Payment Methods to Consider
3 Payment Methods to Help Keep Your Business Safe
Americans are taking a hard look at the way they handle payments as the coronavirus continues to spread across the nation. While not airborne by nature, the covid-19 virus can live on surfaces such as doorknobs or handrails from anywhere between 3 hours to 3 days depending on the circumstances.
For consumers, handling cash has become a well-known source for the collection and spread of germs, however, using credit and debit cards may not be much safer. According to a study done by CreditCards.com, your everyday credit cards actually carry more types of bacteria than traditional paper currency.
Despite these concerns, the key to keeping yourself and your tenants at minimal risk is to take extra precautions to limit the spread of infection. Among the safety measures you’ve decided to adopt, this might be the best possible time to start using a variety of payment options that are both secure and adaptably health conscious for your self-storage business.
NFC (Near Field Communication) contactless payment technology has been readily available and growing in self-storage since the EMV-liability shift back in 2015. This technology allows your tenants to pay by simply “tapping” their card within close proximity of a compatible payment terminal. This also opens the door to paying with NFC-enabled devices such as cell phones and tablets using digital wallets such as Google Pay and Apple Pay.
With the limited physical interaction of NFC payments, the potential for health benefits are fairly obvious, but adding onto that – NFC payments are faster and more secure than pin and chip cards.
Some self-storage operators may opt to use virtual terminals in lieu of having an onsite card reader at all. Virtual terminals are essentially a web-based application that allows you to enter in a tenant’s credit card details manually over the internet. An excellent resource for any manager with limited counter space, this technology is great for accepting phone payments or payments in person from your computer. These transactions are completed through a payment gateway that uses either tokenization or data encryption to secure your tenants payment information.
If you have closed the storefront to your self-storage business but still want to accept payments securely, virtual terminals are a great option.
While there may not be any revolutionary innovations in the ways of recurring payments, the fundamental idea behind it could not be more important: securing a steady income flow while limiting customer interaction. This is beneficial to both your self-storage operation and your tenants in a time where social distancing and limiting out-of-home exposure are encouraged, as your tenants won’t have to worry about piling bills, late fees, or potential infection.
A properly worded email generated from your management software may be enough of a nudge for tenants to rethink their position on auto-payments if they’ve declined to sign up in the past. Operators may even consider offering a small incentive such as a discount for signing up – with many choosing to waive late fees during this crisis, the profit loss from discounting is lessened vs. the cost of a waived late fee. The flexibility of these payments allows your customers to opt in online, over the phone, or in person.
Ongoing Value for Operators
Whichever payment methods you decide to accept during this difficult time, it’s more important than ever to embrace the technology available around you for the benefit of your business and your tenants. While the gains to safety at this time are obvious, the modernization of payments will continue to prove to be a valuable asset down the road that lowers operational costs and reflects a higher standard of business management.
SC Pay by Storage Commander Software provides access to all of these safe payment methods mentioned and has shown an amazing potential savings in credit card processing of over 17%. Additionally, SC Pay is fully-integrated into the Storage Commander Cloud management software, providing you with the ability to easily reconcile payments directly from your software and contact the same amazing team for both your payments and software support. For additional information on SC Pay or Storage Commander Cloud, reach out anytime from our contact page, email, or call us toll free at 877.672.6257.