, and suggest banks that create customized digital tools such as cash flow forecasting can better serve customers and decrease the risk of disintermediation from startups like Square and InDinero. “Now is the time for banks to begin addressing their vulnerabilities in the small-business space,” says Christine Barry, research director with Aite Group and author of a 2013 report on small-business banking, in a blog. “They must proactively offer the tools necessary to improve customer satisfaction, address customer inefficiencies and challenges, and increase the utility of their online banking platforms.” Bill.com, founded in 2006 in Palo Alto, Calif. as CashView, ties together finance and accounting programs, banks, customers, vendors, accounting professionals, and documents to automate small business’ financial tasks, including handling payments. “Cash flow is the life blood of all small businesses,” says Tom Kunz, senior vice president and director of payments and e-Business for The PNC Financial Services Group, PNC Bank’s parent company. “Most small business owners aren’t finance professionals. …Knowing their cash flow isn’t intuitive or easy for them.” PNC’s existing suite of digital tools, called Cash Flow Insight, is designed to tackle that challenge by helping small-business owners automate their financial pain points and offering them visuals of their anticipated incoming and outgoing funds. PNC’s partnership with Bill.com expands what Cash Flow Insight, launched in April 2013, lets customers do. The service served as a place to forecast cash flow based on small businesses’ bank data, such as bill payments. Now, the suite includes digital invoicing capabilities and the ability to sync in data from popular accounting software like QuickBooks. The combined tools now let small business clients pay bills, manage contracts and receipts online, generate reports, and model their cash flow three ways: a shorter-term (90-day) view, an 18-month model and what-if scenarios of the user’s choosing. “To have all that [data] in real-time with a bank is what we think customers are after,” says Kunz. Other cash-flow software products available for this market don’t integrate with bank accounts, Kunz says. PNC does not disclose its small business customer count. The updated tools, however, have been live with some customers for 30 days, Kunz says. The enrollment is a one-click process for online banking customers. Then, of course, a business owner needs to enter data about vendors and other aspects of his business, to get a more accurate forecast. In turn, the length of the set-up process will depend on each small business’ operations. The bank, then, gets access to a treasure trove of data and potentially more logins and more dedicated customers. PNC used APIs from the Bill.com business payment network to integrate the service with existing tools. Bill.com announced in November it updated its platform to let banks offer its services. PNC is the first large bank to announce offering the services. Mercantile Bank of Michigan was the first financial institution to partner with Bill.com in 2012. To be sure, every small business is different and the features they will want or need to use will vary. Unlike retail customers, small businesses are more likely to swallow fees for services, according to recent industry research. The software’s advantages for the end-user are positioned as time savings and a single place to manage money. Most invoicing customers are using simple software, such as Microsoft Word, to send out bills and a separate payment provider to collect, which requires double data entry, says Kunz. “It makes it easy for the small business owner to understand cash flow,” he says. Users can set up alerts and calculate what-if scenarios, too. Historically, banks’ digital tools have ignored small businesses. In some cases, banks don’t understand the small business customer. That’s changing. Small Business Payments Company is a newer startup designing software meant to help small businesses handle money matters, including forecasting their cash flow. Yodlee, meanwhile, is working to make such services available to banks. 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