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April 27, 2022

What’s the difference between ACH and Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT)?

LeAnne Taylor

As a business owner, you’ve probably heard of an electronic funds transfer (EFT) and an automated clearing house (ACH) payment. But, did you know these terms aren’t interchangeable?

To make the differences clearer, we’ve broken them down in just one sentence.👇

An “ACH” payment is a specific type of EFT - and “electronic funds transfer” or “EFT” is a general term that refers to all digital payments.

Still wondering what exactly an Electronic Funds Transfer or ACH payment is? Let’s get into it!

What is an Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT)?

As mentioned above, Electronic Funds Transfer or EFT is just a blanket term for digital payments. There are many types, but some of the most common types of EFT payments include:

  • Electronic checks
  • Direct deposit
  • ATM transactions
  • Payments made via phone, internet or card
  • Wire transfers
  • ACH payments

What is an Automated Clearing House (ACH) payment?

An ACH transfer is a type of electronic funds transfer (EFT) used in the United States. ACH transfers are processed through the Automated Clearing House Network - hence the name - and governed by the National Automated Clearing House Association (Nacha).

Payments in the ACH network are transferred directly from one bank account to another. ACH transfers are more commonly known as Direct Deposit, direct pay or eChecks.

So, that feeling of getting money deposited directly into your account (without a trip to the bank!) - that's ACH. And the convenience of paying a bill or vendor online vs sending a check? Also ACH! Oh, and let's not forget the recurring bills you can pay automatically - hats off to ACH for those too.

Benefits of ACH with Corpay One


With Corpay One, you can pay any vendor requesting ACH (or Check!) payments with your credit card as the funding source - even if they don't accept them!¹ Our flexible payment options allow you to leverage your credit for initiatives that move the needle, instead of putting your cash toward ACH and Check payments to your vendors.

No manual entry

If a vendor’s banking information is on their invoice or ACH is listed as their preferred payment method in the invoice payment instructions, Corpay One's OCR scanning technology will read those details and start paying them via ACH automatically. No manual vendor management needed!

Sending an ACH payment is easy with Corpay One. Start simplifying your payments with Corpay One - book a demo to get started today! 

¹ 2.9% transaction fee applies when funding Check and ACH payments with a Visa®, Discover® or Mastercard® credit card, including the Corpay Mastercard®. All cards subject to availability and approval, including credit approval. See Corpay Mastercard® and Corpay One terms and conditions for details. US customers only.

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