Credit Cards can be a hot button issue for many pet sitting companies. The fees cut into already thin margins but most clients expect to be able to pay with plastic. What’s the right solution? Well — it depends on your business. In today’s blog post, we are going to dig a little deeper into the positives and negatives of accepting credit cards for your pet sitting business.

Let’s start with one of the positives. Accepting credit cards helps to legitimize your business. Consumers carry credit cards because they trust the companies that have issued those cards and ultimately they trust the companies that accept those cards as payment. Credit cards also provide a level of convenience to your clients that cash or checks can’t match. Here at Time To Pet, our processor partners are able to securely retain the credit card information of your clients allowing you to initiate the transaction — what could be easier for your clients than that? Accepting credit cards also allows you to be flexible in offering your clients several different ways to pay.

On the reverse side, credit cards can be complicated. With the advancement of technology and companies like PayPal, Stripe and WePay, accepting credit cards is becoming easier and easier but it is still not as easy as accepting cash or a check (unless of course you factor in the trip to the bank!). Our pet sitting software has partnered with several of these innovative credit card processors to help our clients make the process of accepting credit cards as simple as possible.

Another positive of credit cards is that they can level the playing field and open up a subset of clients that you didn’t have access to before. There are a percentage of pet owners who prefer to or may need to pay by credit card and if your biggest competitor accepts plastic and you don’t — you are at a disadvantage. Accepting credit cards allows you to even the game no matter how big or small your company is!

The biggest drawbacks of credit cards are the fees. Each time a business runs a credit card transaction, the processing company charges a fee. The fees typically are less than 3% and often include a flat rate of $0.30. Some processing companies may also charge a minimum transaction fee or a monthly fee. With narrow margins already, some pet sitters may decide that the cost of taking credit cards outweighs the positives.

Now the most surprising (and often times overlooked) benefit of credit cards is the cash flow and the increase in sales. After implementing credit cards as a payment option for clients, invoices for my pet sitting business were paid on average, nearly a full week quicker. Visa also reports that the average credit card transaction is nearly 4 times as large as the average cash transaction. Many people don’t have access to cash or checks for pet sitting services, but they do have access to credit which they can pay off at a later date. Credit cards also allow you to instantly verify funds eliminating the risk of cashing a bad check which costs you time and money.

Here at Time To Pet, we have worked to make accepting credit cards an integral part of our pet sitting software. It allows our clients to seamlessly schedule visits, create invoices and get paid as quickly as possible. We believe that accepting credit cards is a great tool for any pet sitting business.