Shedding Light on the Payment Modes in the US

Tony Varghese2 years ago

We’ve been getting a lot of questions about our payment modes – if and why we accept credit cards, net banking in the US. We felt that we need to explain our process further and shed some light on the banking and payment system in the US.payment-methods-in-usRight now, checks are the only mode of payment with Zilra. Your clients would have to send a check to our collection center in Chicago, IL via snail mail. It can take anywhere between 1 to 3 business days for the check to reach us. Give us 2 more business days for the check to get cleared. You can get a clear idea of how this works at http://demo.zilra.co . Here are some common questions that we get about our payment modes.

Why do you not accept Net Banking as a payment mode in the US?
This is because an equivalent of ‘Net Banking’ does not exist in the US. For an inter-bank transfer, the payer would have to send a domestic wire transfer to the payee’s bank. It costs around $30 to send a wire and ~$20 to receive a wire. We are strongly against charging transaction fees and accepting payments via domestic wires would defeat the purpose of Zilra.

Why do you not accept ACH transfers as a payment mode?
This is because ACH payments are unreliable and time-consuming in the US. There is no way to track the status of an ACH payment made by the payer and a payment can take up to 7 business days to reach our bank. We believe that paper checks are far better and reliable for business payments compared to ACH.

Isn’t there any other way for my clients to pay me online via Zilra?
There is. Most banks allow their customers to send a check via online banking service. All your client has to do is login to her online banking and give instructions on writing a check in favor of Zilra, Inc. and mention the tracking code in the memo field. Here’s how they would go about paying for a Zilra invoice.

So just old-school paper checks, huh?
For now, yeah. However, we are working on an online payment solution – zCheck. Unlike ACH payments, zCheck gets cleared in 3 business days and is easy to track. For a sneak peek on this feature, please write to us at support@zilra.co. We plan to get this feature online later this week.

  • Sunny

    So what recourse does a client have after making the payment? As the payments are made to Zilra, tomorrow if Zilra goes belly up or if refuses to transfer the money to the intended recipient?

    Moreover, why can’t a client just do a wire transfer as most wire transfers are within $25-$30 range with no charge to the recipient?

    • “So what recourse does a client have after making the payment?”

      If you’re referring to the payment sender (since you mentioned “after making the payment”), the client cannot file a chargeback after the money has been moved from his account over to ours. The payment sender can always choose refund the payment received via Zilra.

      “As the payments are made to Zilra, tomorrow if Zilra goes belly up”

      We do not involve our customers’ money with market risks, they stay in the bank. Even though it is possible, it is unlikely that you lose the money that stays in your Zilra wallet.

      “refuses to transfer the money to the intended recipient”

      We are trying to build a business here and as such do not see a point in doing that.

      “Moreover, why can’t a client just do a wire transfer as most wire transfers are within $25-$30 range with no charge to the recipient?”

      If your clients are ready to go through the hassle of sending you an international wire transfer, generous enough to not deduct the wire fees from your payment and there in fact is a bank that offers this service in that price range, of course – go for it! You do not have the problem that Zilra is looking to solve.

      For freelancers and businesses that have customers in the US, Zilra offers a ‘convenient’ payment option for the payers that is also economical for the payees. While international wire transfers cost around $50 a piece for the payment senders, they can get too complicated. Most banks require that the person visit a branch personally in order to initiate a transfer. This complication is the reason most clients prefer to pay via Paypal in the first place. We’re always working on making the payment experience a convenience for your clients. Your client can choose to send us a check or pay online via eCheck from the comfort of her home. And you get to receive the payments at a 0% fee – you pay a flat fee of $25, only when you choose to withdraw money to your local bank account.