The PSR’s stance on payments will shake up the industry, enabling more choice and flexibility for merchants.
I had to think long and hard about how I comment on this, as one of the reasons we’ve always differentiated to many re-sellers of merchant services, has been our non-reliance on terminal commission and the need to tie customers into long contracts with crazy early termination fees.
Whilst a bit of me feels like we’re losing one of the reasons we stood out from the crowd, my main reaction is gratitude to the PSR for making a bold move towards their aim of making sure “all payment systems serve everybody as well as they can”. And again, in their own words, “promoting competition and innovation in the interest of the people and businesses using payment systems”.
We can hopefully say goodbye to re-selling business models built on tied terminal contracts of 3, 4 and even 5 years, and instead must readjust with a focus on customer experience, values, transparency and providing merchants with access to new and evolving payment solutions.
For those that already operate to the above modus operandi, there is nothing to fear from the changes. In fact, they will benefit from the second phase of regulation taking effect from July 2023, where prompts will be sent by card acquirers to businesses, allowing them to switch more easily and compare prices against other providers.
So, a question for providers of payment solutions, is when your customers receive the message prompts later in the year and beyond, are you providing a level of service, functionality and fair pricing, so they don’t feel the need to act.
I welcome the PSR’s latest regulations and as the UK’s largest independent broker who champions the need for the sector to serve businesses better, there is more work for them to do in making the merchant services sector more transparent and easier for businesses to navigate.