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As a business owner or Consumer, you may have encountered the terms virtual credit card or virtual debit card, and you might wonder, “What is a virtual card?” A virtual credit card is not a physical, plastic card. Instead, it is a set of sixteen digits similar to a credit card number together with a CVV code that is randomly generated using Payment applications that supports it’s usage.

 Now you might be asking yourself at this point what about physical cards are they no good or does this mean that virtual cards are the better option?

 That really depends on the kind of transactions you make, the amount of security you need and the kind or nature of the platforms you purchase from, while having a physical card has its place, using a virtual payment card can make your life much easier and keep your data much more secure even if you are spending on well-known secure sites, data breaches still happen. And with a virtual card, you limit your exposure to these vices.

Here are five benefits that may make you consider using virtual cards; 

1.   Convenience while shopping online: it’s smart to consider a virtual card if you are a drop-shipper, shop online constantly or always pay for subscriptions online, Virtual cards protect your information online, though making purchases and paying bills online is fast and convenient, it’s not always private. Sharing your credit card information over the internet can make you more vulnerable to potential identity theft and data breaches.

 2.   One-Time Purchases: there are situations in which you might not want to use a card tied to your permanent account, in instances where you are buying from a new business, setting up an online trial, or paying invoices for a new business vendor you’re vetting, having more control over your online privacy can create a better, freer online experience.

 3.  Easily manage subscriptions: Being able to manage all your online subscription is one of the many benefits of virtual card, a situation where it becomes difficult to manage or keep track of what you’re being charged for online during a subscription upgrade or renewal, you can use a new virtual card for each subscription, hence able to track all your transactions in one place. No overcharge and you have control over your virtual card in terms of spending limits, terminating card.

 4.  Protection from fraud: The biggest benefit you receive while using virtual cards might perhaps be the improved level of security you get; as virtual payment cards aren’t physical it makes cloning them impossible as there are no physical items to be stolen. 

 5.  Helps you cut back on spending: Virtual cards allow you set a spending limit by setting a date for an automatic closing of the card after a charge whenever you need to and however long it suits your business.

6. Staff empowerment: Virtual cards can be issued to multiple team members who are required to make payments for their business on a daily basis. So instead of hounding your manager or accounts department for access to the one single physical card to make a payment (or going through the onerous paperwork to get a corporate card yourself), staff can be issued with individual virtual payment cards that are unique to them. 

 As a manager, you can set the spending limits on each virtual card, which means you keep a firm hold on your budget when making business payments, and your teams know exactly how much they have available to spend. 

 Eliminating payment bottlenecks means your business can move at a much faster pace by allowing the purchasing of new software and equipment without delays. When executed correctly, purchase requests no longer need to sit in pending for weeks while your staff sit idle awaiting the green light to make the purchase. With their own virtual payment card, they can do so instantly, while you maintain full control.