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Retail Merchant Services are Evolving: Are You Keeping Up with Trends?

September 15, 2021 • by shall

Industries are evolving, especially for restaurants and retailers, and your retail merchant services must keep up with these trends. Retailers of all kinds must accept debit or credit cards because cash payments account for less than 20% of all payments.

What are Retail Merchant Services?

When retailers or restaurants swipe a credit card, a retail point of sale system is involved. In-store payments include:

  • POS systems
  • Mobile readers
  • Traditional terminals

Seamless solutions are becoming the norm in today’s retail world, as consumers expect to use numerous payment methods to make purchases. The right systems evolve over time to offer the flexibility that consumers demand, such as mobile, brick-and-mortar and on-the-go solutions.

Retailers should identify how merchant services evolve to know which services will serve their customers best.

Evolution of Retail Merchant Services

The times of offering a standard retail POS system that accepts a very limited number of payment options are disappearing. Customers want the freedom to pay using their favorite payment method, and payment options go well beyond Visa and MasterCard.

When retailers allow customers to use their payment method of choice, it leads to more money spent at a retailer.

The evolution of merchant services has led to:

  • Digital wallets. Many consumers have digital wallets that give them access to their accounts and money. Consumers expect to have the option of paying through mobile or digital wallets, and merchants must do their best to accommodate these needs. Digital payment acceptance through the following services has grown significantly:
    • PayPal
    • Google / Apple Pay
    • Visa Checkout
    • More 
  • On-the-go solutions. The times when a retail POS system tied the consumer and retailer to a physical location are long gone. Consumers are now mobile. Even if it’s just in the parking lot, offering on-the-go solutions can provide peace of mind to retailers and consumers.
  • Customization. Service providers are stepping up to meet the demands of a business’s customer base. As businesses work with a diverse set of customers, they must also be able to offer tailored solutions to meet all of their needs. Therefore, service providers are offering the option to customize offerings to meet the demands of customers.

Perhaps the most important and least discussed change is that retailers are offering seamless solutions to their customers. It’s no longer about accepting a physical credit card in-person – it’s about acceptance everywhere.

Retailer merchant services must offer acceptance in-person, online and on the go.

Consumers want the choice to pay for services or goods in a way that wasn’t possible years ago. Acceptance is one thing, but it’s growing increasingly important to provide a seamless experience that focuses on the consumer.

Providers of retail merchant services have grown to accept that adopting new payment solutions is the norm.

Many providers are integrating solutions to accept digital currency and even rewards programs, which wasn’t possible for small retailers in the past. As a result, the gap between major businesses and small retailer point of sale is closing, making it an even playing field for companies that have 6,000 employees or six employees.

Multiple Options for Retail Point of Sale Systems

Merchants can, in most cases, leverage three solution categories that allow them to streamline the payment process of their consumers. The main systems that are available in our portfolio of services are:

  1. Point-of-sale systems. Integrated payment systems are one of the main perks of POS systems. Customizable solutions are essential for catering to the consumers of today. These systems combine both in-store and mobile payment options. The right solution will evolve with your business’s needs, whether you need to accept on-the-go payments or mobile payments.
  2. Mobile readers. Contactless and mobile payment solutions are in high demand among consumers. The flexibility offered by retailers to accept payments of all types is a major part of purchasing decisions. These mobile readers can accept payments using EMV, magstripe and other technology.
  3. Countertop. Terminals that reside in businesses are countertop terminals, but they’re no longer clunky. New countertop terminals provide PCI compliance, protection of customer data and the ability to accept payments even when connections are not full.

It’s not uncommon for businesses to have one or a combination of the systems above to meet the growing demands of their customers. Discussing your options with a merchant services provider can help you find the best way to streamline your payment processing,

Final Thoughts

Working with a company that offers state-of-the-art retail merchant services is one of the best ways for retailers to improve their customer service and experience. Smaller retailers, cafes and restaurants can use their flexibility and streamline retail point of sale as a competitive advantage.

The right retail merchant services provider can help.

Call us at (800) 720-3323 to see how our merchant services can help transform your business.

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