Mobile payments are getting big and the predictions are even bigger.
It’s been reported that over 70% of the world’s population owns a mobile phone – that’s over 5 billion mobile subscribers, and in the United States, it’s 9 in 10 people. The mobile phone as a point of sale launched 10 years ago but remained stagnant until 2010, when it reached its tipping point with the massive adoption of smartphones. According to a recent Gartner report, the number of mobile payment users will hit 141.1 million this year – a 38.2% increase from 2010. The research firm reported the 2011 global mobile payment volume at $86.1 billion, up 75.9% from 2010. A recent study by Juniper research says the total value of mobile payments will triple in 2015 to an estimated $650 billion.
What mobile payment acceptance options should small businesses focus on?
The term “mobile payment” is a large all-encompassing term covering any form of paying for a good or service using a mobile phone or any transfer of money between two parties done via a mobile phone. NFC (near field communication), Google Wallet and Google’s acquisition of Motorola dominate the headlines, but these mobile payment types are not yet a reality for small businesses today.
The mobile payments method that small businesses are ready to embrace is credit card processing on the mobile phone. Customers are comfortable paying by credit card and with the proliferation of mobile banking; they are now comfortable conducting financial transactions on a mobile device. Small businesses are ready too. According to a recent AT&T small business survey, 72% of small businesses use mobile apps in their business.
Mobile payments deliver real value to small businesses.
Small businesses do more work remotely than any other business size, and according to the AT&T survey, ownership of wireless devices to do work away from the office is on the rise. Forty percent of small businesses report all their employees use wireless devices or wireless technologies to work away from the office, a 66% jump over the past two years.
Mobile credit card acceptance means getting paid faster. In these economic times, cash flow is more critical than ever, however, it continues to plague small businesses. In a recent Discover Small Business Watch survey 46% of small businesses reported experiencing a cash flow issue in the last 90 days. With mobile payments, businesses are able to collect payment at the time of product or service delivery eliminating any lag in getting cash into their bank account.
Accepting credit cards from anywhere means more sales. Small businesses don’t have to turn away customers who don’t have cash or drudge around a bulky credit card terminal. Payment convenience delights customers. Eliminating all friction in the payments process and always being able to say yes to any way a customer wants to pay keeps customers happy and encourages them to purchase more.
What does a small business need from a mobile payments app in order to reap the benefits?
As the leading account receivable automation software provider for small businesses, PaySimple is always on top of small business payments needs. PaySimple knows that mobile devices have become ubiquitous, and that small businesses can make some true headway into getting paid faster by leveraging these devices, so they have recently released apps for iPhone and Android.
While there are offerings out there that allow merchants to swipe a credit card on a mobile phone, PaySimple worked closely with small businesses to learn about their needs from a mobile payments app and quickly learned that their needs went beyond just swiping cards.
PaySimple learned that merchants want:
• Access to their customer list, customer profiles and customer history on-the-go
• To seamlessly collect payments from repeat customers without having to re-ask for a credit card
• Be able to accept multiple payment types including credit card and eCheck
• Professional automated payments communications
• A robust integrated web application that would accommodate other payment acceptance needs including recurring billing and electronic invoicing
• An easy way to share data with other systems by customer record for reconciliation ease
And they don’t want to have to stitch together multiple pieces of technology to make this happen.
In talking to small businesses, we learned that customer management and seamless repeat transactions were as critical as payment acceptance through mobile devices. While many small business owners spend a large portion of their time on the go, they also have other payment acceptance needs beyond just using their mobile device.
Using the new mobile app for iPhone and Android from PaySimple, small businesses can:
• Collect credit card, debit card and eCheck (ACH) payments from customers anytime, anywhere.
• Have their customer list, customer profiles and customer payment history within a click’s reach.
• Collect payment from existing customers without having to re-enter credit card information.
Our customers tell us immediate cash flow and payment flexibility is critical to their success, and are looking for ways to eliminate the typical delay in collecting payments. This means the small business owner can’t say no when a customer asks to pay a certain way, nor can they wait to get back to the office to collect that payment.
This is just the beginning. We believe the features and functionality of the mobile payment experience will need to rapidly evolve to meet the explosive growth and demand of the marketplace.
Company Profile: PaySimple provides a SaaS based electronic invoicing and payment acceptance platform that enables small businesses to bill, collect and manage their customers all in one user-friendly system. (Read More)