One bizarre consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic is the current coin shortage in the U.S.  Many businesses rely on coins as a crucial part of their operations. Any business where the average purchase is less than $10, like laundry mats, coffee shops, or bakeries, has been affected.

What caused the coin shortage? 

The U.S. Mint is responsible for producing coins.  Like most businesses, their operations have been disrupted by the Pandemic.  You can’t produce coins on a Zoom call.  Like the restaurant industry, workers have to be physically present to produce coins.  Another reason for the shortage is a reduction in circulation, or velocity.  As more people have spent their time at home and have ordered more of their daily purchases online, fewer coins are being used.  Essentially, the coins are trapped in cars and homes throughout the U.S.

What are some solutions to the coin shortage? 

Most cloud based Point of Sales (POS) solutions allow pricing that includes taxes?  For instance, my favorite local spot charges $2.75 for a medium coffee.  At 10% sales tax, the total is $3.03.  It’s possible to just list pricing on whole dollar amounts like $3.00 that include the tax (so the new price of the coffee is really $2.73).  This eliminates the need for coins or at least reduces the need.

Find a solution with contactless dining to save credit card information.

Table Needs enables a guest to scan a QR code, order with their phone, and pay with their phone.  Imagine standing in line at your favorite spot.  Scanning, ordering and paying without any contact or cash involved.  Not only can this improve the efficiency of the coffee shop, but it allows you to social distance and wait on your drink.  If you’re interested in learning more about how Table Needs can reduce the need for coins and increase your sales, click here and schedule a live demo.

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