How Smart Terminals Enable Better Customer Experiences

The modern retail landscape is vast and customers have far more choices, both in-person and online, than at any point in history. As a result, experience, not price, is now the crucial tipping point that will make or break a sale. Some even expect it to become more important than price in the not-so-distant future. In fact, 86 percent of your customers are willing to pay more if it means an improved experience.

If a patron has a bad experience with you, they likely have multiple competitors from which to choose, or they can forego the brick-and-mortar experience entirely and find what they need online. But the damage doesn’t stop there; they can also broadcast their unflattering opinion of your company across social media. If, on the other hand, you provide stellar service, they’re far more likely to return.

A smart terminal can make all the difference when providing remarkable customer service. Here’s what it gives your business:

Faster Service

With a smart terminal, checkout is faster. This makes your customers happy (less wait time) and your employees happy (more customers served, more revenue). No matter how smooth and simple a payment experience might be, no one wants to wait longer in line for it. A quick in-and-out means they’re far more likely to return and recommend you to friends.

In fact, the world’s largest retailer, Amazon, has taken fast checkout to its logical extreme: the cashier-less store, Amazon Go. You’re probably not ready to go that far, but your investment in a smart terminal will likely speed up operations and increase revenue.

Easy Payment

With a smart terminal, your business sends a message of welcome—you accept every form of payment, be it cash, card, mag stripe, contactless mobile (Apple Pay, Google Pay, Samsung Pay), gift cards, and many more. This sets you apart from establishments that rely on outdated registers that don’t connect to their inventory or send automated email confirmations. In an age in which mobile connectivity is a must-have for most consumers, they expect the same functionality in retail payments.

The importance of contactless payments in particular cannot be overstated. EMV chip cards came to the American marketplace in 2015, bringing with them a welcome rise in transaction security and a frustrating rise in customer wait times.

Although these delays have become the new normal, contactless mobile payments were able to leapfrog over them and process sales much faster. Add to this the growing acceptance of paperless receipts, and wait times go down even further.

Simple User Interface

All the processing power in the world doesn’t mean much if your payment solution’s interface is difficult to use and time-consuming to learn. Smart terminals are designed with users in mind, and they provide simple, intuitive instructions for both customers and sales staff.

Add a second screen, and you eliminate one of the hallmarks of the smart terminal era: turning the unit around for a customer’s signature. It also lets the patron choose their preferred payment method, rate their experience, and even browse additional items that they might pick up later online or in-person at their next visit. The unit can even literally be in dialogue with the customer (“Enjoy your new jacket, Sam!”).

Efficient Back-End Tools

Smart terminals are ideal for businesses in multiple locations or those that need multiple terminals in the same facility. Rather than having to interrupt a transaction to pick up the phone and confer with a colleague, a sales rep can simply message them within the terminal or have a manager jump in from across the store to approve a refund or discount. This ensures that your patrons will have a consistent experience no matter where they encounter your brand or who they speak to when they’re there.

It also helps coordinate your front-line and back-of-house teams so that inventory management knows what products need immediate replenishment and where they should be placed on the sales floor. No more panicked calls to the storeroom or delays while someone runs back to check if an item is out of stock.

Rewards for Loyalty

Every time a customer purchases a product or service, they generate data—precious information that allows you to customize their experience and reward them for their loyalty. A smart POS platform captures their search and purchase history and presents them with everything from birthday freebies to discounts on new arrivals.

There are great examples across all business sectors, from Starbucks stars to Amazon Prime to North Face VIPeak to Sephora’s Beauty Insider.

Experience = a Great Investment

In short, a remarkable customer experience makes a happier customer—one who will buy more, come back often, and (hopefully) bring friends. And a smooth payment interaction is a necessary step in making that happen.

The Poynt Smart Terminal is a complete wireless payment solution that provides an affordable way to transform your customers’ experience.