Chip cards have been one of the most significant changes faced by retailers in the U.S. in recent years. However, the switchover has been far from smooth with merchants facing delays in their terminals being certified, and some small businesses have been slow to introduce the new technology.
70 percent of consumers now have chip cards and while the changeover is gathering pace, as of April 2016, most retailers still couldn’t accept them. However, with the EMV liability shift firmly in place, retailers might want to see what they can to do to speed up the move to an EMV terminal.
In the countries where chip card technology has been introduced, it has a proven track record of reducing fraud. For instance, after EMV was introduced in Canada, debit card fraud fell by 79 percent. Chip cards are considered more secure as they are harder to copy. Older cards depend on a magnetic strip, which can be skimmed and used by fraudsters.
A further benefit of chip cards is many of them allow contactless payments, which allows more efficient checkout times.
The United States has lagged behind when it comes to introducing chip cards and although the chip card technology has been available in the US for some time, it has been in limited use. Research from the Strawhecker Group, which was released in September 2016, showed that less than half (44 percent) of card-accepting merchants in the US. have EMV terminals, and just 29 percent can accept EMV payments.
Further figures regarding EMV adoption indicates that there are five million EMV compliant terminals, yet only 1 million of retailers are ready to accept chip payments, according to CBS News, and there are several suggestions as to why the switchover has been slow to gather pace. These include:
Switching over can be a time-consuming process. However, if you are one of the merchants who have yet to make the move, there are several steps you can take to quicken the chip card changeover process:
While the U.S government doesn’t require retailers to switch over by law, with millions of cards worldwide being chip enabled, consumers are keen to use chip card readers.
The changeover has been slow to gain pace and not without its challenges, but being ready for chip card payments offers a business many advantages such as improving security for your customers and reducing a merchant’s liability should a transaction be fraudulent.