EMV Adoption Remains Sluggish

TSG survey suggests that only 29% of merchants can accept chip-based transactions.
September 22, 2016

OMAHA, Neb. – The Strawhecker Group (TSG), a management consulting firm focused on the global payments industry, released survey results this week that estimate 44% of U.S. card-accepting merchants have EMV terminals. TSG also found that less than a month away from the October 1 anniversary of the EMV liability shift, only 29% of U.S. merchants are actually able to accept chip-based transactions.

TSG’s previous survey of payment processors and other payment providers completed in January estimated that more than 50% would have an EMV terminal by this time, showing a slower pace of implementation than expected.

“EMV merchant adoption has slowed down a bit, at least comparatively speaking to our last EMV survey results in January 2016,” said Jared Drieling, business intelligence manager at TSG. Approximately one-third of merchants have activated EMV POS systems despite the larger base of U.S. merchants with EMV terminals in place. “EMV terminal vendor supply and delays in the terminal activation/certification process are the bottlenecks in the migration,” he said.

By December 2016, it is estimated that consumers will be able to use their chip-based credit and debit cards at 51% of U.S. merchant locations, according to TSG. “It is also important to note that EMV adoption by … industry can vary drastically; for example, quick-service restaurants are suspected to be laggards in the transition,” Drieling added.

The survey also indicated that more than 60% of respondents have experienced an increase in the number of chargebacks due to a lack of EMV compliance. “It is clear that non-EMV compliant merchants have felt the impact of the liability shift. The good news is that as merchants refresh their terminals for EMV, they are also adopting the contactless capability [that] lays down the foundation for future payments such as mobile proximity payments,” Drieling said.

Find EMV Solutions at the NACS Show
Learn more about EMV at the upcoming NACS Show during the “Are You Prepared for EMV?” education session. During this session, participants will explore considerations for implementing and maintaining EMV both in-store and on the forecourt, and evaluate their organization’s options and associated risks. Through Technology Edge at the NACS Show, participants can also meet with Conexxus and industry experts for even more insights on EMV.

Register for the NACS Show today!