“The Only Constant in Life Is Change.”- Heraclitus
Nowhere is this more relevant than in the world of money exchange and payment processing. In just 50 years, we’ve seen payment processing evolve from imprinters to magstripe readers, to chip-readers, to online payments, to mobile devices and digital wallets.
As a VAR or ISV, it’s already challenging to keep up with current technology, let alone predict what’s coming next. Your livelihood and customer satisfaction depend on your ability to anticipate future trends and proactively incorporate them into your products. While you can’t be everything to everyone, there are some upcoming changes and strategies that you can take advantage of that will keep your sales current and expanding.
By now everyone is familiar with cash discounting and surcharging. Dual-pricing is the latest iteration that displays the difference between the prices on the terminal at the time of sale. Consumers are presented with a standard price – which the merchants define as either the cash price, and the associated cash discount decreased price or increased surcharge price. The consumer chooses which price and method they prefer and makes their payment accordingly. A recent report by Capital One shows that 70.2% of all purchases are made by credit cards. Merchants typically pay between 1.5% and 3.5% in processing fees. By utilizing dual-pricing and passing that cost on to the consumer, your merchants will see a significant increase in margins.
The United States remains the world’s largest retail economy. It’s also the most competitive in terms of POS and payment solutions. For years, U.S. POS manufacturers have been stymied from global expansion by the requirement to find different banking and processing partners in each geography they elected to do business in. This required multiple international certifications and integrations, requiring valuable and expensive resources. The advent of new payment platforms and international processors has created an environment where a single integration will allow a POS to take payments in the US, Canada, the UK, Western Europe, The Caribbean, Latam, Australia and many other regions. Growth opportunities for POS providers are at an all-time high in foreign markets. By partnering with the right international processing platform, you can easily expand your reach into multiple markets, leverage their in-country distribution and Banking Relationships, providing you with a new revenue stream.
According to PEW Research, 85% of Americans own a Smartphone that utilizes Near Field Communications (NFC). To date, NFC has largely been utilized to allow Digital Wallets to make outbound payments to traditional payment terminals. SoftPOS, on the other hand, allows a mobile device to accept inbound payments. By adopting a SoftPOS model, ISVs who modify their software to efficiently run on a mobile phone or tablet give their merchants the advantage of being able to take payments from any number of familiar devices, at any place, using their existing mobile infrastructure. Your merchant benefits by reducing the cost and set-up time associated with traditional payment terminals. SoftPOS providers benefit from additional SaaS fees on a per-device basis, the consumer benefits from a quick and easy payment experience.
Change is constant, but rather than view it as a threat, we need to embrace it as the catalyst to creating new and stronger relationships between our businesses and our merchants.