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Going Cashless

You may have seen one recently—something unthinkable just 5 years ago, but in our current payment age—in the realms of normalcy: the cashless store. Big corporate chains (who had locations to experiment with) were some of the first to give it a try. It’s less of a shock now, and even smaller businesses are experimenting with it.

We’re a long way off from a cashless society, but there is movement in that direction. According to a recent survey published by TD Bank 70% of small-business owners accept cash and checks. As for points of sale, there is a little more variety, reflecting the variety in the nature of the payment tech. The same survey found that roughly 20% use traditional point of sale systems, 17% use cloud-based point of sale systems (such as the Poynt Smart Terminal) and 24% accept payments online.

To be sure, eliminating cash eliminates headaches, but you want to make the cost-benefits analysis to know for certain if it’s right for your location, or else you’ll be eliminating customers along with those headaches. One crucial factor is the type of store you’re running. If you’re a boutique furniture store, odds are you won’t turn away any customers; but if you run a fast food restaurant or a coffee shop, both of which still report a high level of cash use over card, you may feel the pinch, at least at first.

Faster payments

Giving back change takes time, and so it’s generally reported that card payments remove friction and get payments done with faster; however, that may not be the case across the board. Printing out a little receipt and getting a signature on it also takes time! Some points of sale are faster than others, which is why Moolah recommends and even provides a Poynt Smart Terminal free when you sign up with us. Its two-screen paperless signature reduces friction and offers the fastest check out around.

A few more key points:

Pros

  • Cashless stores virtually eliminate the possibility of getting robbed.
  • Reconciling the books at the end of the day becomes painless when you don’t have to count up pennies.

Cons

  • You are putting a barrier between customers that want to pay with cash. It can be painful to turn away customers.
  • You do have to pay fees on card transactions. (but it should be noted that it’s not money for nothing. You’re getting a cleaner, more convenient payment option that can simplify your life immensely.
    In the end, like so many aspects of your business, it comes down to your customer. If all consumers gave up cash tomorrow, stores would be cashless in a matter of weeks. In the interim, it’s up to each location to decide if and when it makes sense to eliminate the cash till.

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