Calling something a “cash-only business” basically means it’s a small, local establishment with tight profit margins and low-cost products. This could be a corner drug store or a family-owned restaurant, places like that. The reason they only took cash is that checks take too long to process and credit cards require a processing fee.
These days you also need an internet connection to process a card, and it’s hard to justify the monthly cost of having one when you only need it for electronic processing. It’s much cheaper to just put up a sign saying you only accept cash.
However, a lot of these local places are starting to accept cards and smartphone wallet transfers despite the fees and other costs. There are several reasons for this:
- More people are carrying around cards and smartphones instead of wallets, so when they find out they can only pay cash they walk out and find someplace else.
- The equipment cost for processing electronic payments has gone way down from where they started, and many merchant processing companies include a device with the contract.
- Business internet costs are lowering thanks to growing competition in many areas and faster connections provided by fiber-optic cables.
- Wi-Fi has become so important that many restaurants are getting business internet connections so their customers can stay online.
Cash-only business operators often take pride in keeping their prices as low as possible, plus it’s a practical concern since they usually have stiff competition. However, even places like these are getting a business internet connection and signing a processing contract because of how many potential customers now prefer to pay with cards. They may have to raise their prices a bit to keep their profits stable, but the increase in customers makes up for that.
While the internet started out as a way for research companies and universities to communicate, it’s spread out to become a hobby, then a perk of living in the right neighborhood, and now it’s a necessity for an ever-growing number of people. Cash-only businesses are now taking cards so they can keep serving their customers, and so a strong business internet connection is important even if your business has nothing to do with technology.