Smart Card Alliance Release Guide to Implementing Contactless Payments for Merchants

A new guide for merchants released by the Smart Card Alliance Contactless Payments Council aims to provide traders with comprehensive information on implementing contactless payments. The guide, entitled �Accepting Contactless Payments: A Merchant Guide,� is available along with a presentation, �Contactless Payment Deployment: Merchant Implementation Guide,� free of charge at

By making payment faster and more convenient, contactless payments lead to increased customer satisfaction and loyalty, and allow traders to reach a much broader customer base. This white-paper targets merchants who wish to take advantage of these benefits, for themselves and for their customers, but still have queries about how to start accepting contactless payments.

The Smart Card Alliance is the leading advocate of smart card technology in the United States and Latin America. A non-profit association uniting bodies across a multitude of industries, the Smart Card Alliance works to promote smart-card technology, its more widespread adoption and a better understanding of its implementation, through a variety of projects including training programs, market research, open forums and direct advocacy. The Smart Card Alliance is recognized as the foremost mouthpiece of the smart-card industry.

One of a number of councils set up by the Smart Card Alliance to promote smart-card technology and the smart-card industry, the Contactless Payments Council has brought together leaders in the financial industries, traders and suppliers, with the goal of promoting and facilitating the development of contactless payments in the U.S. The council's main aim is to educate consumers, traders, and issuers about the benefits of contactless payment, and to confront misapprehensions about the abilities and safety of contactless payments technology. Smart Card Alliance members are free to participate in the Council and to contribute to any of its projects.

This particular guide draws heavily on the experience of traders who already enjoy the benefits of contactless payments, with contributors from the Contactless Payments Council including American Express, Arby�s Restaurant Group, Inc., Discover Financial Services, Giesecke & Devrient, MasterCard Worldwide, VeriFone and ViVOtech. Says Randy Vanderhoof, executive director of the Smart Card Alliance: �Now, merchants can go to one place to find all of the information necessary to successfully plan for, implement and roll out contactless payments acceptance technology.�

The white paper and presentation covers the following topics:

  • A general introduction to the implementation of contactless payments and their advantages for traders
  • Advice on the practicalities of implementing contactless payments, including payment processing requirements, optimizing physical environment, and development and certification of software and hardware development
  • A guide for merchants to best practice in the fields of training, marketing and support
  • Details of contactless payments vendors, and other resources available to merchants.
  • While the guide is aimed primarily at merchants new to the technology and implementation of contactless payments, Vanderhoof describes it as �a must-read� for all traders, whether they are only beginning to consider the possibility of contactless payments, are planning to deploy contactless payments technology, or are already accepting smart card payments in their daily business.

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