Businesses Turn from Tech Triage to Upgrades


Running a baseball stadium demands technology that can be all things to all fans. That means systems that support contactless payments, that are flexible and scalable, that can maximize productivity, and that can handle both retail merchandizing and food-and-beverage sales.

Software and payments provider SpotOn knows these needs well — 56% of the ballparks in Major League Baseball rely on its services to meet customer demand speedily and seamlessly. Beyond sports and entertainment venues, SpotOn’s technology encompasses all business sizes and many business types, including restaurants and hospitality, retail, enterprise and automotive.

“When we think about stadiums, we think about the opportunity that will create around the areas as well,” SpotOn Chief Financial Officer Lisa Banks told PYMNTS. “Maybe a restaurant says, ‘If the stadium can use it, this would work well for us too.’”

Making Real-Time Decisions

Beyond the point-of-sale aspects that their customers will see, businesses also need reporting that will give them visibility into what is happening in the business. Businesses can leverage this data to make changes as necessary.

“Insightful reporting is a critical element for businesses of any size,” Banks said. “Just to get that data, to be able to see it and make real-time decisions, is very important to help them run and grow their businesses effectively.”

SpotOn also makes it easier for companies to integrate loyalty and marketing programs. And it helps businesses run more efficiently — something that’s especially in demand at a time of labor shortages.

Businesses are learning that software like online ordering and labor management tools can help them find a better way to run their business, improve their revenue and improve their customers’ experiences.

“Payments are an important component, but the software that you build around the transaction is really where you get the stickiness and the value,” Banks said. “If you’re able to boost your revenue, improve your customers’ experiences — that means they’re coming back for more and you’re more profitable.”

Meeting Customers’ Changing Expectations

Many small businesses are still using legacy tools — such as a fragmented point-of-sale system that doesn’t have those sorts of software capabilities built around it — and many are still doing a lot of it manually. They know now that it’s time for an upgrade.

“Because customer expectations are changing, there’s just a massive tech replacement that’s happening right now to make sure they stay at the forefront of the changing customer experience,” Banks said.

When COVID-19 hit, small businesses had to rapidly adopt solutions such as online ordering to keep their businesses alive and growing. The pandemic may have subsided, but online ordering is still in demand, and with inflation and a lingering labor shortage the pressure is still on for businesses to do more with less.

“COVID accelerated that, and I think that over the next several years, we’ll see more and more small businesses really focused on this and driving some of that transformation,” Banks said.