Paperless transactions are not only convenient but are also better for your health and for the environment.
Thermal paper, a thin-coated paper commonly used for receipts, labels and tickets is known to contain high levels of BPA and BPS, which are both hormone disruptors.
Studies conducted on thermal paper demonstrate that cashiers have higher than average levels of BPA in their blood simply due to handling receipts. However, since BPA and BPS are readily transferable through skin contact, most Americans are reported to have high levels of BPA and BPS in their urine.
Some states, such as Illinois, Connecticut and Suffolk country in New York have banned thermal receipts containing BPA, however certain states like California have not been successful in doing so. Still, many major retailers have moved towards issuing BPA-free receipts, mainly by using BPS instead, however studies show that this alternative has similar impacts.
Paperless Transactions: A relic of the past?
Besides negative impacts on human health, making the transition to digital receipts means less paper and less water consumption. As per “America’s Skip The Slip Campaign” by Green America, paper-based receipts have a surprising environmental impact.
Reports indicate that paper receipts are responsible for the following every year:
- 10 million felled trees
- Consume 21 billion gallons of water
- Generate 686 million pounds of waste
- Produce 12 billion pounds of carbon dioxide
For customers, digital receipts come in handy; you can’t lose them easily (unless you delete them), they don’t fade or get damaged when you spill water and you save a few minutes at checkout.
On the merchant’s side, enabling digital receipts means more upfront costs initially, however it’s a golden opportunity to build closer relationships with customers through tracking their consumer behavior and following up with targeted marketing campaigns. Moreover, digital receipts reduce overhead operating costs and the cost of potential fraudulent returns for merchants.
Paperless Transactions: How Does a Smart Terminal Work?
In order to issue digital receipts – through text message or email, you’ll need to invest in a smart terminal.
A smart terminal is a handheld device used to process card payments. They can be hardwired or wireless and require either a phone or internet connection in order for transactions to be processed. What’s most convenient is that smart terminals can be used remotely, making them ideal for small business owners whose work takes them off-site.
Electricians, plumbers, or landscapers can collect payment on-site at the time of service, making payment more convenient for the customer and reducing headaches that accompany invoicing and bill payment for the business owner. For creators, smart terminals are essential for festival season and make it easy for admirers to become customers.
The transaction process remains the same: customers’ credit or debit cards need to be swiped or their card information needs to be manually entered into the machine. The request is then sent to the merchant services provider and to the acquiring bank for approval. When the payment is approved, the funds are sent to the merchant and the sale is finalized.
In this day and age, customers are more likely to carry credit cards rather than cash, therefore having a smart terminal will make a difference in your sales volume; you’ll satisfy your customer, you’ll have less cash hanging around and it means that processing credit card payments will be easier.
For smart terminal suggestions, we suggest Payanywhere due to its cost, user-friendly platform and wide range of business solutions tailored to businesses of varying sizes.
In addition, Payanywhere can easily help you set up paperless transactions, so that you save on paper costs while keeping your health (and your customers and staff’s health) and environment footprint in mind.
Learn more about Payanywhere.