31297925 - information display monitor terminal standEvery retail business in the U.S. today knows they need to accept more than one type of payment. Cash accounts for a minority of transactions. Consumers prefer using their debit cards over any other form of payment, prompting many businesses to install an Automated Teller Machine (ATM). This puts the onus for hosting ATM services on the business manager or owner.

ATM services range from regular maintenance to stocking with cash and even things as mundane as receipt paper. Then there’s ensuring that transactions are processed properly, as well as monitoring and reporting on use—and whether or not the ATM is delivering a return on your investment. It all takes time. A complete ATM services solution may be the answer.

The ever-changing world of payments

According to several studies, fewer Americans use or even prefer using cash at the retail point of purchase. The most popular form of payment is now the debit card, at 44 percent, while 33 percent prefer credit cards. Only 12 to 15 percent of American consumers say they prefer to pay with cash (although that number has remained fairly steady since the early 2000s). Still, the proportion of transactions using cash has fallen from 40 percent in 2012 to 32 percent in 2015, and continues to fall. Even two years ago, more than two thirds of Americans said they use cards for small purchases under $5.

In 2017, US Bank found that half of survey respondents admitted going out without any cash close to half the time, and half regularly go out with less than $20 in cash. The widespread availability of ATMs, not only in banks but in retail stores, restaurants, bars and other locations makes it easier for Americans to travel with less or no cash.

Many small businesses have seen the advantages of offering ATM services in their location. But buying and installing one puts the responsibility for ATM services on their shoulders: transaction processing, cash handling, loading, security, and monitoring and reporting all transactions. Add to this the move to EMV chip cards, and new payment technologies looming just over the horizon, and the job of managing point of sale technology and ATM services in the retail environment is getting more complex by the day—and more time consuming, too.

More pressure on small business managers

The most precious resource for a small business manager or owner is time. You have to wear a lot of different hats, and you know how regularly you burn the midnight oil to keep up with inventory, payroll, taxes, ordering supplies and consumables … sometimes, it can seem like the job never ends. And the more time you spend on these activities, the less time you have for the activities that will add most to the bottom line, like selling and promoting the business. You’re not alone.

A survey of small business owners reported that nearly half of all small business owners feel they have to perform three to four different job functions on any given day, and another 30 percent feel they are doing five to six jobs. Nearly three-quarters report working longer days and more on weekends than they were five years ago, and 40 percent say they take less vacation time than they used to.

What’s your time worth?

In short, there’s less time for you and the most important job you have: managing your small business. The same survey asked small business owners how much they felt their time is worth. While a third felt that an hour of extra time in a working day is worth $100, one in four said it was worth more than $500.

A modest proposal: Complete ATM services

You need more time in your working day. Merchant Enterprises is a specialist in deploying, operating and maintaining ATMs. We have deployed ATMs in a wide range of locations across the United States. Our company offers complete ATM services in Joliet Illinois. We look after deploying and installing the ATM in the design that’s right for your operation, taking care of the processing, making sure it’s stocked with all the supplies it needs, and you get regular, clear reports on use, costs, fees and profitability.

Give us a call with any questions about ATM services.