Could your business cut out the cash?

Pound Signs

When starting out as a new business you have an infinite to-do list; how high on your agenda is a card payment solution? As a recently launched startup it may not seem like an essential, however research has shown that when a customer is able to pay on card, they are more likely to spend a higher amount and buy on a regular basis. Can you afford to miss out?

Last June, Handepay staged a social experiment on a street of independent traders in Manchester to test if business owners and consumers were ready for a cards-only future.

The first ever Cashless Street saw only cards used for a day’s trading – and proved a success with turnover on the street up by an average of 22 per cent.

Shoppers surveyed on the street during the cashless experiment revealed their changing spending habits, with 60% saying they had left a shop because they couldn’t pay by card and 53% stating that they would shop local more often if they knew they could pay by card everywhere.

On average these shoppers used their plastic 2.5 times per day and those surveyed were only carrying an average of £19 on them at the time.

Almost half of the UK’s small and medium businesses don’t have the option for their customers to pay by card. It is these enterprises who risk being left behind as consumer spending habits change away from notes and coins to cards.

Mark Latham, Product and Innovation Director at Handepay, says: “The public’s speedy adoption of contactless and their confidence in using it means we’re past the tipping point. Those who still don’t take card payments are watching money walk out the door.

“The future for the local high street is in making it as easy as possible for customers to shop there.

“There is now an expectation that card payment can be made everywhere. Switched on business owners love it too as it reduces queues, eliminates lost sales and gives them more time to chat with customers. Consumers spend more, too, as they are no longer limited to the cash in their pockets.”

The UK Cards Association’s figures for 2014 revealed that there were more than 319 million contactless transactions in the UK, resulting in a spend of £2.3billion. As a result of this mass adoption, the spending limit per contactless transaction will rise from £20 to £30 in September 2015.

As a result, small businesses are being urged to get on board with the card spending boom.