Agile Payments Blog

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So You Need an ACH Transfer API, do you?

What is an ACH Transfer API, anyway? Quite simply, it's an API that provides the ability for a software application to integrate ACH processing capabilities for the purpose of providing the application to originate, manage and report on the transfer of funds between bank accounts.

ACH transactions come in two basic forms:

  1. ACH Debits, which allow an originating organization the ability to obtain funds from someone or another organization who has authorized the originator to do so.
  2. ACH Credits, which allow an originating organization the ability to send funds to an individual or another organization. Examples would be direct deposit payroll or vendor payments.

If your organization needs an ACH transfer API, chances are pretty good that the softwareACH transfer API application that you would be integrating to either has substantial existing volume or it's an application that other organizations use or will use that require the ability to transfer funds, whether they be debits or credits, for the using base.

Now, let's get to some of the potential requirements that might be needed from the ACH API provider. Not all ACH transfer API's are the same. Moreover, not all providers have the same business model. Here's a few things to ponder:

  1. Revenue share provided by the API partner: If the integrating organization's application is to be used by other organizations and there is a decent outlook for a substantial volume of number of transactions, then the integrating organization might be owed a revenue share by way of a partnership agreement. The integrating organization should discuss what the requirements might be for a partnership agreement that would provide them revenues on a recurring basis. 
  2. How are the transactions priced? Are there volume discounts? Can my organization provide a fair market price while still being able to obtain a revenue share? All good questions that you need to discuss with potential ACH transfer API providers. How transactions are priced is related to a flat fee or percentage of the dollar amount of the transaction. Flat fee is just that - a flat per transaction fee for any dollar amount of a given transaction. A percentage fee structure is to price the transaction processing on a percentage of the dollar amount of a given transaction. Providing a fair market price to your application users for ACH processing is a matter of volume. That you likely have or you wouldn't have read this far. The simple fact is, there's a cost to marketing and sales, and if you have the ability to be granted a partnership agreement, then your application and your organization become a sales agent for the ACH transfer API provider. So, yes - a fair and marketable price is more than possible. In fact, with any substantial volume, it's better than doable.
  3. What are your organization's specific requirements? We at Agile Payments have been providing ACH API integration services for more than 18 years. We run across new requirements all the time. The very best thing you can do is start early in talking to potential providers and provide them with a transaction flow document and a list of requirements. Discussions will help everyone involved in gaining a clear picture og everything that might be required.

 

 

 

 

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Gene Krause

Gene has been consulting businesses of all sizes for 18 years and providing them with strategic payments and gateway integrations.

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