How to Deliver Faster Payments with Push-to-Card Technology

Andrew Lambert, Head of Product for Cards & BaaS

June 21, 2023

3 min read

It’s pretty hard not to be excited about faster payments these days. RTP® continues to gain share, FedNow’s arrival is around the corner, and faster customer expectations continue to push business innovation. One area of particular interest to me personally is faster payments through card rails.

If you are looking for a way to improve your customer experience, streamline your operations, and generate new revenue streams, you may want to read on—and consider adopting faster payments via card rails. For the uninitiated, card rails are the networks that process debit and credit card transactions, and they can enable near real-time payments with push-to-card technology.

Push-to-card allows the sending of funds directly to a customer's bank account via the linked debit card, without requiring bank account information or waiting for batch processing. This can be useful for a variety of use cases, such as:

  • Refunds and rebates

  • Insurance claims and payouts

  • Gig economy and payroll payments

  • Rewards and incentives

  • Lending and financing

But how can you implement push-to-card payments into your business strategy? And what are the benefits and challenges of this payment rail?

To answer these questions and more, I sat down with Keith Vander Leest, our Head of Payments, and Gil Akos, Co-founder and CEO of Astra, one of our partners, for a discussion on "Unleashing the Untapped Potential of Push-to-Card Tech for Real-Time Payments". This webinar was part of a series on faster payments, featuring insights from experts across the payments industry (watch our full discussion here).

We spent time talking about how push-to-card technology can facilitate faster payments via card rails, and how businesses can leverage the infrastructure offered by Astra and Cross River.

We also covered the benefits of an API-driven push-to-card program, such as:

  • Speed: Push-to-card payments can be delivered in minutes or seconds, compared to days or hours for other payment methods.

  • Convenience: Push-to-card payments do not require customers to provide bank account information or sign up for a third-party service. They can simply use their existing debit card to receive funds.

  • Security: Push-to-card payments are encrypted and tokenized, reducing the risk of fraud and data breaches. They also comply with card network rules and regulations, ensuring consumer protection and dispute resolution.

  • Customer satisfaction: Push-to-card payments can enhance customer loyalty and retention by providing a seamless and satisfying payment experience.

The crux of our discussion ultimately provided guidance on how to integrate push-to-card payments into your business strategy, such as:

  • Choosing the right partner: You need a partner that can provide you with the technology, infrastructure, compliance, and support you need to offer push-to-card payments. Astra is an example of a partner that can help you with these aspects.

  • Understanding your use case: You need to identify your target market, customer needs, payment frequency, transaction size, and cost structure. These factors will help you determine if push-to-card is the right solution for your business.

  • Testing and launching: You need to test your push-to-card program before launching it to ensure it works as expected. You also need to communicate with your customers about the new payment option and how they can benefit from it.

If you missed the webinar or want to watch it again, you can find it here: