Business tips

Is your business ready for a cashless society?

By Jereme Sanborn on
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If you own a business that sells products, you have doubtless recognized the trend: Customers don’t carry much cash anymore. Instead, most prefer to make their purchases with their credit or debit cards, or even digital wallets. Before cash gets to be as rare as a bald eagle sighting, it is in your best interests to prepare your retail establishment for the low-cash world that is right around the corner, if not here already. 

Embrace contactless payments.

Although American consumers and merchants have been slower to adopt touchless payments than our European and Asian counterparts, the coronavirus pandemic has caused interest and adoption to skyrocket. All that this safe and seamless form of checkout requires is a smartphone for the consumer and a reader equipped with contactless technology for the seller. The consumer simply preloads their digital wallet with their payment information, which is then encrypted and stored securely.

Paying for an item then becomes a simple matter of placing the wallet-enabled smartphone near the merchant’s reader. Within a few seconds, the entire verification, authorization, and payment process has been completed without there ever being a need for physical touch. This technology allays safety concerns, enhances good hygiene, and eliminates the need for time-consuming and often dirty (and germ-infested) cash.

Make your online presence known.

Hopefully, you have already designed and launched a business website. By taking this step, you’ll be able to reach the massive number of consumers who prefer to browse the internet for products and services, in lieu of perusing printed advertisements, or just driving around until they find a store. In today’s environment, your website can be your best brand ambassador, acting as a hub for information, product-related content, images, and customer reviews.

Even if you choose not to conduct payment processing from your site, you can still use it as a springboard for sales. Encourage interested customers to speak with you directly to get the most personalized shopping experience. Then when they contact you with a desire to buy, simply input their payment information into a virtual terminal.

A payments software solution, a virtual terminal acts like the online version of your store’s point of sale system and enables you to securely process your customers’ payments.  Will cash ever totally disappear from the business landscape? Considering that millions of Americans possess neither credit cards nor bank accounts, and still others do not wish to give up bills and coins, total cashlessness seems unlikely. Even so, pivoting your business to accommodate the increasing numbers of buyers who prefer to use cards and contactless options is certainly in your best long-term interests.