Fiserv has had hundreds of banks and credit unions sign up to offer its SpotPay mobile card reader since the device's launch last year, but many times, marketing constraints can slow financial institutions' rollout of the devices.

Fiserv's new spotpay.com website addresses this concern without compromising the vendor's mission of offering the device almost exclusively through banks and credit unions.

"We’ve gotten terrific interest and enthusiasm by financial institutions," but "many of them are on tight budgets and timeframes … so [they] didn't have the marketing tools that they wanted to go out and start offering the program immediately," says David Keenan, Fiserv's general manager of network solutions.

"We’ve now got a website, spotpay.com, where an institution can … accept enrollment," he says.

Financial institutions can ask Fiserv to host a cobranded site, or they can use code provided by Fiserv to offer the reader on their own websites. There's also a third option to target merchants that go directly to spotpay.com: "it will cobrand on the fly," Keenan says.

As merchants enroll online to accept payments through SpotPay, they must indicate which bank account to use to receive funds. Fiserv can then determine whether that financial institution is already a SpotPay customer and then add the institution's branding to the app.

If the merchant’s account is not held with a SpotPay client, Fiserv can add the branding at a later date if that financial institution signs up to offer the service. Though the merchant would use a generic SpotPay app until that time, Fiserv does not intend to proactively offer SpotPay directly to end users.

"The ultimate goal for us is to link you to a participating financial institution," Keenan says.

Five financial institutions have signed up to use the SpotPay site, including Seaford Federal Credit Union.

"We are planning our own customized launch of SpotPay, but in the meantime, we really appreciate that Fiserv is helping us to bring this service to our small business members quickly by enabling them to enroll at www.spotpay.com," said Veronica Nhan-Nock, a branch manager at the credit union, in a press release March 7.

Fiserv launched SpotPay last year as a means for its bank and credit union clients to serve small merchants that wanted a Square-like device to accept card payments. The reader, which is built by MagTek, encrypts and decrypts swiped card data.

Fiserv is also tying SpotPay to its Accel/Exchange debit network to allow funds to be credited in real time. It plans to offer instant access to funds scanned from a check this summer.

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