Saving time often means saving money or making more money – and Chip and PIN reader solutions can not only process payments securely, the various options for payment terminals which use Chip and PIN reader technology can speed up payment and increase sales volumes.
Chip and PIN Reader Machines – Getting started
In order to use Chip and PIN payment processing for debit and credit card payments, businesses require a merchant account. These are now competitively priced, and it is important to shop around for the best deals, which can include payment processing for under 1% per month or batch payment options on some merchant service accounts.
Your merchant provider will usually have a range of Chip and PIN machines suitable for your business – or it is possible to shop around separately for a merchant account and a Chip and PIN reader machine.
How to save time and money with Chip and PIN
Chip and PIN technology is developing all the time and there are now several options when it comes to choosing a payment terminal which can not only provide a flexible solution to card processing, but can also save SMEs time and money.
The main technologies Chip and PIN reader solutions are:
- Contactless Chip and PIN reader terminals are for sales under £15, above which the payment terminal reverts to a Chip and PIN reader, requiring the customer to type in their pin on the keypad to authorise the sale. Sales under £15 use wave and pay technology – the customer simply holds the card in front of the reader and the transaction takes seconds, saving time and speeding up the number of small transactions your business can accept
- Countertop (fixed) Chip and PIN reader terminals are used when there is a fixed checkout. Counter top payment terminals are now small and compact, meaning that SMEs with limited space for counter services can now deal with a wide range of payments at checkout without compromising space or having to hire extra staff. Chip and PIN readers now process payments within six seconds, meaning a fast turnaround and no customers walking out because they are stuck in a queue at the till
- EPoS Chip and PIN reader terminals provide integrated business solutions and can be linked to other business software such as CRM, HR, credit control stock control and security systems. By integrating all aspects of an SME into one business solution, EPoS (electronic point of sale) does the work of several staff, reducing payroll and recruitment costs, as well as logging and cross referencing data automatically. Training staff becomes easier with data flagging up time efficiency at the till. Issues like payroll, overtime, staff absenteeism, cover and holidays can also be dealt with quickly and effectively with an EPoS system. Security linked to the staff rooms, stock room and changing rooms can also cut down on pilfering or tea breaks which overrun
- Mobile (GPRS) Chip and PIN reader terminals are essential to SOHO (small office/home office) workers, MOTO (mail order/telephone orders), sole traders and SMEs working in the field or in open air environments – such as markets or gardens –,and any business which requires a cheap or flexible Chip and PIN reader solution. The reader uses mobile technology or is connected to a mobile phone using a virtual (hosted) merchant service. Mobile Chip and PIN readers can be charged in a vehicle or using a dock – and most have long life batteries which can process between 200 and 300 transactions per charge, saving time and money
- Portable (Bluetooth) Chip and PIN reader terminals operate within a radius of the main payment terminal or base station and are mainly used for restaurants, bars, clubs and hotels, when payment needs to be taken from a customer seated at a table or away from the main till. Portable Chip and PIN card readers are usually designed for a wide range of environments, with backlit screens and keypads for poor lighting conditions. Payments can be processed within 6 seconds – mobile and portable payment terminals also record each transaction automatically, meaning less paperwork and accounts staff
- Touchscreen Chip and PIN reader terminals are configured with pre-programmed icons, speeding up payment and cutting down on mistakes at the till. Touchscreen technology is common in retail businesses, especially restaurants and cafes where there is a fast turnaround of customers and items may need to be altered according to changes in stock or menus.
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