There has been a lot of innovation in laundry payments over the last 20 years. For a long time, coin-operated laundromats and multi-family housing locations were just that – strictly coin-operated. Customers either brought in bags of quarters to a store to use the washers and dryers, or they used the change machine inside the store. Over the years, debit card-based systems were introduced, followed by credit card-based options. Today, the demand is in the use of mobile payment apps.
With several mobile payment providers specifically designed for small business use, an owner can develop a strategy to fit the location’s specific needs. Pricing and setup for mobile payments are relatively simple for small business owners. Even without a mobile app, allowing people to pay for laundry machines through Google Wallet, Venmo, EBTor Apple Passbook opens up a business to a new group of customers that otherwise may look elsewhere for their clothes washing needs. (Eastern Funding).
Gone are the days of machines only accepting coins to operate and to leave operators with no data from their machines. Most machines today accept credit cards and provide enhanced features like:
- Programmable cycles
- Multi-level pricing
- Transaction tracking
- Repair Alerts
- Availability Monitoring
- Advanced user data and analytics
As more customers, especially young people, use mobile services to buy items, locations must consider adopting technology as a valid payment as a way to cater to the demands of customers. (Eastern Funding). This means that they’ll need to have the right internet connectivity to support the functionality of smart laundry machines and apps alike that is reliable and secure.
Commercial Laundry Connectivity
Today, the commercial laundry industry connects to the internet through a few different options including DSL/Cable, Wi-Fi, and Cellular. However, communication needs are changing rapidly, and network security has become more of a priority. Many operators find themselves unable to join a location’s Wi-Fi network due to an IT manager locking down the network and not allowing any 3rd parties to access it or losing connectivity when passwords or settings are changed and not having a quick and reliable way to reconnect.
That is why more and more operators are turning to managed cellular connectivity to reliably connect their laundry machines to the internet. Having a partner that manages their connectivity allows operators to focus on their core business of running the locations and all of the complexities that exist there. As they focus on that, they have the peace of mind knowing they receive the most reliable connectivity possible from a partner who manages the complexities of keeping their machines connected to the internet.
With a reliable and secure internet connection, operators are able to guarantee their customers are able to process transactions on their credit or debit cards while also gaining access to key data and metrics that allows them to run their business more effectively. Some of those types of data include:
- Measure and view machine usage for preventative maintenance scheduling
- Tracking sales
- Viewing machine availability
- Tracking remaining run times
- Implementing dynamic pricing strategies based on demand
- And more.
As the premier wireless data provider for commercial laundry, OptConnect has the hardware, the network connections, the customer dashboard, the customer support. and the management and monitoring to make your commercial laundry deployment simple and secure. To learn more about OptConnect’s connectivity solution for commercial laundry, please call us at 1.877.678.3343 or click here.