Posted by NationalACH on Sep 30, 2012
echecks, electronic checks, accept checks online,

Electronic Checks Increase Sales for Online Pharmacies

Online pharmacies provide an important service to consumers that do not have health insurance or cannot afford to pay the high cost of medicine in their own countries.  For years, consumers were able to buy pharmaceutical products with both credit cards and echecks,

However, within the past several years increasing pressure has put on banks on governments by the powerful international pharmaceutical companies.  The companies, under the auspices of protecting their “brands”, have made it very challenging for online pharmacies to obtain credit card processing accounts.

(Of course, most knowledgeable people realize that the pharmaceutical companies are less interested in helping those in need than in generating huge profit volumes for their companies.  This is a political discussion that we will avoid in this article.)

Echecks More Important than Ever

The lack of stable credit card processing accounts has led online pharmacies to depend more heavily on echecks to accept payments online.  Echecks are a convenient and easy way for buyers to purchase much needed pharmaceutical products online.

The growth of online banking and online bill pay has made customers comfortable with paying with a bank transfer.  Over 95% of US households have bank accounts and are able to make payments with echecks.

How Electronic Checks Work

With an echeck, at checkout, the buyer enters bank routing and account information rather than a card number.  The transaction is processed through the Federal Reserve, in the same way any echeck purchase is processed.

Echecks are not processed in “real-time”.  Instead the transactions are cleared through the Federal Reserve at midnight.  Returns for insufficient funds or “bounced checks” are generally reported to the merchant within 2-4 days.  Therefore, merchants may want to wait to ship product until that time, to minimize the risk.

Many online pharmacies have loyal, repeat customers who purchase goods.  This customer group represents a smaller risk to the merchant because of the established buying history.

Customers want and need the products that are being ordered.  Therefore, the risk of revoked transactions (chargebacks) for echecks for online pharmacies is quite low.  And, it substantially more difficult for consumers to charge back an echeck transaction than it is to chargeback a credit card.


Many online pharmacies are successfully processing high volumes of echeck transactions per month.  Online pharmacies do not have to be located in the US in order to take advantage of this important payment option.

Accept checks online. Accept check by phone, mail & fax orders. Echecks are a safe and secure method of accepting payments from your customers. 

Are you an established online pharmacy that wants to accept electronic check payments?

Contact today