What are NFC Contactless Payments?

NFC payment with iPhone

NFC payments, or “near field communication” are what you might call Apple Pay, Android Pay, or a contactless mobile wallet. NFC contactless payments are convenient if you’re short on time and don’t like digging around in your wallet for exact change or to find your credit card. They’re also vital for merchants because today NFC is how customers want to pay.

In fact, 24 million people have used Apple Pay to buy something. Starbucks developed its own way for customers to use their app to pay at the register as early as 2009. All you have to do is scan a QR code at the register, and your venti iced latte is paid for.

Today, the risk of not accepting NFC payments is losing out on any of those 24 million potential customers. Here’s how it works.

Just Tap and Go

To make an NFC payment, all a customer has to do is open their mobile wallet or app and tap their phone to a terminal. NFC-enabled terminals only communicate with the phone and the information is encrypted. This makes it more secure than swiping a card. The reader only connects with one phone at a time, so a customer can’t accidentally pay for someone else’s purchase.

To accept payments, you need an NFC-enabled countertop terminal or mobile swiper and a credit card processor that can facilitate contactless payments. If you’re not sure if your current processor can support NFC mobile payments, or if they charge an extra fee for it, sit down and discuss it with your merchant services provider.

Go Beyond Cash Registers

Tapping your phone at the register goes beyond retail chains. Restaurants have begun adapting NFC contactless payments too. 72% of mobile payment users are Millennials or Gen X’ers, so if your business caters to these demographics, you should look into NFC payments.

Your merchant services rep can recommend a terminal or mobile solution for you if you’d like to begin accepting contactless payments.

NFC contactless payments are on the rise across industries since they’re such a convenient and secure way to pay. Providing your customers with a wide range of payment options is the foundation of a smooth checkout. An easy checkout is just one part of providing a great customer experience that they will want to come back to.

This type of payment is also one of the fastest ways for customers to pay. With just a tap of their phone, your customer completes their payment.  And because it’s an in-person transaction, interchange rates are lower than they would be if you keyed in a card. You can offer your customers a convenient way to pay while saving money at the same time.

Check out our blog on the best mobile readers for EMV and NFC contactless payments to learn more!


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