Next time you are looking for a new bank or financial services provider, consider making a list of all the services your business requires. Then, select your bank or other firm according to the best match for your needs.
Receiving Customer Payments: Consider how you receive payments and the steps to convert receipts into cash.
- Forms of payment accepted
- Methods of accepting payments
- Number of transactions
- Dollar amount of transactions
- Speed, ease and price of settling transactions
Making Vendor Payments: Consider how you pay vendors and what you require for timely and accurate payments.
- Forms of payment accepted by vendors
- Timing of payments
- Purchase controls
Managing Cash Position and Growth: Consider your existing situation, plus imagine ideal scenarios for managing cash position now and cash needs for growth.
- Funding for day-to-day operations
- Supporting systems
- Funding for growth
After you have defined your needs, search for solutions.
- You may turn to your local branch of a large bank to provide all your financial services. Perhaps a small-business bank account and charge card is all you need. Or, if you are engaged in global trade and have multiple locations, a commercial account with treasury management, international and credit services may be more appropriate.
- You might consider a basic account with a local bank or credit union, and arrange for more complex services with third-party providers (such as accepting e-checks or managing payroll).
- Finally, you may find that non-traditional sources of financial services may suit your requirements. For example, instead of applying for a business loan to expand your business, you might obtain funds from customers for equipment purchases or a crowdfunding site for a special project.
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