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Taylor Havlisch

March 30th, 2018

3min Read

A Gift from the Major Credit Card Brands: No More Signing for Purchases

Business owners sure have been through a lot when it comes to the evolution of credit card payments. In the span of 60 years, we’ve gone from the introduction of the first plastic credit card by American Express all the way to the ease of Apple and Google Pay. It’s hard to keep up with ever-changing payment technology, but there’s a new change in particular coming next month that ought to make merchants (and their customers) pretty pleased.

You may have heard that the major credit card brands MasterCard, Discover, American Express and Visa have all agreed to spare merchants the need to make customers sign for credit card purchases.

That’s right. Think of all the extra time you’ll have! OK, that may be a slight exaggeration, but when you’ve got 15 customers in line, every little step toward streamlining the checkout process counts. Not to mention, your customers will be happy they won’t have to scribble some illegible shape just to get the transaction over with.

Visa was the last to get onboard with the no signature thing and earlier this year announced they would make the signature requirement optional for all EMV contact or contactless chip-enabled merchants. That’s a pretty good deal. Digital Transactions magazine is actually predicting Visa’s condition will “provide another boost for merchants who have yet to adopt chip-card acceptance.” According to data from Visa, EMV technology has been tremendously successful at reducing fraud at the point of sale, with a noticeable decline of 66% for chip-enabled merchants.

You can check out each card brand’s announcements about the signature change by clicking on the below:

Together they’ve decided that the signature is no longer a necessary part of the checkout process, especially considering the more modern measures now taken to protect customer data. This change is not expected to have an impact on security because solutions like EMV technology and tokenization have come to serve as much more valuable methods to protect merchants and customers against fraud.

What it certainly will have an impact on is the customer experience during checkout.

The move will help merchants speed customers through checkout, provide more consistent experiences for every customer with every purchase and should decrease costs associated with safely storing signatures.” MasterCard

For businesses with CardConnect merchant accounts, you’ll be happy to know we’ve been making changes on our end too so you’ll have updated terminals in time for the removal of signature.

Please keep in mind, this requirement change is absolutely optional. There may be instances where merchants would like to continue to require capturing the signature of their customers, and if that’s the case, you are more than welcome to do so. For example, you may have a return policy that you’d like your customers to acknowledge, in which case you may want to continue to have them sign a copy of the receipt for your records. Or, if you aren’t accepting EMV cards at this time, it may still be a good idea to grab customer signatures.

If you’re ready to update your equipment to get rid of the signature requirement for purchases, visit the dedicated page our Support Center that provides instructions for the steps to take, depending on the equipment you’re using to process with CardConnect.

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