customer payments Archives - Striven

Not All Generations Pay the Same Way

Businesses must be aware of their target audiences but also understand they could have customers from any age group. Even if Gen-Z’ers are your demographic, you might find their parents or grandparents sometimes purchase gifts for them. Ensuring you have a way each generation prefers to pay helps you avoid missing out on sales.

Why Are Generations So Different?

The world is more connected than at any other time in history, yet different generations are as far apart as at any other time in history. Currently, Millennials are the largest generation group, making up about 21.8% of the population. 

Knowing who your customers are is your first step to ensuring you offer the payment options they’re most likely to embrace. If you’ve ever visited a site, added a product to your shopping cart, and bounced away during the checkout process, it could have been due to the lack of payment options. Don’t let that happen to your business because you didn’t offer a selection the buyer wanted. 

Each generation is born at a select time in history and has different experiences that make different technology more comfortable. Understanding the preferences of each ensures you offer the payment options your core demographic is most comfortable with. However, it can also help you implement payment gateways for every potential buyer.

Baby Boomers

Baby boomers prefer to shop in a store rather than online. The entire e-commerce revolution is quite new to them, with all of its impersonal shopping and waiting for items to arrive. For the majority of their lives, this generation went to a store, found what they wanted, paid cash for it, and took it home. They didn’t have to order shoes and hope they fit. There was no need to input information and pay online. 

That said, cash is not nearly as popular for payments as it once was and most boomers understand the limitations, especially when purchasing in the online world. Studies show cash has lost favor with the majority of United States consumers, with only 19% of payments coming from physical money. 

Although baby boomers prefer to write a check or pay cash, they are well-versed in how to utilize a credit or debit card and are able to use these methods when necessary. They are quite cautious about sharing personal information and will check your site security before buying online.


Gen-X is often the forgotten generation. They are the first children whose parents both worked outside the home and were dubbed “latchkey kids” as they would let themselves in the house after school. They’ve proven to be resilient and able to adapt well to the many changing technological advances they’ve seen in their lives. 

Gen-Xers know a world without cell phones or the internet as we know it today. At the same time, they like the world wide web and their smartphones. They had to learn MS-DOS to use the first home computers and they played on the first Atari gaming systems. They have a built-in propensity for artificial intelligence.

They enjoy streaming their favorite movies from the 1980s. Most of them know how to pay with PayPal, Venmo, and many other methods. Since they do adapt so well, they will likely pay with whatever methods you offer but may prefer something secure such as a credit card.

Millennials reports around 75% of millennials have a PayPal account. They’re adept at splitting bills with friends or using cash apps. 

The largest generation is one of the first to grow up with smartphones. They can text at the speed of light and they know their way around a computer and apps. They’re careful about how they spend their money but they’re happy to pay with methods such as digital payments or even bitcoin. 

Whatever payment methods you choose, be cautious about who you align yourself with when marketing to this generation. Around 90% of millennials care about the authenticity shown by the brands they buy from. If they feel you are just choosing a payment gateway to win their business rather than choosing what you feel is best for them and your company, they may walk away and never look back. 


Gen-Z is made up of people born in 1997 and after. They are the first to grow up fully with technology such as social media and cell phones. They are known for being ambitious, preferring experiences to physical items and are gamers. 

However, some are quite anxious about the world and the way it is—much driven by school shootings and world events they’ve seen in their lifetime. Since they are so adept at changing technology, they are able to pay via almost any digital means imaginable. 

Many have tapped into the efficiency and convenience of digital wallets. They look for opportunities to use Apple Pay, for example. Surprisingly, they are reluctant to use credit cards and prefer to use cash or debit cards. They’re open to alternative payments via cryptocurrency or cash apps. 

How Will Future Generations Pay?

The next generation coming of age will be Generation Alpha. Born in 2010 or after, the oldest in this age group has just come into their teen years. If your demographic is younger, you’ll likely need to market to them and their parents, which are the millennials for the most part. 

Expect the younger generations to adapt to any new currencies introduced and continue with digital payments. It’s hard to say if society will ever be fully cashless in our lifetimes. However, it does seem to be trending that way with more people shopping online than ever before. 

Pay attention to what your customers want and their preferred payment methods. The more options you offer, the happier your customers of all ages will be.

How Small Businesses Can Maintain Cash Flow

If you run or manage a small business, there’s a lot about accounting that’s in your control: payroll and taxes are just a few. But when it comes to how you maintain cash flow, you’re probably relying on payments from customers. 

More than we’d like to admit, those customer payments often come in late. And late paying customers pose a major risk to the livelihood of small business cash flow. 

Send and Receive Money

What happens when you’re ready to outgrow your current accounting software?

An Intuit study, as reported by Small Business Computing, found that 69% of small business owners said that “they’ve been kept up at night by ongoing concerns about their cash flow status.”

The same study reports that “33 percent of U.S. small business owners said their company currently has more than $20,000 in outstanding receivables.” At the same time, “the average U.S. small business has $53,999 in outstanding receivables.”

Those are significant numbers for small businesses. One solution to helping solve them? ERP software.

Why Customers Pay Late

Block Advisors, a tax preparation group, has pinpointed one of the top reasons customers don’t pay on time: payment options aren’t convenient enough. 

time is money with erp software system

There are other (perhaps deeper) reasons, too. Outdated payment processes, poor communication between your company and your customers, and lack of project insight all contribute to late payments.

Preventing late customer payments is all about establishing clear lines of communication with customers. That means you have to make things easy for them, and you have to remind them (in tasteful ways) of the value your product or service provides.

In many cases, these issues are unavoidable. But, by utilizing the best ERP software, they can be remedied.

How to Avoid Late Payments

Here are some strategies and processes you should have in place to make sure customers are happy. They’ll keep your payments on schedule and your cash doing what it was meant to do: flow.

Understand Who Owes You, and How Much

Before you do anything, you should understand how much your customers owe you, how much has been paid and credited, along with late payments. A detailed accounting software can produce these reports in seconds, allowing you to filter for specific customers and date ranges.

If you’re not keeping track of this information, it’s going to be very difficult for you to properly understand your cash flow. The best approach to tracking? Consider software that integrates accounting with both customer and project data. That way, you’ll always be sure your numbers are correct. Having to pull data out of different systems and check for accuracy unnecessarily wastes your employees’ time. 

Accounting software with a powerful customer portal will show you all of your accounts receivable transactions that your customer is responsible for, including invoices, credit memos, payments, sales receipts, check refunds, and journal entries.

Give Customers an Easy Way to Pay You

mobile ecommerce erp

Know that feeling you get when you’re in line at the grocery store and the person in front of you is paying by check? Frustrating, right? That’s because, to all of us who pay with cards, the process of writing a check has become too painful to watch. 

Now think about your customers having to get stamps and envelopes at the post office, finding their checkbooks, writing the checks, finding a mailbox…

You get the idea. It’s laborious and time-consuming for people to pay you with a physical check. By giving your customers an easier way to pay you, you’ll not only make them happy—you’ll get paid faster. 

So how should we define easy? A couple of clicks (or less)! Having a portal where customers can log in, find their invoices, and pay them by credit card or e-check instantly is an ideal solution. Even better, they’ll get immediate confirmation the invoice was paid. Customer portals also allow them to track their payment history.

Give Customers Insight into Project Status

Great relationships with customers are built on transparency. The more insight they have into the work you’re doing for them, the more they’ll see the value of that work. And because great relationships enable smooth and reliable payments, you’ll be setting yourself up for success. 

Think about it this way: if your customers have to inquire about the status of a project, they’re probably already unhappy. Being proactive and, more importantly, giving customers the tools to be proactive themselves will prevent the need for project conversations in the first place. With software that has a customer portal, they can log in, check the project status, and feel confident that you’re on track.


Running a business well depends on maximizing cash flow, and timely payments from customers contribute significantly to your company’s financial health. But those payments aren’t just transactions— they’re representations of relationships that you’ve worked hard to create

Money Transferring

Having the right ERP software to make sure you’ve enabled a good relationship and a streamlined payment process is only part of the story. When you give customers insight into the work you’re doing for them, you promote the value of that work. 

When you’re looking for software that has the right features to make your customers happy and get them paying on time, think about their experience with your product or services. Put yourself in their shoes. What will keep your company top-of-mind for them? What will keep them happy? When you’re able to match functionality with your customer relationship goals, you’ll have found your solution.