Small and mid-sized business have historically struggled when it comes to payment processing. After all, getting a point-of-sale environment up and running is very expensive, and connecting those systems to acquirers and banks is time-consuming. That doesn't even take into account the technical know-how required to maintain and support a POS ecosystem or the compliance side of accepting credit and debit cards.
Making the process a bit easier to swallow for SMBs are new mobile POS providers which are quickly gaining share in the marketplace. In fact, according to Transparency Market Research, the global mPOS sector will grow 47 percent every year until 2022, eventually resulting in the shipment of just around 245 million mPOS devices. The research showed that SMBs are largely responsible for this massive uptick in mobile POS interest. Capterra indicated that out of 44 percent of American companies using mPOS systems, 79 percent are small or mid-sized businesses.
Mobile POS works for well for many SMBs - especially smaller companies that aren't necessarily in retail or table-service restaurants, like food trucks. For example, many mPOS systems provide relatively seamless integration with the cloud, simplifying deployment. Then, there's the added benefit that comes with the convenience of meeting customers where they want to buy.
The many benefits of mPOS for SMBs
And that's just the surface level of the SMB advantages that mPOS offers. SmallBizTrends contributor William Johnson listed some other benefits:
- Scale: SMBs don't stay small forever, and sometimes the need to expand appears overnight thanks to a well-timed YouTube ad or perfectly relevant social media post. With a cloud-based mPOS system, a company can quickly and easily add more mobile devices to their arsenals or establish a new store without headaches.
- Tether-free: Whether the SMB is a food truck, a booth at the local market or a clothing company that operates without a brick-and-mortar, it could find itself sans internet connectivity. Johnson explained that many mPOS devices function without the internet, sending information to the cloud once a signal has been reestablished.
- Data collection: Despite being a small package, mPOS devices are full of data, and Johnson highlighted the value of that transactional information when it comes to real-time reporting on the status of business.
- Sell anywhere: SMBs can take mPOS devices anywhere they want. Bring them on the road, to customers while they're shopping in the aisles, directly to the table or put them in the front of the store.
In addition, it's worth noting that getting a upgrading to a POS system with mobility is often and ideal solution for SMBs that have lagged in EMV adoption. EMV should be viewed as an opportunity to add mobility to an existing POS or upgrade to a new mPOS platform. That way, merchants can kill a lot of birds with one stone: Support EMV, get off the hook for fraud, improve customer service, future-proof their POS environments and accept payments everywhere.
Mobile POS in practice
Touting the efficacy of mobility at the Point of Sale in such broad strokes is easy since there are so many advantages to these solutions, but SMBs are all about the actual execution of sales given that they're so close to the action. So, take the Massachusetts-based food truck Clover Food Lab for example. Ayr Muir, founder of the business, told PYMNTS that the only way he could run his company is with an mPOS system.
"I looked at all the existing systems and, at that point in time, they weren't coming close to what we needed done," Muir explained.
So, not only does mPOS provide a wealth of benefits for SMBs, but a great mobile POS system supported by strong middleware can also mean the difference between starting a booming business or not.