Never had EFTPOS before?

EFTPOS is everywhere you go in New Zealand. But what is it, how does it work, and is it right for your business?

EFTPOS stands for Electronic Funds Transfer at Point of Sale, and it has been around since 1985. It’s now as Kiwi as Marmite on toast and accounts for more than 60% of all retail transactions. In 2016, that worked out to be almost $80 billion worth .

So, if you’re in business, it’s important to understand how EFTPOS works and its benefits.

  • EFTPOS is the main way New Zealanders pay for things – it’s even more popular than cash
  • It lets customers pay you on the spot – at the counter, on the job or online – using a bank, debit, credit or other card
  • The transaction is electronic so you know immediately that your bank has accepted payment
  • The money typically hits your bank account the next business day
  • EFTPOS is easy-to-use, fast, safe and cost-effective

Before your customer can make a purchase by EFTPOS, you’ll need to have a few things ready, including:

An EFTPOS terminal

This allows you to take card payments on the spot. The right terminal for you will depend on your business. If you run a café you might want a counter-top device that connects by broadband. If you’re a tradie, a mobile device that connects by 3G might work best.
We can help you choose the right terminal and features for your business and set it up so you can hit the ground running.

A Merchant ID

You get a Merchant ID when you set up a merchant facility with a bank. A merchant facility allows you to accept credit card and EFTPOS payments. Again, we can help you organise this if you’re leasing a terminal from Smartpay.
The bank that provides your merchant facility is called your merchant bank. They will often (but not necessarily) also be your acquiring bank. The merchant bank is the one you deal with for day-to-day banking. The acquiring bank works in the background to process your EFTPOS transactions.

An EFTPOS Network

The network enables your terminal, the acquiring bank and the issuer (the bank that issued the card) to safely connect. Your terminal packages up the data and sends it to the network. The network then sends the details about the transaction back and forth each party to determine if a purchase should be accepted or declined. As soon as there is an answer, the result is sent back to your terminal.

An EFTPOS network is ultra-secure and uses the latest industry security standards to encrypt any information sent across it. There are two EFTPOS networks in New Zealand – Smartpay terminals connect to the Paymark network. If you need to stay connected to your current network we can still help you out.

Next Steps

Learn about the process of getting set up

Now you know all about EFTPOS, read about the steps to getting set up to accept card payments.


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Request a quote today or call 0800 476 278 to speak with a sales specialist

Existing customer looking for help or support? Contact our Customer Service team

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