Imagine never needing plastic, or even a wallet again because your smartphone is about to replace them. You have it with you at all time anyway, why not use it to buy the things you need?
It’s the beginning of the ‘digital’ age where plastic is outdated and smartphones are in. Why pull out a credit card when you can use your smartphone?
Mobile payments are an innovative way to engage the experience of customers. It increases sales because it improves the flow of invoicing and remittance.
Mobile apps are bringing a world of possibilities to business owners, whether they like it or not. This means that many businesses will need to adapt to find a place in their business for mobile payments, or get left behind.
Innovations from the Commonwealth Bank have given us a glimpse into the future of mobile payments with customers ‘customising’ their point of sale experience. These developments are still in their infant stages but show that, while nothing will change about the customer being the centre of your business, the ways to engage them are moving as fast as technology will allow.
What is NFP (Near Field Communications)?
NFC (Near Field Communications) allows customers to use their phone to pay for things from coffee to office supplies. It exchanges data wirelessly and all you have to do is put your phone near an NFC reader and poof – you’re done.
How, you ask?
In the near future, smartphones will be equipped with NFC – but for now, you can purchase a sticker that attaches to your phone and allows you to purchase from vendors who have receiving devices.
This offers significant advantages for businesses that can curretly only accept cash.
Here are some pros and cons of how this will affect your business.
Advantages of Mobile Payments to businesses
- Accept payments in real time: If you own your own business and are always on the road. Business owners can accept their payments on the spot by using their phone.
- Accept easy payments: There is a high population of smartphone, credit and debit card users in Australia. Integrating them together makes payments more convenient and simple.
- On the go access to accept payments for consumers: Businesses can use their smartphone as a point of sale terminal. For instance, if you have a pop up store in your local markets, merchants now have more options to accept more payments. As a business owner, mobile payment apps also allow you to email the receipt to your customer.
- Track your transactions: While you are on the go you can check transaction you have made in the past with customers. This helps view, track and manage all your payments.
Disadvantages to businesses:
As wonderful and convenient as all of this may sound, there are risks.
- Customers may not be as willing to pay by mobile: Some customers might prefer to pay with cash or other methods and may not trust the mobile payment option. It’s crucial to always have an alternative while the technology is still becoming more and more trusted and common place.
- Security and Privacy: There are always con artists and hackers that inevitably seem to find a way around the most secure sites and devices. So, take extra steps to secure your smartphone and because of the massive information that is held in smartphones now, take special care not to lose your device.
- May require a swiper: Some mobile payment apps require a swiper. If you do not have one, you will not be able to make payments.
Just think outside the box and be open to new ways of doing business.
Establishments in Sydney are already installing smartphone charging stations adjacent to the bar, while e-loyalty coffee cards are pretty much stock-standard in busy cafes. Paypass and PayWave have infiltrated existing payment systems almost seamlessly.
Australians are clearly not shy of giving a new technology a go. How will you embrace mobile payments?