Posted by NationalACH on Jan 29, 2013

It’s no surprise that more people are paying bills online and paying for website purchases with echecks.  As this electronic transformation is occurring, obviously fewer people are writing paper checks.

As the younger generation, raised on electronic transactions, matures, and older generations die off, paper checks will eventually go away.

The latest data from NACHA confirms this self-evident trend.

WEB transaction grew by 9% in Q3 of 2012.  There were 732.5 million transactions, compared to 672.2 million in Q3 of 2011.

Paper checks to mailed to lockboxes (ARC) decreased by 8% in Q3 of 2012.  Volume slipped to 455.3 million transactions compared to 495.2 million in Q3 of 2011.

In addition, customers wrote far fewer checks at point of sale.  Point of purchase transactions dropped 8% to 111 million transactions.  Back office conversion (BOC), where paper checks are converted to electronic transactions, slipped 9% 5o 46.5 million.

Similarly, collection on returned paper check transactions (RCK) dropped 22.9%.  This is to be expected as the number of paper checks declined.

Telephone transactions (TEL) declined 6% to 86.3 million transactions.  But, it’s too early to tell if the drop in telephone transactions is a trend because phone transactions increased 4% in 2011.

International ACH transactions (IAT) grew 13% in Q3 of 2012.  But, it still accounts for small numbers of transactions, with only 10.8 million processed.  International ACH are used to facilitate cross-border transactions.  Commonly,it is used for remittances, pension payments to US retirees living abroad, and payments to international workers.

Overall, the growth in ACH transactions in Q3 of 2012 was 2.4%.


Paper checks are on the decline. Yet, electronic checks for online payments are increasing by almost 10% per year.

If you are an online merchant, adding echecks to your checkout page is a smart strategy to increase sales.  When you accept electronic checks you:

  • Get sales from buyers who prefer to pay with an echeck rather than a card
  • Obtain orders from shoppers who don't have cards or are maxed out on cards.

The more ways customers can pay you, the more sales you make.  

Do you want to increase profits by adding echecks as an alternative payment method on your website?

Contact today.