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  • Writer's pictureAlex Gough

Should I get an EFTPOS terminal?

Updated: Jun 19, 2018


In fact, if you don't do this, you are losing out in more ways than one.

Here's three good reasons why you need to start accepting card payments:

1. You'll sell more coffee.

A lot of people simply don't carry cash on them. And even if they do, there is always likely to be a time when they don't (There aren't many ATM's at the local footy fields!). If they know that you accept card payments, they'll still come for a coffee. So make sure you advertise that you accept card payments. Once, I had a regular customer that had been coming for 18 months. I'd been taking card payments the whole time, and had a little sign saying "We take EFTPOS". But one day, she didn't come. The next day, I asked her where she had been the previous day. I was shocked when she told me just didn't have cash and that she hadn't had time to stop at an ATM that day. She was even more shocked than I was when I told her I accepted card! She never stopped at an ATM again for me.

Lesson learnt. Advertise your card terminal - loudly.

2. You'll save time

I mean this in two ways. Firstly, you'll save time at your van. If you take card, and especially if you have a good, efficient merchant terminal (like Square), you'll be able to key in a card payment and tap the card quicker than you would normally take cash. Sure, the customers who give you a $5 for a $5 coffee would be quicker than that, but if you average out all your sales, and factor in the time normally spent by customers fumbling around for change, and you fumbling around for their change, then you'll find that the average card payment is faster than the average cash payment.

Secondly, once the payment has been taken, there's nothing more to do! The money goes into your account. Thats one less sum of cash you need to count at the end of the day, and one less note or pile of coins to take to the bank, wait in line, and deposit.

3. You don't need to worry about theft

If you run a business with multiple staff, you might have all the trust in the world for your employees. But in any business, the less people that handle cash, the better. Card payments take this risk away. And if you don't have staff, there's always another person who might put their hands in the till: you! You'll be far more tempted to spend a big pile of cash in your till, safe, wallet, or under your pillow, than the money sitting in your bank.

The other big risk of course is when you are depositing it, and the safety involved in that. I've never felt completely relaxed parking my car and walking around the block to the bank with multiple thousands of dollars in a big, heavy, jingling bag.

No such hassle with card payments!

Those three reasons alone should be enough to convince you to get a merchant facility.

Now, once you have one, remember a few things:

- Don't have a "minimum spend". Seriously, nothing pisses a customer off more! They are saving you time and money anyway. Take all the card payments you can get.

- Keep it charged and ready. It's no good to you if the battery is flat or you have to keep a customer waiting while you turn it on.

- Advertise that you have it, loudly!

- Don't worry about the fees. They are nothing compared to the hassles you had before.

Which merchant terminal should you get? I'll have to write another article on that. In short, use Square. It's the best one on the market to date.


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