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Let's Talk: Credit Card Imprinters


credit card imprinter

The 70s was a popular decade known for bell-bottoms and the rise of disco. Although the music, lights and groovy roller rinks were the talk of the town, the decade was full of technological advances as well. For instance, in the early 70s, the first commercial microprocessor was created by Intel and Atari released the arcade game Pong, which was intended to be a teaching tool to learn how to develop a game.


The 70s is a decade that provided us with many new technologies that helped launch us to the very gadgets that we love today. A great example of technology that paved the way for innovation is the credit card imprinter. This might be old-fashioned, but you might be surprised to know that many retail stores still have one of these tucked away in case of an emergency.



credit card imprinter

How does a credit card imprinter work?


A credit card imprinter works by allowing the cashier to obtain payment information from customers by making an imprint of the customer’s credit card on a double receipt. Then one of the receipts goes with the customers to validate the purchase, while the other stays with the business owner to complete the purchase.



The business owner will then submit the customer’s credit card information to their bank where the funds will later be transferred to their merchant account to complete the transaction.


Why businesses should upgrade from a credit card imprinter


Credit card imprinters are great as a backup plan, but a merchant should consider using a different form of payment acceptance for most sales. Imprinters are such an outdated payment method that most employees won’t know how to properly use one. This means that a business owner will spend more time training their team than if they were using a more updated system.

In addition, customers might not be very receptive to the process of using a credit card imprinter as most have never encountered one during checkout. A customer might not feel comfortable with their credit card numbers being floated around on a piece of paper without knowing what might happen to it. Maybe it gets lost and a customer finds it or it doesn’t get properly disposed of, leaving them vulnerable to potential threats. Either way, a customer might not be willing to gamble on an unsecured way of paying.



credit card terminal


Alternatives to a credit card imprinter


Technology has come a long way since the use of a credit card imprinter. Today, a business owner has access to a variety of payment acceptance tools. A merchant can utilize a point-of-sale device that can properly accept, authenticate and encrypt cardholder data in a secure environment. Thankfully, it gets even better! Merchants can use handheld devices that allow them to take payments on the go and within the comfort of their own stores. A merchant can now checkout customers on the patio or in an aisle. Either way, the convenience is unbeatable. Businesses can even use mobile devices and apps to broaden their reach with customers. The more ways you allow customers to pay, the more sales a merchant can make!



In conclusion


Luckily, in 2021 we have come far from credit card imprinters. This knuckle busting device reminds us that technology has grown immensely, which has opened us up to more payment options. If your business is looking for new payment methods we've created a helpful guide for choosing the right payment option. We discuss different options like a mobile card reader, payment terminal and more. If you want to learn more about payment options and how to get started, let us know! We have dedicated team members who can help you decide which method is the best fit for your business.


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Related Article: Choosing The Right Payment Option