Its no secret that business are going through a rough time at the moment. The economy is doing strange things, petrol prices are climbing and falling and climbing again like a roller coaster and customers are changing service providers at a drop of a hat to save a Rand or two.
Businesses now need all the help they can get.
This had me thinking about the Nedbank PocketPOS™ system, Nedbank’s mobile point of sale device which is aimed at small businesses. For this to be a truly compelling offering it means that Nedbank had to relook at the credit card payment method with fresh eyes as the pricing needs to be reasonable and the system has to be portable and easy to use.
Nedbank has realised that a major issue for small business is collecting money once work has been done. This is especially true for mobile business such as plumbers, electricians and delivery services that are promised to be paid by EFT and then either never get paid, or have to constantly call the customer to reminder them to pay.
Nedbank has unveiled the PocketPOS™ to solve just this problem. The PocketPOS™is a mobile point of sale device that is truly portable. It is the first device of its kind that is able to accept the Chip & Pin debit and credit cards in a secure manor.
The merchant simply hands the keypad over to the customer whilst he/ she fires up the PocketPOS™app on their mobile phone. The customer inserts their credit card and enters the PIN on the pad. The mobile app then sends the encrypted info using the phone’s data connection (3G or WiFi) to the banking system and the transaction is finalised.The customer can have the receipt emailed to them automatically or have a printed receipt depending on the PocketPOS™ unit the merchant has.
These systems are always good in theory, so I wanted to find out from people who have been using the PocketPOS™ device about their experience in the real world.
I spoke to Dr Monika Stransky who is a Homoeopath and Iridologist and has been using the PocketPOS™ for about two months. Dr Stransky explained that the PocketPOS™ is ideal for her business. Even though she operates from a single location she did not want a credit card machine that uses her telephone line as this is how clients phone to book appointments. The reaction of her clients “has been amazing as clients are very happy that they can make the payment on the spot and no loner have to remember to make the EFT payment which they sometimes tend to forget.” This system also saves both time and aggravation as “now I don’t have to sit at the end of the month and work out who has not paid their bill and start to chase them. Clients pay, the machine prints out a receipt and they can submit it to medical aid – it is perfect!”
Frank Gouveia and Shaun Rooney from Simply Wild, a small business that sells delicious sauces, are also a perfect fit for the PocketPOS™. “Our business is such that we sell our sauces at shows and exhibitions. These could be located anywhere and we are never guaranteed to have power or a telephone line. The PocketPOS™ is ideal. It uses the phone and our customers are able to pay with both credit cards and debit cards” remarks Frank. He also confirms that the system allows them to have both their iPad and the iPhone connected to the same device “which is great when there is a large crowd waiting to purchase”. Frank also commented that previously they used to hire credit card machines however these were pricy and having a traditional credit card machine was a waste as most of the time it sat in the office as the shows are typically on a weekend”. To summarise his experience Frank says “We are wild about our flavours and wild about Nedbank technology”.
Nedbank has been very smart with the pricing of the PocketPOS™ making it very affordable for specifically these kinds of businesses.
The following are the pricing options that are available:
12 Month Contract Based Pricing
Pay as You Go Pricing
The PocketPOS™ is able to last for around 5 days on a single charge and the merchant should be able to achieve over 200 transactions. Currently the PocketPOS™ app is able run on the iOS platforms such as iPhone, iPad and iPad Minis and there are plans to expand this to other operating systems too.
UPDATE 20 May 2013: PocketPOS is now available for Android too
Whilst many large organisations are doing their bit to assist the small-man/women business, I noticed that Nedbank continues to support both large and small businesses through various interventions including the Small Business Friday™ initiative which is aimed at rallying South Africa to buy from small businesses. Nedbank also hosts Free Small Business Seminars which is now in their 9th year and has provided training and practical advice to over 20 000 small business owners since 2004.
To sign up and for PocketPOS and for more info click here