Jump to content


Photo

Credit Card Processing, Droid And Square!


  • Please log in to reply
13 replies to this topic

#1 SShirley

SShirley

    Cow Creek Pottery

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 199 posts
  • LocationPittsburg, Kansas

Posted 09 December 2010 - 03:06 PM

Some time ago I started looking into getting set up for taking credit cards in my studio and at shows, but hesitated at the prospect of paying $800 to get started. Then I happened to see something about a thing called Square.

It's a system started by the Twitter people (I think) and it allows you to use a free smart phone application to accept credit cards. Since my phone contracts were all done, I started looking into it seriously and settled on a Droid X phone from Verizon. I signed up with Square, set up an account, and they sent me a tiny little gadget (free) that fits into the earphone jack on my Droid. Once the app is loaded, all you have to do is activate the app, enter the amount of the sale and scan the card with the little gadget. Then the customer signs on the touch-screen of the phone with their FINGER (amazing), and puts in their e-mail address if they want an e-mail receipt. It is really cool. You get immediate authorization and immediately after the sale you get an e-mail notification that the sale has been received by Square.

There are no set-up fees, monthly fees, access fees, statement fees, or anything like that. You pay 2.75% + 15 cents per transaction for each card you swipe and 3.5% + 15 cents per transaction for each transaction that you key in manually. And you can take a photo of the item you are selling and attach it to the receipt, which is handy. You can go to the square web site and look at the receipts plus you can download an Excel spreadsheet that shows all the details of the sales that you have made.

I used it for the first time during my holiday open house and it was a big success. Sales were way, way up, and people were fascinated by the whole system. My open house was on Friday night and Monday by 1:00 or so the money was in my bank account.

A side benefit of this is that I was able to get rid of a lot of other expenses by using this smartphone. I got rid of my studio landline, my home landline, and the Sprint aircard I was using for internet access. There is another app (PDANET) that lets you use the smartphone as a modem to attach to a laptop of desktop computer, so you don't need an internet service provider (other than the internet on the phone). Plus, it's a great MP3 player, camera, and video camera, so it has lots of other functions besides credit cards.

One of my potter friends even bought an I-Pad so she could do Square, and she loves it too. You can check the square web site, under "Getting Started" and it shows a list of which phones and devices work with it.

Sylvia





#2 GEP

GEP

    Moderator / full time potter ^6 stoneware

  • Moderators
  • 744 posts
  • LocationSilver Spring, MD

Posted 09 December 2010 - 03:46 PM

I have friends who are also interested in the Square, so I will let them know you had a good experience. I recently switched my credit card processor so I looked into the Square too, but there are some limitations that might not work for all pottery businesses.

First of all, if you don't already have a smartphone (which I don't), then you need to buy one and buy a data plan too, which is much more expensive than a lot of credit card processors for small businesses. And secondly, the Square has a $1000/week limit. This will work for a lot of pottery sellers, but for many others it's too low. If you process more than $1000 in a week, you will get the first $1000 right away, and the rest within the next 30 days. Way too vague for me.

So to all those out there thinking about the Square, I'd only recommend if you already have a smartphone, and if you're sure you won't exceed the $1000/week limit.

Mea
Mea Rhee
Good Elephant Pottery
http://www.goodelephant.com

#3 Marcia Selsor

Marcia Selsor

    Professor Emerita, Montana State University-Billings

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 3,526 posts
  • Locationwhere Texas, Matamoros, Rio Grande and Gulf of Mexico come together.

Posted 09 December 2010 - 06:56 PM

Potters Council offers this benefit. I don't use it but I have been thinking about getting it.
Here is the deal:
Credit Card Processing: check out the credit card processing program available to all Members. Note: only $3.50 monthly fee. To see the full Terms & Conditions, click here. Are you glazed over by the cost of payment processing? Potters Council members benefit from: No monthly minimum; Competitive Mastcard and Visa credit and debit rates; No application or enrollment fees.


I use many of the other benefits. The Fedex freight is my favorite!
Marcia

#4 SShirley

SShirley

    Cow Creek Pottery

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 199 posts
  • LocationPittsburg, Kansas

Posted 10 December 2010 - 10:42 AM

Like I said, I was already in the market for a new phone, so it came at a good time. If the $1000 a week thing gets to be a problem later on I can always go to some other system then, but as of now I don't sell $1000 a week. I liked that I don't have to buy any equipment besides the phone (like the swiping machine) and don't have to pay a monthly fee if I don't use it at all.

For me it was a good fit.

Sylvia


I have friends who are also interested in the Square, so I will let them know you had a good experience. I recently switched my credit card processor so I looked into the Square too, but there are some limitations that might not work for all pottery businesses.

First of all, if you don't already have a smartphone (which I don't), then you need to buy one and buy a data plan too, which is much more expensive than a lot of credit card processors for small businesses. And secondly, the Square has a $1000/week limit. This will work for a lot of pottery sellers, but for many others it's too low. If you process more than $1000 in a week, you will get the first $1000 right away, and the rest within the next 30 days. Way too vague for me.

So to all those out there thinking about the Square, I'd only recommend if you already have a smartphone, and if you're sure you won't exceed the $1000/week limit.

Mea



#5 GEP

GEP

    Moderator / full time potter ^6 stoneware

  • Moderators
  • 744 posts
  • LocationSilver Spring, MD

Posted 10 December 2010 - 12:23 PM

Thanks SShirley, I didn't mean to imply that you made a bad decision. It sounds like a great deal, and I'm really excited that Square is addressing the needs of artists' businesses. I just wanted everyone to know its limitations. And there's no such thing as a perfect solution, every choice has its pros and cons.

Mea
Mea Rhee
Good Elephant Pottery
http://www.goodelephant.com

#6 ebroaded

ebroaded

    Newbie

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 1 posts

Posted 29 December 2010 - 12:58 PM

Has anyone used the credit card processing, Chase/Paymentech, offered through the Potters Council?

Thanks, Eleanor

Potters Council offers this benefit. I don't use it but I have been thinking about getting it.
Here is the deal:
Credit Card Processing: check out the credit card processing program available to all Members. Note: only $3.50 monthly fee. To see the full Terms & Conditions, click here. Are you glazed over by the cost of payment processing? Potters Council members benefit from: No monthly minimum; Competitive Mastcard and Visa credit and debit rates; No application or enrollment fees.

I use many of the other benefits. The Fedex freight is my favorite!
Marcia



#7 claudsimms

claudsimms

    Newbie

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 1 posts

Posted 24 August 2011 - 11:31 AM

Some time ago I started looking into getting set up for taking credit cards in my studio and at shows, but hesitated at the prospect of paying $800 to get started. Then I happened to see something about a thing called Square.

It's a system started by the Twitter people (I think) and it allows you to use a free smart phone application to accept credit cards. Since my phone contracts were all done, I started looking into it seriously and settled on a Droid X phone from Verizon. I signed up with Square, set up an account, and they sent me a tiny little gadget (free) that fits into the earphone jack on my Droid. Once the app is loaded, all you have to do is activate the app, enter the amount of the sale and scan the card with the little gadget. Then the customer signs on the touch-screen of the phone with their FINGER (amazing), and puts in their e-mail address if they want an e-mail receipt. It is really cool. You get immediate authorization and immediately after the sale you get an e-mail notification that the sale has been received by Square.

There are no set-up fees, monthly fees, access fees, statement fees, or anything like that. You pay 2.75% + 15 cents per transaction for each card you swipe and 3.5% + 15 cents per transaction for each transaction that you key in manually. And you can take a photo of the item you are selling and attach it to the receipt, which is handy. You can go to the square web site and look at the receipts plus you can download an Excel spreadsheet that shows all the details of the sales that you have made.

I used it for the first time during my holiday open house and it was a big success. Sales were way, way up, and people were fascinated by the whole system. My open house was on Friday night and Monday by 1:00 or so the money was in my bank account.

A side benefit of this is that I was able to get rid of a lot of other expenses by using this smartphone. I got rid of my studio landline, my home landline, and the Sprint aircard I was using for internet access. There is another app (PDANET) that lets you use the smartphone as a modem to attach to a laptop of desktop computer, so you don't need an internet service provider (other than the internet on the phone). Plus, it's a great MP3 player, camera, and video camera, so it has lots of other functions besides credit cards.

One of my potter friends even bought an I-Pad so she could do Square, and she loves it too. You can check the square web site, under "Getting Started" and it shows a list of which phones and devices work with it.

Sylvia






I also process credit cards on my droid but I do not use square. I know a lot of people who do and love it however, I was not a fun of the credit card reader itself. It seemed flimsy and I once watch a guy try and swipe the card three times before it worked. Instead I went with http://payanywhere.com/ which has similar fees, and does the same thing I just liked the card reader more.

#8 Jordan

Jordan

    Newbie

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 3 posts

Posted 09 December 2011 - 02:25 AM

Can anyone think of a good reason why credit card issuers cannot put a QR code right on to their credit cards - or retrofit existing cards with a QR code sticker, to enable instant transactions via barcode readers on phones? I can also see QR codes replacing credit cards entirely - placing your buying power right on your phone (password/biometrically protected, of course). It could also eliminate the need for a physical receipt, by allowing "virtual" receipts, transferred via bluetooth or e-mail to one's account/accounting programs.Yes...I want credit for the idea. lol This would be a phenomenal app IMO.

#9 bridgespottery

bridgespottery

    Newbie

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 6 posts
  • LocationPort Washington, New York

Posted 12 December 2011 - 06:18 AM

I have used square for over 2 years and it's a great way to accept credit cards without any long contract etc. Works very well for my business.
Posted Image
Patricia Bridges
BRIDGES POTTERY

from kitchen to table and more

"Slab Construction" Video Launched Dec 5th!
see it at
bridgespottery.com


WEBSITE
www.bridgespottery.com

BLOG
www.blog.bridgespottery.com

VIDEOS
from my blog

#10 klen11

klen11

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 30 posts

Posted 26 December 2011 - 02:24 AM

I've used the system and there are some downs to the whole thing. I dislike how some transactions can take over a month to process and get into your account.
Either way it is a great piece of hardware and with no minimum charge amount, you can literally sell all sorts of items, even $0.50 items!
The great thing is it is free!
Posted Image
Painting ceramic bisque is like painting a 3D canvas.
Fun and relaxing for all ages!

#11 SShirley

SShirley

    Cow Creek Pottery

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 199 posts
  • LocationPittsburg, Kansas

Posted 26 December 2011 - 09:07 AM

I've used the system and there are some downs to the whole thing. I dislike how some transactions can take over a month to process and get into your account.
Either way it is a great piece of hardware and with no minimum charge amount, you can literally sell all sorts of items, even $0.50 items!
The great thing is it is free!


I have never had it take a month to get the money into my account. Never. in fact in the last few months they have made it faster than ever. It's usually more like 3 days, tops. I love my Square!

#12 Mark C.

Mark C.

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,290 posts
  • LocationNear Arcata Ca-redwood rain forest

Posted 11 January 2012 - 04:09 PM

I have friends who are also interested in the Square, so I will let them know you had a good experience. I recently switched my credit card processor so I looked into the Square too, but there are some limitations that might not work for all pottery businesses.

First of all, if you don't already have a smartphone (which I don't), then you need to buy one and buy a data plan too, which is much more expensive than a lot of credit card processors for small businesses. And secondly, the Square has a $1000/week limit. This will work for a lot of pottery sellers, but for many others it's too low. If you process more than $1000 in a week, you will get the first $1000 right away, and the rest within the next 30 days. Way too vague for me.

So to all those out there thinking about the Square, I'd only recommend if you already have a smartphone, and if you're sure you won't exceed the $1000/week limit.

Mea


I have had 6 credit card servers over my years in ceramic sales-my present outfit is merchant warehouse-I own a nurit 8000 wireless machine-
when one does the math on all charges for the year on all card tear costs (cards have various tear costs-say a milage card costs you more than a personal card)
the bottom line is close to 5%-thats all the wireless fees various card rate monthly fees etc-this has been true for most servers like costco-discover etc which I have had all of them
Since i do not have yet a smart phone that monthly cost would have to be factored in as well as the 1000$ a week thing would not fly with my pottery business-the other factor is that when you have no phone signal how with a square make a sale??? With my nurit i set it to store forward and it downloads those sales when i have a signal-that has happened at Park City and a few other venues over the years-also how fast is the transaction time???when i have 10 people in line how fast is it to make those card transactions-. my machine is very quick and gives a receipt
I have thought about the square along with other full time potters at shows but the shear volume of sales/speed/handing your smart phone to sign all seems to not add-up.

low sales and if you have the phone it may work well-how do they(the square )deal with different card charges like corporate and reward cards??
Mark Cortright
www.liscomhillpottery.com

#13 GEP

GEP

    Moderator / full time potter ^6 stoneware

  • Moderators
  • 744 posts
  • LocationSilver Spring, MD

Posted 12 January 2012 - 09:37 AM

Since the last time I posted about the Square, they have lifted their $1000/week limit. As for how do they charge the same rate for rewards cards and corporate cards? That's because Square is still a venture-capital funded startup, operating at a loss. So their service is a great deal right now, can they make it past their VC phase and into a profitable business? We'll see.

People who use Square seem to adore it, but there are also plenty of anecdotes about situations where it doesn't work. (rural areas, thick-walled buildings, etc)

I'm sticking with my Nurit too. I store and forward everything, no wireless plan needed. It is blazing fast, yes that matters when you have a line of customers. And compared to the monthly cost of a smart phone, it is dirt cheap.

Mea
Mea Rhee
Good Elephant Pottery
http://www.goodelephant.com

#14 neilestrick

neilestrick

    Neil Estrick

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,142 posts
  • LocationGrayslake, IL

Posted 12 January 2012 - 08:01 PM

I use Intuit GoPayment on my Droid, and I like it. They pay very quickly, and no monthly fee. I also use Intuit for credit card processing at my shop, and for my web site. Their fees are slightly higher for those than other companies I have used, but the ease of use is worth it for me. I don't have time to be on the phone arguing about my account all the time!
Neil Estrick
Kiln Repair Tech
L&L Distributor
Owner, Neil Estrick Gallery, LLC
www.neilestrickgallery.com

neil@neilestrickgallery.com




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users