With rising gas prices, we think Gas Buddy is on to something. We’re hopeful that other businesses will follow.
Gas Buddy, the gas price website which locates the least expensive fueling stations by zip code, launched Pay with Gas Buddy one year ago, a discount fueling program that enables consumers to pay by ACH processing bank transfers. It works like this:
- A consumer enrolls in Pay with Gas Buddy and connects their checking account through the Gas Buddy app on their mobile phone.
- The consumer then receives a Gas Buddy card in the mail, to be used at the pump, and payment is automatically deducted from the consumer’s checking account.
- Consumers can also take advantage of Gas Buddy’s rewards and discounts.
To say the least, we’re excited about this. We’ve long said ACH payment processing is an overlooked, underappreciated form of payment from which every business – online and brick-and-mortar – can benefit.
2 big reasons Pay with Gas Buddy will continue to grow
One year into the Pay with Gas Buddy program, and it has 300,000 members strong. For us, it’s not a surprise, for two reasons.
- Perhaps more than any other product on Earth, consumers are riled when fuel prices increase, even when the increase is less than $1 per gallon (this was evident at the turn of the decade). Most consumers will take any kind of break they can get at the gas pump.
- Secondly, payment by ACH processing bank transfers is safer and as efficient as a credit or debit card payment at the pump. Additionally, ACH payments are immediate, thanks to NACHA’s ‘Same Day ACH’ effort which went into full effect in March of this year.
Why ACH and check solutions are vastly underrated
With the exposure of Gas Buddy’s success using ACH processing, we feel more companies may follow its methodology, and why shouldn’t they? We’ve been singing the praises of ACH processing bank transfers for years, for good reason.
- Safer: As we noted prior, ACH payments are safe and direct. Even better, unlike three years ago, ACH payments made before 2:45 p.m., will settle by 5 p.m.
- Cost effective: ACH transactions are less expensive than credit card processing. Though there is a ‘per transaction’ fee with ACH, there are no interchange fees as there are with credit card payments.
- Nationwide access: Nearly every bank and financial institution in the U.S. is connected to the Automated Clearinghouse (ACH).
- Ever reliable: For merchants, both e-commerce and storefront, ACH processing bank transfers can be a parachute. Sometimes the credit card networks go down and transactions cannot go through. Additionally, though it doesn’t happen often, we’ve seen merchants in high risk industries have their credit card processing privileges halted for little or no reason. Having ACH processing bank transfers can bridge the gap from one credit card processing solution to the next.
- Fast approvals: When a merchant approaches Instabill for a check processing solution, the approval time is usually 1-2 days, rarely more, even though the same KYC documents are necessary.
- Hassle free: With ACH payment processing, there are no paper checks, postage or envelopes to deal with.
ICLs, Check 21, Virtual Checks…we’ve got e-check solutions
ACH processing bank transfers aren’t the only solutions merchants should consider as credit card processing alternatives. We offer several solutions:
- Check 21: The scanned image of a paper check submitted as payment.
- Image Cash Letter (ICL): ICLs operate outside of NACHA guidelines, but with the same time frame. With the customer’s banking information, merchants create a virtual check or image cash letter verified by the merchant or processor’s check verification system.
- Virtual Checks: When the merchant enters the customer’s bank data into a checkout page, virtual terminal or web API, creating a remotely created check (RCC).
Discover the ease and convenience of ACH processing bank transfers and other check solutions with a 10-minute conversation with one of Instabill’s expert payment processing representatives at 1-800-530-2444.