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How DSM Small Businesses Can Embrace Transaction Processing Innovation

Transaction Processing Innovation

December 20, 2023

How your company gets paid has shifted over the last decade or so. While many consumers are still using the old magnetic stripe credit card system, more innovative forms of transaction processing are coming to the fore. Even local banking institutions, like GreenState Credit Union, are starting to issue tap-and-go cards for contactless payment as standard. After all, the more options for payment you can offer your consumers, the more conveniently they can engage with your company. It’s no wonder, then, that such innovations are present everywhere from restaurants to parking systems.

Let’s explore how your Greater Des Moines (DSM) small business can effectively embrace the new wave of transaction processing innovations.

Finding the Right Tools

Big businesses often have the budgets to easily access advanced tools. As a small business in DSM, though, you may have limited capital at hand. Therefore, you need to make well-informed decisions about the technology that can help you embrace transaction processing innovations.

Some areas of focus here are likely to include:

Point of Sale (POS) Readers

This is the most important piece of hardware in transaction innovations. Choosing the best credit card reader for your small business requires consideration of various areas. Certainly, the price of the base unit matters, though how much you’re willing to spend can also affect the features it has.

You should also investigate the types of payment each reader accepts. Some don’t allow pin payments, which can affect whether customers can use debit cards rather than just credit cards. A reader that supports near-field communication (NFC) is also essential for accepting contactless payments.

Operating Systems

Often, POS readers enable you to process payments through a service provider’s operating system or payment platform. However, it’s vital to review what service is most appropriate for your small business. One important element of this is the percentage each provider charges for transactions.

You should also check to see what payment partners each accepts. For cards, you’re usually looking at if they allow for both Visa and Mastercard or if they’re more restricted. If you want to embrace mobile payments, establish support for systems such as Google Pay, Apple Pay, and Samsung Pay.

Remember to start talking about the tools you’ve adopted as soon as possible. Advertise clearly to customers the full range of payment types your hardware and software accepts. Place this in the front window of your brick-and-mortar store or at your booth for events.

Maintaining Security

With any technological innovation, there are going to be people who want to exploit it for their own gain. This isn’t just a problem for big businesses. There have even been reports of small family-owned businesses in the region that have become targets of major Chinese cybercrime operations. To ensure both your business and your consumers have a positive experience, it’s vital to make certain your transaction processing is bolstered by security measures.

These should include:

  • Understanding and training about the risks: Your transaction technology could be subject to various risks. Hackers could gain access to your processing service account through phishing. Criminals could intercept card data by gaining access to your Wi-Fi networks. Make certain you provide all members of staff with thorough training on how to prevent, recognize and respond to these threats.
  • Investing in robust security tools: Alongside investing in payment technology, you should also put capital toward security tools. This might include a strong firewall service that prevents unauthorized access to your networks. You could also consider artificial intelligence (AI) driven threat detection and management software that identifies and addresses potential breaches.

It’s also worth considering that you can boost consumer confidence by openly promoting your commitment to security when using innovative transaction processing. Logos of the security services you use can be useful trust signals when posted on your website and in your store. Create online content — blog posts and social media videos, among others — about the efforts you take to safeguard payments.

Encouraging Employee Engagement

Your staff are likely to be key to successfully embracing transaction processing innovations. As with so many other aspects of your small business, they have enormous influence. They may drive consumer adoption, boost effective use, and even drive innovative uses of the technology. Therefore, part of your focus should be on encouraging their engagement with the technology.

Wherever possible, seek to make your training not just related to the day-to-day use of the tools, but also what drives the technology behind it. Don’t forget that DSM is fast becoming one of the most supportive spaces for tech startups to thrive. Many of the top businesses are in the financial technology (fintech) sector. It may be effective to develop relationships with these businesses and invite representatives to give guest talks to your staff. This may provide your workers with a greater understanding of how payment processing innovations operate and the true scope of their use.

That said, it is vital, though, that you create a culture of innovation in your small business. In essence, this is a working environment in which you encourage your staff to think differently and support them in trying out new ideas. Arrange for collaborative ideation meetings. These allow staff to share about how to use payment processing systems more effectively and build off one another’s concepts. Encourage your workers to ask questions or offer criticism, as this is a way to spot problems and devise innovative solutions. And most importantly, make sure you reward their efforts.

Embracing payment processing innovations can help your local small business thrive. After all, many consumers expect businesses to use the most current technology, even when it comes to purchasing methods. It’s vital to take a careful approach to this, though. Perform thorough research and provide your staff with effective training. Don’t forget to regularly review the system to ensure its ongoing efficacy and identify areas you can better optimize.

The Greater Des Moines Partnership celebrates the Greater Des Moines (DSM) entrepreneur community and helps small businesses succeed with one-of-a-kind resources and opportunities for networking. Find out how other entrepreneurs have found success by reading their stories and attending local small business events in the region.

Sam Bowman

Sam Bowman writes about people, tech, wellness and how they merge. He enjoys getting to utilize the internet for community without actually having to leave his house. In his spare time he likes running, reading and combining the two in a run to his local bookstore.