Should I Accept Android Pay?

Android phone users and retailers alike have been anticipating the launch of Android Pay since it was first announced at Google I/O back in May. Now, the wait is over. On September 10, Google revealed that initial rollout of the payment service had begun, with the plan to expand to more banks and stores and adding more features in the coming days and months. We already told you what it is and how to accept it, but the big question you’re probably asking yourself is, “Should I give my customers the opportunity to pay with it?”

Answering the following questions can help you determine whether it makes sense for your business to accept Android Pay:

1. How tech-savvy are my customers?

If the majority of your customers have smartphones, then the majority of your customers can make NFC payments. See, Android powers 93 percent of all smartphones that have NFC, so when Google first announced Android Pay back in May, mobile payments gained immediate momentum.

Today, users who already use Google Wallet can upgrade to Android Pay immediately, while those who are new to Google’s mobile payment offering can download Android Pay a few days after the initial rollout. In other words, NFC has a lot of influence in the payments world—and that influence is growing. In 2015, 416 million NFC-equipped phones are expected to ship, with that number skyrocketing to 1.2 billion by 2019.

That means you’ll want to seriously consider offering mobile payment options soon. If your customer base is full of millennials and early adopters, it’s all the more reason to consider offering NFC-based mobile payments.

2. How tech-savvy are my competitors?

If your competitors accept Android Pay, or will soon, you should do the same. As of now, 1 million NFC-equipped retailers—including Macy’s, Whole Foods and Toys R Us—can accept Android Pay from all users that have updated to or downloaded the new payment method, and that number will continue to spike in the following months.

If you want to stay competitive, you should also consider building your own app through the platform. Soon, Google plans to roll out the ability to let customers pay for their purchases before they even walk through your store, giving you a clear advantage with mobile shoppers.

3. Am I looking for incremental revenue opportunities?

One cool thing that differentiates Android Pay from Apple Pay is that it will soon come with the ability to offer built-in loyalty programs and discounts. If you aren’t taking advantage of these types of incremental revenue opportunities (a.k.a. more money in your pocket), Android Pay could be a perfect opportunity to start.

4. Is my existing point of sale terminal NFC-ready?

NFC-compatible POS systems are ready for Android Pay. You may need to call your POS provider for a quick software upgrade, but you should be up and running in no time. If you accept one kind of NFC payment, it’s a no-brainer to accept Android Pay, especially because it’s built into the most prevalent smartphone OS in the U.S.

5. Is it time to upgrade my POS anyway?

Let’s face it. A lot of businesses run their POS systems into the ground—and that’s okay. But there comes a day when all devices must go to technology heaven. If that day is nearing for your POS, consider selecting a new one that has the built-in ability to accept NFC payments.

Additionally, it’s vital to remember that the EMV deadline is coming up in October, which means many merchants need to upgrade their terminals anyway. If you’re one of those retailers, you might as well pick a solution like Genius that accounts for both EMV and NFC.

So, will your business be accepting Android Pay in the near future? Tell us why you think it’s worth the upgrade—or not—on Twitter: @cayan.