Why Contactless Payments Are Right For Businesses

Contactless payments are becoming increasingly popular and, with just a little research on the subject, it is not hard to see why. Contactless technology offers many benefits, not only to the consumer, but also to the merchants using the technology.

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Advantage 1: Speed

The first advantage is speed; taking a transaction from a contactless payment device takes just moments. In scenario 1 let us consider a man, buying a sandwich and a drink to take to work. He takes his selection to the till, and stands there while two or three people are served ahead of him. The first one forgets her PIN or enters it incorrectly before she is finished. The second customer uses the wrong PIN for the card she is attempting to pay on and after declaring she cannot recall this PIN, spends minutes searching through her handbag for some cash. By the time our man puts his sandwich and drink down on the counter he is becoming very short of time, possibly even regretting popping in to this particular shop to pick up his lunch. He now has a negative association with the shop and will avoid it for the next few weeks – even though this might be a subconscious decision.

In scenario 2, using the new contactless technology all transactions can be easily processed within half a minute. Our man will be leaving the shop very quickly, not at risk of being late and with positive thoughts associated with the shop. This shows how efficiency can be greatly enhanced, enabling many more customers to be swiftly dealt with in a relatively short time. A speedy and convenient payment procedure will engender feelings of loyalty towards the shop, meaning that those happy customers will return time after time.

Advantage 2: Versatility

Contactless technology can take many forms which could ultimately see consumers not having to carry cash or cards around in the future.  In May 2011, Google announced Google Wallet in the US, a mobile commerce and payment application which was made available on NFC enabled smart phones. Mobile wallets, such as that launched by Google, bring together several elements of commerce including not only mobile payments but also loyalty initiatives in one application*. This means that those with Google Wallet or similar, are able to pay for goods and services via their mobile device and also realise incentive programmes without having to use cards or cash– perfect for a night out, for example.

Contactless payment technology can have an incredibly salutary effect on many businesses and companies which rely on quick and easy payments throughout the day. As long as customers can be assured that their needs can be processed safely, securely and efficiently, they will be more likely to take advantage of the technology.

There are several examples of where contactless technology has already made a huge difference including in ticketing for public transport networks; the Oyster card tap and go system has streamlined the overcrowded London public transport system enabling ever faster and more efficient travel. Fast food and food-to-go sections of supermarkets have also adopted the technology to process more transactions in a short time, particularly in busy periods, such as those experienced at London 2012 Olympic sites, billed as the contactless games. In addition, many petrol stations and toll machines are also streamlining their sales process making it easy for consumers to complete their journeys in a timely fashion.

Any technology which can make it easier and more convenient for customers to spend their money on your service, product or business is something to be seriously considered. Industry experts predict that the use of contactless technology is growing enormously, and that this trend is set to continue, especially as wary consumers realise that this secure and reliable method of payment that can save them precious time.

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