The payments landscape has evolved to the point of doing away with signature requirements. Fraud capabilities have been limited due to the EMV migration that started back in October of 2015. This is great news for merchants and consumers, as it proves that EMV is a safer payment alternative. Beyond merchants and consumers, this is great news for value-added resellers who can position this information to sell more EMV compliant point-of-sale systems.
All Card Brands on Board
As of January, Visa joined the ranks of the other three major credit card companies in getting rid of the signature requirement on credit card purchases in the United States. The change will be in effect for both chip-and-signature credit and debit cards, and contactless payment solutions such as Apple Pay where a Visa credit and debit card are linked. With ongoing migration to EMV, increased security and convenience are being brought straight to the point of sale, meaning a signature is no longer necessary.
Visa is the last of the four major credit card companies to do away with the signature requirement, though the concept is not so foreign to them. This has been in the works for Visa since 2011, when they detailed their future plans for EMV in the United States. Since then, Visa has deployed over 460 million EMV chip cards and chip card compatible readers at more than 2.5 locations.
Here is a quick recap of the statements from the card networks by creditcards.com:
• Mastercard, which announced in October that it would make signatures optional in April, says more than 80 percent of the in-store transactions (also known as point-of-sale purchases) it processes now don’t need a signature.
• Discover said on December 6, that it, too, would abandon the signature requirement. “With the rise in new payment security capabilities, like chip technology and tokenization, the time is right to remove this step from the checkout experience,” Discover’s Jasma Ghai, vice president of global products innovation, says.
• American Express announced December 11, that it will drop the signature requirement globally in April.
• Visa said in a blog post January 12, that it will make “the signature requirement optional for all EMV contact or contactless chip-enabled merchants in North America, beginning April 2018.”
More Secure Transactions
According to a news release from this past December, in the two years since the EMV transition, fraud at the physical point of sale is down by 66 percent. This has been mostly attributed to the deployment of EMV-ready technology at the in-store POS and from the deployment of EMV chip cards. EMV chip technology provides layers of protection and encryption that has proven to stop more fraud than prior payment forms of the past.
In terms of security, consumers are still afforded the same protections as they were even with the signature requirement. The banks or credit card issuers can still be contacted to dispute charges or report fraud. Robert Harrow, a Credit Card Analyst for ValuePenguin doubts most people even notice the signature now, “No one ever really looks at those signatures for fraud’s sake. I’ve been signing my receipts at restaurants with a smiley face to see if anyone would say anything. And neither my bank and anyone else said, ‘hey, is this really your signature?’ So, that goes to show how little this was doing for people.”
How consumers will react is still up for debate. Though most people scribble their signature on a receipt past the point of legibility, it is uncertain how they will feel about not being required to sign. Visa hopes to increase convenience for consumers with this announcement by eliminating long lines due to lengthy payment checkouts. With small purchases, this measure will probably be positively received. However, it is difficult to say how consumers will react to that with larger purchases, especially since signing a receipt tends to be more ritualistic now.
Increases in Shifts to EMV
One thing seems for certain – the lack of signature requirement should hopefully boost transitions to EMV point of sale devices for merchants. The announcement claims that they are only doing away with this requirement for those merchants who have updated to EMV or completely contactless payments. Those stores that have yet to upgrade will still need signatures. Additionally, this is only optional for retailers. As the optional signature requirement becomes more widely accepted and adopted by consumers, merchants will feel even more pressure to update their POS system.
This is where resellers come into play. Resellers should position this information to not only educate merchants but to also move them towards upgrading to EMV if they haven’t already. The key to the EMV transition when it first started years ago was education. The same goes for dropping the signature.
Preparing merchants for this transition should be a top priority for resellers. Merchants tend to be suspicious of new technological changes in the payments industry, so it is up to the resellers to make that transition as smooth as possible.
This article originally appeared here.
Generally small businesses love doing business in cash, but that doesn’t take away the need for credit card processing to utilize the full potential of their business. You cannot neglect the fact that today a large number of consumers rely on credit and debit cards to make their purchases and pay for services.
Being a small business, credit card processing is important for you but not at the cost of emptying your wallet. If not chosen wisely, credit card processing will require you to pay for a lot fees. A small business already faces a lot of challenges in a competitive market that leaves hardly any scope for paying huge sums of credit card processing fees on a yearly basis. This is why it is highly imperative that you find an efficient credit card processing company that matches all the specifications of your small business with customized solutions. There is no need to be stuck with your current credit card processing services if they are putting a hole in your pocket with high yearly processing fees.
FEATURES OF A GOOD CREDIT CARD PROCESSING COMPANY FOR SMALL BUSINESS OWNERS –
• Easy processing – A credit card processing deal that promises easy processing with customized solutions is always a good idea as it is something that can work well for your small business.
• Reasonable prices – Low processing cost is another factor that you need to consider while making the deal for your company’s credit card processing. Some credit card processing companies also offer a Cash Discount Program (helping you eliminate up to 100% of your processing fees), which also something that you can choose from.
• Flexible terms – If you have got your hands on a flexible credit card processing deal that does not require making any long term contracts, you are on the right track.
• Customer service – A good credit card company will always be one with an exceptional customer service. After all, everyone needs a customer service that values your business.
Irrespective of your industry type, a good credit card processing company will offer you the most suitable solutions for your small business. Joining hands with an efficient credit card processing service will eventually help you grow your small business amidst all the competition. If you are looking for a solid partner for your small business, make sure you do your research!
What is a Cash Discount?
A cash discount is when the merchant provides a discount when the consumer pays with cash. A non-cash price adjustment is passed through to the customer on all card transactions.
Cash discount programs have been available for years to higher education, municipals, gas stations and utility providers, but only recently have independent business owners began to use the same programs.
This program enables merchants to charge a customer service fee to their customers and thereby eliminate their processing fees. This is not a surcharge program, nor convenience fee.
Here is how it works: The merchant will post a sign in their store notifying customers that there is a 4% customer service fee applied to all store sales.
However, if the customer pays by cash, they will receive a 4% cash discount which will eliminate the 4% service fee. For the sake of clarity, if the customer makes a purchase for $100 and they pay by cash, then the total cost will be $100. However, if they pay by any other form of payment, such as the credit card, then the total cost will be $104. This is done automatically and there is absolutely no calculation required on the merchants part.
When we created VizyPay, our goal was to create a company that is fully transparent and without any hidden agenda. Of course, we want to make a living but won’t allow the power and authority we have to price our clients outweigh doing it the right way and still being able to make a profit. Creating a payments world that competes within margins that are fair to all business owners not just some.
As we begin this journey, we know we are on the right track of making a big difference in the payments world. From years of watching sales reps and companies take advantage of small business owners, we know there must be a change. It may be against the industry norm the way we are doing it, but we truly don’t care. There needs to be a disruption, or the ways of our business will continue to eat away the much-earned profits from small business owners.
The enormous amount of money that small businesses must pay towards interchange and dues and assessments is bad enough. Not to mention the outrageous monthly, and annual fees companies charge. Oh, but wait, there is more! The high mark ups along with bait and switch tactics that our industry is known for, but nobody does anything about.
Hence the reason we cap our sales partners on what they can charge, not only on equipment but on pricing the merchant account itself. Forcing surrounding competitors to compete within our bubble not the uncapped current bubbles that are currently out there.
Change is coming…. “Simple Pricing. Simple Decisions.”
You as the business owner should know this!
In the ever changing payments industry (especially for small to mid sized businesses), the need for full disclosure and transparency is a must. The lack there of within the payments business is hurting small businesses across America.
We will always do our best to show you the true colors of the payments world, while always providing you with fullest amount of transparency possible. Your success is truly ours. Check this video out to better help you understand how things really work, and how we can assist. Thanks!