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ChowNow integrates Apple Pay, helps its SMB restaurants beat the majors to one-touch checkout

By Michael Carney , written on December 17, 2014

From The News Desk

Running a small business is hard. Not only do you need to worry about acquiring customers and delivering your product or service, but in today’s instant gratification world, business owners are expected to offer their consumers the newest, most exciting technology, whatever that may be and however often it may change. A decade ago, that meant having your own website. Then, businesses were expected to list on Yelp, Angie's List, Houzz, or any number of other online platforms. Today, it means offering on-demand ordering and one-touch payments. But how the hell does a pizza shop owner in Dubuque, Iowa do that?

Since its launch in 2012, ChowNow has been solving this problem for small and mid-sized restaurants by offering them plug-and-play online and mobile ordering. Better yet, it offers its software on a subscription basis, meaning restauranteurs can avoid the hefty sales commissions claimed by many similar services.

Yesterday, ChowNow made a major update to its platform by integrating Apple Pay, a first for the online and mobile ordering sector. The company plans to update the individual mobile platforms of all its restaurant clients to include Apple Pay by January 2015 and all new customers thereafter will receive it as a standard feature.

"By giving independent restaurants access to the latest in technology at an affordable price, we are upholding our mission of helping them compete with larger chains," says ChowNow founder and CEO Chris Webb. "We will update each restaurant's native app to include Apple Pay at no additional cost, so restaurant owners can focus on operating their businesses."

For restaurant owners, offering Apple Pay to their customers not only makes them look cutting edge, but also stands to increase conversions rates. Rather than having to reach for their wallet and input payment info using a cramped mobile keypad, ordering via a ChowNow-powered online or mobile checkout will be as easy as scanning your fingerprint. Furthermore, Apple has shown that checkout experiences that integrate Apple Pay are more sticky, and thereby could help restaurants drive repeat business and better compete with other local dining options.