Let me ask you a simple question: Do you know anyone/are you any of the following?
- Someone who has yard sales or garage sales.
- Someone who sells items you make or grow at a local fair.
- Someone who runs bake sales or fund raisers for a local group.
- Someone who does work on the side (computer repair, car repair, handyman, etc).
- A small business trying to keep costs down.
How many missed opportunities do you think the above people had due to not being able to take credit cards? In today’s world, very few people carry around the amount of cash they used to and want to put everything on credit card or debit card.
Well, the answer in the past was to spend a lot of money on a credit card machine, setup a merchant account, have a business checking account, pay a monthly fee, a per-transaction fee (plus a percent of each transaction), but what if you could use your iPhone or iPad (and select Android devices) to accept credit cards anywhere – securely and only be charged when you actually use it – and even then only 2.75% of the transaction, with no hidden fees/cost?
Square offers this fantastic service, along with online transaction management. The square device itself is free, and plugs in to the iPhone & select Android phones or iPad headphone jack and and has security features built-in to transfer the card information securely to the app. The app is super easy to use, and can be downloaded from the App Store (or Google Play store).
In the Square app, you type in the dollar amount you want to charge, type in a description then swipe the card through the card reader. The app then connects to the internet using your phone’s wireless service and authorizes the charge.
Once the charge is authorized, a signature panel comes up and you can use the touch screen or a capacitive stylus to sign. After signing and accepting, you’re prompted to text or e-mail the receipt to the customer. The e-mailed receipt includes the order total, the last 4 numbers of the card used and the signature.
If you have an iPad to connect the Square to you can use it as a virtual cash register. In the example below I’ve setup services I provide as a computer consultant, such as virus removal, diagnostic and custom PC builds. You could easily use the same interface to have items you commonly sell (necklace/bracelet/pendant/ring for a crafts fair jewelry maker or cookie/muffin/pie/donation for a charity bake sale).
When you log in to your Square account at SquareUp.com you can see the list of transactions, resend receipts and even issue refunds. You can even view past transactions and look up details when needed. Once you accept a credit card, the money is automatically transferred to your bank account within 24 hours (if the transaction is processed after 5 PDT then it counts for the next day).
Should you get this device? Well if the answer to “Have I ever wanted to take a credit card payment for something?” is Yes, then I would go over to SquareUp.com and register for a free account and Square today.