We seem to be rapidly heading towards a cashless society and any business that is not geared up to take credit and debit card payments from their customers is likely to find themselves losing out on business.

A PDQ machine is a device that is designed to process card payments and it is one of the most frequently used ways of taking payments from retail customers.

Growing in popularity

The growth in popularity of PDQ machines that you can get through signing up with suppliers such as Merchant Services UK, means that they have gone from being used by major national retailers to appearing in many different outlets and business throughout the UK.

One of the reasons why they have become so readily accepted is that consumers like the idea of being able to swipe the card through the machine themselves rather than giving up their card to the merchant or store employee.

Processing payments

There are two slightly different steps involved when using a PDQ machine, depending on whether you are taking payment from a credit card or a debit card.

Card payment (PD)If you are processing a credit card payment, the machine will normally simply print a receipt with an approved or declined message on it, which may or may not require a signature from the customer to verify the transaction.

If taking payment by debit card, the cardholder will probably be asked to enter their four-digit PIN to verify and confirm the transaction.

There are often fees that are associated with having a PDQ machine but the majority of retailers consider this to be a price worth paying when you consider the flexibility it offers in being to provide their customer with the options that most of them want these days, when it comes to paying for goods or services.

Rent or buy?

The cost of renting a PDQ machine will vary based on a number of contributory factors, such as the supplier rate, the number of terminals you require and the length of the rental contract you agree to sign for.

The majority of PDQ machines in circulation are rented to business, who pay a flat monthly fee for the rental cost. The machine will be linked to a merchant account that you set up with your PDQ supplier, so that payments are then made to your business bank account.

A typical outlay for renting a PDQ machine would be somewhere around £20 to £30, which will include the cost of a maintenance and assistance package. You can purchase these machines outright for anything up to £750, but you will have to pay extra for any maintenance or repairs needed.

Renting is generally considered the more viable option overall, as you will get a replacement machine or an updated version as part of the package. As technology improves and more fraud and security measures are developed, it makes sense to keep up to date with these developments, which is easier to do when you are renting a PDQ machine.

There are transaction fees to consider, which is a commission charge based on a percentage of the transaction. You can probably negotiate transaction fees with your PDQ supplier based on the volume and value of annual transaction and there is the opportunity of passing these charges onto the customer if you want to.

If you want to stay ahead in business and provide your customers with a convenient and secure way of paying for their goods and services, you should definitely consider having a PDQ machine.

By Carl Robinson

Carl has been a key member of the business world for some time now. When he's not running his business, he's sharing his know-how with others. You can read his helpful posts on a variety of business and merchant websites.

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