With the holiday season just around the corner, many shoppers are getting out early to ensure they complete all of their purchases in time. This means that retailers are preparing earlier than ever before for the holiday rush, and making sure that they have the staff and infrastructure in place to serve their customers and drive revenue. New EMV cards are going out to customers, and the shift in liability has moved to retailers, making it more important than ever to improve security for transactions and upgrade equipment. Be prepared for the holidays with small business credit card processing solutions that ease workflow and make the transition to EMV cards and readers simpler for you and your customers.
Are You Ready for EMV?
In order to be prepared for the holiday season, retailers need to begin implementing technology that allows them to accept EMV chip-enabled credit and debit cards. The liability shift took place on October 1, 2015, meaning retailers are now responsible for losses pertaining to fraud instead of the issuing banks if they do not have the proper readers in place. To ensure that your small business is ready to accept and process EMV cards, it is necessary to reach out to your merchant account service provider. This will help you understand your responsibilities going forward and give you the information you need to educate your customers about the change.
According to a recent story by Forbes, six out of 10 U.S. consumers with credit cards are not ready for EMV. They are either in the dark as to what EMV technology is, or still have yet to receive their new cards from credit companies and banks. In addition to that, they may be unaware how to complete a transaction using their new cards, as this may be the first time they have had EMV cards in their lifetime. Communicating with your customers about how EMV changes the purchasing process is just one piece of the puzzle. You will also need to have EMV-friendly card readers available and train your staff on how to process payments for your products and services.
Getting everyone up to speed ahead of the holiday rush will allow you to process more transactions and help your customers get exactly what they need. In addition to driving revenue by simplifying the payment process, and working with a credit card processor to get paid, your improved level of customer service strengthens relationships with customers and keeps them coming back all year.
How Will EMV Chips Affect the Holidays?
As previously mentioned, EMV technology affects your holiday plans because it requires additional knowledge and training to prepare your staff. Not only do businesses feel the crunch around the holidays, so too do credit card processors, for a variety of reasons. Small business credit card processing and businesses themselves will be successful this holiday season by calming security concerns, according to a story published by NBC News. Numerous high-profile data breaches associated with magnetic stripe cards have made consumers wary of card security concerns, which EMV technology is designed to fix. More secure transactions are good for businesses and customers alike.
Since the new EMV credit and debit cards will not be the only forms of payment that customers use during the holidays, there is still some leeway for small businesses and other merchants. Businesses will begin to see more and more EMV cards being used in stores, restaurants, and other locations, and the biggest mountain to climb will be to ensure all POS systems are compatible with the new cards, and that staff members are trained about the differences of processing these payment. Rather than only needing to worry about cash handling procedures, check processing, and credit cards with magnetic stripes, merchants will also need to know how to assist customers who have cards with chips and those who are EMV-only.
As the holidays approach, the shift to EMV technology can affect merchants in two main ways:
- Service Levels – Increased security, faster transactions, and greater revenue for businesses when you have the credit card terminals you need and a relationship with the right credit card processing company.
- Greater Amount of Customers – Banks and credit card companies are already sending out EMV chip-enabled cards to customers around the country. If your business is unprepared, you are missing out on untold amounts of money during what will likely be another record-setting holiday season.
What to Do Moving Forward
What does this all mean for merchants moving forward? With EMV cards already making their way into the wallets of consumers around the country, a merchant’s first priority is to ensure that all of his or her credit card readers are up-to-date and ready to accept the new cards. In addition, it is important to learn about your processing rate structure and if and how the EMV transition will affect your bottom line.
Whether you are a contractor or retailer, own a professional services business or a family restaurant, the shift to EMV cards will undoubtedly have a role in your business plan moving forward. It gives you an added layer of protection against fraud, and leads to a lower rate of chargebacks and money lost in the process. Leap Payments, the best-rated credit card processing company in the industry, can assist your business with finding the perfect processing solution that helps you achieve your business goals. From purchasing and working with new EMV credit card readers to getting mobile readers to be able to help more customers, Leap Payments allows you to get the equipment and services needed so you can get paid anywhere you do business.
Don’t get stuck with a confusing rate structure that goes up over time. Instead, work with a processing company that understands your business and what you need to serve your customers. As EMV cards continue to roll out, you want to find yourself in the best position so that you are not playing catch up to your competitors. Learn more about EMV technology and small business credit card processing by contacting a Leap Payments representative today at (800) 993-6300.