Recently I’ve seen several situations where not being able to accept credit cards for purchases has cost small business people money. One was an author and speaker, the other an artist at a crafts fair. Seriously, in this day and age, people still haven’t figured out how to take credit cards?!? How many sales are you missing? Could immediate payment improve your cash flow? About 18 months ago, I posted a blog on this very topic complete with the easy – FREE solution. Perhaps it is time for a repost!
Accepting credit cards for payment has lots of benefits for a small business. Many consumers, like me, prefer to use credit cards for everything. Impulse purchases are greater when a business accepts credit cards. Immediate funds, no waiting for a check to be mailed or to clear. No bounced checks – you know immediately if a charge is declined.
You know all that, so why are you not yet accepting credit cards for your small business? Are the costs associated with traditional credit card terminals holding you back? The hassle of carrying a “terminal”? What if I told you the “terminal” is already in your pocket, briefcase or handbag?
With the Square, your smart phone becomes a credit card terminal. Best part – the plug in to swipe the credit cards is FREE, the app for your iPhone, iPad or Android phone is FREE and there is NO monthly fee or “per transaction” fee – just a competitive 2.75% per card swipe.
Funds are deposited into your account the next day and it’s so easy to get started. Go on-line and create your account and they will send you the card reader in the mail – did I mention it’s FREE? If you can’t wait, go to Target or another retailer and buy the card reader for about $10. Inside the package you will find a code to redeem for $10 when you set up your account – essentially refunding the amount you paid for the reader.
The app is very easy to use. Enter an amount and description of goods or services purchased. Swipe the card. Hand your phone to the customer for an on screen signature and wait for the approval. At the end of the transaction, you have the option of texting or emailing the receipt to your customer. It’s fast, easy and very inexpensive – what’s not to love?
Yes, you can set it up to accept tips, calculate and add sales tax, track payments taken by more than one device and many other handy business features. All for FREE!
I’m a professional speaker and I sell books and cds at the back of the room after a speech using my Square.
Whether you are a hair stylist, massage therapist, chauffeur, private chef, speaker, musician selling cds or performing for a party, a birthday clown, dog walker, house-sitter, window washer, house cleaner, gardener, handyman or any other service provider – you need this tool!
What would it do for your cash flow if when you sent a plumber, appliance repair person or delivery to a home to not only leave the invoice as is typically done, but accept the credit card payment there on the spot? No mailing an invoice and waiting for payment.
If you are in the hobby to business stage with your art or crafts, you can use Square to accept credit cards at local arts and crafts shows.
Clearing out your junk using CraigsList or even a garage sale? You can accept credit cards using your Square!
You can also use it to let people make donations to your non-profit or to pay for event attendance to business or civic group meetings. The possibilities are endless!
You may not think you need to accept credit cards. You may think how you are doing business now is just fine but I can assure you that you are missing business if you do not accept credit cards. Customers who don’t do business with you don’t typically tell you why but I know that it’s a deciding factor for me.
Accepting credit cards is just one more way to look like you are serious about your business. It also removes an obstacle to doing business with you for consumers. When it’s free to get started and this inexpensive – why wouldn’t you try it?