Magazine Article | March 19, 2015

The Biggest Opportunity In Retail IT: Changes In Payment Technologies

Bernadette Wilson

By Bernadette Wilson

Business Solutions polled channel vendors on the biggest opportunity in retail IT, and nearly all of the responses included ways to capitalize on the changing landscape of payment technologies. Opportunities range from providing EMVenabled systems for merchant clients before Oct. 1 (when liability shifts to the least-compliant party if a transaction is made with a counterfeit card) and complying with Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) 3.0 to helping clients leverage transaction data for marketing. Here are some of the responses illustrating the opportunities.

Dana Bargell, dir. of marketing, SBS/ Keystroke POS: “[POS] integrated payments continue to be the most important retail trend VARs should be focused on in 2015. While EMV, NFC (near field communication), and encryption and tokenization are the hot topics that will serve as catalysts to convince more retailers to finally abandon their standalone payment terminals and electronic cash registers, these technologies are increasingly becoming must-haves.”

Jeremy Gumbley, Creditcall CTO: “2015 is the year of EMV — and of a shift in consumer perception, where users will soon equate chip cards as the more secure payment option. Expect chip card adoption to snowball as card issuers put more into circulation and waves of consumers start to use their chip cards.”

Art Porth, VP of strategic partnerships, JetPay: “The challenges ahead with EMV are a complete change from the client’s technology perspective. Most merchants will be required to change hardware, update POS systems, and retrain staff for this challenge.”Subscribe to Business Solutions magazine

Will Atkinson, president, CAP Software: “I think 2015 is going to be the year where we finally see some traction with the smartphone as a payment method category. This is the perfect time to make sure you are including NFC and mobile payment acceptance technology in any new devices you are deploying for your customers. They may have to support EMV, but they want to accept mobile payments.”

Randy Clark, SVP marketing, Vantiv: “EMV and PCI DSS 3.0 will be something every VAR should be having a conversation with their clientele about in 2015. The need to update equipment to accept EMV and upgrade software to reduce PCI scope burden for the merchant will be drivers of revenue for the channel and put VARs in the position of trusted advisers.”

Nell Alverson, dir. of marketing, ScanSource POS and Barcode: “Currently, we are seeing a lot of activity around upgrading payment terminals in order to be ready for the October liability shift related to EMV. Mobility is a big topic and one that is getting some traction, and beacons make the reality of mobile wallets, mobile couponing, and location-based marketing possible.”

David Dickison, VP of global channel sales, Tripwire: “Because retailers don’t want to be the next victim of a data breach, even those that have been investing consistently in security realize they need technology that can help them detect cybersecurity threats faster, quickly identify which systems have been compromised, and deploy countermeasures that will protect critical systems and data.”

Mike Coffield, Vormetric VP of worldwide channel operations: “Our 2015 Vormetric Insider Threat Report found that 62 percent of U.S. retailers were increasing IT security spending to offset threats to data in the next 12 months. Encryption with access controls, application encryption, tokenization, data masking, and other protections for data should be welcome solutions to retailers.”

Jon Levin, product integration manager, Star Micronics America: “Shoppers want convenient payment methods — including using their smartphones … and after the transaction, shoppers want to engage with the store on their own terms, whether with future marketing, promotion and coupons, or even the receipt.”

Shawn Harris, North American retail and hospitality industry lead, Zebra Technologies: “We now live in the ‘Age of the Customer,’ and lip service about being ‘customer-centric’ is no longer acceptable. Forrester Research reveals 62 percent of shoppers expect a mobilefriendly Web, 42 percent expect a mobile app, and 23 percent expect location specific experiences.”

Bill Clark, CEO, Spindle: “Reports indicate that consumers are using their mobile devices more than ever, including for the purchase of goods and services. The market has become ripe for retailers to harness this consumer preference and leverage it for not just shopping and payments, but also to initiate proactive marketing campaigns that serve a mobile customer base.”

Drew Cather, innovation principal, Trace3: “Enabling customers to shop instore and online while staying connected to their social networks is a big focus. Enabling organizations to leverage disparate data sources such as third-party data and user-generated data is giving business teams insights they never had before.”