Small Business Saturday Blog

Is Britain Becoming a Cashless Society?

Wednesday, November 22 at 13:52



As Britain becomes a cashless society, businesses big or small have an opportunity to offer seamless cash free transactions. Where once the ring of a cash till was a sure sign of success, most modern shops will instead have their steady flow of payments signalled by the beeping of a card reader.

Cards are the new cash

Cards, especially in their contactless form, are quick to use, easy to pay with and make tracking purchases much easier with online banking. The simple decision to change from cash to card therefore has a knock-on effect on personal finance admin, time-saving and even moral stances like being green, with online banking lessening the need for paper receipts. In other words, offering card payments to your customers can help them in more ways than one.

The figures speak for themselves, and should prompt any smart business owner to get their hands on a card payment systemASAP! Three in five Brits favour paying by card to cash, with 58% of them choosing card before any other form of payment. While this may leave over 40% of consumers happy to pay by cash, small businesses should bear in mind that the average amount of cash carried by brits is just £32.54, hardly enough to fund a single purchase if your shop is a customer’s third or fourth stop along the high street. 

£647.3 billion worth of sales was made in the first quarter of 2017 alone. In fact, 27% of shoppers say they haven’t completed a purchase when they discovered a shop did not accept card and 28% said that this would impact negatively on their overall opinion of the business. That’s a lot of potential customers or repeat customers lost when the solution is as simple as a card reader. And for modern businesses, it’s expected by shoppers that they can pay any way they want – a staggering 60% of customers would be more likely to visit their local small businesses if they knew they could pay with card.

Not just about customer convenience

Permitting card payments isn’t just about making life easier for your customers, you’re sure to benefit as a business owner, too! Say goodbye to counting penny after penny of the day’s takings, nervous trips to the bank with bags full or cash or having to run through your receipts with a fine-tooth comb to calculate your sales. With an EPOS system for card payments, customers complete their payments with a single tap or by quickly inserting their PIN, and that’s it! All sales are recorded in your system so you can view, analyse and compare your total sales in a single glance. There’s no risk of money being lost under the cash drawer or rolling under the counter and you can even send receipts digitally so your customers will have a much more secure record of their purchase that a paper receipt hastily stuffed in a pocket.

A portable card payment system makes things even more convenient for businesses that have no set location or a counter to have a till wired up to. Even if your business inhabits no more than a corner in a local train station, that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the ease and convenience of card payments.

Take card, keep customers

Between the high street and the extensive choice of online shops, if customers can’t complete their purchase with you, it’s far easier for them to find what they need elsewhere than source a cashpoint. And with the average Brit going weeks between trips to the ATM, it’s a huge inconvenience that will likely confirm your brand’s status as one they never intend to visit again.

Keep things simple, easy and sales-effective for both you and your customers and make sure you're equipped to take card. You’ll never lose a sale, customers won’t lose faith in your brand as a modern business and ease of pay will increase your customer service in a way that may well see the same customers come through the door again and again!

Find out more at squareup.com/gb 

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