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What is the best international money transfer provider for my business?
Compare your options to find a cost-effective and convenient way to send money overseas.
A specialized international money transfer company can help you set up a global payroll, buy stock from another country or settle your outstanding debts — but which provider is best for your business depends on its size and where it operates.
Your business international money transfer options
Factors to consider when choosing a transfer provider
There are several factors that have a bearing on which transfer company is right for your business, including:
- The size of your transfers. If you’re a relatively small company, you may be talking about transfers of just hundreds or only a few thousand dollars — and there are plenty of transfer companies that can help. But if you’re running a large organization and need to send transfers of $100,000 or more, you’ll have to find a transfer provider with a high or no maximum limit.
- The frequency of your transfers. Some transfer providers offer special deals to frequent transfer customers, for example every fifth transfer free, while others offer the flexibility of setting up regular payment plans to automate recurring transactions.
- Where you send money. Make a list of all the countries around the world where you’ll need to send money, and then compare this with a list of countries and currencies that each transfer provider supports to make sure you’ll be able to send transfers everywhere you do business.
- How you send money. Are you likely to need to send money transfers when you’re on the go? If so, finding a transfer provider that offers a mobile app for quick and easy transfers could be beneficial.
- Why you need to send money. Make a list of any unique features you need in a transfer provider based on your business. For example, If you’re managing an international payroll, you’ll benefit from a provider that can handle mass payments. If you’re an antique dealer, you might benefit from a provider than can process transactions almost instantly so no one can buy a piece out from under you.
- Your customer service and support requirements. Could you benefit from having a personal account manager for your business to provide on-call advice and handle any sensitive transactions? Alternatively, if you ever have a question or a problem with a transaction, would a 24/7 online support service meet your needs?
Which transfer provider should I use?
Which transfer provider is best for you depends on what type of business you run.
- Online sellers. If you sell goods online, Paysera can help you take payments from international customers. You can install a plugin on your website to accept payment in over 180 countries.
- Small business owners and freelancers. If you sell goods or services to clients worldwide, a TransferWise Borderless account will let you accept payment in over 40 currencies. That means that your clients won’t have to worry about sending US dollars or setting up a complicated transfer for every payment, and you won’t have to worry about opening foreign bank accounts.
- Medium to large businesses. If you send $10,000 or more per transfer, Hawk FX will assign you a dedicated currency expert to walk you through the process and help you get the best exchange rate. The company will also help you create a risk management strategy by looking at your company’s currency exposures, recommending a hedging plan, analyzing your cashflow and preparing a detailed business exposure report.
- Companies with international employees. If you’re looking for a simple way to manage payroll internationally, Payoneer can automate payments to as many employees as you need — even if they’re scattered across the globe.
Can I use my bank?
Yes, you can use your bank to send international business transfers. Sending money overseas via your bank is a convenient option and can typically be handled through the Internet banking portal for your normal business bank account.
However, because banks add a large margin to the foreign currency they sell, sending international money transfers via your bank is usually not the most cost-effective option. Instead, it’s financially prudent to compare your bank with one of many transfer providers that specialize in international business transactions.
Online transfer companies have much tighter margins than banks, which means they typically offer better exchange rates and minimal transfer fees. By shopping around and comparing a few transfer options, you could find big savings for your business.
Bank vs. online transfer companies
Carrie is the founder of an American tech startup, and she needs to send $20,000 to Australia to fund her business expansion plans. Eager to save money wherever possible, Carrie compares the cost of sending the money from her bank with the cost of using an online transfer company.
As you can see in the table below, both online transfer companies offer substantial savings when compared to the bank. However, online transfer company B is the clear winner, allowing Carrie to send an extra AUD$344 without spending one extra cent of her American currency.
|Bank||Online transfer company A||Online transfer company B|
|Exchange rate||1 USD = 1.2532 AUD||1 USD = 1.2687 AUD||1 USD = 1.2704 AUD|
|Amount received (in AUD)||AUD$25,064||AUD$25,374||AUD$25,408|
|Difference in AUD received (compared to bank)||–||AUD$310||AUD$344|
*Please note this is a fictional case study. Always source a quote for current exchange rates.
How to compare business transfer providers
So, what do you need to look at when comparing transfer providers? Remember to consider the following factors:
- Exchange rate. Compare the exchange rates on offer from any transfer provider you are considering using. Make sure that any rate you are quoted is the rate you will receive for your transaction, and remember that some companies with attractive exchange rates may also charge high fees.
- Fees. How much will you need to pay in fees each time you send a transfer? Are there special deals in place to help you save money, such as every fifth or tenth transfer is fee-free?
- Fee-free thresholds. If you need to transfer large amounts of money, look for a provider that offers fee-free transfers for large amounts. These companies will usually list their fee-free thresholds on their websites.
- Transfer limits. Check the details of the minimum and maximum limits each provider imposes on transfers. Are these suitable for your business transfer needs?
- Transfer options. It’s also worth checking to see whether the provider offers flexible transfer options, such as:
- Supported countries and currencies. Check each provider’s list of supported countries and currencies to make sure it allows you to send money everywhere you are likely to need to make payments.
- Customer support. Will there be a personal manager assigned to your account, offering one point of contact and expert advice for all your business foreign exchange needs? In addition, is 24/7 customer support available so that you can access help whenever you need it?
Got it. What do I do now?
- Use the table above to compare money transfer providers for your business. Enter the amount your business needs to send overseas and the country you want to send money to, and the table will show suitable options to meet your transfer requirements.
- Click through to a couple of the providers via the green “Go to Site” buttons and get preliminary, personalized quotes so you can compare your options before making a transfer.
- When you’ve chosen your provider, register your business details to create an account. You may need to provide information like your Employer Identification Number (EIN), your business address and a form of ID, so have these handy.
- When your account is approved, you can login online and request a second quote with the updated exchange rates. If you’re happy, accept the transfer and make a payment to the provider to lock in the transfer. Review the payment methods available, as there is often an additional fee for credit card payments.
- Track the transfer online, if necessary.
Whether you’re purchasing stock, paying overseas staff or just settling outstanding debts, finding a cost-effective and convenient way to move money around the world is essential. Compare money transfer companies to get the best deal on your international business transactions.
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