Business Software and SystemsBusiness Advisory

Get paid faster using online payment options for small businesses

Michael Alexander Michael Alexander
29 February 2024
5 min read

Getting paid as fast as possible from your customers is more important than ever. According to the latest Xero small business report, the average time to get paid for a small business in New Zealand is 24 days. The same report also shows that small businesses that provided online payment options increased the speed of payment from their customers. This means cash hits the bank account faster to cover wages, debt repayments or supplier bills.

This begs the question; how can you make it easier for your customers to pay? It is important to remove as many barriers as possible to getting cash in the bank. For example, if you are a tradie, you could offer credit card payments on the spot, a professional service firm could set up direct debit payments, or an online platform could use every option possible to encourage payment.

How to find the right online payment option for your small business

There are many options out there for online payments with different pros and cons. Below we outline a few of the most popular options, which can also be integrated with Xero accounting software. Integrating with Xero has its own set of benefits but customer experience is at the forefront, reducing the number of clicks between receiving an invoice and paying it. For example, when a customer receives an invoice from you, there will be a button for them to click to make an instant payment.

Stripe and PayPal

PayPal and Stripe are two of the most popular and well-known payment processing platforms globally.

  • Both are great for taking credit card and internet banking payments.

  • The fees are similar, and they both have the ability to on-charge the costs to the end user (meaning no cost to your business).

  • The time required to cash out funds is something to consider as different plans have different time periods on how long it takes to withdraw the funds.

With Paypal and Stripe, there is not an obviously ‘better’ option, you could even opt to have both for different types of payments.

Speaking with a digital solutions expert will help you better decipher between the pros and cons of each of the platform for your specific needs.


GoCardless is an online payment processing platform that allows businesses to collect payments via direct debit. This means businesses can collect payments directly from their customers' bank accounts. This is a great tool if you have customers who are happy to give you authority to withdraw payments from their account, usually on a regular basis (i.e., if they are making recurring payments to you on an agreed contract, such as a gym membership, subscription, etc).

Pick the online payment tool that’s right for you

Every business has different needs and there is not a ‘best’ online payment option for all. It is important to go through a thorough process when deciding on the right systems to implement. When we are assisting our clients with this, the following three step process is a great guideline to ensure you get this right:

  1. Review your processes to understand your key business criteria.

  2. Compare your needs to what the identified online payment options offer.

  3. Create a robust implementation plan to mitigate any business interruption.

With the pace that technology is moving, it is important to regularly review your systems and make sure your tools are up to date, including your accounting software. It is not enough to set and forget, we recommend an annual review of your systems to ensure that you are using the best tools available to put your business ahead of the rest.

Reach out to our team to start the conversation and find the online payment solution that is right for both you and your customers.


The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author/s and do not necessarily reflect the thought or position of Findex.

Findex, trading as Findex Group Limited

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Michael Alexander
Author: Michael Alexander | Partner