Publishers: The Key to Growing Your Business is Better Payment Terms

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Keith Smith is co-founder and CEO of Payability, which provides the capital and platform to pay suppliers faster. Previously, Keith founded CyberMortgage and Zango and served as co-founder and CEO of BigDoor. Keith also lends his time to early-stage startups via Techstars and serves as an advisor, investor, and board member for multiple tech startups.

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Advertisers’ poor payment terms have made their mark across the globe—and the results of 45–90-day payments make an even bigger mark on publishers who are trying to grow their businesses.

In the U.K., 60 percent of small and medium-sized businesses say they’re hindered by late payments from big clients, and the average amount owed per business is a staggering £38,186.

App developers and publishers are serving up impressions across web and mobile apps, but advertisers keep dragging their feet on actually remitting payment to them. Ads are served on a site in milliseconds, so why do publishers have to wait months to receive payment for those impressions?

Publishers, these unsustainable payment practices are hindering your growth. It’s time to get the regular cash infusions you deserve. Here are two ways to stabilize your income and empower your business to get better payment terms.

  1. Secure Regular Revenues so You Can Reinvest in Your Business

Payment delays cause issues for publishers—such as erratic cash flow, decreased working capital, and difficulty estimating revenues. Cash to cover operating costs is constantly flowing out, but revenue arrives only once every 45 days. For a business to grow, it must constantly reinvest revenues to build its audience and advance its product. This consistent reinvestment can’t happen with Net 30 payment terms.

Publishers need to have working capital for reinvestment. Investing today leads to growth tomorrow, and delaying today’s investment means delaying tomorrow’s growth.

This is where faster payment terms come in: depositing regular revenues into your account more frequently means that you have more cash to reinvest. Diligently reinvesting—even in smaller amounts, more consistently—means faster growth. As a publisher, better payment terms really are the key to growing your business. Luckily, there are new technology and capital-as-a-service solutions to help you determine better payment terms.

Payability Dashboard Screenshot

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  1. Empower Your Business to Push Back

As a publisher, it’s your imperative to receive your earnings on faster payment terms. Here’s how to manage payment expectations with advertisers to improve cash flows from the start:

  • Be choosy with your partnerships. Start with concrete payment expectations, and work only with advertising networks and agencies that will treat you respectfully. Research potential partners’ reviews, brand image, and growth status. Ask and be educated on all items specific to each partner, including yield, eCPM, and whether they provide an option to receive weekly payouts of your earnings.
  • Ask first, then negotiate. Just because a particular payment arrangement isn’t offered to you doesn’t mean it isn’t available. Be clear with advertisers that you need regular revenues to thrive, and start negotiating.
  • Hold advertisers accountable. Just as you have to pay your suppliers on time, advertisers have to pay you on time. Make sure you are invoicing on a regular schedule. Follow up immediately afterward if payment isn’t received on time.
  • Seek out a third party. If the advertiser is uncooperative, find a third-party financial firm that can help you speed up your payment terms. This is what Payability does: We work with publishers to accelerate payments of their earnings from existing revenue sources.

Once you start receiving your earnings on a schedule that meet your business’s needs, you may be surprised how much untimely payments were hindering your business growth. Predictable, regular cash flow means you can stop wasting time hounding advertisers for payments—and spend more time developing fantastic content to grow your business.

You can visit the Payability website here.