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Payment Processing Services to Rock Your Business #SecurityLivesOn

Brant Schelhaas

Individual payments companies vary in the payment processing services they provide. Some are adept at handling mobile transactions, while others set their focus on operating globally. Security should be prioritized across the board, but processors differ in how they approach the concept. Ultimately, it's up to business leaders to choose a company offering the services they need to best support themselves and their consumers.

Security
Safe payments are a huge concern among shoppers, banks, card providers and retailers. Most payment processors provide security packages that include features like point-to-point encryption or tokenization. Choosing payment processing services that help you secure your business greatly helps you maintain compliance with Payment Card Industry standards.

P2PE, short for point-to-point encryption, encrypts, or scrambles, payment information the instant a card is swiped through a terminal. The data is sent to the payment processor, where it is securely decrypted and transferred to the appropriate bank. Tokenization used mostly for online payments, on the other hand, creates a unique code to authorize purchases. Only the token itself is transferred - the card information is secured in an off-site vault. 

Encryption and tokenization are just two elements of secure payments. The best processors have teams dedicated to fraud screening, risk assessment and security monitoring. Small businesses likely don't have the staff or technology to provide these capabilities themselves, but security is a necessity they can't ignore. 

Mobile
Mobile payments are spreading like wildfire. Innovative startups and card processors have made it easy to transfer funds with a tablet or smartphone, and tech giants like Apple, Google and Samsung allow people to shop via mobile wallets embedded in their phones that allow consumers to essentially leave their credit cards at home. A forward-thinking payment processor that provides mobile capabilities is a good bet for any business.

Having the ability to accept card purchases with a smartphone or smart device, such as a smart watch, is incredibly beneficial for businesses, including those on the go. They're able to serve their cashless customers without being bogged down by heavy equipment. Mobile payment processing also saves time during processing and reduces overhead from ink, paper and terminals.

At the same time, accepting payments from mobile wallets prepares businesses for the future. Many expect mobile payments will nearly eliminate cash and cards by 2020. (1)

Gift cards
"Do you offer gift cards?" Many cashiers hear this question during the holidays and around special occasions, even those working at smaller businesses. It's not uncommon to encounter a local business with its own gift card program. What was once exclusive to large retailers is now readily available as payment processors extend the service to smaller organizations.

Gift cards remain fairly popular among consumers and generally bring them to physical stores. (2) Sixty-two percent said they had purchased a card during the 2015 holiday season, spending $145 on average.

These are just a few of the offerings credit card processing services provide. Business leaders should carefully research various options and choose the company that best suits their operations.

  1. http://www.pewinternet.org/2012/04/17/the-future-of-money-in-a-mobile-age/
  2. http://www.thecenterofshopping.com/news/industry-conditions-gift-cards-further-insights-into-the-2015-holiday-seaso

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