Mobile features and benefits, new technologies, and smaller checkout stations encourage interoperability, mobile payments, and mobile marketing. Small-, medium- and large-sized businesses risk falling behind their competitors or becoming marginalized unless they recognize mobile POS trends and respond accordingly.
New technologies will base their operating specifications on the assumption that companies have mobile POS systems in place, and credit card companies – fueling a shift to EMV technologies from traditional magnetic stripes - will increasingly expect merchants to install chip-reading terminals and mobile antifraud and antitheft security systems or assume financial fraud liability for failing to upgrade. Contactless payment systems can read cards from embedded chips without swiping, and some companies, such as Home Depot and Sports Authority, are already researching how to install EMV and mobile payment ready devices.
As pressures mount on merchants for payment acceptance devices with enhanced features and capabilities, consumer expectations around the in-store shopping experience, loyalty and mobile payments continues to rise. Today’s consumers continue to embrace mobile payment processing because eliminates the need to wait in line, allows them to, in some cases, make payments via their smartphone, and potentially offers integrated loyalty and/or discount offers. Merchants see increased revenue opportunity in mobile POS by delivering a significantly enhanced customer purchasing experience and adding new conveniences, offers and value to in-store shopping. And, for some merchants the ability to integrate loyalty rewards and offers also opens up the opportunity to drive repeat business and deliver targeted offers to existing customers.
And, mobile POS offers additional individual and mutual benefits to consumers and merchants, respectively, including:
- Salespeople have the ability to accept payments from consumers anywhere in the store or even remotely, allowing for ultimate flexibility and providing a much more convenient option for consumers.
- Consumers can make payments on mobile POS devices via credit or debit, and, in some cases, their smartphones (digital wallets).
- Merchants and customers benefit from loyalty programs; seamlessly integrated into the payment transaction.
- If mobile POS is robust enough to serve as a merchants sole payment acceptance device, savings of up to 80 percent versus a legacy POS solution may be realized.
Research by Accenture has found that both stores and consumers find increasing value in mobile POS systems that include the following benefits:
- Encourage spur-of-the-moment buying and decrease shopping cart abandonment
- Monitor and control seasonal demand more effectively
- Increase shopping conversions
- Allow customers to get help immediately with questions about features, pricing and purchasing details
The research also shows that merchants can mobilize in stages, navigate paradigm shifts in manageable increments, and learn to target customer segmentation and calibrate marketing efforts in ways that both employees and customers appreciate. Although fixed POS systems will continue to operate, consumers expect to find mobile systems at forward-thinking retailers, making now the time to explore and adopt mobile POS.