As U.S. merchants move to accept the new EMV cards, one major retailer stands out above the rest. Target has fully embraced the chip and PIN standard, and has made significant efforts to make sure their customers are comfortable embracing it as well.
I started noticing this when I got my new Target chip and PIN credit card recently. As you can see from the picture above, it’s very different from most credit cards—it has no magnetic stripe on the back. I was also required to set up the PIN on receiving the card.
This led me to start noticing other things that Target had to offer its customers:
- Multiple signs by the registers instructing people on how to use their new card
- Equipped and functioning machines at every register
- Alarms to remind you to remove the card at the end of the transaction.
- Cashiers and staff ready to help a confused customer
Target Chip and Pin Transactions a Few Seconds Longer Than Magstripe
It’s true that EMV credit card transactions take a little bit longer to finish (about eight seconds), but I haven’t had any complaints. I’ve noticed that Target offers a wider variety of cheap items near the registers than were previously there. I don’t know if this is intentionally related to the new cards, but it does mean I often spend that time waiting for another customer pondering if I should buy a package of lip balm or a cute keychain, instead of getting frustrated at the wait.
As stores across the country shift to the EMV standard, it’s nice to see that a large company like Target has stayed on top of the new technology. Many of their strategies can be used by other merchants as well to increase customer satisfaction as customers deal with confusing new cards. Making sure your cashiers are ready to help walk customers through the process and ensuring there’s plenty to distract customers from longer wait times are both simple steps that will make your customers happier and more likely to return to your store.
Share Your Chip and Pin Experiences With Us
If you have a story about encountering EMV cards ‘in the wild’ or your own experience of getting your store ready for EMV, please leave a comment below.