Long before cash, people used to exchange goods and services without money. This trading system was called bartering. In the barter system, a baker would exchange two loaves of bread for a pair of shoes from the shoemaker. But this system has its limitations. For example, what if a shoemaker doesn’t need loaves of bread? How is the baker supposed to get the shoes he needs? This limitation led to a currency system where people used to exchange valuable things like animal skins or gold coins in return for goods or services. Then came the era of monetary currency where notes and coins were introduced.

Cash is no longer king.

Today, consumers around the world use various payment methods including credit and debit cards, online payment systems, e-wallets, and NFC contactless payments to name a few. These payments methods tend to be faster and more frictionless than paying with cash. For decades, it has been said that cash will eventually become obsolete. Specifically, in the wake of COVID-19, it looks like cash is, at the very least, outdated. Below are four main reasons why today’s consumers are carrying less legal tender than ever.

Enhanced security.

The simplest reason for cash being outdated is that it is very easy to get lost or stolen, and if it’s gone, it’s really gone. Whether it gets dropped, goes through the washing machine, or is damaged, cash is very easy to lose.

On the other hand, payment methods like debit or credit cards offer more protection to consumers. In case the card goes missing or stolen, consumers get protection from their financial service provider and the money remains safe. Another perk is that credit card companies cover consumers against unauthorized charges and offer purchase protection if a consumer’s order is lost, stolen, damaged, incomplete, or composed of unordered items.

A focus on safety.

Bills and coins offer a very hospitable environment for microbes such as viruses and bacteria to survive. As notes and coins keep passing between different individuals, it poses a potential health threat in terms of transmissible diseases.

With the world being struck with a major virus outbreak, organizations like the World Health Organization recommend we all thoroughly wash our hands after handling money and encourage people to use cashless payment methods where possible. This is where the NFC contactless payment method comes in handy. This payment method allows consumers to make transactions by simply hovering or tapping their contactless payment technology-equipped card or smart device near your NFC-equipped POS solution. This eliminates the need to swipe or dip a card into a credit card terminal or to hand it over to cashiers when checking out.

Benefits and rewards.

Another point where cash becomes really outdated is when we talk about rewards programs. Although there are retailers who offer discounts on cash purchases, there are a whole other wonderful world of possibilities! Whether it's amazing discounts at retail stores, exclusive offers at your favorite restaurant, free merchandise, or travel rewards, one can always enjoy the perks and benefits of going cashless.

Spending power.

How many times does it happen when your customers want to buy that beautiful dress or want the matching accessories and realize that they do not have enough cash handy? Well, that’s another instance when credit and debit cards come in handy.

In conclusion.

Given rapidly evolving technologies and our increasingly fast-paced lifestyles, it is not hard to imagine that perhaps one day, cash will indeed become obsolete. Make sure your business is positioned for sustained success by offering your customers a fast and frictionless checkout featuring their preferred payments methods.

Contact NAB today and see how easy it is to get the merchant services you deserve.

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