Do you still use or accept cheques in your ecommerce business?

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Cheques in most people’s world are a thing of the past. I personally haven’t had a cheque book for over a decade and consumers can’t pay in many shops with cheques these days – it’s all plastic debit and credit cards or contactless payments.

And yet it would appear that cheques are still live and in use, I was surprised to read today that McColl’s Retail Group has modernised just their cheque production process.

McColl’s operates 1,370 convenience and newsagent stores across the country and issues around 1,000 cheques per month from their headquarters in Brentwood, Essex. The company was previously using an end-of-life dot matrix system to print cheques, however when the company decided to upgrade its internal back end systems, they also took the opportunity to acquire a more suitable cheque printing solution that offered a greater level of functionality.

Having used Checkprint from The TALL Group of Companies for the supply of cheque stationary since 1996 and enjoyed high levels of service during the 21-year relationship, McColl’s chose to deploy the CheckPrint Solution to fulfil its printing requirements.

The CheckPrint Solution offers remote access authorisation, which allows directors to approve a batch of cheques whilst working off site including the ability to add digital signatures to the documents and the ability to produce manual cheques, removing the need to store and manage less secure manual chequebooks.

Cheques it would appear are still alive, so much so that companies like McColl’s are investing in new solutions. I still hear of marketplace sellers that receive the odd cheque and grumble at the inconvenience. Much as electronic payments speed up the sales process and are much more convenient to process, it’s somewhat endearing to think of a little old lady sitting at a desk and getting her cheque book out to pay for a purchase.

Do you still receive cheques or are they a dying breed? When you pay your business bills do you write cheques or do you process payments at the click of a button?

5 Responses

  1. We get the occasional check. The buyer knows they have to wait for it to clear and we won’t ship the item until it does. Not everyone’s in a super rush.

  2. Pre 2000 I ran a business that took mail order sales of more than £50K per month with an average check value of £30

    Due to banking costs, cheques were only banked on a Friday, so all orders in week one were dispatched on the Monday of week three.

    Bearing in mind that the customer had to post the order to us, this was a long time to wait, but people were more than happy with our service.

    At the time I used the Post Office Cash in Transit service, which offered the cheapest way to bank cheques. (Not sure it still operates)

    Opening the mail and data entry of the orders was very time consuming, I could not imagine going back to that type of system or that my customers would be happy with such a service.

    There are very few things that I can only pay using a cheque these days.

  3. Get about 4 cheques a year. Mail mine into the bank so not a huge hassle, and the customers are long standing repeat business types it is worth going the extra mile for.

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