Online payments giant PayPal is bringing its European point-of-sale business Zettle to the US in an effort to tap into the in-person point-of-sale payments market.
Targeted at small businesses, Zettle provides payment options for in-person purchases as well as online shopping, which PayPal said would “help create a true omnichannel commerce experience”.
Businesses have been scrambling to redesign their models over the past 18 months as consumers were forced to conduct most of their shopping online during the Covid-19 pandemic. This has meant adapting to a sharp increase in online sales activity, and the increasing rollout of contactless and cashless payments.
Research from the National Retail Federation (NRF) and Forester, published in April, found that consumers were worried about touching surfaces during the pandemic, leading to a rise in interest in and use of contactless payment methods.
The State of Retail Payments study found that 67% of retailers surveyed accepted some form of no-touch payment.
“Consumers want seamless and integrated digital experiences no matter where they shop,” said Jim Magats, senior vice president for omni payments at PayPal. “As a result, small businesses need access to omnichannel payment and commerce tools to help them effectively compete and meet their customers wherever they are – in-person, online and in-between.”
In a column for Banking Exchange published at the start of this year, Stefan Merz, chief operating officer at PPRO, highlighted that the pandemic had given payments firms – including banks – a significant opportunity to innovate.
PayPal said its Zettle offering will help small businesses manage sales, inventory, reporting and payments across physical and digital channels, as well as use the group’s wider suite of payment and commerce tools.
Mark Rosales, vice president for business development and payments at BigCommerce – which provides the technology platform for Zettle – said: “As merchants adapt their businesses to start selling across more channels, the complexity of managing operations becomes a primary point of friction.” Integrating across channels enables businesses to simplify their payment structures and improve the transparency of their revenues and distribution, he added.