Many restaurateurs hesitate to adopt pay-at-the table solutions that comply with the Europay, Mastercard and Visa (EMV) payment technology standard and accommodate chip card transactions. Some believe pay-at-the-table options with EMV integration are too expensive to purchase and implement. Others say the pay-at-the-table “tipping culture” makes customers uncomfortable. However, there are three important reasons why seamless EMV integration built on EMV-enabled pay-at-the-table solutions is a restaurant must-have.
1. Reduced liability and chargebacks
When U.S. merchants began accepting EMV chip card payments in 2015, the liability for fraudulent card charges shifted from the issuing bank to the merchant — if the merchant didn’t have EMV-compliant technology. EMV integration makes financial sense because it significantly decreases the potential for chargebacks. By most estimates, fraudulent use of credit cards has doubled in recent years. And even if a customer’s credit card has a chip, your restaurant must absorb any disputed charge if you don’t have the technology capable of reading it. The cost of devices with EMV capabilities could be lower than the price you’d pay in covering fraudulent charges and associated costs.
2. Enhanced customer data security
Unlike magnetic stripe cards, EMV-enabled chip cards are extremely difficult to counterfeit. EMV chip cards communicate with card readers and create a unique transaction code for each purchase. Even if card numbers are stolen, the card is useless without the ability to generate the proper code — unless you don’t have an EMV card reader. Then you would run it as a mag stripe card — and lose the amount of the sale because you weren’t able to detect the fraudulent card.
Moreover, your customers are becoming more educated about EMV. They understand their accounts are more secure if merchants can accept EMV cards at the point of sale (POS). Since EMV solutions require the card to be dipped and to remain in the card reader through the transaction, EMV pay-at-the-table solutions allow customers to keep their payment cards in sight at all times. As customers begin to equate EMV with card data security, it will be more of a risk to your business not to have it.
3. Not boxed in to a certain way of doing business
When EMV was first introduced in the U.S., restaurants were rightfully concerned that their traditional check-settling processes would have to change. But solutions providers have enabled restaurants to do business in the manner they prefer. Tipping can be handled traditionally (the receipt is left with the customer that adds the tip, then the server returns for the receipt) or it can be handled at the table with or without assistance from the server. Moreover, vendors such as Focus POS, now offer EMV-enabled mobile payment solutions that integrate seamlessly with traditional POS systems.
As the percentage of consumers with EMV chip cards increases, it is becoming more important for restaurants to accept them. Move forward with EMV integration to provide added security for their payment card data and your business’ reputation.