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How to Send Free Bank Transfers in 2021

A Guide to Sending Money for Startup and Small Business Owners

In the year 2020, the United States saw over 4 million applications for new businesses. That's more than the entire population of Los Angeles. If you're one of those new entrepreneurs, or a small business owner gearing up to modernize and compete, you need to know how to handle payments.

Understanding invoices, vendor bills, and customer payments can be daunting—but getting it wrong could result in countless (unnecessary) fees for you and your business. Luckily, by the end of this 5-minute guide, you'll know exactly why bank transfers are the best solution, and how to leverage them for free.

  • Use Bank Transfers Instead of P2P Payments
  • Ways to Send Money Online Via Bank Transfers
  • Why ZenBill Is the Best B2B Payment Solution for Small Businesses and Startups

Ready to start? Let's go.

Use Bank Transfers Instead of P2P Payments

Business owners who are billing customers or receiving invoices from vendors should use bank transfers instead of peer-to-peer payments whenever possible. A bank to bank transfer (sometimes known as wire transfer) is the superior choice for a few reasons:

  • Professionalism: Payment apps like Cash App, Google Pay, and Apple Pay, are all meant for sending money to friends and family—splitting the bill, pitching in for a birthday gift, etc. Transferring money between bank accounts is much more professional.
  • Security: The identities of both parties must be verified before anyone can transfer money to a bank account.
  • Unseen fees: P2P payments apps have an incentive to keep their users' money in their mobile wallet. That means there's usually a fee when you pay from a credit card or move money from the app's balance to your bank account. Neither your customers or vendors will be happy about that.

Ways of Sending Money Online via Bank Transfer

1. Western Union

Western Union is one of the oldest money transfer companies in the world. Since the 1800s, the company has helped people send money all around the world. Unfortunately, you might have to incur some hefty transfer fees. For a $100 transfer to a US recipient's bank account, Western Union charges:

  • $8.00 if you're sending from a debit card.
  • $12.50 if you're paying from a credit card or in-store.
  • $0.99 if it's directly from your bank account.

A 99 cent bank transfer fee might not seem like a whole lot, but it comes at a different cost: service time can take up to 5 days. And let’s not even get started on international transfers.

2. Zelle

Zelle does bank account transfers quickly, and they're already partnered with most banks and credit unions in the United States. Since it's already ingrained into so many mobile banking services, recipients don't have to worry about downloading a new app.

However, Zelle isn't designed for sales and purchases. As a business, if one of your transactions gets lost in the wind (disrupted, sent to the wrong recipient, etc.), you may not be able to recover it. Moreover, transaction limits cap out at $2,500: for more expensive business purchases, that may not be enough.

3. PayPal

PayPal is one of the most popular methods of sending money online. Unlike other P2P payment services, PayPal also accommodates for business to business (B2B) money transfers. They also allow transfer maximums that are upwards of $10,000+.

However, they're also not without their costs: For US transfers, a credit or debit card will cost you 2.9%, and for bank account-funded international transfers, up to 5%.

Why ZenBill Is the Best B2B Money Transfer Solution for Small Businesses and Startups

Unlike those other services, ZenBill makes it easy for businesses to pay their vendors and get paid themselves.

  • In contrast to WU, ZenBill handles your bank transfers for free.
  • Unlike Zelle, ZenBill is designed to handle business grade expenses and customer payments.
  • With ZenBill, you can automate your bill payments and accept recurring payments from customers with more affordable plans than PayPal.

Even better, ZenBill's AI lets you avoid late fees and save time by digitizing your invoices, and it integrates seamlessly with your business' QuickBooks or Xero account.

That way you can focus on what's really important to you: your business.

Using Bank-to-Bank Transfers for Your Business in 2021

Let's quickly recap:

  • Bank transfers are the most efficient way to send money to vendors and receive money from customers.
  • P2P money transfer apps like Google Pay, Cash App, or Apple Pay are good to send money to friends, but shouldn’t be used to send or receive invoices and bill payments.
  • Most bank transfer solutions come with some drawbacks: whether it's a transfer limit or a debit card fee, you have to watch your step when handling your business' payments.
  • ZenBill automates the bank transfer process so it's seamless for you, your vendors, and your customers.

With that all covered, you're ready to pay and get paid!

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