7 Questions SMBs Need to Ask About Accepting Payments

Payments are one of the most important parts of any retail business. If you keep up with new payment mediums as they emerge, you will continue to delight your customers and ensure a superior in-store experience. Businesses that take every form of payment can sell to every customer, whether they want to pay with cash, credit cards, or NFC services, like Apple Pay and Google Pay.

Choosing the right POS system is a major decision you will have to make for your business. Not only are you looking to meet customer expectations of a seamless, personalized experience, but you also need to keep other things in mind—like how workers today are often on the go, how technology might change in the future, and how you can reduce the chances your retail business will suffer a data breach.

To make your decision a bit easier, here’s a list of seven questions small and medium-sized businesses need to ask themselves when considering new payment solutions.

1. Am I giving my customers enough payment options?

Consumers expect personalized experiences. In fact, 58 percent of customers consider personalization to be an influential factor in any purchasing decision. For brick-and-mortar retailers, this means customers expect to be able to pay however they want to pay. Still, lots of businesses out there only take cash, including small restaurants, nail salons, food trucks, and laundromats. According to a U.S. Bank study, more than three out of every four customers carry less than $50. That means if you only take cash, you’re significantly reducing the likelihood of seeing transactions of $51 or more.

If your goal is to sell more while meeting customer expectations, you need to be able to take several forms of payment: cash, credit cards (both mag stripe and chip cards), gift cards, EBT cards, NFC payments (e.g., Samsung Pay), and more.

2. Can my POS system evolve to keep up with new developments in payment technology?

Old-school cash registers can’t accept NFC payments or digital wallets, which means they also won’t be able to accept any new payment mediums that emerge in the future. Leading POS systems enable businesses to keep up with new developments in payments, thanks to automatic software updates that keep them up to date.

3. Is my payment system secure enough to avoid a data breach?

Think your business is too small to worry about security? Think again. One recent study found that 20 percent of SMBs have been impacted by security breaches—at an average cost of $36,000. In the age of high-profile hacks, look for payment solutions that are built with enterprise-grade security measures to avoid incurring those expenses.

4. Is my payment system PCI-compliant?

The Payment Card Industry (PCI) has a set of standards designed to ensure that companies that process credit card transactions maintain secure environments to keep sensitive information protected. Businesses that run afoul of the PCI’s standards can face fines of up to $100,000. To avoid these issues, look for POS systems and payment terminals that feature built-in PCI certifications.

5. Does my POS system provide any analytics?

The more data you have on hand, the more informed your business decisions can be. For example, if you can clearly see that your business doesn’t get much traffic between 9-11 a.m. on Sundays, you might want to consider opening at 11 a.m. that day. Leading POS systems provide insight into all corners of your business, giving you a wealth of data you can use to improve your operations.

6. Can I manage my finances remotely?

In the age of smartphones and lightning-fast networks, do you really have to manage your finances, issue refunds, view reports, and settle from the confines of your office? Not anymore, thanks to new payment solutions on the market that were built with mobility top of mind. With the right payment system in place, you can securely access data and financial information from any connected device.

7. Can my payment system scale to support my business?

If you are focused on growing your business, you need to look for a payment solution that is designed to keep pace. Leading systems will be able to scale to support your business’s growth as you add channels, open new locations, and expand your team.

Move to a modern POS system today.

A modern POS system can meet the needs of today’s customers while ensuring sensitive financial data and personally identifiable information is secure. With the right system, you can manage your finances remotely from any connected device and generate reports that will help you make better business decisions.

When a new kind of payment comes along and gets rapidly adopted, the last thing any merchant wants is to find themselves in a position where they can’t accept that form of payment. With a modern POS system in place, you get a future-proof solution that can grow with your business.

Take a look at the Poynt product portfolio to learn more about how your business can accept more payments without compromising on security—delighting your customers and growing your bottom line along the way.