Community State Bank announced today customers can now use their mobile phones to tap and pay for purchases at the point of sale via Bling Nation, a provider of mobile payments services that connect financial institutions, businesses and consumers.
"As a community bank, we are deeply invested in our customers and our local economy," said Kirk Crespin, information technology and information security officer for Community State Bank. "Our products and services focus on meeting and even anticipating our customer's financial needs. Now, with Bling Nation's tap and pay service through mobile phones, our personal and business customers can make and receive payments with greater ease and less risk of fraud or theft."
Customers with a full-service checking or Bling Only account at the Community State Bank can easily sign up for a BlingTagTM, a quarter-sized microchip sticker that adheres to the back of their mobile phone to enable debit transactions directly from their account. The BlingTag gives users their real-time account balance each time they make a purchase, which means there are no overdraft charges or fees. Since the tag does not store any personal information, it is more secure than traditional plastic cards and reduces the risk of identity theft.
Day-to-day purchases are also more rewarding with the BlingTag. Community State Bank customers receive five percent in Shop Local Rewards Points with every Bling transaction up to $100.00. The points can then be used at any local business that accepts Bling.
"Lamar, Colo., which launched its own stimulus package and scrip in 2009, is no stranger to supporting local businesses and community members," continued Crespin, who has been active in Lamar's City Council and Chamber of Commerce. "Bling keeps money circulating within Lamar and at a lower cost for business than credit cards. Our customers have been excited about this program, and our community has shown that they truly appreciate our efforts to support our local businesses, consumers and economy."
Businesses, such as grocer Lamar Thriftway, and electronics store Valley Electronics, a Radio Shack dealer and authorized retailer of Verizon Wireless, embraced Bling immediately. Community State Bank has seen a 55 percent increase in business accounts, since offering the BlingTag.
"It is important for us to accept all forms of payment our customers might ask to use," said Jack Jones, owner of Valley Electronics. "We also like the idea of rewarding our customers for shopping with us, while reducing what we pay in interchange fees."
"Bling Nation offers a more attractive alternative for small businesses than a traditional credit or debit card transaction because our network is more efficient, involving fewer payment processing parties," said Rod Stambaugh, general manager, West region for Bling Nation. "This allows us to pass along greater savings to local businesses, who can create more satisfied, loyal shoppers."