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Putting payments in the pockets of SMEs

For many small businesses and sole traders in Ireland, the process involved in getting set up with the facility to take card payments has tended to be awkward, lengthy and often not very affordable. Credit card facilities are often the preserve of the bigger guys. And Ireland’s reliance on cash is clear given we are the highest users of ATMs in Europe.

But for a business it’s hard to keep the cash flowing if you can’t take a payment. It’s a case of either being dependent on your potential customers having cash on them, or a cheque book (urgh), or invoicing them later. Being able to take a card payment there and then is often a much better alternative.

New technology/New opportunity

The payments and the mobile spaces have been a hive of technical innovation and one of the results of this, at least on this side of the pond, has been Payjack. Launched in May in Ireland, Payjack is a solution designed by WorldNet, a provider of multi-channel online payment solutions based in Dublin. It enables small businesses to take payments on the go and works by turning a smartphone into a mobile virtual terminal. Customers get a receipt by email or text message. So now you can take a payment anywhere using a piece of kit that is already in your pocket.

Payjack is specifically aimed at small businesses that don’t currently have the ability to take card payments and the really neat thing about the solution is that there’s a fast and easy signup process, which is fully online. A business could be taking its first payment within days.

Square from Jack Dorsey

Square, set up by Twitter founder Jack Dorsey, is operating in a similar space in the US. In the space of two years they’ve signed up over 1m merchants and become a $1 billion company.

The kinds of businesses that can really benefit from this kind of solution are those who sell goods or service clients in different locations. These could range from stall-holders at farmers markets to tradesmen or caterers. With just about every small business in Ireland sensitive to cashflow the benefits are clear.

Clearly, that phone in your pocket has been mobilised into much more than Alexander Graham Bell ever dreamt of!

Find out more about Payjack.

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4 Responses to Putting payments in the pockets of SMEs

  1. Frustrated by payjack October 17, 2012 at 6:34 pm #

    Having been through the Payjack process I have to say it was a complete disaster. The ’48 hour’ signup took over 2 months and when we finally processed our first payment the money never hit our account. We chased it up and were told that money would be held for 30 days before transferring. We put a lot of time into it and it was a complete shambles!

    • fionan murray October 19, 2012 at 1:30 pm #

      Thanks for taking the time. Hopefully someone from Paylack will come on and comment? It’s an open forum and we need balance…

    • James O'Sullivan October 19, 2012 at 2:05 pm #

      Is a merchant ID with your Bank required for this payments solution? Typically you can get your money pretty much straight away if you have a merchant ID but maybe I am missing something here? In general hooking up anything online in terms of payments is a disaster. Hopefully the Irish brothers working over at can bring their solution to our shores sooner rather than later. I know their solution is not necessarily mobile right now – but I am sure it will be and then no more paypal and a few others thank god!!

      • Ryan Harris October 19, 2012 at 2:37 pm #

        No merchant ID needed on this James…… I am sure its just a payment ID issued to your account and away you go but yes the money gets held in most of these providers incase of any charge backs to the card holder – I agree this space is new and not exactly smooth to sign up to just yet. Stripe not in Ireland yet, I thought it was actually must go look see….

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