ALEXANDRIA, Va. — Financial and resource challenges — many of which have been compounded by the uncertainty of COVID-19 — pose a threat to fuel site operators upgrading to outdoor EMV.
In its third survey measuring the level of preparedness of the U.S. convenience and fuel retailing industry for the EMV liability shift for automated fueling dispensers (AFDs), Conexxus focused solely on outdoor EMV, including contact (when the card is inserted in the reader) and contactless, with an emphasis on the impacts of COVID-19 and the liability shift date change from October to April 2021.
The survey found that some progress is being made with contact EMV. Thirty-one percent of respondents indicted zero sites were deployed, an improvement from 52 percent in the spring and 70 percent in summer 2019.
Operators with a store count of 50 or less are more likely to report 100 percent deployment, while complexity and other challenges continue to plague larger chains. A number of site owners/operators are undecided (particularly those owning 10 store or less) about what to do with regards to upgrading, all citing financial concerns, exasperated due to COVID-19 uncertainties and hardships.
The top reasons identified as challenges to getting 100 percent deployment include:
- Financial challenges and technician availability (34 percent);
- Overall lack of software (30 percent);
- Lack of certifications (27 percent); and
- Effort/complexity (27 percent).
Although COVID-19 has exasperated challenges for operators, it has also served as a catalyst for contactless EMV at the forecourt, with a majority of operators (81 percent) saying they have implemented or plan to implement the technology.
Those operators who decided to not implement contactless EMV cited additional upgrades (60 percent), cost (40 percent) and other reasons, such as not much demand and not worth the investment, (30 percent) as top reasons.
To view the full survey, click here.