Many people believe we are moving towards a cashless society, and there appears to be some truth to that. A shortage of coins during the pandemic and social distancing mandates have advanced the need for alternative payment methods. However, while plastic options, such as credit and debit cards, were once king, they have lately had to step aside to make room for other electronic payment methods. These include the established Apple Pay, which made its debut back in 2014. Read on to discover how to accept Apple Pay at your business and how doing so will benefit you.
What Is Apple Pay?
Apple Pay is a contactless payment method that works via Apple’s mobile devices. It lets consumers pay for goods and services using a merchant’s contactless card terminal and a tap of the finger (though newer iPhones allow users to use facial recognition instead). Consumers can store a variety of payment cards within the application and choose which one they want to use at the point of sale (POS). People can also pay for merchandise and services they order on websites that have Apple Pay enabled.
Why Your Small Business Should Accept Apple Pay
Why should you learn how to accept Apple Pay? Well, there are a variety of benefits for businesses that use this type of in-store payment. Here are a few of the most notable:
There’s no denying the insane popularity of Apple products, especially the iPhone, which is literally off the charts. As of March 2021, 113 million people in the U.S. owned one of these phones, according to Statista. This accounts for a whopping 46.9 percent of American smartphone users. And this number does not even include the Apple watches many people slip on their wrists every morning. These also allow people to use the Apple Pay service.
That’s a lot of users with access to Apple Pay, and if that’s their preferred — or perhaps only — method of payment and you don’t accept it, you’re limiting your customer pool–by a lot.
Apple pay is more secure than other types of electronic payments. It features tokenization and encryption, and your merchant system does not store any of your customer’s sensitive payment information. For these reasons, consumers trust it and want to use it.
Apple Pay transactions are also faster than those made with credit card or debit cards, which feature magnetic stripes that may take some time for your hardware to read. The Apple Pay method can speed up POS wait time considerably. No one likes to wait in line, so anything that speeds up checkout improves the customer experience.
People who prefer to use Apple Pay will frequent your business and not those competitors who don’t accept this form of payment. This could give you a significant advantage over the establishment across the street or even online businesses if you have a website presence.
How to Accept Apple Pay at Your Location
To accept in-person contactless payments through Apple Pay, your business needs to have the standard contactless payment hardware. If you have an EMV-compliant, NFC-enabled terminal, it can already accept Apple Pay. If you don’t have one, you will need to purchase this through your merchant services provider. After you receive the hardware, you will configure it and test it with Apple devices to make sure it works correctly before you deploy it. Be sure to test it with the iPhone, iPad, and an Apple watch to cover all your bases.
It really is as simple as that, but be sure to advertise as well. Your patrons need to know that you accept this form of payment or they may not think to use it.
Advertising Your Acceptance of Apple Pay
Once you’ve got Apple Pay all set up and it’s working properly, scream about it from the rooftops. Place decals on your physical point-of-sale system and/or a banner on your website. In addition, be sure to tell customers to enable Apple Pay on all their devices. All these things will encourage future sales.
Apple Pay on the Web
So you know how to accept Apple Pay at your small business now, but what about also accepting it on the web? Fortunately, though different, setting up Apple Pay on your website is not all that difficult. These are the steps that you will go through:
Create a Merchant Identifier
The number that you will create in your developer account is a unique identifier that establishes your authority to accept Apple payments. If you already have a merchant identifier for other web apps, you can use the same one. It will not expire.
Create a Payment Processing Certificate
The next step is to create a payment processing certificate that will correspond to your merchant identifier. This certificate will let you encrypt the payment information. It expires after 25 months, at which time you’ll need to recreate it.
Register Merchant Domains
You will then register your business’s merchant domains, the ones that are going to be processing the transactions.
Create a Merchant Identity Certificate
Finally, you’ll create a merchant identity certificate. This will authenticate communication between your equipment and the Apple Pay servers.
Get Your Fair Share
The big brands are cashing in on contactless mobile payments, and you should be too. Even if we never see a completely cashless economy, at the very least, contactless payment methods aren’t going anywhere. The point is not to ban cash. Rather, it’s to accept as many payment methods as possible so you can serve many more people.
Now that you know how to accept Apple pay — and how easy it will be — you can add it to the growing number of payment methods your business accepts. After all, you work hard — why shouldn’t you attract the lion’s share of consumers?
About NMA — We Work For You™
NMA is a merchant advocacy group dedicated to reducing or eliminating the unnecessary fees associated with accepting credit card payments. Since 2004, NMA’s payment processing solutions have been delivering tailored solutions, best-in-class customer service and high-quality service offerings for businesses across multiple industries.Whether it’s high-risk or low-risk, brick-and-mortar or e-commerce, NMA will create the best processing experience for your company. For more information, visit us at www.nationalmerchants.com or call (866) 509-7199.