Payment Options

Are You On Board With the Future of Payment Systems?
March 20, 2015

Apple Pay made its much awaited debut in October 2014, and as with everything Apple does, the conversation on alternative payment mechanisms has gained center stage. Is there even any credence to all the clamor about new payment mechanisms? What happened to good ole' cash, checks and credit cards?

Meijer Offers $10 Coupon After Credit System Outage
March 20, 2015

Meijer is turning a past headache at the checkout lanes into a $10 coupon that customers can use Friday or Saturday. The coupon is good for $10 off a $50 purchase on grocery, health and beauty items or general merchandise. Frank J. Guglielmi, senior director of communications for the Grand Rapids, Mich.-based retailer, said an outage affected the retailer's ability to process credit cards. He noted it was an internal IT issue. The glitch in late February disrupted the point-of-sale system at stores for debit and credit card purchases.

Alibaba Wants to Let You Use 'Selfies' to Confirm Payment
March 20, 2015

Someday soon, buying items online may require you to smile before paying, no matter how high the price. At least, this is where Alibaba Group Holdings Inc.'s new technology seeks to lead us. Earlier this week, Alibaba Founder and Chairman Jack Ma unveiled the company's "Smile to Pay" system, which will allow users to confirm their identity by face-recognition technology rather than with passwords or other digital tokens. Ma showed off the new system in a presentation at the opening of the CeBit technology conference in Hanover, Germany.

Will Online Sellers Use Facebook's New Payments Service
March 18, 2015

Facebook's new payment service has several things going for it that might sound appealing to online sellers. First of all, it's free. Secondly, there's no risk of chargebacks since senders cannot use credit cards to fund payments. But hold your horses — this isn't a solution for e-commerce payment processing. Facebook launched a payments service on Tuesday designed not to pay for purchases, but rather to pay your friends. The person-to-person service works with Facebook Messenger, which is Facebook's answer to texting. 

Visa Wins Costco’s Credit Card Business
March 2, 2015

Costco announced that its credit card network will be handled by Visa next year, an announcement that comes weeks after it sideswiped Visa rival American Express in a move that ended a 16-year relationship with the retailer. Costco said Citigroup would be the exclusive issuer of the retailer's co-branded credit cards, while Visa will be replacing American Express as the credit card network for Costco in the U.S. and Puerto Rico beginning April 1, 2016.

Apple Pay: Seamless in Stores, but Quirky Online
October 22, 2014

After using Apple Pay for a day of shopping in stores, a few things became clear: The new payment system is convenient, problem-free and even fun. The same can't be said for using Apple Pay to shop via apps. That system has lots of room for improvement. It's limited, still buggy and seemed to result in multiple charges for some purchases — at least on Day 1. Apple Pay lets owners of the new iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus store credit card information on their phones and then pay in stores using tap-to-pay wireless terminals.

President Obama Takes on Payment Security With BuySecure Initiative
October 20, 2014

President Obama on Friday unveiled a series of steps aimed at improving the security of credit and debit card payments, including a pledge to shift government transactions over to the PIN-and-chip system and commitments from major retailers and credit card providers. In announcing the BuySecure initiative, Obama signed an executive order directing federal agencies to phase out magnetic strip credit and debit cards issued by the government, and to implement readers for the more secure PIN-and-chip cards in government retail locations such as national parks. 

Consumers Push Retail Sales Higher; Import Prices Subdued
September 12, 2014

Retail sales rose broadly in August, which should ease some concerns about consumer spending and support expectations for sturdy growth in the third quarter. The Commerce Department said Friday retail sales increased 0.6 percent last month as Americans bought automobiles and a range of other goods after an upwardly revised 0.3 percent gain in July. "It still paints the consumers muddling along," said Scott Brown, chief economist at Raymond James in St. Petersburg, Fla. "The general message on the economy is that it's improving but we still have a lot of slack to take up." 

What Apple Pay Means for Retailers
September 10, 2014

Unless you've been living under a rock, you know by now that Apple launched a bevy of new products and services yesterday in a star-studded (can you say Bono?) event in Cupertino, Calif. Of all the the major announcements — the launch of the iPhone 6, the iPhone 6 Plus, the Apple Watch and Apple Pay — the latter is arguably the most important news for retailers.