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  • New research from leading payments company Verifone shows that UK SMEs are moving to a digital-first approach with customers
  • Increase in consumers’ mobile device use is a significant contributor to the shift as the UK moves towards a cashless society

 Dublin  – New research commissioned by Verifone (NYSE: PAY), a leader in payment and commerce solutions, shows how United Kingdom (UK) small and medium enterprises (SMEs) are modernising their businesses to deal with the huge demand from a digitally-savvy society.

The independent report, conducted by Verve Partners Research and commissioned by Verifone for MoneyConf,, shows that more than a quarter (29 percent) of UK small and medium businesses now give their customers the option to pay using an app in store – an increasingly popular payment method for consumers, fueled by the popularity of mobile payments apps such as Google Pay and Apple Pay.

In addition, almost a fifth (17 percent) of micro-businesses are also tapping into the trend and accepting payment apps to ensure a seamless, easy experience for their customers at the checkout.

 The Digital Demand

With UK consumers becoming more and more digitally demanding, and more than 81 percent of Brits now owning a smartphone, the new Verifone research shows that the country’s SMEs are eager to meet their needs by leaving traditional processes behind. More than a third (38 percent) of small and micro businesses, and 44 percent of medium sized businesses, now conduct payments with tablets and other digital devices.

 Nathan Gill, VP and Head of Solutions at Verifone, commented:

“Society has become familiar with the seamless use of apps and social media. Today, consumers expect to pay with the same speed and convenience as with these other aspects of their lives, but they also want other options at the checkout that extend beyond a traditional transaction – the ability to donate to charity or delay the debit from their account, for example. This demand from consumers is making retailers re-think their approach to payments, and it’s encouraging to see that businesses in the UK are now adjusting their technology to meet this demand.”

With the UK high-street currently undergoing a difficult period amid tightened consumer spending, the research also showed that UK businesses believe cost was a vital factor when exploring new payments technology – 45 percent of small and micro businesses, and 35 percent of medium sized businesses, say that transaction cost is a key factor when exploring payment solutions.

 Beccy Stamp, Director – Research & Consulting at Verve, added: “The cost of payment solutions and speed of receiving funds is certainly key. It’s encouraging to see from this research that UK small businesses are also looking towards the future, calling for payment solutions that offer the flexibility to adapt to the changing needs of the retail environment and are able to provide customers with digital solutions that are both seamless and secure.”

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