Star Spotlight with Shift4

Shift4 blog

What does Shift4 do?

Shift4, the first card-present payment gateway and the largest independent payment gateway in North America, is now launching their mobile point of sale system. Shift4 decided to take a different appraoch in building their mPOS solution and wanted to put a focus on the enterprise market. Shift4 offers specific solutions to hospitality, retail, food and beverage, eCommerce, and most other industries which are scalable from a single store to an international enterprise with franchise and company-owned locations.

How is Shift4 working with Star Micronics?

Shift4 is a software-as-a-service provider that was seeking the perfect hardware to compliment their solution. They decided to go with Star Micronics base on their reliable and advanced printer models. Shift4 has integrated throughout Star’s entire line of point of sale peripherals including desktop thermal and impact printers, portable printers, and the all-in-one mPOP™ peripheral. Shift4 currently supports Star Micronics’ SM-S220i, SM-S230i, and SM-T300i portable printers, the TSP650II BTi and WebPRNT thermal printer, the SP700 impact kitchen printer, and the mPOP™.

What key benefits does the mPOP™ bring to Shift4 customers?

Shift4 values customer communication and keeps in close contact to make sure that all of their customers are satisfied with their solution. The mPOP offers a compact solution that can work with any mobile device. Having the printer and cash drawer combined into one peripheral is a huge benefit in the mPOS space, and it is simple to operate.

“In mobile point of sale, it’s important to have a solution that is versatile and doesn’t take up a lot of space. The mPOP combines the cash drawer and receipt printer into one compact form factor that it perfect for mPOS needs.” – Jeremy Fried, System Architect at Shift4.

 

Disruptive Technology and Its Influence on the Receipt

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It wasn’t that long ago that shopping was a single-channel experience. If a customer needed something, they purchased the item at the store, checked out at the register and took their receipt at the end of the transaction. However, disruptive technology like mobile commerce has opened new channels that have transformed the entire retail experience.

Mobility and the Modern Shopper

Mobile commerce is expected to hit an all-time high in 2017, according to the retail analysts at eMarketer.com. The website estimates that this year, more than 95 million Americans will make at least one purchase on a smartphone and an even higher number – 165 million people – will use their smartphones to research and compare products. Retailers have been working to adapt to shopper’s new preferences by optimizing their websites for mobile, introducing new store apps, and offering cross-channel purchasing options.

Although the competition from online-only retailers is fierce, big data has helped brick-and-mortar retailers learn more about their customers’ habits and preferences. Online shopping is highly personalized, so physical retail stores are working to provide a similar experience by gathering information about their customers via social media, traffic counts, and loyalty engagement, but big data has helped them to better predict trends, develop targeted marketing campaigns, engage customers across channels and generate a higher level of customer loyalty.

Mobile Commerce’s Impact on the Receipt

Disruptive technology like mobile payment platforms will continue to emerge and gain popularity and the number of purchases made using smartphones will soar. These innovations have transformed the way we shop and pay for purchases, but it’s also had an enormous impact on another staple of a payment transaction: the receipt.

Many retailers require receipts for returns and exchanges, but disruptive technology has changed the way we think about receipts – how they are printed and issues and what information they include. A customer who opts for the mobile checkout to avoid waiting in line still expects to be given a receipt, and Star Micronics’ printing and receipt apps along with wireless printers make this possible.

The SM-T300i, for example, is a popular wireless printer with an ultra-rugged design, perfect for busy restaurants or retailers and other harsh work environments. Printing is possible via practically every mobile device using Star’s newest app PassPRNT, which enables printing from an iPad®, iPhone®, iPod touch®, or Android™ device. Star’s cloudPRNT, is an innovative technology enabling users to print to Star printers directly through a cloud service.

Although it’s easy to lose track of paper receipts – whether they are crumpled on the floor of the car or shoved into a pocket, electronic receipts are easy to organize and access later. Star Micronics’ AllReceipts™ is a free, cloud-based digital receipt application that allows users to store and manage receipts on their mobile device. Customers just have to scan the QR code at the bottom of the receipt using the app.

Disruptive technology like mobile payments and big data have changed the way people shop as brick-and-mortar retailers work to compete with the highly-customized experience that online-only retailers can provide. Receipts are still expected with every purchase, so this technology has been forced to evolve as shoppers prefer mobile checkout and paying with their smartphones. Star Micronics offers an arsenal of options for retailers seeking wireless solutions for receipt printing, so customers can receive their receipts and organize them the way they are most comfortable.

Technology Shifts & Consumer Trends in Front of 2017

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Amazon Go and the Post Checkout Era Begins

New broke out detailing Amazon’s latest innovate in retail, Amazon Go beta, which opens to the public in 2017. Amazon has built a grocery store equipped with machine learning technology, similar to that in self-driving cars, and is testing out a post checkout, post line waiting era in retail. Here’s the cool Amazon Go video for your enjoyment. Companies like ShelfX and a Swedish entrepreneur have also attempted unmanned grocery stops (before it was cool).

Why is there so much hype surrounding it? Consumers are in and out of the store thanks to Amazon’s “Just Walk Out Shopping” experience. Families and individuals can go into the store, see something on the shelf, and walk out with it while never speaking to an employee (it’s called technology, not shoplifting?).

This means POS users need to start thinking ahead of the curve and preparing themselves for yet another technological advancement. Granted, since the program is in beta, that doesn’t mean things are going to change overnight, but now is a good time to start brainstorming changes so the impact of a new status quo is less severe.

Amazon-Go-TA

This new shopping experience requires customers to have an Amazon account, a supported smartphone, and the Amazon Go app installed to shop freely. The outside orange square logo display Amazon and Go in large letters, and on the inside there are four bottom menus that users can press “key”, “receipts”, “about”, and “more”.

I speculate they might release for both Android and iOS. Users can enter the store by tapping on “key” and scanning the QR code that appears on screen to pass through a subway-like terminal. That process than activates the shopper’s virtual cart and customers can begin taking goods. Amazon Go automatically updates the user’s inventory in the app when products are detected taken from our returned to the shelves. Customers don’t need to scan out and when they pass back through the terminal, the app sens a mobile notification alerting that a payment was processed, and a digital receipt is then sent to their device.

NFC Contactless Payments lead the change into the Post Checkout Era

Snapchat Spectacles and the Engaging Brick and Mortar Space

Snapchat, known as Snap, Inc., released a camera equipped pair of sunglasses called Spectacles that might seem familiar to those who bought Google Glass. TechCrunch reports Spectacles allow users to record video tidbits in a socially accepted style. On November 21st 2016, a pop up shop appeared overnight in New York City where app users and curios consumers initially waited as long as three hours in wintery weather to get their hands on a pair. Inside the brick and mortar store was a single vending machine (SnapBot), where customers choose up to two out of three sunglasses, selling for $129.99 each. I was in the city visiting some friends and decided to snag a pair for myself. While I anxiously waited in line, there were a few thing that I noticed about the store. Snap Inc engaged their users and holiday customers by providing exclusive content. Unique snap codes were placed throughout the queue and shoppers in line were able to entertain themselves by scanning them. The staff was equally as engaging by educating their new product users in-store with personalized customer service.

Showrooming Pains and Frustrations

Retailers will continue to struggle against online sales due to a developing showroom trend that is likely to move forward into the new year. Consumers visiting in-store locations are purchasing goods online later at their own convenience after studying the product in-store. I’ve seen people walk into a store, snapping a quick photo and leaving without a purchase. This can be increasingly difficult for retailers and small business owners to keep a healthy relationship with customers while fighting for their attention. At first glance it might seem as though showrooming is becoming a nuisance, but some retailers are using this as an opportunity to innovate. Small businesses can utilize new technology available to study their target market, improve the ecommerce experience, as well as integrating a seamless purchasing system between online and physical

Personalization and Exclusivity

In a retail world where department stores once ruled the market, small unique ships are are able to provide value, unique in-store experiences, and cultivate relationships with their customers, are embracing the momentum shift. Therefore, offering a unique and personalized shopping experience is vital for customer retention, on-site sales, and business growth. The goal is to add a hint of intimacy and customer care, rather than entertaining customers (depending on your objective and brand).

Rob Hom

Marketing Intern

 

Growing Restaurant Revenue with Mobile POS

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Mobility is dominating the point of sale world. From table-side service, to tablet point of sale, mobility is making is easier for restaurant owners and operators to perform quick and painless transactions and give their customers the ideal dining-out experience. While some of the smaller, “mom and pop” restaurants may be hesitant to invest in a mobile point of sale (mPOS) system, they could be missing out on a huge boost in revenue by not upgrading. In addition to revenue increase, the adoption of an mPOS system could also mean an increase in tips for servers, making it easier to maintain low turnover rates.

A report by Software Advice shows that mPOS can predominantly impact your servers’ commitment to upselling – therefore, increasing daily restaurant revenue. Upselling is a sales technique that restaurant server often use to induce the customer to purchase more expensive items, upgrades, or add-ons when placing their order. This technique is commonly used by restaurant server because their calculated tip becomes higher with every dollar spent by the customer.

How does mPOS impact upselling?

In restaurant settings where the mPOS system is used for table-side service, the server may have a tablet in-hand entering the order as it is being placed. This can help remind the server to ask the customer if they would like to add a side of fries to their order or upgrade their drink to a larger size for only a dollar more. This is especially helpful for daily promotions or one-day offers that are not a part of the server’s regular order-taking routine.

restaurant mPOS charts

In the chart above provided by Software Advice, you can see that restaurants are not upselling as much as they could be. However, we can see that the majority of customers surveyed are more likely to make an order modification that was suggest by their server when dining out.

The Mobile POS Checklist

In case revenue increase isn’t reason enough to adopt a mobile point of sale system, we’ve outlined some additional benefits that mPOS can bring to restaurant businesses. According to an additional report done by Software Advice, 72% of restaurant owners request mobile restaurant POS software.

First and foremost, you need an mPOS system that is simple enough for any server to fluently use. If you’re looking for a mobile solution that will allow for a table-side service, you must ensure that your mPOS software is quick and easy-to-use. If your servers are disrupting the order process by taking the time to search for items in the POS, it defeats the purpose of the table-side mPOS solution.

Secondly, you will need a receipt printer that works seamlessly with your mPOS solution and will allow for a total transaction to be completed right at the table. It has been bound that engaging customers by having them complete the payment process right on the tablet can actually lead to an increase in tips. When this transaction is complete, servers equipped with portable, handheld receipt printers can kindly print and hand the customer their receipt without ever disrupting the transaction process.

In addition to the ease of use and fluid transaction process, mPOS systems often offer features such as inventory management, loyalty, and customer data capture, that help you run your restaurant more efficiently.

If you’re looking for an mPOS solution to take your restaurant business to the next level, be sure to check out Star’s line of portable receipt printers for your mobile point of sale needs.

Star Spotlight with Appetize

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What does Appetize do?

Appetize is a modern enterprise point of sale platform that is specific for sports and entertainment, education, and professional industries. Designed from the bottom up with multi-site and multi-business units in mind, Appetize is deployed in over 15,000 business units with the most complex setups. Offered with a full site of features, Appetize offers a simple solution for mobile ordering and accepts payment methods of cash, credit, EMV, NFC, Apple Pay, RFID, Bluetooth, and many more.

How is Appetize working with Star Micronics?

Appetize works with Star Micronics’ printer peripherals including the TSP650IIBTi desktop receipt printer and the SM-S230i portable receipt printer. Appetize has Star printers in nearly all of their enterprise locations. To name a few, Appetize and Star provide POS solutions for the Golden 1 Center (home of the Sacramento Kings), U.S. Bank Stadium (home of the Minnesota Vikings), over 40 Live Nation properties, and many more.

How has Appetize teamed up with Star and Elo?

Appetize is also bundling their point of sale solution and Star peripherals with the Elo I-Series. This bundle appears mostly in bar, concession, and restaurant environments where hardwired functionality is needed.

The Appetize, Star, and Elo bundle provides a simple, fully integrated POS that includes a touch screen monitor for Android. This solution, with the I-Series flip-stand, can transform into a fully functional self-service kiosk, or used as a traditional point of sale system.

“We work with Star because it combines the best of modern and enterprise on the hardware side,” says Kevin Anderson, Chief Strategy Officer at Appetize. “When it comes to printers and the types of environments that Appetize is typically in, which is high pressure and high volume, we need a hardware that is reliable”

3 Critical Payment Trends to Watch This Year

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The past few years have brought rapid evolution and change to the payments industry, with the same growth expected in 2017. Retailers must remain aware of these developments to properly compete with other operations in their vertical market. Here is a close look at three critical payment trends that will prevail this year.

Mobile Wallet Growth

Statistics make a strong case for including increased momentum for mobile wallets on the list of significant payment trends to watch in 2017. This is especially true of mobile wallets that incorporate near field communication (NFC) technology.

  • According to a report by research firm Research and Markets, the global mobile wallet market will experience a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 35.5% between 2017 and 2021.
  • Technavio, another research firm, has predicted a similar CAGR (more than 35%) for mobile wallets through 2021.
  • A Capital One Wallet Survey conducted by Capital One late last year shows that nearly one-quarter (24%) of U.S. consumers use mobile wallets in some capacity.
  • More proof that the use of mobile wallet technology among consumers is trending up: Of 24% of Capital One survey respondents who claimed to utilize mobile wallet technology, more than 63% have been doing so for less than a year. This demonstrates rapid adoption and use of the technology in 2016, according to Capital One, with a similar pattern expected throughout 2017.

Ongoing technological advanced in NFC devices and heightened security of payment portals rank among catalysts for the consistent growth of mobile payments and its high rank among key payment trends, according to Research and Markets and Technavio. Mobile wallet options such as integration with coupons and tickets are fueling the fire as well.

Payment Security Push

With perpetrators’ attempts as and methods for transaction fraud growing more sophisticated, increased and varied attempts to shore up payment security is one of the hottest payment trends. There is now a major move among U.S. merchants to migrate to point of sale (POS) equipment that accommodates microprocessor chip-enabled credit and debit cars (“chip cards”) under the umbrella of the Europay/Mastercard/Visa (EMV) liability shift that took effect in October of 2015.

  • The Payments Security Task Force, a consortium of payment networks, backs, credit unions, acquirers, retailers, POS device manufacturers, and industry trade groups, estimates that the shift to EMV will “reach 98%” by the end of this year.
  • According to Mastercard, 9 in 10 Americans now user chips cards, a 38 point year-over-year increase from 49% in 2015 to 87% in 2016. Payment trends cited in a recent Mastercard report includes additional increased in chip card usage in 2017.

More mPOS

Mobile point of sale (mPOS) and tablet POS devices are becoming a staple as merchants adopt mobile technology to assist with line-busting and speeding up transactions during peak traffic periods. What’s more, with innovations like Star Micronics’ new mPOP™ accessories, tablet POS devices can be used as a cost effective, fully functioning point of sale system. This versatility makes mPOS a hot ticket item in 2017.

  • According to a study conducted by Boston Retail Partners, almost half (49%) of retailers are using mobile solutions for sales staff. That’s up from less than a third (31%) from last year.

Payment trends other than those discussed here may also take hold in 2017. However, the rise of mobile wallets and mPOS, coupled with a greater emphasis on payment security, merit special attention in the coming months.

Learn more about the mPOP™, Mobile Point of Purchase, here.

The Rise of Experiential, Discount, and Specialty Retail

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In 2016, we have seen major shifts in the retail industry and consumer buying patterns. We’ve seen the largest Internet-based retailer in the world (Amazon) open brick-and-mortar stores, and we have seen “big-box” retailers closing stores. Clark has named just a few:

  • Macy’s plans to close about 15% of its locations amid challenging retail environment.
  • According to the Dallas Morning News, JCPenny CEO Marvin Ellison said the department store chain plans to close some of its roughly 1,000 stores soon.
  • CVS, America’s leading retail pharmacy, plans to close 70 stores early this year.
  • Mall-based retailer, The Limited, closed all of its nearly 250 stores across the country on January 8, but will continue to have an online presence.

Shift in Consumer Buying Patterns

With the closing of many department stores and “big-box” retail stores, we see that discount retailers such as T.J. Maxx, Marshalls, and Ross are thriving. Consumers are now realizing that many of the products or goods that they typically shop for in department stores can be found for a cheaper price either online or in discount stores. This shift is being largely influenced by the millennial generation. For retailers who do not fall into the “discount retailer” category, the key to competing is improved store data. This means creating a way to better track customer data in order to provide unique and authentic shopping experiences for each customer.

The Millennial Consumerscan_shop_featured

According to Forbes, there are eighty million millennials in America alone, and they represent about a fourth of the entire population, with $200 billion in annual buying power. This means that the buying patterns of millennials are having a direct impact on the retail industry and brick and mortar stores.

While millennials are commonly targeted as the “self-entitled” and “lazy” generation, it has been found that they are extremely price sensitive. Meaning, millennials will take the time to search for more affordable options (usually online or by using their smartphone) before making a purchase. Based on a survey performed by Accenture, 41% of respondents said they have practiced “showrooming” – the act of examining merchandise at a nearby retail store and then shopping for it online to find the lowest price.

It’s no question that the millennial generation is very unique. Retailers have struggled to understand the buying patterns and the interests of this generation for quite some time now. Unlike the Baby Boomer or Gen X generations, millennials tend to be less influenced by advertising and promotional content, and care more about the authenticity of a brand. Millennials best connect with people over logos. The fact that millennials are less likely to go for the “brand name” over a cheaper option, is largely impacting the way retailers must market themselves and their brand. The recent closing of Macy’s and JCPenny stores speaks volumes when compared to the popularity these stores held with previous generations.

Specialty Retail Steps Up

Specialty retailers are businesses that focus on specific product categories. It isn’t the product they sell that determines if a company is a specialty store, but rather the breadth of their product offering.

As we see more and more large retail stores closing, we see specialty retail continue to thrive. Brick and mortar retail is becoming less about shopping and more about the customer experience. With the rise of retail technology such as IoT, virtual reality and augmented reality in retail, consumers are entering brick and mortar stores with the expectation that they will walk away with more than just their purchase, but with a valuable and unique shopping experience.

With the generation that values experiences over items now holding such high buying power, retailers have to make an adjustment to their previous selling strategy. Retailers are beginning to take advantage of IoT and artificial intelligence to create a more personalized shopping experience. Specialty retail is thriving because it has been much easier for SMB and specialty retailers to create these personalized experiences, because they are more likely to have repeat customers, making it possible to establish a certain level of customer loyalty. “Big-box” retail stores have a more difficult time creating a unique customer experience, simply because their audience is too large, and too diverse to maintain a valuable relationship with the customer.

For retailers to survive in this age of discount and digital shopping, it is essential that retailers do not just sell goods, but that they sell an experience.

Electronic NFC Payments Continually Increase in Popularity

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Who is using it?

Millennials are embracing the use of their phones and mobile near field communication (NFC) technology at the checkout lane. Now is the time for small business owners to accept that reality and harvest the benefits by adapting their point of sale system.

Picture this. A consumer is in a hurry to grab a quick bite to eat on their way to a meeting. While driving through town, the consumer sees a local restaurant and decides it would be a good place to pick up lunch. Getting back on the road with as little time disruption as possible is important. After a quick meal prepared by the merchant, the consumer soon realizes he left his wallet in the car, but notices that the restaurant accepts mobile payments. Without hesitating, the consumer pulls out his phone at the point of sale and uses it to pay for his meal. After a speedy meal and transaction, both the merchant and consumer are happy with the exchange.

Consumers and shoppers are always looking for the smallest queue. NFC technology effectively cuts back the wait time since people with smaller purchases can complete their purchase faster. There’s no more waiting a half an hour just to buy a single item. Thankfully, there’s also no more searching through purses (or man purses because… it’s 2016) for oversized wallets filled with tons of credit cards or cash. With the advent of technologies like Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, Google Pay, and Android Pay, wallets are succumbing to the Internet of Thing (IoT), a past time that consumers are likely not to miss.

Where are they being used?

contactless-lead-1355413251According to a Business Insider article, there are approximately 2.5 million point of sale systems equipped with NFC readers that are being used in the United States alone and Apple Pay is looking at a lot of growth. Mobile payment systems are being used in local retail stores, restaurants, for public transportation, and inside convenience stores when consumers are making a quick or small purchase. As long as the point of sale hardware or credit card reader displays an NFC logo, that means Apple Pay and other mobile payments are compatible at that retail location.

 

Barclays is now leading the finance industry with newly announced ATMs. The new machines offer cardholders contactless access to their accounts via mobile key points at the ATM, according to multiple news sources. These new machines utilize the same kind of near field communication technology, and prompts user authorization to allow the debit card stored on their device to be used for banking.

Why are they using it?

In 2014, PayPal disrupted the payments industry where users could pay across platforms with a single touch, without the hassle of entering usernames and passwords. A year earlier, companies like Venmo began the downplay of entering credit card numbers on small screens. Innovative technology continually changes our world, and millennials are adapting by using these services to help create a smooth initial transaction at checkout. PayPal and Venmo revolutionized the way younger consumers interact with their finances, and larger tech companies notice the switch in consumer behavior and react by scaling use of mobile payments.

In addition to the mobile payment phenomenon, millennials are now using more coupons than previous generations and they are accessing these on their mobile device. Imagine allowing customers to not only use their phone for coupons at the point of sale, but for payment as well. The two go hand-and-hand because with every mobile payment, there is an opportunity for the merchant to access the customer digital world by offering digital receipts and coupons, ultimately driving more return customers.

Small businesses can believe in the post-cash payment era because it all comes down to speed, ease, and simplicity. Using a phone to pay for goods provides a better solution for consumers who don’t like to carry cash or consistently forget their wallet, and it provides a faster and easier workflow for the retailer who wants to keep their lines moving.

Learn more about Star’s digital receipts and coupon solutions at www.starcloudservices.com.

Rob Hom

Marketing Intern

POS Industry Updates and Trends of 2016

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We are now in the middle of the POS industry redefinition. 2016 and 2017 will be very interesting years where we will see major players rising and others disappearing in the industry.

In the last few years, mPOS solutions have proven that tablet devices are a reliable hardware solution for many retailers, and that the cloud is a reliable solution to provide instant information on not only one, but multiple retail locations. The POS of the 21st century was born, and is continuing to grow quickly.

What we see now is a strong demand for small, and easy to deploy POS solutions. Since most of the POS solutions now provide a cloud solution, the need for heavy store hardware has decreased significantly, and many POS providers are rethinking their hardware offering.

For many restaurants and retail stores, a simple tablet, cash drawer, and receipt printer is all that is needed . And don’t forget your payment device!   The payment device has actually become one of the most important devices at the POS.  It is the device that has the capability to enable Apple Pay, Android Pay, Samsung Pay, and most importantly, EMV enabled payment.

The October EMV deadline came and passed. It did not motivate many SMB retailers to change their POS. The way we, as consumers want to purchase a product is what will make the retailers want to upgrade their point of sale system.

Retailers and restaurateurs alike are looking to increase their revenue by offering purchase options both in-store and online. While online shopping has been around for quite some time, restaurants and food service are also beginning to adopt the idea of online ordering by allowing customers to order pick-up or delivery right from their smart phones.

Leading the transition to this new world, Star Micronics’s hardware and software solutions represent new opportunities for technology providers. Adopting Star Micronics peripheral suite of mobile or desktop printers with Star Micronics cash drawers,  or just embracing the world of all-in-one with the mPOP™, (cash drawer, printer, scanner and tablet stand in one, easy to ship package) helps to answer the requirement for smaller POS solution.

Technology like CloudPRNT allows restaurateurs to receive orders from online ordering services without the need to have the printer connected to any other device or service inside the store. CloudPRNT will work with the online service to store jobs, create jobs, and communicate with the printer directly through the cloud.

cloudprnt

In addition to leading the way to a better shopping or eating experience, Star is improving the way we manage our purchase receipts. Last year Star released the first true digital receipt solution, AllReceipts™, where shoppers can now decide for themselves if they want to keep their paper receipt or save and store them on their mobile device. Now, Star is offering retailers the capability to communicate electronically with their customers to promote their latest products.

The face of retail will continue to change rapidly and Star will always be there to lead and innovate for you and keep your business successful.

Cash, Card, or Phone?

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Our phones have already replaced our cameras, our iPods (or MP3s), and our computers. Now, they are beginning to replace our wallets. We are seeing more and more consumers reaching for their mobile phone at the point of sale instead of their wallet. It’s no surprise that this recent adoption of mobile payments is going to majorly change the way people shop.

The number one thing driving consumers toward mobile pay options and mobile wallets is simply the convenience of the payment. 45% of millennials said that they would be willing to connect their payment info to a wearable device in order to make fast, hassle-free payments, according to Adweek. If there is one thing that consumers today love, it’s for their shopping experience to be as quick and painless as possible. We know this because consumers, especially the millennial generation, prefers their shopping experience to be online. Seriously, what’s better than doing all your shopping from the comfort of your own living room? But, we are finding that brick and mortar stores are making a comeback.

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According to TimeTrade research, 85% of consumers say they prefer to shop in physical stores. However, there is still a convenience in the shopping experience that consumers are looking for. This comes at the point of sale.

Giving customers the option of their preferred payment method is important, because it can make or break the entire shopping experience. How many times have you had your credit card out and ready to pay only to hear “sorry, cash only”? According to Business Insider, about 45% of millennials (ages 18-34) have made an NFC payment, and 35% of adults 35 or older have done so. When a retailer cannot accept the customer’s preferred payment method, the entire shopping experience becomes frustrating and inconvenient for the shopper. We must accept that we are now moving toward an age where shoppers will be standing at the point of sale with their mobile device out and ready to pay.

It’s now the responsibility of the point of sale industry to make these mobile payments possible and easy to implement for SMB retailers.

From a point of sale standpoint, we already see ISVs (Independent Software Vendors) working to make their POS applications compatible with mobile payments. Some, such as Square, have even developed their own customized payment terminals to accept any type of mobile payment along with chip-enabled credit cards. By moving toward mobile payments as the norm, we are left wondering what that means for the future of point of sale.

This could easily lead to a greater move toward digital receipts. When retailers are implementing mobile payment options, it is important for them to keep in mind the idea of the mobile wallet not just for payment, but for the digital receipt as well. While many mobile payment platforms offer digital receipt options, if retailers want to use those digital receipts as an opportunity to engage with their customers, going with an outside digital receipt provider might be the best option.

The bottom line is that cash and card payments will never fully disappear. As the adoption of mobile payments continues to grow, we will find a growing demand for more brick and mortar retailers to accept these type of payments.

Learn more about Star Cloud Services digital receipt solutions at www.starcloudservices.com.