The number and value of electronic payments conducted over the ACH network in the U.S. each grew more than 5 percent in 2016 and online payments account for an increasing share of them. According to NACHA, the organization that maintains the ACH network, enabling bank account-based payments between financial institutions, online ACH transactions fall into two categories: WEB credits (P2P payments) and WEB debits (traditional online transactions).
Online merchants increasingly are enabling ACH as a payment method and NACHA said WEB debits grew nearly 13 percent from 2015 to 2016 to 4.6 billion transactions. P2P payments showed higher growth but lower volume, up more than 38 percent to nearly 79 million transactions. Together, the two types of online payments accounted for 23 percent of overall transactions in ACH payments last year.
“2016 marked a significant year for the continued evolution and growth of the ACH Network,” said Janet O. Estep, president and CEO of NACHA. “With the implementation of Same Day ACH, we have added to the robust capabilities of the Network, now enabling not only next-day payment capabilities, but same-day capabilities as well. The added attribute of speed provides additional flexibility and options to a system that has the capacity to process credit and debit transactions, payments and robust information together, domestic and international transactions, business and consumer payments, and more.”
Evaluating ACH as a Payment Method