Is your small business ready for chip and PIN transactions?

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Is your small business ready for chip and PIN transactions?

A new survey has found that around half of Australia's SMEs still aren't able to handle chip and PIN card payments.

It's less than two months until chip and PIN transactions become mandatory for most non-contactless (payWave, PayPass, etc) credit and debit card payments. 
With the 1 August deadline getting closer, it's worrying to learn that a survey of 534 small businesses with under 20 employees and that accept credit card payments - or think they should - found they weren't up to speed about chip and PIN.
64% of the owners and managers didn't know what 'chip and PIN' meant. Presumably after it was explained to them, 54% said they cannot accept chip and PIN payments, although that fell to 36% among businesses that currently accept credit cards.
Even if you take the most optimistic view of the 12% or 16% of these groups who weren't sure whether they could do chip and PIN, that's still a worryingly high proportion.
If you do take card payments over the counter and you're not equipped for chip and PIN, it's time to get moving.
Contact your bank or other supplier to arrange for a replacement chip and PIN EFTPOS terminal. This also applies to card readers and related services for smartphones, such as PayPal Here and MYOB's PayDirect. The latest PayPal Here does the job, but businesses using the original version will need to update. MYOB has announced that it will offer an new device, but we're still waiting for the details. Quest's microPay has handled chip and PIN since it was launched. 
If you do need change your terminal or card reader, this might be an opportunity to shop around to see if you can get a better deal on the hardware as well as the other fees involved in accepting card payments.
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