Riding the contactless payments wave


Contactless payments are taking the local business scene by storm. Cash, previously the bread and butter of commerce, is undergoing a rapid revolution. Driven by the need for convenient and socially distant methods of payment, customers are now expecting their most loved local businesses to offer contactless payments.

What exactly are contactless SMS payments?

Instead of a plumber, accountant, lawyer or any other type of local business issuing a PDF or paper invoice via email or post, they can send a contactless payment link, via text, through a platform like Podium.

When an invoice is ready, it is sent as an SMS with a one-click payment link to a customer’s smartphone. Instead of them logging into a website, banking app or, worse still, sharing their card details on the phone, the link enables them to complete transactions quickly with credit, debit, Google Pay or Apple Pay. The entire process is quick, secure and seamless.

Traditional methods of exchanging goods and services for payment are changing and digitising. If your small business wants to improve cashflow and master money, here’s how your business can thrive with the contactless payment wave.

Sense check your current payment system

We’ve all abandoned a purchase if our prefered payment method wasn’t available. Contactless payments can help your local business eliminate this costly issue altogether. By removing unnecessary, arduous or outdated steps from your payment processes you’ll capture the revenue lost from customers who’ve chosen to take their business to a competitor offering pandemic-friendly services.

It’s important when reviewing your payment procedures to take into account practicality and having customer convenience and needs front of mind. Identify any and all time sinks or holes in your current processes. Ultimately, if you spend too much time issuing payments and chasing overdue invoices, you can speed up your cashflow and reduce cost-to-serve through contactless.

Is your hardware and software ready?

To streamline the inclusion of contactless payments, you’ll need the necessary hardware. Most updated Point of Sale systems are compatible, but If it’s been some time since you’ve upgraded your hardware, you’ll most likely need new, but easily accessible, contactless payments hardware and software. You’ll also need to ensure your business line can facilitate text messages.

It’s common for small businesses to go and buy the first integrated terminal they come across, however it’s worth exploring if your merchant services provider offers an add-on reader that easily plugs into your current terminal.

Advertise, advertise, advertise

Most consumers will expect you to accept cash and credit cards as forms of payment and while the need is becoming more apparent, contactless payments aren’t a necessity…yet. When you’re to accept contactless payments, it’s important to advertise it throughout your local business to remind them of this convenient new offering. You can advertise this with signage at your entrance, at the checkout and even incentivise customers with offers and promotions if they use contactless payments. And by doing so, you might just boost your likelihood of attracting new customers from a competitor.

Teach your staff

When you’ve set up your contactless payments ensure your employees understand the process and feel comfortable answering any questions and troubleshooting any technical difficulties that may arise. With the right hardware and software, the training will be minimal and the process as simple as sending an SMS.

Contactless payment methods are a critical tool in the modern local business arsenal. By riding the contactless wave and adopting pandemic-friendly methods of payment, you stand to take advantage of this exciting new chapter in payment processing and most importantly, increase cashflow and customer satisfaction in the process.