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Is a card payment system right for you?

By: JJones, 5/15/12

Right now Card Payment Systems for Laundromats is a very hot topic. So much so we dedicated our entire St. Patrick’s Day Trade Show to them. There are many options out there right now. From Debit/Credit Card Readers directly mounted to a machine (allowing the customer an option between using their own debit/credit card and traditional coin insertion) to full Card Only applications (utilizing a cash kiosk dispensing a reusable card dedicated to your store).

Coins have been the tried and true payment method to Laundromats nation wide. Coins are proven, so the real question you have to ask even before choosing the correct card method is: Do I need to change at all??

With the population of 40, 60, and 80lb. washing machines in Laundromats growing. Think about an average of 18 quarters per 40lb. cycle, 23 quarters per 60lb. cycle, and 34 quarters per 80lb. cycle and the number of coins that are being processed through Laundromats right now is staggering.

Now imagine being able to reduce the handling of coins and only dealing with bills at one or two locations within your store. After performing a few installs and talking with customers, the main reason people seem to switch is to eliminate the need to remove quarters from machines. We all know that is a very time consuming process.

Maybe the volume of coins does not factor your decision. There are always other things to take into account:

  1. What is your competition doing? Are you seeing a drop in customers due to a competitor offering a more convenient system?
  2. Would you like to allow your customers to use just one card swipe as apposed to inserting a few dozen coins per wash?
  3. Would you like to offer options that your machines do not have without upgrading your equipment? Many of the full card systems offer Time of Day Pricing, Usage Bonuses, and more that are handled directly through the card network.
  4. Have you been looking for a way to create greater customer loyalty to your store? Full card systems provide your customer with a Debit/Credit looking card that it tied to your store(s) only. They are able to reuse the card adding money to it each time they visit.

The list could go on. However, to keep this article readable I will stop there.

We understand you will have plenty of questions about Card Payment Methods. More so than I can accurately cover in a web site blog post. Should this article leave you curious or, if you have been thinking about Card systems for a while and have decided now is the time to make the leap. Contact us anytime. We would be happy to talk with you about your options more specifically.