BEDFORD HEIGHTS, Ohio -- Riser Foods here will complete a rollout of debit and credit cards to an initial group of about 20 stores by the end of the year.
i-Rego Stop-n-Shop Supermarkets. Six stores have had the systems since the initiative started in May.
Stores that receive debit and credit will be chosen by their sales volume and customer demographics, said Al Van Luvender, vice president of management information services for the chain. How debit and credit fare at initial stores will determine expansion.
Riser is hoping its investment in the personal identification number pads and terminals needed to accept electronic payments will be paid back in higher sales.
"It's not going to be an immediate payback, but we're looking for [electronic payments] to increase our average transactions and reduce the number of checks we process," Van Luvender said. "We expect a payback by reducing the time spent handling checks."
The rollout was inspired by customer requests and a storewide expansion, he said. "We're remodeling some of our stores, we're making them larger, and we felt it was time to start introducing credit and debit," Van Luvender said.
He added that somecompetitors in the area already offered the services. Credit may not see as much expansion as debit, he said, because, although Riser will accept Visa, MasterCard and Discover in the initial stores, store officials are concerned about high fees.
"We may not roll credit out to all stores," Van Luvender said. "We're worried about credit card fees absolutely; we're really tracking that. We're taking a serious look at how far we're going to go with credit cards."