Merchants

Anyone who’s been in a Glenbrook Payments Boot Camp session with me has heard me emphatically stress that merchants “just want to sell stuff – they don’t want to be in the payments business”. Of course many larger and more sophisticated merchants have figured out how to use payments strategically to increase sales – think […]

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Chargebacks are one of the card system’s great consumer benefits. If fraud happens, the merchant doesn’t deliver on what was promised, or you’re charged six times for something you bought just once, the chargeback mechanism returns your money or restores your credit. What’s not to like? Well, if you’re a merchant, a lot. While there […]

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Payments industry professionals naturally have a hard focus on the industry’™s own dynamics. So, it’s not uncommon to lose sight of who the customer is and who pays the freight. In retailing, yes, the consumer pays, but payments is a direct cost to the merchant. With all of the changes underway in the U.S. payments […]

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Visa’s CEO recently reported that more than 750,000 locations, representing 17% of the U.S. face-to-face card-accepting merchant base, are accepting EMV chip cards. While everyone in the industry agrees that it will be quite a while before the numbers reach “critical mass” (whatever that means to you), there are two key questions for today. The […]

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The evolution of the digital wallet has seemed to accelerate in recent months, weeks and days, led, in my mind, by some important payment product launches by the retail community. These developments combine the long-standing heft and influence of America’s largest retailers with a seemingly more aggressive stance by these companies to both assert their […]

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Interchange galvanizes the attention of regulators around the world like iron filings to a magnet. Everyone in card payments watches their moves closely because of its economic impact on merchants, card networks, issuers, acquirers and, in theory, consumer pricing. European regulators are among the most recent to weigh in. Based on the EU’s Multilateral Interchange […]

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Smart. Very Smart. I applaud Square’s introduction of “$Cashtags” for a number of reasons. First, some of you may know that I am a bit of a nut when it comes to brand names in payments – I think it is incredibly important that the sending and receiving party both know/understand the word being used […]

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I’ve been thinking a lot about how payments and payment-related technologies fit into the emerging world of multi-channel commerce or omni-commerce as some people call it. When a lot of companies describe their omni-commerce strategy, they are usually talking about recognizing customers across channels and being able support a sales cycle that starts in one […]

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Like many payments industry insiders, we have been following the recent impassioned industry dialog about the relative merits of Apple Pay and MCX’s CurrentC wallet with a combination of amusement and despair. The barbs and accusations being exchanged by the rival camps in this technological holy war between NFC and QR codes suddenly reminded me […]

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First There is a Mountain, Then There is No Mountain, Then There is… I’ve been thinking about what the future of the point of sale environment will look like from a consumer perspective. Of course, 10 years ago, we all knew what it was going to look like: consumers tapping their mobile phones to Near […]

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The recent entry of Amazon.com into the small merchant mobile POS card acceptance market may signal the last phase of increasing hostility in the US merchant acquiring segment of the card payments business. Prior to the launch of Square in 2010, the merchant acquiring business in the US might have been described as having some […]

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In various venues — our Payments Bootcamp, our private client sessions or our merchant group meetings — we have talked a lot about MCX, the Merchant Customer Exchange initiative, created by a number of the largest US retailers to establish a merchant-centric wallet and payments solution. In these discussions, I’ve often joked about the name, […]

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As a biller or merchant, you are vitally concerned about your payments “back office”, that set of core functions involved with accepting consumer payments. Whether you are in Treasury or Technology, if you are concerned with payments, you are asking yourself, every day, questions such as: Is my organization optimized to manage payments? Am I […]

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Every three years or so, merchants and billers have an opportunity to reconsider their card processing agreements with their acquirers. This is an opportunity to negotiate lower rates — especially if business is booming – and also the time that a merchant or biller could consider changing to another service provider. Sadly, many merchants and […]

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Dennis Moser is Glenbrook’s payments systems expert.  He’s worked on building the engines that make payment networks run, especially the critical component of the POS and payment acceptance infrastructure.  He’s also been neck deep in payment data management systems, both as a designer and as a data mining practitioner. Dennis and I have worked together […]

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