Retail and hospitality have been moving towards a cashless model since the advent of card payments decades ago. In fact, the adoption of frictionless payments has been so vast, cash transactions are forecast to be used in only 9% of all payments made by 2028. In other words, the sooner event venues take the leap, the better! Since then, we’ve had even more sophisticated solutions cropping up including cloud-based Point of Sale solutions, mobile ordering platforms and a whole lot of automation. Read all about why event venues should jump on the cashless bandwagon below.
1. Managing attendees
Large crowds and large venues are practically a package deal, and managing swarms of people will invariably lead to logistical issues. When opting for a dedicated POS, anything from order fulfilment to payment processing is automated. This means venue runners can do away with printed tickets and automate a whole host of otherwise manual workings that result in unmanageable queues, instead checking attendees in quicker and smoother than ever before.
With festival operations changing, many venues are starting to scrap wristbands altogether so even entry is eased, requiring only a quick scan of the downloaded ticket via the customer’s smartphone and getting guests into their seats in a matter of seconds.
2. Actionable insight
A dedicated POS system enables you to collect bouts of data on performance; from what items are selling, what items aren’t, stock levels, staff performance and a whole lot more.
Convenient, yes, but this also gives businesses insights unavailable with simple cash-based systems. Do customers drink differently depending on what event is on? A live band might generate more beer or draught sales, compared to a house or disco night, which increases the number of spirits people drink. Then again, it might be the other way around.
The difference is that where venues would have previously guessed these tendencies, EPOS offers certainty. Venues can change prices and offers depending on what will sell the best, which can make a huge difference to revenue streams and create targeted and informed marketing campaigns based on the available insight.
3. Lower labour costs
Accepting cash payments at your venue means committing valuable staff time to several tasks that will simply disappear if you choose to go cashless – setting up cash floats at the beginning of the day, periodically refilling the registers with change, counting and reconciling cash for each register at the end of the day and making bank deposits is both labour-intensive and time-consuming.
With cashless payments, however, everything is digitised through your Event POS, meaning you’re ready to go live as soon as the till is switched on and all that counting time is eliminated. Some venues are reporting labour cost savings of up to 2 hours per day per staff member – and those add up!
4. More Sales
On average, it takes roughly 15 seconds to complete a cash transaction, with a chip and pin roughly 7 seconds and contactless can be completed in just 2!
There have been several studies which compare card to cash payments and the simple fact is that, when using a card, people will spend more – and significantly so. It’s evident that customers prioritise comfort, speed and ease of use and enabling a smooth point of sale journey motivates customers to spend more time browsing and more likely to opt for upsell.
In fact, it has been reported that the average customer spend per visit to a stadium event can increase by as much as 25% when using a card payment instead of cash. With the volume of people coming to the venue, that extra 25% could amount to hundreds of thousands of pounds per event.
5. Ordering made easy
Mobile and in-seat ordering give venues a way to implement social distancing and offer convenience coupled with the atmosphere of a live experience not replicable from your home sofa.
Using mobile ordering, fans can order their food and drinks from their mobile device and either have it delivered to their seat or collect it as soon as it’s ready. Concession operators can also now use wireless, hand-held POS terminals to take quick-purchase items like drinks or ice-creams directly out to fans and accept payments right there
If mobile or in-seat ordering isn’t an option, placing self-service kiosks or checkouts near hospitality or merchandising outlets can give customers another way to fast-track their orders or purchases and can be used by concessions to promote cross-sells or up-sells too.
Take the leap
In-seat ordering and cashless transactions will, in time, become the new standard as more venues opt for innovative tech to address a whole host of demands and industry-specific conditions. Early adopters will no doubt stay competitive and as the general trend across all of the hospitality and retail space leans towards innovation, that little investment will allow venue runners are able to boost the customer experience, turnaround and profit.