What They Didn't Tell You about EMV

Whether you consider yourself a marketer, dealer, jobber or convenience retailer in the Retail Petroleum industry, by now you’ve been told you need to act on implementing EMV, empower new forms of payment (mobile chief among them), or drive growth through robust loyalty offerings. The complex relationships and technologies that are critical to the infrastructure you need sell a gallon of gas or a candy bar make these topics even more difficult to address.
Think of EMV, Loyalty and Mobile as Synergistic Topics
Conversations and actions driven from separate siloes have provided success to some companies, but often cost more and achieve less than the organization originally planned for. The path you choose will impact your investment of people, money and time. Organizational siloes impact an organization’s ability to develop solid business requirements to help target investments and achieve the business goals that optimize return on growth and profitability, while managing adoption costs. This is why it is important to think about EMV, Loyalty and Mobile as synergistic topics.
Due to urgency over the EMV liability shift, retailers are often examining their infrastructures through an EMV-only lens. This limited view may require you to spend more money making changes for loyalty and mobile payments after completing your EMV project. It may also place you behind your competition, as you will not have implemented anything focused on growing your business and retaining customers.
Balance Your Strategy to Offset EMV Costs
Do customers understand EMV well enough to appreciate your investment? A few consumers may tell you that they find the new payment process cumbersome and slow, compared to what they are used to in the quick service convenience model. This is our reminder that you need to know your business drivers and goals you are working towards.
Some would agree that EMV protects your customer by reducing fraud. However, for the retailer, EMV is an additional cost that does not generate more revenue, attract consumers, or make your store more attractive. A balanced strategy is needed to address adoption and the revenue needed to offset the cost.
The wrong choices can be costlier than your initial investments in EMV, Loyalty and Mobile. Getting help with expertise on EMV, Loyalty and Mobile is a good idea, providing you more education and industry insights. Without the right information, decisions on business drivers may harm your organization’s position. Get help when you need it, so you can evaluate your business goals for profitability and growth.
Business Drivers Must Support Your Business Goals
Business drivers must support your business goal: “I want to increase my gross merchandise sales by 5%”, or “I want to build repeat business through loyal customers, that I will reward when they purchase from me”. How do loyalty and mobile fit in?
These drivers will guide you in the evaluation of solutions for loyalty and mobile. As you evaluate solutions, you also need to measure the compatibility of your retail technology infrastructure against the solutions you feel support your business drivers. Finding the pattern of what your infrastructure can support will be key in determining where to invest.
W. Capra suggests you leverage business drivers to select solutions that promote your business goals for growth. Your business growth drivers will help you evaluate and learn about loyalty and mobile solutions. Your selection of a mobile solution can help you identify robust loyalty options, while also optimizing your EMV investment. Mobile provides alternatives to EMV adoption that can reduce fraud risk with equal effectiveness, allowing you to invest in solutions that can grow your business and perhaps reduce unneeded costs.
It sure has become complicated to sell a gallon of gas and a candy bar. But one thing that remains constant is the importance of knowing your business drivers for growing your business and retaining customers. Identify your business drivers, get educated on what solutions can support them (i.e. mobile and loyalty) and then start looking at the solutions that promote growth and address EMV adoption.
For further information, contact Loren at lallston@wcapra.com.

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