What's a virtual terminal?

Published: 27/10/2020

Virtual terminals make taking payments over the phone super simple. 

We understand that now is a really tough time for small businesses, and many will be looking for new ways to keep trading until everything returns to normal, including taking phone payments so they can offer delivery or pick up services.

Taking card payments over the phone lets you reach customers who can't come to your business in person, opens doors that would be closed otherwise during this period and could help you keep trading until we get back to normality.

Whether you’re thinking about investing in your first virtual terminal, or have used one before, by the time you’ve finished this blog you’ll know everything from what they are and who they’re for, to how they work and what their key benefits are.

What’s a virtual terminal?

Simply put, it’s the online way to process transactions without a physical card terminal. It's also cheaper than processing phone payments through a card machine, so long as you follow all of the security steps.

Your customer can call you up to prepay for an item, whether it's food, drink, flowers, milk etc. Whether your customer’s in Edinburgh or Essex, with a virtual terminal, all you need is access to the internet, your log-in details and a dedicated link.

How it works

They’re literally as easy as one, two, three (so don’t worry if you’re somewhat of a technophobe!).

Step 1: your business will be given a custom link and this is the page you’ll need to head to every time you go to take a payment; all you need is access to the internet and you’re set to go.

Step 2: while you’ve got them on the phone, pop the customer’s payment details into the form.

Step 3: hit submit, send the receipt and voila, you’re done.

How many people can use a virtual terminal?

Once you’re set-up most virtual terminals let you add multiple users (well, our does anyway) so all of your staff can take payments at the same time.

Tip: if there are certain things you don’t want everyone to see you can hide them by giving users different levels of authority.

Who uses them? 

There are no bounds to who can use a virtual terminal. Maybe you’re a restaurant and want takeaway money upfront, a cafe who is starting to deliver milkshakes and coffees, or an event organiser and want to take a deposit to secure a booking.

What are the benefits?

Now we can’t speak for the rest of the providers out there, but with takepayments virtual terminals couldn’t be easier. Quick to set-up, easy to access and simple to use, it’s the perfect phone payment companion.

Here’s what your business could look like with one in tow:

1. Streamlined payment processes

You won't be reliant on cash payments. Instead, the new you can painlessly put a card payment through right there, right then.

2. Shared workloads

With the option to add several users you won’t have to bear the brunt of being the sole cashier. Make your life a little easier and take the load off your plate by letting your team take payments too.

3. Broadened horizons

As well as servicing your existing customers during this time, you can start expanding your net to reach new ones too.

4. Complete peace of mind

Virtual payments are safe and go through Address Verification System (AVS) security checks to make sure the person who’s giving the details actually owns the card.

5. It's more hygienic

You won't have to handle cash, or get too close to your customers when you're dropping of their product or they're picking it up from you.

Ready to start?

If you’re on the hunt for a virtual terminal but you’re not sure where to start, we’ve got your back.

For more about us, what we offer and how we can help you, get in touch with our payments experts on 0808 274 2017.

Get your FREE quote today.

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