Having access to your school’s bursar billing account is an important strategy for many bookstores, as it allows students to charge their books directly to their student accounts.
However, according to a recent study conducted by indiCo of 235 participating stores, only about half of independent college stores have such access to their bursar’s account, which can be a significant liability when it comes to accommodating student needs.
According to respondents, convenience for the student to easily acquire necessary course materials was the top benefit of access, followed by the student being able to acquire books without having to wait for financial aid. Also noted was convenience for parents paying for students from out of town, as well as an increase in preparedness on the first day of class.
What’s more, 66% of stores indicated they saw an increase in sales when they implemented access to bursar billing.
Only half of stores are taking advantage
The survey revealed that just about half (49%) of stores had some access to their bursar’s accounts. Levels of access and usage vary by school, but 95% of stores allowed students to charge their course materials directly to their bursar accounts through the bookstore.
Eighty-six percent of stores allow students to charge school supplies, and 52% general merchandise. And 75% of stores use this access to enforce repayment and returns of rentals by blocking transcripts and future enrollments.
The fast-growing emergence of e-textbooks and digital course materials is expected to spur more stores to begin the process of bursar access on their campus, as sales-to-enrollment models of course materials distribution are expected to grow in importance.
Get started on your own campus
indiCo has developed a new Bursar Billing Checklist, a step-by-step guide to help stores quickly and effectively implement bursar billing at their school.
Login to download these handy guidelines to begin the process of student account billing on your campus, to take advantage of the benefits this solution will bring.
To view this information, you must be a full college store member of NACS and logged in. If you are logged in and still unable to view the information please contact Member Concierge Services at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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