Contactless payments: Get the FULL value!

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Any time you change your payment mix, make sure to look at how you handle cash.

There they were! I was grabbing a coffee at my local bagel shop, when I saw them: 2 contactless payment terminals. And why not?! The speed and convenience are obvious, especially where you have commuters standing behind you, need their caffeine fix.

Suppliers of contactless technology say the QSR industry is “the next killer app.”

It is reported that there will be 80 million contactless cards in circulation by 12/2009. Here is a payment method that might just pay for itself.

The SmartCard Alliance says contactless payments are 21.2 seconds faster than cash, and 14.2 seconds faster than the average card transaction. I’ll leave it to the industrial engineers to argue about what constitutes the beginning and end of a transaction, and the impact of simultaneous activity. But, let’s face it – fast!

Some say that 6 seconds of savings in a drive-thru adds 1% to sales.

(There are experts that argue on both sides of that 1% argument, though.) If that holds true for my bagel shop, this would offset the transaction fees. Here is a technology that provides benefits to both the consumer and the business owner, and I expect it will really start to change your payment mix.

If contactless payments are starting to affect your cash volumes, you owe it to yourself to revisit the way you handle cash. Deposit frequency, change fund size and armored car schedules should all be reviewed. This is the logical extension of implementing contactless payments. If you don’t, then your expense of having cash in the business just grew as a percentage of sales.

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