Restaurant and hospitality oriented entrepreneurs know that having amazing customer service is a defining part of what makes a business successful. To many customers, the ways they can pay for a meal or service makes a huge difference in whether they will return to your establishment. In an age of smartphones, tablet point-of-sale (POS) systems, online banking, and virtual shopping the limitation of only accepting cash or check payments is no longer a sustainable business model.
On top of providing your customers outstanding service and products, you need to provide flexible payment options, or risk losing out on a sale. Patrons utilize credit and debit cards for their purchases at restaurants more than any other kind of establishment. In 2012, a full 81 percent of all full-service restaurants in the U.S. used plastic for those purchases; up 7 percent from 2004. This trend is expected to continue with percentages reaching up to 90% by the year 2016. 92 percent of restaurants accept debit, credit, and pre-paid cards as a form of payment, and that number is also on the rise.
According to a 2014 report from Bankrate.com, close to 50 percent of Americans carry $20 or less each day, including nine percent who don't carry any cash at all. By adding credit and debit card acceptance to your payment options, you will open up a whole new avenue of sales and ensure that you never have to turn away another customer who doesn’t carry cash.
Before you choose a service provider and open a restaurant merchant account, take the following into consideration:
- Fees that the provider charges - It is important that the entrepreneur know how they will be charged for each transaction. Some providers will charge hidden fees on top of what is already charged by the credit card associations. Only do business with a provider that has a transparent fee structure.
- Account caps - It is important that the account not be capped to ensure that all the payments can be withdrawn.
- Customer service – You should be able to reach your provider with questions and concerns quickly and receive quality service, regardless of the size of your business.
For more information about merchant accounts, check out the Payscout website or contact one of our customer service specialists at 888.689.6088 to learn how we can help your restaurant business grow!