MAP Releases Branch Best Practices Guide for Debit Card Programs

Research shows that the Visa debit card is one of the most popular of all credit union products. Understanding how best to offer a debit card in the branch is a great opportunity to increase member activation and usage of their cards.

Typically, branch staff view debit as a product that “comes with” a share draft account and may not spend much time talking about it. To help credit unions make the most of their debit card program, Member Access Pacific (MAP), the nation’s only aggregator of the Visa debit processing service platform for credit unions, offering a series of Best Practices based on research of local and national Visa debit issuers.

Best Practice # 1: Simplify the in-branch product offering

To make your member experience more pleasant and to keep your branch staff happier, it can be a good idea to trim down your product selection. Limiting the number of products offered helps to streamline the sales process, and utilizing market research can help you pare away products that are becoming less relevant. For example, paper checks are no longer being viewed as a standard offering, since Visa debit is becoming the preferred account access vehicle. Also, ATM-only cards are still viewed as a necessity by issuers, but most are taking steps to limit the distribution of those cards.

A recent study encompassing 10 of Visa’s top 20 issuers shows how the biggest players narrow their offerings:

  • Three issuers offer premium cards, with the only difference from standard cards being daily spend limits.
  • Two offer premium cards with rewards.
  • Three offer a limited number of affinity cards (cards with a different design on the plastic but with no added benefits).
  • All 10 of the issuers provide marketing materials that showcase the security and convenience of Visa debit.

The key is not to bombard your members with a plethora of card options, but to create a few cards that will best fit the majority. Take some time, do your homework, and start with a sleek product line that will make your member experience smoother.

To receive a copy of the MAP Solution Series “Branch Best Practices Report”, click here to download the PDF version of the report.

For more information about MAP’s innovative debit, credit, prepaid, mobile and ATM solutions, contact Bryan Elder at 866-598-0698, ext. 1624, or


Strategic Link is the NWCUA’s wholly-owned service corporation, providing the Association’s member credit unions with exclusive high-quality, competitively-priced products and discounted services. Questions? Contact Sales & Marketing Associate Craig Reed: 206.340.4789,

Posted in Compliance News.