New Research Gauges Small Merchants’ Adoption of Mobile Payment Technology

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Joint ControlScan-TransFirst survey of Level 4 merchants discovers preferences and gaps, establishes important benchmark as mobile solutions take shape.

The rise in mobile device use, combined with an increasing number of technology offerings for mobile payment acceptance, is disrupting “business as usual” for small merchants. Those who have relied on a credit card machine for card-present payments and a standard website for online consumers are now faced with a rapidly growing customer base that utilizes smartphones to make online purchases as well as comparison shop from in-store locations.

The small business PCI compliance and security experts at ControlScan partnered with TransFirst, one of the nation’s largest privately-held payment processors, to survey Level 4 merchants regarding their awareness and adoption of mobile payment technology in multiple business scenarios. More than 730 merchants responded to the inaugural Mobile Payment Acceptance Survey, providing a revealing look into current technology preferences and gaps as well as perceived customer demand for mobile payment options.

“Consumer-based mobile technology solutions are exploding in the marketplace, promising to fundamentally change the merchant-consumer dynamic,” said Dave Abouchar, Sr. Director of Product Management, ControlScan. “As small business experts, we want to understand how the Level 4 merchants we and our acquiring partners serve are adapting to this change.”

The Mobile Payment Acceptance Survey touches on three specific mobile payment scenarios: 1) Customers using a mobile device to access the merchant’s online shopping cart and make purchases, 2) Merchants processing card-present payments using a smartphone or tablet, and 3) Customers using their mobile phones (mobile wallet) at the point of sale (POS) in lieu of physical credit cards.

While certain areas of the study measure awareness and adoption of emerging technologies, survey questions surrounding website optimization for mobile devices represent current opportunities for small merchants to better understand and meet their customers’ online purchasing requirements. In this area, the study found that the majority of small ecommerce merchants are not evolving their online businesses to capitalize on the mobile trend. Respondents say their lack of website optimization is due to low customer demand; however, these same merchants are not measuring key indicators of lost mobile sales, such as website traffic and online shopping cart abandonment by mobile users.

“Our goal is to understand merchants’ technology-related concerns and needs so we can continue to provide products and services that promote business growth,” said Craig Tieken, Director of Product, TransFirst. “The Mobile Payment Acceptance Survey has given us valuable insights to better engage and inform our customers.”

“As mobile devices and applications achieve marketplace ubiquity, implementation trends will develop among the Level 4 merchant group,” said Abouchar. “The regular delivery of this survey will build an important data set for future comparison.”


About the Mobile Payment Acceptance Survey
The ControlScan/TransFirst Mobile Payment Acceptance Survey was sent to randomly selected Level 4 merchants listed in the ControlScan and TransFirst databases. A total of 736 responses were collected from June 12 through July 16, 2012. To access a copy of the detailed research report for the inaugural Mobile Payment Acceptance Survey, please click on the following link:

About PCI Compliance and Security Provider, ControlScan
Headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, ControlScan is the leading provider of Payment Card Industry (PCI) Compliance and Security services designed to meet the unique needs of small to mid-sized merchants and the acquirers that serve them. The company’s flexible solutions, easy-to-use online tools and personalized support significantly simplify PCI and security for its clients. In addition, as an Approved Scanning Vendor and a Qualified Security Assessor, ControlScan is positioned to help merchants meet compliance requirements and maintain secure business environments for their customers. For more information about ControlScan and its cloud-based solutions visit or call 1-800-825-3301.

About TransFirst
A leading provider of secure transaction processing services and payment enabling technologies, TransFirst offers innovative products and services designed with financial institution, independent sales organization, healthcare, e-commerce, government and merchant customers’ unique needs in mind. By collaborating with our customers and utilizing strong industry knowledge, we help them grow their businesses. Founded in 1995, TransFirst continues to attain significant market share and world-class expertise in growing and profitable industry segments. Built on a platform of personal service, customer commitment and flexible pricing, TransFirst currently processes approximately $30 billion in annual sales volume for more than 175,000 merchants and financial institution partners. For additional information, please call 1-800-745-2659 or visit

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Stacey Holleran
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