Advantages of eChecks over Other Payment Types

In the world of payments today, there are so many options and so many providers, it can often be confusing for a business owner to decide which way to turn.  eCheck is one of the most often overlooked forms of payment, but it is something that every business owner should consider.

eCheck, an established payment instrument combining the security, speed and processing efficiency of all-electronic transactions with the familiar and well-developed legal infrastructure and business processes associated with paper checks, is the first and only electronic payment mechanism chosen by the United States Treasury to make high-value payments over the public Internet.

As of 2017, eCheck is an established and highly utilized payment method online. Virtually every major payment gateway offers eCheck payment options in addition a raft of other payment services. Paying by eCheck remains one of the most secure and CHEAPEST methods of making a payment directly form your bank account to another party (or to pay for goods or services).

You can typically send an eCheck from any sort of modern checking account, provided your bank offers the ability to do so online.

The Electronic Check (also known as the ‘eCheck’ or ‘e-check’):

  • leverages the check payments system, a core competency of the banking industry.
  • fits within current business practices, eliminating the need for expensive process re-engineering.
  • works like a paper check does but in pure electronic form, with fewer manual steps.
  • is designed to meet the needs of businesses and consumers in the 21st century, using state of the art security techniques.
  • can be used by all bank customers who have checking accounts, including small and mid-size businesses which currently have little access to electronic payment systems.
  • enhances existing bank accounts with new e-commerce features.

Let’s examine how eCheck works for the banking industry and the clients it serve. There are fundamental characteristics and differences between paper check, the eCheck and other Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) transactions.

eChecks are an important instrument in transitioning businesses and consumers into the world of electronic commerce.

Here’s a detailed comparison of eCheck to the other popular payment types.

eCheck and Paper Checks
The electronic check (eCheck) is an all-electronic enhancement to the paper check and is based on current check law. This white paper briefly compare paper and echecks, based on five categories: usage, cost, allowance for errors, risk management, and information richness.

eCheck and Debit Cards
Debit cards are used by individuals, and to a far lesser extent by businesses, to make payments at the retail point-of-sale, or to obtain cash from ATMs.   This white paper will briefly compare the differences between debit cards and echecks.

eCheck and Automated Clearing House (ACH)
Since electronic checks are debit transactions, this white paper provides a high level comparison of some of the main differences between the ACH debit system and echecks. These differences are reviewed in five main categories: terminology, business practices, underlying technology, transaction authorization, and risk management.  Note that as of 2015, ACH and eCheck can pretty much be used interchangeably. There are some differences, but for all intensive purposes, they are the same. Echeck now uses the ACH network to connect the Payee with the banking institution.

eCheck and Secure Electronic Transaction (SET)
The SET protocol specifications were defined by the credit card industry to facilitate credit card purchases over the Internet.  This white paper briefly compares the differences between SET and echecks.

eCheck and Home Banking
Home banking bill payments are convenient for consumers, and although they have some of the characteristics of electronic payments, there are significant differences between echecks and home banking bill payments.  This white paper will briefly explore the differences between the two payment approaches.

If you’re interested in finding out how eChecks can help your business save money we can help. To learn more contact ACHQ or call us at 877-743-1551.

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