A recent study by small business network Alignable has revealed that many new business owners have yet to embrace mobile payment technology. While retail giants across the country are quickly adopting mobile payment capabilities, the more than 25 million “Main Street” small businesses are not as receptive, presenting a major problem for mobile payment vendors. Here are some of the main issues small business owners have with mobile payments, as described in the survey:
- Small business owners do not fully understand the technology. Within the study, around 33 percent of respondents reported that their customers are actively asking to pay by phone, but it was clear that there was some confusion over whether this meant using a mobile payment technology like Apple Pay or mobile credit card processing options such as Square, PayPal, and GoPayment. This indicates that mobile payment providers haven’t been successful in educating business owners about the new technologies available to them.
- Small business owners do not see the tangible benefits in adopting mobile payment technology. In the Alignable survey, only 14 percent of small business owners cited a reduction in transaction fees as an important benefit of adapting mobile payment technology. Only 3 percent of respondents cited such benefits as easier integration with loyalty programs and faster transaction times. Clearly, mobile payment vendors haven’t been effective in demonstrating the value of such technologies to small business owners.
- Small business owners aren’t seeing a real customer demand for mobile payment capability. While the top trigger for adopting mobile payment technologies was listed in the survey as “due to customer request” for the service, only 27 percent of respondents cited this, which means that the customer demand for mobile payment technology simply isn’t that high yet. Since small business owners have historically been very responsive to the needs and wants of their customers, it’s clear that adoption of mobile payments across Main Street will come only after consumer demand increases.
One of the most important takeaways from the Alignable survey is that mobile payment vendors are not reaching small business owners and successfully educating them on the technology and the business value it offers. In addition, consumer demand will have to grow considerably for mobile payment adoption to become prevalent on Main Street.
Groves, Eric. “Survey: Small Businesses Still Not Sold on Apple Pay.” Street Fight. 4/2/15.