Let’s face it: credit cards are a pain. There's nothing convenient about all the paperwork, the number of people you need to talk to, and clear (sometimes pretty large) sums of money that can be tied up in processing transactions. Thankfully, the B2B landscape is growing increasingly digital, and for a good reason: alternative payments are gaining traction with business owners and consumers alike.
One area to watch out for is virtual cards B2B, which offer highly sought-after capabilities around payment automation. The compelling efficiencies afforded by virtual cards are the root cause of the exponential growth this payment method is predicted to enjoy over the next five years.
The global value of virtual card transactions is expected to increase from $1.9 trillion in 2021 to an astronomical $6.8 trillion by 2026.
As the demand for virtual cards by businesses increases, issuers can capitalize on up-and-coming companies. These new relationships will help card issuers captivate future business customers.
What are virtual cards for business? How do they work?
Both virtual and physical cards have the same basics and details on how to use them: a card number, expiry dates, a CVC2 or CVV code, the cardholder's name, and billing address. In our previous article, we discussed them all.
But for businesses, the virtual card B2B is more powerful than its physical cousin. One thing that often gets lost in your busy schedule is spending control. How do you reconcile everything you've purchased, when, and for what reason? By running a corporate credit card, this process becomes clutter. And that's where virtual cards uncover their powers.
What's the deal with virtual cards?
While businesses seek the flexibility to accept payments in whatever medium their buyers prefer, b2b virtual card payments offer far more options than checks or ACH — they allow AP departments to streamline processes and enhance security.
Many businesses switch, and there are plenty of virtual card benefits.
Since virtual cards for b2b payments are digital, they eliminate all the risks associated with issuing plastic: virtual cards can't be lost or stolen, eliminating a chance of compromised data and compliance-related issues. While credit card fraud is still rising, the security issue becomes crucial for any company.
Virtual cards are safer than traditional debit/credit cards because they use tokenization to process transactions, creating a unique randomly generated code to process each virtual payment.
This makes it harder for fraudsters to steal details and use them if they do, which is especially important for businesses with high traffic: e-commerce, marketing agencies, affiliates, etc.
Improved efficiency and automation
Virtual cards can help improve organizational efficiency by automating b2b card payments and reconciliation processes, minimizing time and resources spent on manual tasks. Every expense is automatically deducted and recorded in real time. No more waiting for snail mail, clunky bank statements, or days of data entry.
Complete transparency over each payment
Virtual company cards are a way to offer corporates centralized, customizable data on every transaction — to inform decisions going forward. This aligns with today's data-driven world, about gaining insight from data and making smarter business decisions. Also, virtual cards can help businesses manage their working capital, freeing up time and resources for other tasks.
Enhanced vendor relationships
A problem worth solving is the annual nightmare formerly called vendor payments. Paper checks still store nearly 25% of all B2B payments. Emailing PDFs. Manual invoicing. The endless cycle of chasing down payments, retaining unpaid balances, and simply not asking for payment in the first place. It's a messy chore for busy AP professionals, cumbersome for vendors, and costly for everyone involved.
Virtual cards digitize vendor payments to secure, expedite, and increase vendor satisfaction.
Karta virtual cards for b2b payments automate manual burden, save time, and reduce risk
- Create as many cards as you need for b2b virtual payments. Each card has a US BIN, built-in limits, and access levels so you can get the flexibility you need to control expenses and ensure safe payments.
- Make budgets, control expenses, and easily track them. Your team can spend within limits and stay within budget with each business virtual card.
- Go paperless: eliminate the hassle of printing receipts and filing expense reports with a single-use virtual card that is perfect for online payments. Tie it to a specific network or vendor, and skip the need-to-approve finance desks.
Get a virtual card for business and automate the spending process — from payments to approvals.Try Karta
What are B2B cards?
Virtual credit cards are 16-digit numbers generated digitally to replace physical cards. Thanks to tokenization and spend controls, virtual cards are one of the most secure payment options for business buyers. In our previous article, you can find more info about virtual cards for a business.
Are virtual cards free?
It depends on the provider or virtual card services. Karta allows you to create unlimited virtual cards for free with an Enterprise plan, and it's customized for your needs with no hidden costs. For more info, please check our Pricing page.
How much is a virtual card?
There is no cost to create 100 virtual cards. After it's exceeded, each additional card will be $0.50. You can also apply for an Enterprise plan to get a customized price and save more.
Do virtual cards have fees?
At Karta, there are no hidden costs. The only fees we charge are for international card payments: a real-time fee for each transaction of 1% of the value of the transaction + $0.30 and a foreign exchange fee of 1% of the value of the transaction. You can find our full pricing here.