Businesses Turning To Digital Services

As COVID-19 continues to stress businesses financially and operationally, small business owners across North America are turning to digital services to improve cash flow and modernize their payments ecosystems. Citing speed, security, and transparency, more than half (57 per cent) of small businesses say they’ve increased their use of digital services for business-to-business (B2B) payments since the start of the pandemic, says a study by Mastercard. It shows 38 per cent of small business owners in the U.S. and Canada are experiencing cash flow issues associated with late payments and slow processing times for cash and cheques. While the challenges of traditional, physical payments existed before the pandemic, these pain points were magnified by widespread lockdowns and social distancing measures. Now, 48 per cent of small business owners say their business is one missed payment away from going under. To address these challenges, 64 per cent are actively trying to steer clients away from using cash and cheques. Online card payments saw the greatest increase at 60 per cent. As well, positive sentiment, increased customer satisfaction, and continued exploration suggest small businesses plan to stick with digital business payments, even as the pandemic subsides. The study shows 70 per cent are willing to invest in the technology required to advance their payment systems.