If you’re like most business owners, you store every printed receipt from your credit card terminal and provide copies to your customers. It may be a routine you consider a best practice to protect your business, but the cost to maintain and store printed receipts significantly eats into your profits.
Your customers have up to 18 months to dispute charges on their credit card bills. So you store signed, printed receipts, most likely past the 18 month time frame, to protect your business from the possibility of a chargeback dispute.
This practice is in your best interest, but the truth is it's unnecessary in this day and age. By eliminating paper and collecting digital receipts, you can save your business a whole lot of moolah.
Printed Receipts Are a Money Drain
Storing printed receipts requires certain equipment and recurring stock to keep it running. Let’s break down those costs:
- Receipt printer = $29 – $400
- Paper rolls = $20 – $80 per case
- Storage space = $43 – $348 per month, depending on size
- Printer ink = $12 – $55 per cartridge
That’s potentially $883 just to get started, $348 monthly to retain storage space, and $135 every few months to restock on paper and ink — all to end up with paper in storage that you’ll most likely never touch again, unless you get hit with a chargeback dispute.
The Cloud to the Rescue
To adequately protect your business from chargebacks, you should always collect signatures. With the ability to collect digital receipts and store them in the cloud, you can cut, or at the very least reduce, expenses incurred by printed receipts.
The cloud’s backend securely stores data and runs programs so your computer’s hard drive isn’t responsible. With the cloud you are able to:
- Collect signatures on every transaction, including online and over the phone
- Store digital receipts indefinitely
- Send your customers a receipt copy via email
- Easily search and pull digital receipts in seconds
With nearly two-thirds of Americans now owning smartphones, the ability to remotely capture signatures and email digital receipts is critical for keeping up with your customers. If you happen to have some customers who want physical copies, you still have the option to provide printed receipts while you retain digital copies for your records.
Eliminate Printed Receipts And Save Money
We know that storing printed receipts for too short a time can expose a business to chargebacks, yet retaining them for too long can be costly and inconvenient. Work with a provider with cloud-based technology to boost business efficiency and keep money in your pocket. Take the time to research providers that currently offer this feature and see how your business can reap the benefits.
How would your business be affected if you could be paperless and find receipts with one click? Share your thoughts below in the comments section!
Editor's Note: This post was originally published in July 2016 and has been updated for comprehensiveness and accuracy.