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How to surcharge and keep customers smiling

Banner image of lady paying with a contactless card on EFTPOS machine

Surcharging can save small businesses thousands in transaction fees, but does it create a good customer experience? 

Customer satisfaction and customer retention are critical for any business owner and a surcharge and a happy customer can co-exist. 

Here are a few ways to add a payment surcharge and keep your customers smiling.

1. Set customer expectations early

Whether you’re dealing with a new customer or an existing customer, be upfront about your payment surcharge. 

You can print it on your menu or display it near your cash register. You might even let current customers know beforehand that you’ll be introducing a surcharge and why.

When a customer understands why you surcharge, you might be surprised at how accepting they are. You might even tell them where that money is going and how it benefits them, like more staff on weekends, etc.

Customers who no longer carry physical wallets, get the convenience of tapping their phone or smartwatch to pay. And those that do not want to pay the surcharge, can simply insert or swipe their debit card to pay. 

Today’s shoppers value customer service over price and product. In fact, up to 86% of customers are happy to pay more for a better customer experience.

2. Automate how you add a surcharge

Surcharging is a common practice in New Zealand, which the Commerce Commission oversees. You can surcharge for contactless and credit card payments, but it should reflect the fair cost of accepting these payments.

Surcharging on your Smartpay EFTPOS terminal is hassle-free. You tell us what percentage amount to surcharge and we set your terminal to apply this charge automatically.

There are no manual calculations required. The customer can clearly see the surcharge amount on the terminal screen and on their payment receipt.

This way, your customers know you’re always fair, and you know you’re always compliant.

3. Fine-tune the way you surcharge

If you have a Smartpay terminal, you can tweak how you surcharge to suit the way your business works. 

You have flexibility to set your surcharge as a percentage per transaction or even waive the fee for some contact (insert or swipe) transactions via the bypass function .

You can also create a truly contactless payment experience by deactivating the “surcharge prompt”. Doing this removes the manual confirmation step but displays the surcharge value on-screen. This approach is compliant, convenient, and offers a truly contactless experience to your customers. 

We give you the control to make surcharging more configurable and flexible to provide a better experience to your customers.

4. Focus on your bottom line

Surcharging could save your business thousands of dollars. Many merchants choose to invest these savings back into their business: on more staff, advertising, and even customer loyalty programs.

Offering more payment options can attract more customers and encourage loyalty while a surcharge can help offset the costs of acceptance. Customers can accept the surcharge to use their preferred payment method or use a no-cost payment method like inserting or swiping an EFTPOS or debit card. Either way, you get the sale.

If you already accept credit cards and contactless payments, and would like to surcharge, get in touch and we can help set this up free of charge. Otherwise, you’ll need to contact your bank to accept these payment methods first.

Speak with one of our Kiwi payment specialists today!

Every year our payment specialists help hundreds of businesses in all sorts of industries to get the right payment solution. Talk to us about your business today.