How Mobile Payments Can Help Your Newsstand Thrive

The internet, e-books, and virtual magazines have made a serious dent in the periodicals industry. But print isn’t dead yet. Plenty of people still enjoy grabbing a magazine, newspaper, or book (perhaps with a snack or a beverage) at the corner newsstand, especially if they need to kill time on the bus, subway, or train on their way to and from work.

Here’s how mobile payments can help your newsstand thrive.

  • Extra checkout point during rush hours — At least one or two times per day, it seems like half the city wants to buy something from your newsstand at exactly the same time. If you have a mobile-payment device, you can either handle a cash payment and a credit card transaction simultaneously, or have another employee take credit card payments to speed up the line.
  • Reduced transaction times — Because you can process transactions more quickly, you can complete more of them in a given time period, so no one walks away because they have to wait. (This also lets you spend more time being vigilant and watching out for potential shoplifters.)
  • The ability to scan product codes — If you choose, you can set up a UPC bar code or QR code sheet at your payment station and scan the corresponding code whenever a customer buys a newspaper or magazine. Alternately, you can take your smartphone to a product label on the rack and do the same thing.
  • No need for a payment counter — Why deal with a register? You can do all of your business using a mobile payment-enabled smartphone and a cash belt or bag. There’s no real reason you need a centralized payment counter, which frees up more space for inventory.
  • No more signed credit card slips — It’s a real pain for customers to have to sign a credit card slip with pen and paper in the rain and/or wind. Mobile-payment systems let you collect signatures on your smartphone’s touchscreen with a finger, so you don’t need to keep a flat surface and a pen handy.
  • Increased credit card use — Mobile payments make it easier for customers to use credit cards, so it’s likely they’ll do so more often. That means your average transaction will be higher (as it is with most credit card payments), and you won’t have to spend as much time counting out change for customers.
  • Ability to email receipts — Obtain repeat customers’ email addresses, so you can send all of their receipts electronically. That way, they’ll no longer have to wait for a credit card receipt to print out and sign each time they buy something. Out-of-town businesspeople who need receipts for expense accounts are bound to appreciate the added convenience, too.
  • More AC power — If you don’t need a permanent cash register, that’s one more electrical outlet that you can access for other business-related uses, such as lighting, displays, or food refrigeration. Or you can leave it open and save money on your electric bills.
  • Better trend-spotting — Because mobile payments record every transaction and product purchased, it’s easier than ever to analyze your revenue stream and spot buying trends. This, in turn, can help you manage your inventory and tweak your marketing and promotions to improve your bottom line.
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