It may seem like a stretch to compare payment processing to a symphony. But the fact is both require a number of distinctly separate components to work together in harmony. While a well-rehearsed musical composition is pleasing to the ear, the right mix of payment processing technology is pleasing to merchants and customers who want faster, easier transactions.
Payment processing technology should help simplify and streamline your business operations—not add complexity to them. Just as different instruments come together in expression of a musical piece, payment processing systems work together to help create business harmony, simplifying your life and the day-to-day job tasks of your staff. Read on to learn some ways that your payment processor can help you pair appropriate technologies to improve your business practices and efficiencies.
Integrated card readers
Like symphonies, payment processing solutions are continuously evolving and impacted by technology innovations. Composers today have access to instruments that create new sounds (consider the theremin, an unusual electronic instrument played without touching), and merchants have access to new technology designed to simplify commerce (such as contactless mobile payments). Gone are the days when businesses needed multiple systems to ring up sales and swipe card payments. Instead, today you can implement a POS system that accepts magnetic stripe and EMV chip cards—and mobile payments—without having to set up an extra piece of equipment. Not only will your setup time be greatly reduced, card readers that are integrated with the POS terminal will save you valuable counter space and make it much easier to take your payment systems on-the-go.
Robust reporting and analytics
Composers years ago had to painstakingly handwrite their compositions, but today’s musicians have access to many types of notation software. In a similar fashion, merchants no longer have to manually track sales–a cumbersome and error-prone process. Today’s merchants have access to technology that makes this task much easier and more streamlined.
Each time you process a customer’s transaction, important data is gathered, transmitted and stored. Your payment processor should be aggregating and providing this data to you in the form of reporting and analytics, so you can use it to better understand and grow your business. Because this information should be automatically compiled each time you process a customer’s payment information, accessing and using this data shouldn’t add more complexity to your workflows.
Here’s how using a reporting and analytics application that is integrated with your payments processing can help improve your business:
- Identify trends. Easily understand what your most popular products and services are so you can maintain inventory.
- Improve staffing. Quickly view your busiest days and times so you can schedule staff appropriately.
- Correct payment problems. View frequent denial codes or other transaction issues so you can correct these problems and improve your authorization rate.
- Ramp up your marketing. Use customer demographic data gathered during payment processing to inform your next marketing campaign and capture new customers.
Simplified accounting and payroll
One of the biggest headaches for small businesses can be reconciling your payment processing activity between your POS system and your accounting software, such as QuickBooks. Choose a payment processor that enables you to create a smooth link between these systems, greatly reducing your time spent on back-office tasks as well as reducing the likelihood for human error involved in such manual reconciliation. What’s more, you can select a POS system that allows your employees to easily clock in and out for their shifts right on the same touchscreen that rings up sales. Not only does this eliminate another piece of dedicated equipment you’d like for this function, doing so also saves your staff members the time of logging into multiple applications when they arrive at work.
As with musical tastes, preferences for payment processing solutions vary, and there’s something for everyone. Work with your payment processor to find out about even more ways payment processing can help simplify your business operations, to free up your time to better serve your customers and create new, innovative products and services.