North American Bancard Blog

Right Tool, Right Job: An In-Depth Look at the Latest in Merchant Services Equipment

Posted by Joshua Griffin on

As the total number of card payments in the United States is growing, so is the development of payment processing technology options for businesses. The Federal Reserve Payments Study – 2017 Annual Supplement report, by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, found total card payments grew from a value of $5.65 trillion in 2015 to a value of $5.98 trillion in 2016. Customers today are swiping and dipping their cards into readers on smartphones and tablet devices, using EMV terminals’ chip-card technology and near field communication (NFC) credit card terminals for transactions.

Here's a look at how these four credit card processing technologies are affecting today's merchant services landscape:

EMV Equipment

EMV terminals are a must-have for businesses today. EMV stands for Europay, Mastercard and Visa, which are the major credit card distributors around the world that are now upholding cards to a more secure standard.

All credit cards issued today now come with EMV chips, which is ushering out a signature-required security measure in favor of one that uses unique encryption during every transaction. Credit card fraud during in-person transactions is thwarted, which protects your business and your customers.

Where it works: Every point of sale device in your business should accept EMV chip cards. If your customer has an EMV chip card, and your device is not compatible and forces them to swipe, your business is held liable if fraud occurs. If you’ve upgraded to EMV equipment, and fraud occurs, the liability is lifted.

Besides saving money on fraud charges, using EMV equipment in your business can increase the trust customers have when they purchase from you.

Mobile Credit Card Terminal Processing

Mobile credit card terminals move with your salespeople. They can be credit card readers that work while attached to a smartphone, or they could be handheld devices designed to process transactions.

Some businesses decide to use only mobile payment processing, which cuts down on the machines that are seen throughout a store. This tech-savvy form of payment processing can also be attractive to millennials and younger shoppers, who are used to using their smartphones for everyday tasks.

Where it works: When you want to close the sale and check out customers quickly, mobile payment processing rules. Restaurant servers can check diners out right at their table. Salespeople in a store can sell merchandise directly in the aisle, which cuts down on long lines at the counter.

Mobile credit card terminals are also a vital tool for business outside a brick and mortar. If your company is heading to a trade show, you can sell at your booth with a mobile reader. Mobile credit card terminals are also great for business owners without physical locations, who might be selling at locations like farmers' markets, festivals or pop-up shops.

Tablet Payment Processing

Tablets offer an advantage in their versatility. Not only can they be carried around, but they can also be used in a tablet reader on a desktop to mimic a countertop point of sale system.

Tablet payment processing enables customers to add tips to transactions at a counter purchase, or get quickly checked out wherever they are. Tablets are rugged and durable and can accept EMV payments just like other desktop and mobile devices.

Where it works: Tablets have similar uses to smartphone payment processing and other types of mobile merchant services. Merchants can take tablets on the go, use them as a desktop point of sale device or carry them throughout a venue.

Some businesses choose to place tablets in locations where customers can check themselves out, as well. For example, restaurant chains like Applebee's and Outback Steakhouse have tablets on tables, enabling customers to order and pay right from their seat.

NFC Credit Card Processing

NFC payment processing is a contactless form of payment, where a person can use a smartphone application to pay. Customers simply place the application near the payment device, and the transaction occurs, without having to exchange money or a credit card. The bank account or credit card information is already linked to the application, enabling a quicker form of payment.

NFC payments use contactless EMV technology, meaning data from every transaction is unique. Like EMV, a customer's data cannot be skimmed, stolen and replicated during an NFC transaction like it could during a swipe transaction.

Where it works: NFC merchant services can be used wherever payment processing occurs. Not only can customers use NFC at a desktop point of sale device, but merchants can add NFC devices throughout a store for instant self-checkout. There are also ways to enhance the NFC experience for customers, such as the ability to scan coupons via a smartphone or get special offers delivered to a smartphone, depending on where customers are in a store. NFC is a payment processing technology that is likely to have exciting developments in the near future and beyond for enhancing the in-store customer experience.

Get Free Payment Processing Equipment from NAB

North American Bancard (NAB) is a merchant services provider that offers free equipment to all businesses we work with. Get NFC-ready and EMV terminals, mobile credit card processing, tablet POS’ and more when you work with NAB. Call (877) 840-1952 for more information, or contact us online.

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