Business-to-business payments may finally be on the right track to faster, digital payments. New data from NACHA offered insight into the growth of ACH payments in 2015 and found significant increases in the use of ACH for B2B payments.
An announcement on Thursday (April 14) by NACHA said ACH transaction volume increased by more than 5.6 percent last year compared to 2014. More than 24 billion ACH transactions occurred in 2015, the report said, marking the second year in a row that saw a more than 1 billion increase in the number of ACH transactions.
All of this amounts to more than $41.6 trillion being transferred via the ACH network, NACHA added, itself a 4 percent increase over the total value of 2014.
It’s a sign that NACHA President and CEO Janet O. Estep was right when she discussed the topic for the PYMNTS Faster Payments Tracker.
“The understanding of faster payments is really increasing across the ecosystem, and that is good because it means then that people can start building new services and really support end users who want to embrace the concept of moving payments from one person or one entity to another in a more timely fashion,” she said.
B2B payments saw their own growth spurt regarding use of the ACH network.
According to NACHA, ACH volume in the B2B payments category increased by a combined 15.4 percent across the two types of transactions, CTX and CCD. Health care payments using the ACH network saw a 39 percent increase last year alone, the report said.
Businesses also demonstrated an increase in the sending of payments and information together via the ACH network.
“Almost 2 billion addenda records containing invoice and other payment-related information were transferred over the network through CTX and CCD transactions,” NACHA stated, a figure that marks a 9.1 percent increase from 2014.
Estep said the findings represent the growing importance of ACH payments for both businesses and customers, especially with the flexibility to send more than just money and to do so in multiple ways.
“It is this flexibility and adaptability that has facilitated new payments capabilities to meet the evolving needs of end users and, ultimately, contributed to the network’s consistent growth,” Estep stated. “Consumers and businesses alike value having options that empower them to determine how they make payments and get paid.”
Data from NACHA in 2014 also showed an increase in B2B use of ACH payments.