Online sellers can pay suppliers, transfer currency balances, and manage their account on their phone with this new service
The growth of cross-border ecommerce seems unstoppable. It’s predicted that by 2022, cross-border shopping will account for 20 percent of global ecommerce sales.
As sellers have flocked to take advantage of global markets, many have used World First’s receiving accounts to bring funds from international sales back home. These accounts support a wide range of currencies, and offer preferential exchange rates compared to online marketplaces and payment providers.
But online selling has evolved, and sellers need more than just an account to collect their marketplace payments. They need to pay suppliers, transfer between currencies, and manage their accounts on the move. That’s where the World Account comes in. It’s a big leap forward in currency services for online sellers.
What is the World Account?
It’s a service, provided by World First, designed to help businesses trade internationally. World First specialize in currency exchange services for businesses and individuals, and have been working with online sellers for 11 years.
The World Account allows online sellers and other businesses to receive funds from cross-border sales, make international payments, and hold balances in different currencies. It’s a big step up from a receiving account, as sellers can pay suppliers directly, and transfer instantly between currency balances.
The World Account is also a faster, cheaper and easier alternative to traditional overseas bank accounts. There’s a quick and simple signup process, then you can set up accounts in multiple currencies with no monthly fee to operate them.
How does it benefit sellers?
One of the biggest benefits to sellers is that they can pay suppliers straight from an account balance in a foreign currency. This will come as a relief, as in the past sellers had to convert funds into their home currency, just to convert them back again to pay an overseas supplier in the same currency that they started with.
Moving money between your different currency balances is also possible. With a World Account, if you want to pay a UK supplier but only have funds in USD, you can simply take, for example, $10,000 from your USD balance and transfer it into your GBP balance. The currency exchange will be made instantly, so you can proceed with the supplier payment.
A further benefit is that sellers can receive payments from any business, not just marketplaces and payment gateways. This is useful for sellers who wholesale internationally, or have a side business with overseas customers, as they can use their World Account to receive direct payments from other businesses.
These functions can be completed through a web browser or via a new mobile app. The app has the key the functions of the World Account browser interface, and gives sellers the flexibility to check balances and move funds between accounts on the move.
Do I still need a receiving account?
Receiving accounts have two important benefits for online sellers:
- They provide a better exchange rate when transferring international sales proceeds back home, compared to Amazon or PayPal, for example. You simply get more cash back in your home account, for a very minimal effort.
- They meet the requirement of some overseas marketplaces to have a local bank account to receive payment.
A World Account also has those benefits, so there’s no need for both. However, World Accounts are still in a beta phase so there’s no rush to switchover if you already have a receiving account. New customers can still sign up for a receiving account to get the benefits above, and switch to a World Account later – there’s not really anything to be gained by waiting.
World First are rolling out the World Account gradually, and in time will migrate over all their existing customers with receiving accounts.
Who can open a World Account?
The beta version is launching summer 2017 to a limited pool of World First customers. Accounts will then be released in phases to existing customers, before being made available to new customers.
Initially the World Account will only be available to World First customers in the UK and European Economic Area (EEA) but will be extended to other regions in the future. The accounts will hold EUR, USD and GBP to start with, with more currencies to be added later.
But wherever you are in the world, and whether you are an existing World First customer or not, you can register your interest via the online registration form and you’ll get an email notification when signup is available to you.
Is my money safe?
When you open a World Account, your money is held in client trust accounts. This money is held by some of the world’s largest international banks, not World First directly, and is completely segregated from the company’s funds.
Account security is a priority for World First, and they follow the highest standards to keep accounts safe both from economic disruption and cybercrime.
How do I sign up for a World Account?
If you are an existing World First customer, and have received an invite to switch over to the World Account, you just need to provide the following information:
- Where you expect to receive money from (marketplaces, your bank account or another source)
- Which marketplaces you sell on
- Which countries you will be making payments to
You will also need to provide your mobile number, and accept the new terms and conditions that cover World Accounts.
Brand new customers will need to sign up on World First’s website, once World Accounts are publicly available. They will then need to provide their personal and company details, proof of their company address, and their account requirements.
Once all your information has been verified, you can go online and start using accounts in each currency you need.
This post was sponsored by World First.