EMV is a worldwide card transaction authentication standard every merchant services industry player must be at least familiar with. The issue of EMV certification is of special importance to payment gateways and owners of proprietary payment ecosystems. Small-size merchants who want to process EMV transactions can just purchase the necessary hardware and software from some third-party entities (providers), so they do not need to conduct the deep analysis of the EMV certification process. The relevance of EMV certification is caused by the fact that all European countries already support EMV and some exclusively use EMV for card-present transactions. The adoption of EMV is also actively promoted in the US by Visa and MasterCard.
An entity going through EMV certification process needs to select terminals to process EMV transactions with, payment gateways and acquirers to partner with. The process itself includes two stages: payment processing host integration and EMV certification itself. Host integration is not associated with certification-related costs, and is, basically, meant to ensure message format consistency between the merchant, the payment gateway and the acquirer. EMV certification itself involves usage of the EMV toolkit and required hardware devices. Before EMV certification stage a business, planning EMV certification, needs to compile a list of countries it is going to process EMV transactions in, a list of acquirers it is going to partner with, and a list of devices to be certified by the acquirers. The business should also check with the acquirers what EMV toolkits they support, and develop (or license) terminal applications for the terminals it is using. It is advisable for businesses considering the prospect of EMV certification to plan respective budgets in advance.
More information on EMV certification can be found on Paylosophy.com