Avoid These 3 Traps with POS Tablet Marketing

Tablet-based POS systems bring amazing new customer engagement opportunities for retailers: customized promotions, loyalty tie-ins, instant discounts, and so much more. As a payment service provider, you’re in a key role to educate your merchants on the various revenue-building options they may employ. However, you might also find yourself in the equally important position of advising when to put on the brakes. There’s a fine line between presenting attractive offers and alienating consumers by pushing it too far. Be sure your merchants don’t fall into these three traps:

1. Avoid Choice Overload. Consumers are bombarded with thousands of choices all day long - one study estimates that we make an average of 35,000 decisions per day1. Once consumers enter a store, the level of decision making hits a fever pitch. What's on sale? What special promotions is the store running? What new products are available? However, people only have the ability to make a finite number of choices, before decision fatigue sets in. By the time a customer is ready to check out, they are commonly feeling mentally drained.

While tablet-based POS systems give your merchants an excellent opportunity to upsell, this window of opportunity is short. POS tablets make it easy to inject upsell opportunities into the checkout process with promotions, ads and discounts right on the tablet screen. However, because decision fatigue is real, merchants should take care not to overload customers with random choices that are not tailored to their interests. If a consumer has been overloaded with “junk” choices, even the greatest offer in the world becomes nothing more than visual clutter. Instead, urge your merchants to choose their engagement options strategically, focusing on quality over quantity.

2. Don’t Complicate the Process  Any options your merchants present at the point of sale must be clear, simple and obviously beneficial. Take a look at your retailers’ checkout processes. Are tablets cluttered with tedious click-through options? Are customers required to tap their email addresses into the system, key by painful key? Instead of building goodwill, these situations will only result in frustration. Instead, urge your merchants to streamline customer logins, add one-click promotions, and above all, keep it simple. A recent Neilson study showed that 4 out of 5 businesses using digital POS advertising increased sales by 33%2. Smart POS marketing means real profit for your retailers.

3. Don’t Drag It Out In our fast paced world, customers chafe at any sort of delay at the point of sale. 63% of consumers report significant frustration in waiting even a few extra seconds for a secure EMV transaction versus a less-secure card swipe3. Retailers know that every second counts. The great news is that tablet based systems offer some of the industry’s fastest, most secure and compliant transactions available. So, make sure your retailers don’t make the mistake of adding so many bells and whistles that the customer perceives checkout to be burdensome or slow.

For your merchants, the key to success with a tablet based POS system is to leverage customer data with the extensive programming options provided by tablet technology to produce targeted, intentional marketing at the point of sale. By helping your merchants implement effective marketing strategies, you’ll strengthen your position as a trusted support partner, while helping your retailers maximize their business success.


1. “The Cure for Decision Fatigue.” Wall Street Journal. Jim Sollisch. 6-10-16. https://www.wsj.com/articles/the-cure-for-decision-fatigue-1465596928

2. "The Benefits of Point of Sale Advertising." Media Caddy News. 7-30-14.  http://mediacaddy.com/the-benefits-of-point-of-sale-advertising/

3. “Study: More Than 80% of Shoppers Are Still Confused and Frustrated With Slow Chip Cards.” Point of Sale. 9-29-16. https://pointofsale.com/2016092914424/Payment-Processing/StudyMore-than-80-Percent-of-Shoppers-Are-Still-Confused-and-Frustrated-with-Slow-Chip-Cards.html

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