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The different ways a customer can make a card payment with a business has changed a lot in recent years. Chip and PIN cards have been rolled out and Contactless is becoming a common method of payment for smaller transactions. Meanwhile, the explosion of online shopping has meant more businesses now take payments on their website and by email.
It’s therefore important that staff know how to process different card payments so transactions are made correctly and quickly, customers are happy, and waiting times are kept to a minimum.
We suggest what training you should consider so your employees can process card payments for your customers successfully.
Today, there are many ways that customers can conduct card payments with a business:
It’s therefore important for those employees that conduct customer payments to know the exact step-by-step process to complete any transaction successfully. For instance, directing customers to a card reader in a shop to insert their card, or taking an account number over the phone.
Staff should be encouraged to be wary of a customer attempting to make a fraudulent transaction, know the signs to look for, and what to do if this occurs.
Employees should also know what to do if a payment fails to go through, the process they need to follow, and the advice they should give the customer.
If your business mainly depends on customers making payments face-to-face, it’s important for your sales people to know how to process the key card payment methods that are used in the UK today. While Chip and PIN and contactless are the common ways to pay by card, those older methods are still in existence.
Chip and PIN – The majority of UK issued cards are now processed by chip and PIN transactions. It involves the customer inserting their card into a terminal and typing in their four-digit PIN number.
Contactless – The payment limit for contactless, which involves a customer tapping their card on the card reader, increased from £20 to £30 in September 2015. More shoppers are choosing to pay this way as a result.
Swipe – According to The UK Cards Association, some customers still use cards that have a magnetic strip and don’t have chip and PIN. It’s therefore important for employees to know the card swiping process.
Sign – The UK Cards Association also states there are a small number of chip and signature cards, which have been issued to disabled customers who have difficulty using a PIN. Training to conduct transactions with these cards, where the customer signs their signature rather than typing in a PIN, should therefore also be considered.
Training your staff to carry out any kind of card payment can be quite time consuming. So it’s a good idea to appoint your more experienced and reliable employees to lead areas of training, such as processing card payments over the phone.
Your selected staff can also monitor trainees to make sure things run smoothly, for instance, on the shop floor as transactions are made, and are able to attend to any problems they might have.
Card payment training mainly comes down to using different technology, such as specific computer programmes and card readers. That said, it’s important not to lose focus of the fact that it also involves providing a customer service with a certain degree of customer interaction.
From a card reader not working properly to an incorrect account number being read out over the phone, it can be easy for an employee to get frustrated and impatient with a customer. It’s therefore wise to focus some of your training on the importance of being polite, patient, helpful and attentive when conducting a transaction. It can make the customer feel comfortable, while encouraging them to use your services again.
Being able to carry out different card payments successfully, while making the process simple for the customer, is an important part of running a business today.
As part of its card processing services, FSB offers a 24/7 help-desk to provide advice and support for its members. As a member, you can also apply for services to help improve the card payment processes you use in your business. This includes:
If you’d like to find out more about payment processing and how FSB can help your business improve your transaction processes, take a look at our FSB Card Payment Processing page.
A range of packages to help you take payments wherever you are and whatever business you're in, with exclusive member discounts.