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The Key to Surviving the PIN Pad Shortage

If you sell point of sale (POS) and payment solutions, you know some hardware is hard to come by these days. We’ve had reports that some vendors are reporting 40- to 50-week purchase order lead times for PIN pads and other payment devices. While pandemic-related manufacturing and supply chain disruptions are a part of the problem, the Semiconductor Industry Association explains something bigger – well, actually, smaller — is driving the problem: semiconductor chips.

Why There’s a Chip Shortage

PIN pad shortageThe association reports that about 1 trillion semiconductor chips are typically produced each year. However, global semiconductor chip sales grew 8.4 percent over the past year as workers worldwide quickly transitioned to remote work, often using new corporate laptops or mobile devices. The demand for new ways to compute didn’t only originate in the business sector, though. People complying with stay-at-home orders, with few entertainment options and staying in touch with family and friends, bought more computers, tablets, and smartphones, contributing to semiconductor chip demand.

Those same chips are required to make payment devices operate. As a result, vendors are hard-pressed to deliver the PIN pads, mobile payment devices, and smart card readers that merchants are clamoring for. It’s created a significant challenge for merchants attempting to upgrade their payment capabilities in response to changing consumer preferences. In certain markets, if there’s no contactless payment, no mobile payment curbside, no line-busting – there’s also no competitiveness and fewer sales.

How to Solve PIN Pad-Shortage Pain Points

Although you may feel powerless to deliver when payment devices are in short supply, you can leverage your payments partner to help you deploy a payment solution to meet your clients’ needs more quickly. Keep these three things in mind:

  • A hardware-agnostic payments solution provider allows merchants to use devices from various original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), giving your clients the ability to choose from dozens of PIN pads. Instead of waiting for one specific vendor’s devices to become available, you can point your clients to other devices that may be available sooner.

  • A payments solution provider with a feature-rich platform provides merchants with alternative payments, such as QR code payments or text-to-pay. These payment methods don’t require a PIN pad – the merchant generates QR codes or text links that customers can use to access payment pages. Merchants waiting for card readers capable of processing near-field communication (NFC), contactless payments can leverage QR code payment and text-to-pay until the card readers they need are available – or perhaps in place of those solutions in the long-term.

  • Your payments solution provider may also be able to support new merchants by enabling mag-stripe payments so that they can run non-EMV transactions temporarily until EMV-enabled payment devices are available.

One Partner Can Deliver Everything You Need

Independent software vendors (ISVs) and their value-added reseller (VAR) channels are problem-solvers by nature. The problem of a payment device shortage may seem bigger than most others you encounter, but by working with the right payments solution provider, you can offer your clients alternatives.

As you look for hardware-agnostic partners and partners that offer a full-featured, unified commerce platform — remember, you can find one payments solution provider that checks all those boxes.

To learn more about the advantages a partnership with Datacap can provide to your business – whether you’re finding ways to overcome a PIN pad shortage or simply looking for ways to offer your clients flexible, secure payment options — contact us.

Partner with Datacap to combat the PIN pad shortage today!