Tap to Mobile: How micromerchants are adapting to a cashless world

, Internet, Modernización de Empresas, Retail, Tarjetas y Pagos Electrónicos, Tecnología Personal, Telecomunicaciones

A new white paper from Tietoevry explains how categories of merchants traditionally reliant on cash are now adapting to a cashless world.

After COVID-19, Europe’s long and slow decline in cash usage accelerated markedly, such that around seven in ten transactions across the continent are now executed without cash, according to the BIS[1].

Meanwhile, Europe has seen a corresponding and persistent drop in ATM usage, suggesting the switch to digital payments is here to stay. The UK’s Financial Times reports[2] that ATM usage went down more than 40% during COVID – and has remained depressed since.

“30% more merchants will accept electronic payments by 2028.”

The switch to a cashless society means whole new merchant categories want to accept electronic payments, including street vendors, charities and micro-businesses.

In the past, such vendors resisted electronic payment because of perceived costs and complexity: however, they’re now going cashless to halt declining revenues.

Recent research from PCM estimates[3] the number of merchants accepting electronic payments will rise by 30% between now and 2028.

Examples include the Tiptap app launched in North America that targets charities looking to accept low-value donations via contactless card, and the development of cashless acceptance networks for street food vendors in Asia, India and elsewhere.

What it means for acquiring and acceptance

As outline in the white paper, these new merchant categories will be looking for low-cost, easy-to-use payment systems that are flexible and offer best-in-class security.

They’ll want solutions that avoid the cost and complexity of purchasing and setting up a standalone payment terminal – as well as offering new dimensions in convenience, security and functionality.

Enter “Tap to Mobile” systems. Designed to work on a commercial off the shelf (COTS) mobile phone, “Tap to Mobile” turns the phone into a payment acceptance terminal.

Market Research Futures predict[4] the “Tap to Mobile” market will reach $76.3 billion by the end of 2025, representing average growth of more than 23% each year over the next four years – a much faster growth rate than either e-commerce (17%) or standard POS terminals (9%).

“Merchants new to electronic payments will be looking for low-cost, easy-installation acceptance systems.”

In “Next-generation cashless payments for new merchants and more”, Tietoevry outline the simplicity of installation and set up in a “Tap to Mobile” system.

The merchant downloads an app just like any other. They then register to an acquiring service provided by a bank or payment services provider (PSP) using independent device verification (IDV) techniques that confirm merchant identity and associate the merchant’s transactions with their device.

Merchant bank details are also confirmed rapidly via an API call on their bank. The whole process takes hours to complete, rather than the usual days or weeks.

These fast set-up routines plus the absence of a dedicated POS terminal make Tap to Mobile a revolutionary solution.

Previously, many smaller merchants were put off accepting electronic payments by the cost and complexity of purchasing or renting a POS terminal, as well as long set-up and authentication processes.

As Tap to Mobile only requires a standard smartphone, such systems are cheaper and easier to set up compared to previous-generation POS devices.

Tap to Mobile also takes advantage of the phone screen for transactions requiring PIN confirmation – and can be readily adapted to accept new transaction types such as Account-to-Account (A2A) transactions, or Buy-Now-Pay-Later (BNPL).

Download a copy of the new white paper from Tietoevry to find out more about Tap to Mobile as the next-generation acceptance solution for new merchants.

[1] See the Bank for International Settlements, 9 December 2021, “COVID-19 Accelerated Digital Payments”

[2] See The Financial Times, 26 May 2020: “COVID-19 acclerates shift away from cash”

[3] See The Digital and Card Payment Yearbooks 2021-2022

[4] See Payments Cards and Mobile, 26 January 2022, The digital revolution moves from payment to acceptance


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