Apple Pay is a fast, easy, secure digital payment method growing more popular with consumers and businesses. If you’re a small business interested in accepting Apple Pay, we’ll break down everything you need to know about its benefits and costs, how it works for your business, and how to start accepting Apple Pay.
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Accepting Apple Pay is a straightforward process for businesses. Here’s how it works.
If you already accept credit cards:
If you already accept credit cards, here’s what to do to accept Apple Pay:
If you don’t accept credit cards yet:
If your business doesn’t already accept credit cards or your current processor doesn’t support Apple Pay, follow these steps:
If you need to accept credit card payments using your phone, you must ensure your credit card processor provides mobile card readers and supports mobile payments. Many mobile card readers are also NFC-enabled, so you can also accept Apple Pay.
Apple Pay is a digital wallet available to Apple device users on their iPhones, iPads and Apple Watches. Users can connect their Apple Pay wallets to bank accounts, credit cards, debit cards and even gift cards.
When users want to buy something from a merchant that accepts Apple Pay, they open the Apple Pay app on their device and hold it next to the NFC area on the merchant’s card reader. Payment is complete when four green lights appear and a chime sounds.
A business can also set up its website to accept Apple Pay as a payment form. Buyers click the Pay With Apple Pay button on the checkout page and confirm the purchase on their Apple device.
Once payment is made, Apple Pay funnels the funds from the buyer’s linked payment source to the merchant’s account.
To implement Apple Pay, your business must already accept credit cards. You’ll need a credit card processor or facilitator to accept and process customer payments for online and in-person purchases made with Apple Pay. That processor or facilitator must also accept Apple Pay and enable Apple Pay on your account. For in-person payments, you’ll need a card reader that accepts NFC payments.
When a customer purchases using Apple Pay, the credit card processor or facilitator processes the transaction and deposits the money into your account, minus any fees.
Apple Pay has many upsides for buyers and merchants. Here’s a look at some of the top reasons a business should consider accepting Apple Pay.
Since it uses NFC technology, Apple Pay is a contactless payment method, which many consumers prefer. In fact, in the United States, proximity mobile payment users are expected to grow from 92.3 million in 2020 to 125 million by 2025.
According to Statista, Apple Pay consumer adoption is growing strong. Over half of U.S. survey respondents said they’d recently used Apple Pay in a store, while over 30 percent used it online. And Apple reports that over 85 percent of U.S. retailers accept Apple Pay – so not accepting it puts your business at a competitive disadvantage.
Because each payment goes through with just a tap, mobile contactless payments are the fastest way to pay, dramatically improving the customer waiting experience. If you have a business where customers line up to pay, shortening the purchase process can mean a faster line. Customer satisfaction improves with shorter waits, and fewer customers will abandon the line without making a purchase.
Apple Pay transactions are very secure because the card data is tokenized, encrypted and always changing, making it extremely difficult for criminals to steal customer card data. When data is tokenized, the underlying data – in this case, the customer’s credit card or bank account info – is replaced by a series of randomly generated numbers.
Every time someone makes a purchase with Apple Pay, the system generates a new token. This token is then interpreted and changed back into useful information after it gets to the payment processor.
In addition to its security features, Apple Pay requires users to verify themselves with FaceID, a fingerprint, or a mobile device passcode. These measures aim to prevent unauthorized purchases made from lost or stolen Apple devices.
Apple Pay’s security safeguards result in less fraud, fewer chargebacks and more consumer confidence in your business and Apple Pay.
There is no cost to the buyer to use Apple Pay to make purchases. However, your credit card processor or facilitator will charge your business a fee for each Apple Pay transaction, just as it would for every credit card transaction. The transaction fee is a percentage of the purchase total plus a flat per-transaction amount.
Credit card processors don’t charge any additional fees for Apple Pay transactions, so there are no additional costs related to accepting Apple Pay beyond their standard credit card processing fees.
Many of the best credit card processors and facilitators accept Apple Pay. Here’s a breakdown of top processors and their associated fees.
Apple Pay in-person transaction fee
Cost of NFC-enabled card reader
2.6% + $0.10
2.7% + $0.05
Processors (may also charge monthly fees)
0.29% to 1.55%
Free for new customers
2.6% + $0.10
$9.95 per month
Interchange + 0.5% + $0.15
Free for new customers
To reap the benefits of accepting Apple Pay, you must let customers know it’s a payment option.
Here are some popular and easy ways to show you accept Apple Pay:
If you have a website enabled for Apple Pay, your developer will place a Pay With Apple Pay button on your checkout page. You can also download the Apple Pay digital mark and put it on your website and printed materials.
Business owners can go to Apple’s Places on Maps website and “claim” their business place. Once you do this, your business location will appear on Apple Maps; you can add an Apple Pay icon to your Apple Maps listing and everywhere your business appears across all Apple devices.
On its Apple Pay Merchant Supplies page, Apple offers resources to help retailers advertise their Apple Pay acceptance status, including decals and signage.
Order the Apple Pay glass and register decals kit to display the Apple Pay logo at your business on the front window and at each cash register. The kit is free and includes:
You can also order an Apple Pay Signage Kit that reads “Shop safer with Apple Pay.” This kit is also free and includes:
If you have a mobile app for your business, add an in-app message sharing that you’re now accepting Apple Pay and give customers a button to set up Apple Pay on their devices.
Another mobile app tip: Update your App Store product page description, screenshots and previews to include Apple Pay.
Here are some other ways to let customers know you accept Apple Pay: