2017 was a tumultuous year for the POS industry. Numerous acquisitions of POS software vendors by payment processing companies left many solution providers wondering how they fit into the future of a consolidating industry. Within the next few years, those who offer only basic hardware and software bundles might find themselves struggling to maintain relevance. Alternatively, those who expand their solution offerings and move toward a problem-solving approach for their customers will be well-positioned to thrive.
We’re already seeing some solution providers forge deeper relationships and sell beyond POS. Take, for instance, these three opportunities:
Payment solutions are in demand
While the EMV liability shift of 2015 appears far in our rearview. mirror, the fact remains that there are still many merchants in need of upgraded payment infrastructure. In fact, according to a recent infographic we shared concerning payment opportunities, tens of thousands of SMB merchants are still in need of EMV upgrades. Related, Zion Market Research estimates the global payment terminal market will grow at a CAGR of nearly 14% between 2017 and 2022.
Much of this growth is driven by the required EMV migration in the U.S. as well as consumer-driven technologies, such as Apple Pay and Android Pay. Additionally, many modern payment terminals contain new apps and features that allow merchants to engage with customers.
Mobile solutions increase customer satisfaction, engagement
Technologies that aid in customer engagement are highly sought after by retailers and restaurateurs. For instance, mobile devices put in the hands of storage managers and associates can allow a retailer to interact with customers on the showroom floor in meaningful ways. Product research can be performed beside the customer. Stock levels can be checked. Special orders can be placed. The result is a better customer experience.
Additionally, empowering customers on their own mobile devices can greatly improve the experience. Customer loyalty apps and mobile wallets are just two ways that brands are interacting with customers and improving the experience.
Mobility isn’t limited to retail. Restaurants are looking to engage with customers on their mobile devices as well. Also, we’re seeing continued adoption of waitstaff taking tableside orders and payments with mobile devices.
A broad portfolio is necessary
To provide meaningful value to retailers and restaurateur going forward, traditional technologies—while necessary to run the business—aren’t enough. Customer engagement solutions involve technologies such as the latest generation payment terminals, mobile computers, mobile payment devices, interactive digital signage, video surveillance cameras, analytics and more. Survival means solution providers will need to get involved with these technologies.
While this might feel daunting to some, rest assured that there’s help. Ingram Micro’s entire business is built on offering total solutions across a broad portfolio of technologies. If you need help piecing together a solution, give your Ingram Micro rep a call for assistance.