Retail POS Tech

by Raymond Pucci 0

BizTech has written a primer for retailers on selecting POS hardware, as well as covering other issues such as systems integration, EMV, and payment card security.

Emerging shopping platforms and services promise to help retailers open the door to new customers while building stronger and deeper bonds with existing customers.

Yet every one of these systems must be carefully planned, fully tested and intelligently deployed. Detailed planning and thorough testing ensure that a new system meets its performance goals and is fully compatible with the current IT infrastructure and existing business processes. Problems, when they arise, must be dealt with quickly and logically in cooperation with the system’s vendor and other relevant partners.

To reduce the possibility of creating disruptions, a new technology must be completely integrated into the retailer’s existing systems. Front-end retail solutions, such as point-of-sale (POS) stations and self-service kiosks, must be fully supported by the retailer’s back-end technology, including servers, storage systems and wired and wireless network infrastructures, as well as software such as an enterprise resource planning solution.

Compliance with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard(PCI DSS) is essential for all retailers that accept payment cards, whether online or offline, because it provides the best approach for keeping customer payment card data secure. PCI DSS was created jointly in 2004 by four major credit card companies: Visa, MasterCard, Discover and American Express.

Many merchants, especially small to mid-size, are wrestling with EMV transition and have discovered that this is a multi-step process. Retailers purchased the necessary hardware and software packages, and then discovered that the new systems needed certification. Others whose POS terminals are certified find that both staff and customers need training and familiarization for EMV cards to work smoothly. Many customers do not yet have EMV chip cards. Expect the EMV transition to continue for the next 3-4 years.

Overview by Raymond Pucci, Associate Director, Research Services at Mercator Advisory Group

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