EMV Transition Has Been A Nightmare For Businesses. This Guide Should Help.

EMV Chip Card

EMV Transition Has Been A Nightmare For Businesses. This Guide Should Help.

EMV Chip Card


Transitioning to accept EMV chip cards has been a nightmare for businesses, small and large. And the result of this confusion has been loss of millions of dollars and growing, in fraudulent chargebacks!

So here is a must-read EMV transition guide that will walk you through everything you need to know step-by-step.

What is EMV?

EMV stands for Euronet, masterCard and visa. It is a security standard adopted by the payment industry to reign in on billions of dollars of credit card frauds committed every year in US alone. This security standard has been adopted in most parts of the world, but is still fairly new to the United States. It just had it’s first year anniversary.

EMV is also popularly referred to as ‘chip card’ as well.

Why should I upgrade my equipment?

For starters, EMV Compliance is NOT a law as many people assume. You are not doing anything illegal if you still using the old “Swipe and Sign” process on your terminal or integrated POS.

However, it is important to know that you will be held liable for any fraudulent transactions that happen at your location because you did not upgrade to an EMV compliant equipment.

Previously when you fell victim to a chargeback, the issuing bank investigated and based on the proof submitted, covered you for the disputed amount.

But starting October 1, 2015 the responsibility has been shifted to the merchant or the one with the weakest link in the payment process.

The image below is a great illustration to help you understand these changes:



Chargebacks have been on rise exponentially, in thousands of dollars every month, especially at Lounges/Bars, High-End Restaurants, Liquor stores and Gas stations.

A discovery channel video below shows how easy it is for credit card fraudsters to make fake credit cards and use at your locations.

How to upgrade and how much it cost?

The first step to upgrade to EMV is to understand your needs. Do you need to be able to accept EMV chip cards only or you need to adjust tips as well on those EMV transaction.

Or you  want your customers to enter their debit card PIN on those EMV transactions?

There are various different features that you need to be aware of and then decide the terminal model.

Especially if you are a business that takes tips.

Not ALL terminals support tip adjustment at the end of the day. It depends on the type of terminal and the processor that supports it.

There are 2 components that make up your EMV compliance.

  1. Hardware – The equipment needs to have the slot to enter the chip card
  2. Software Certification – Software needs to be certified by the processor for that particular hardware to accept EMV.

Every processor supports different terminal/hardware for EMV and Tip Adjust. So for example, if Ingenico ict220  is supported by First Data for EMV + Tip Adjust, does not mean all other processors will support the same hardware for EMV + Tip adjust.

The terminals below are certified by First Data to accept chip cards.

  1. Verifone Vx520 – Accepts chip cards, Accepts Tip adjust after the sale.

           Recommended for restaurants or businesses that accept tips.


Verifone Vx520


 2. Ingenico ict220 – Accepts EMV chip cards + Tip adjust.

Recommended for businesses that need to accept tips.


Ingenico 250


Approx: $250

3. Clover Mini – Accepts EMV chip cards with Debit PIN + Tip adjust, Apple Pay and Android Pay and can connect using Wi-Fi.

Features to Note:

  1. Customer can sign using their finger on screen and opt for text, email or paper receipt.
  2. Clover Mini can also be connected to cash drawer and replace your old cash register.
  3. Retailers can also download Register software and turn this into a full fledged POS SYSTEM.

Recommended for any businesses that need to accept debit cards with PIN, better receipt management or POS functionality.


Approx: $450

  1. FD 130 – Accepts EMV chip cards + Tip adjust, Apple Pay, Android Pay and can be connected using Wi-Fi.

Recommended for businesses that need to accept tips, and Debit PIN

FD 130 EMV


Approx: $350

Once you figure out what features you need and what terminal you want to buy, it’s time to go shopping.

BUT, let me warn you – Don’t just buy from the cheapest place you can find. You might buy something that’s totally worthless for you. Not all equipment will work with your processor. Usually, the terminals are locked to a specific processor just like how your cell phone is locked to works with a certain wireless provider.

Don’t just buy from the cheapest place you can find. You might buy something that’s totally worthless for you. Not all equipment will work with your processor. Usually, the terminals are locked to a specific processor just like how your cell phone is locked to works with a certain wireless provider.

Usually, the terminals are locked to a specific processor just like how your cell phone is locked to work with ONLY certain wireless provider.

Option 1:

If you already have a service provider you can call them and ask for their pricing but make sure they are not locking you in multi-year processing contract, a lease or any monthly rental fee.

It’s ALWAYS best to buy your own equipment. Not only will you get the best deal on your processing but you have the flexibility to move your processing to someone else and use the same terminal.

The saying ” There is NO free lunch” cannot be more true in credit card processing industry.

A brand new Verifone VX520 should not cost you more than $250. If the provider quotes anything more than that, here are two things you should do:

  1. Buy your own terminal online and stay with your current company if you are happy with their processing rates. But before you place an order, ask your processor if they support Verifone Vx520 or any other terminal you wish to order and will provide all the features you need.

Pitfalls to look out for while ordering online:

  1. Never buy a used terminal as they may be locked to work with certain processor only.
  2. Avoid buying from Ebay, Craigslist, or Amazon or any other reseller sites. Many companies will sell you very cheap just so they can get you into processing agreement with them. Just make sure you do your homework.
  3. Look for a new company that will provide a terminal at a fair price or subsidized price for the equipment.
  4. While hardware equipment is one component of your merchant account, processing rates are something that must NOT be ignored.

Always make sure you are getting a fair deal without any contracts. To understand a little more about the same, definitely read through our post on how to get best deal on your merchant processing.

Or better, subscribe to our FREE Savings course and learn how to save ridiculous amount of money on credit card processing by clicking  HERE.

We hope this guide was simple to understand and will help you in implementing the EMV migration successfully.

We here at Onesto Payments believe in absolute transparency and love to educate our customers. Feel free to contact us to get our equipment and credit card processing rates. You will be glad you did.!


How to Get Media Coverage for Your Retail Business

How to Get Media Coverage for Your Retail Business

Every small business owner knows that it is impossible to thrive without customers. But what they don’t realize is that getting noticed by media is an excellent option to gain traction and boost sales. Moreover, appearing in a newspaper/magazine or on a television channel increases the credibility of the business manifold.

Bringing the media spotlight on your business is not as difficult as it seems. All you need is some meat to offer to journalists that can be converted into interesting stories later. Scan through the following tips to get media coverage for your retail business smartly:

1. Share Newsworthy Content

If you observe closely, every story has an angle. It is neither a run-down of services offered by an organization nor is it an advertisement of sorts. A published article has an angle that piques the interests of not only the journalist who writes or records it but also the readers.

Therefore, don’t be too salesy. Pitch the story behind your business or the upcoming event you are organizing. The story can even be around how your product/service is changing the lives of your customer base.

media newspaper business

Here’s an example: Onesto Payments solves payment and POS challenges for small businesses. The solutions it offers are free from the risk of being cheated by technology providers. It walks an extra mile to keep its customers equipped with the latest knowledge of everything related to payment processing.

Now, the story can be about small businesses which have taken help from Onesto Payments and benefited from it.

You can even connect with your vendors or clients to work around a story. Whatever you share should have the power to resonate with the readers. Moreover, the story should throw a positive light on your business.

2. Target Local Press

It is always beneficial to be covered by a national newspaper or a TV channel. However, local media outlets are equally important. In fact, it is easier to tap into localized press. After all, they cater to your city or town.

Local media outlets support businesses in three ways:

  • Provide faster recognition
  • Boost sales
  • Add to the business’ credibility

If the local story on your business is that inspiring, compelling or impressive – it just might catch the eye of bigger publications and augment your presence even more. Start small, gain big!

3. Send Out Press Releases

This is a traditional PR tactic. If done right, a press release can fetch you the attention of many publications. All you have to do is make sure you don’t disseminate press releases just for the heck of it. The content should be newsworthy – and add value to readers. Writing a press release will also help you in creating strong and topical pitch ideas for journalists.

4. Connect With Journalists On Ground Level

It is easy to send pitches to generic email IDs – but connecting to specific journalists is a different ball game altogether. Try to reach out to them personally. Meet them for a cup of coffee or invite them over for lunch.

Also, read articles published about your industry. Meet the writers. Scan through pieces written on your competitors. Connect with journalists behind those articles. Ask your PR team to apply a “go-getter” approach.

5. Personalize Your Emails

Once you have identified the journalists working on your industry’s stories, personalize your emails accordingly. Start the email by referencing a recent article or a tweet they wrote. That way it becomes easier to relate to your business.

Tailor the tone of your pitch as per the journalist and the publication (s)he works for. The approach to reach out to journalists must vary, else they’d think you’re just another small business trying to be a big deal by making tall claims.

6. Don’t Forget To Follow-Up

Journalists receive tons of emails every day. The nature of these emails varies from pitches and official correspondence to howlers. If you don’t hear back from them within a week – write them a follow-up message reminding them about pitch.

And if you still don’t get a response from them despite repeated follow-ups, it is time to move on to another reporter. Don’t make the mistake of sitting on your pitch. It is necessary to follow-up with the journalist. You never know (s)he might become a close contact of yours through continuous correspondence.

Also, don’t waste your pitches. Be highly aware of those you are sending a story pitch to. Don’t reach out to too many journalists at the same time. That will make you look desperate. You may also lose out on potential stories or severe relations with the journalist. Be patient.

One of the best ways to be on the top of your PR game is to create a PR team.

Networking with media is a continuous task without a deadline. You have to stay connected to them, pitch them story ideas and get follow-ups almost regularly. The PR of your business can’t stay afloat if you don’t have a specific team working solely towards it.

The image of your business is in your hands. Be wise.

5 Ways Small Businesses Can Use Pinterest And Instagram For Sales

5 Ways Small Businesses Can Use Pinterest And Instagram For Sales

An effective social media strategy plays an important role in our digitally-driven world. As a small business owner, social media is extremely useful for you. From building brand value to gaining customer loyalty—there are various benefits of being on top in the social media game.

While Facebook and Twitter have already secured a spot for driving traffic and increasing sales, the use of Pinterest (73+ million users) and Instagram (300+ million users) for the same has also seen a phenomenal rise in recent times.

pinterest and instagram for small businesses

Let us take a look at how you, as a small business owner, can use these “visual” social platforms to increase sales:

1. Reaching Out And Engaging Customers

Use both platforms to spread awareness among targeted customers about the product or service your business offers. Pinterest and Instagram allow the users to scroll through the timeline and pin boards and find all images under one umbrella with a simple hashtag.

This means that they can upload a picture of your product on Instagram and/or create a separate pin board of engaging images on Pinterest. This improved customer engagement on a personal basis is a powerful medium to create conversions on your company website.

2. Helping In Creating A Brand

As a small business owner, you must implement a proper marketing strategy on social platforms to create an online brand image. And, what more can represent a clear brand image than a photograph? Therefore, pick those creatives for your Pinterest and Instagram accounts that actually connect with the product or service of your business.

On Pinterest, particularly, go for thematic boards or How-To guides. Stick to a format and experiment with the visual content. If you have the financial bandwidth, you can even post short clips on Instagram to increase recall value among customers. If you can create a wonderful impression among the social media savvy users, you get the sales!

3. Make ‘Buying & Selling’ Possible

Although a recent development, Pinterest and Instagram now have a revenue button on their platforms. This, by the way, is of great significance for small business owners. On Pinterest, this button is in the form of a ‘buyable pin’ and is seen right next to the regular pins that are used by users to create customized boards.

If you click this button, you are redirected to the checkout where you can make the purchase. On the other hand, if you want to sell your product or service on Instagram, you will have to actually contact the team to get a ‘Shop Now’ button on your profile.

4. Encourage The Customers To Visit Your Website

The best way to increase conversion rates is to direct the customer base to the website. Whether you do it through social posts, newsletters or consumer forums—it is extremely important for you to gain maximum traction on the website.

While you can have the website link on all your prominent social networking profiles, there’s adequate space for you to experiment with this on Pinterest and Instagram. Have you ever noticed the ‘Location’ tag whenever you upload an Instagram post? Well, you can use that to insert the URL of the website, rather than the location itself!

On Pinterest, you can actually insert the link (redirecting to your company website) in the pin itself. The only catch is that links are actually clickable on this social platform, as compared to Instagram where they would appear as text. If the original URL is too long, create a short link that can go up on Instagram.

5. Focus On The Needs And Behaviour Of Target Market

The content uploaded and shared on Pinterest and Instagram is controlled by the users. What they want to see on their timeline or what they want to pin is totally their prerogative. Hence, you have to understand the behaviour of the customer base.

That is possible once your brand gets a few buyable posts on Pinterest and Instagram. Then you will be able to narrow your focus even more on exactly who is interested in your product or service. For instance, Instagram will soon integrate its new feature with Facebook Ads.

This means that small business owners will be able to sell with heightened interest and waste less in their marketing and advertising budgets.

It’s safe to say that both Pinterest and Instagram have evolved as social platforms. Pinning photos mindlessly or uploading selfies—that’s not what everyone does on those platforms anymore.

In other words, they are not just restricted to casual networking but have grown to be of huge help to small businesses.

10 tips to greatly improve small business income

10 tips to greatly improve small business income

It does not matter if you are running a restaurant, bar or retail store -small business owners can improve income by playing smart. You might be running your business alone or with help of 10 people, you can grow your business by making conscious choices. These tips will assist you in going an extra mile.

Money saving


1. Assess your income and expense

Most of the businesses keep an eye on their revenues and cost, but not all analyze on the monthly basis. Spend some time on understanding the cashflow. You will find some points where you can increase your income and reduce your expenses. Small improvements can yield significant results with time.

2. Improve marketing

Don’t just rely on walking in customers. A small investment in marketing can improve your business. Do some offline and online marketing to find out what works for your business. Google & Facebook help local businesses to spread the word in their vicinity.

3. Online Reviews

Get yourself listed on popular online review platforms like Yelp. Be prepared to face angry and happy customers who write their experience with your business. Politely answer each review and resolve their concerns. An excellent opportunity for you to improve and provide better service to your customers.

4. Set Goals

You may lose track of your progress without having any goals. You should know whether you are growing your business as per the plan or not. You will put extra efforts when you have goals in front of you.

5. Business Trends

Be aware of what’s happening in the market. There might be new product launch in the market, or some brand is giving away discounts as a promotional strategy. You must grab the opportunity to be part of trends in the market

6. Train your Employees

When you are not around, your employees take care of your business. Invest time and money to improve their skills. A bad employee can hit your business growth while a good worker can help you boost your revenues.

7. Find better Salesmen

Marketing does a job of bringing the customer to your door; it’s salesman who sells to make you money.

Once an owner saw that his agent sold a hat to the customer who was buying a fishing rod, “Sir, summer is on a peak. This hat will protect you from direct sun while fishing”. The owner appreciated his salesman for his smartness of cross-selling.

His agent said, ”Actually, the customer wanted sanitary napkins for his wife. I asked him that what you will do for three days? Why don’t you go for fishing.”

A good salesman can sell $100 stuff to the customer who came to your store for $10 item.

8. Motivate your staff

Everyone have different reasons for motivation. Some need extra money; some need appreciation and some need extra free time. Understand your team and do whatever it takes to keep them motivated.

9. Customer is always right

It’s no secret, you should not argue with your customer. An unhappy customer will tell ten other people about his bad experience with your business. It’s better to lose one customer than many. If someone is not happy with your services, then try to address his concerns. If nothing works, then return his money and let him go with neutral feeling than negative.

10. Take a break

Get some time for yourself. Go for vacation and re-ignite your passion into your business. You will have a good relationship with your business when you have a better relationship with your family.


While your business is to make money, it’s wise to invest some money in marketing, sales and improving employee skills. Look for opportunities to increase your income and cut your expenses.

We, at Onesto, help you save money on your payment processing solutions.