Why to Accept Credit Cards from Clients in the AEC Industry

Emily Burns
Emily Burns
March 4, 2022

According to a study by the Federal Reserve, 27% of U.S. consumers prefer to use credit cards over other methods of payment. Further, cash usage has declined across all age groups since 2020.

Businesses of every size, in every industry, are experiencing this shift towards strictly digital payments and billing services. Building and design professionals are no exception. The ability to pay by credit card has become an expectation for modern-day consumers, whether they’re grocery shopping or submitting payment for your professional services.

Fortunately, accepting credit cards has numerous benefits for both you and your clients.

Benefits for your clients

Allowing your clients to pay by credit card provides them with several advantages that ensure you get paid for your hard work.

Credit cards are faster and more convenient than other methods of payment.

Clients can submit their information instantly from wherever they are, at any time, day or night. This creates a frictionless billing experience that doesn’t require much time out of their day. Plus, with the right online payment solution, clients have the option to securely store their preferred payment method so they don’t have to reenter it for every invoice.

Credit cards offer more consumer protection.

The vast majority of credit card companies offer enhanced protection for their customers. If there is a discrepancy concerning a specific payment, the card company will investigate on the cardholder’s behalf. If your clients pay for a service with cash, check, or even debit card, that money has already left their bank account and is a far bigger headache to dispute after the fact.

Even the FTC encourages customers to use credit cards when paying contractors or AEC service providers. This extra layer of protection makes clients feel more comfortable and secure when paying you upfront. It also allows them to easily track costs at every stage of a project.

Clients can earn rewards from their credit card providers.

By using a credit card that offers a generous reward program, your customers can earn points to use toward fun things like travel or even to repay their expenses. Many credit card companies offer sign-up bonuses which incentivize the cardholder to spend a certain amount within the first 90 days in order to earn bonus points and cashback rewards.

These types of reward programs are great for clients who need to make a large payment to your firm upfront. Plus, they will benefit from paying you on time which will make them more likely to stick with your project schedule.

Benefits for you, the building and design professional

Along with providing a seamless payment experience for your clients, accepting credit cards makes your job easier and boosts cash flow.

You’ll get paid faster and more reliably.

By offering credit card payments you will save yourself the headache and exasperation of waiting for a paper check to come in the mail and then hoping it clears the bank. This also means you are no longer beholden to traditional business hours set by banks and post offices.

Credit card payments arrive in your account instantly, so you can continue focusing on your design work while simultaneously getting paid.

The use of credit cards improves collection rates and increases revenue.

With instant payment processing and verification, you’ll no longer have to worry about following up on late or failed client payments, which means more revenue for your business.

According to Intuit, consumers spend 12-18 percent more on purchases with credit cards than when using cash. In addition, 52 percent of small businesses experienced a $1,000 revenue increase per month when they started accepting credit cards, while 18 percent saw an increase of $20,000 per month.

You can securely store customer payment information.

When you offer clients the option to pay online with credit cards, some online payment solutions allow them to choose to store their financial information for future payments. This saves you valuable time by streamlining billing processes and ensures that your projects stay on track. Storing customer payment information also helps to avoid late or missed payments.

Credit cards work with any fee structure.

As a building and design professional, you are well aware of the complexities that accompany each new project. That’s why choosing the right fee structure is so important. Fortunately, credit cards can be used with any plan you choose:

  • Fixed fee
  • Percentage-based fee
  • Time-basis fees
  • Unit cost

No matter which fee structure you decide on, an online payment solution can simplify your billing process by making it easier for your clients to make payments with credit cards and allowing you to set up automatic payments.

Start accepting credit card payments with ClientPay

If you’re ready to take the next step in modernizing your AEC business, ClientPay is the perfect payment solution for you. Below are a few of the basic steps that go into setting up your new ClientPay merchant account.

In order to get started with your merchant account, you’ll need the following information at hand:

  • Business name
  • EIN (or SSN)
  • Business email address
  • Business physical address
  • Business phone number
  • Business website
  • Personal information
  • Banking information

Once you have this information ready, you can head over to our signup page to begin. The following video will take you through the signup process:

After you’re all set up with your brand new merchant account, running a charge is simple and easy:

In addition to the numerous benefits of accepting credit card payments, ClientPay also gives your customers the option to pay by eCheck, debit card, or bank transfer.

Ready to get started? Schedule a demo today!