Nov 10, 2005

Accelerating card acceptance at cash-heavy retailers

Banks are speeding up the payment transaction through a combination of technology and business rules. Much of the recent interest in fast transactions has focussed on technology such as contactless cards and offline authorization using EMV. Since technology is sexy, it has generated lots of press interest. However, the business rules related to fast transactions are probably more important than the technology, and will often have a far greater impact on transaction speeds than the technology. For example, avoiding the need to sign receipts or key in a PIN code dramatically speeds up the process, and these rules can be applied to any card technology, whether contactless, magstripe or contact EMV.

Indeed, Visa USA recently announced a new strategy to accelerate Visa card acceptance and usage at cash-heavy, smaller ticket retailers. Through this program, merchants won’t have to obtain a cardholder's signature on a receipt for transactions less than $25. Also, Visa will reduce certain types of interchange fees on transactions of $15 or less. These business rules apply regardless of the card technology that is used.

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