Comparing Mobile Payment Technologies: PayPal? Square? Verifone? A look at all three

As you may know, the market for allowing individuals and small businesses to accept credit card payment through mobile devices is really blowing up.  In fact, just this morning I saw a television commercial for Square’s mobile payment service. PayPal is even getting into the game with their ‘PayPal Here’ solution.

We’ve talked about Square a lot here, as well as Venmo and other ways for folks to pay (and get paid) on the go.  I’m excited about these technologies, because they empower individuals and small businesses through lowering their bar for credit card integration.  Now that the powerhouse of digital payments, PayPal, has entered the space, we can be pretty sure that this type of technology is here to stay. So, the only thing left to do is to compare them and see which fits best for you and your business.

So, how do these different providers stack up? Read More

PayPal Here Credit Card Reader Ready to Compete With Square?

PayPal Here Card ReaderLove it or loathe it, a large number of small businesses already depend on PayPal’s merchant services. It makes sense that the eBay-owned company (that also has its hands in a ton of online merchant’s pockets) would release a mobile credit card reader, called PayPal Here for small businesses looking to step away from the cash register.

PayPal Here is similar to, and in direct competition of, services like Verifone’s PAYware, Intuit’s GoPayment, and of course, Square’s popular dongle. One of the main differences between PayPal Here and the others is immediate access to funds versus waiting for several days to access funds with the rest. That is one of the things in my mind that keeps PayPal on top of eCommerce pyramid, despite it’s issues. Read More

Square Register is the best Point of Sale for iPad

Point of sale software on the iPad is nothing new, but it’s definitely worth a second look now that Square has released Square Register, their app for accepting both card and cash payments via your iPad.

The new Square Register should be ideal for a small business owner. Once you sign up for Square, you get a Square “Card Reader”, a little dongle that allows you to swipe credit cards. As long as you have a place to stash your cash, you can also take cash payments with just a tap of your touch screen. Read More

Better than an Ugly Sweater: Give the Gift of @Square this Holiday Season

Okay, so the Square credit card reader that lets you take credit card payments from your iPhone, iPad or even iPod touch is something we’ve only talked about a thousand times on this site. And sure, their little plastic credit card reader, much like the app that powers their service, is usually free. So maybe the idea of spending $1 for a gift-wrapped Square to give away as a gift seems a bit silly.

Actually, no it doesn’t. Look at that box. These gift-wrapped Squares are adorable. Anyway, what’s a dollar? You can’t even get a cup of coffee for a dollar anymore. Since you can’t usually get extra Squares to give away as gifts (you need to supply your personal info to request one from their site, or purchase one at an Apple store), this is the perfect way to give a gift that practically prints money.

After all, any small business owner or entrepreneur should be offering their clients the widest variety of payment options available. Seriously: do you know someone who isn’t already using Square? Then this is the perfect stocking stuffer.

Square Adds Cash Register Integration to the iPad

Square is looking to replace your cash register…or is it?  The service that helps small businesses accept credit card payments via a smartphone or tablet, now offers the ability integrate a cash register and receipt printer in the mix.

That’s right, now you can use your iPad and the Square credit card reader to accept credit transactions as well as cater to those “cash-only” customers. Read More

New iPod Touch – Business Productivity Tool?

One of the many announcements during this week’s Apple event was the fact that the popular iPod Touch will now come in white, will get the iOS 5 platform, and the price has been reduced to $199 for the entry-level 8 GB version.

Now that sounds all well and dandy for the parent looking to get a gift for their tween… they can download apps that will let them txt message with their friends who are too young to have a full-blown smartphone. Said tween will also be able to play games, listen to music and movies, etc. without destroying their family’s wireless minutes. All in all, at $199 the iPod touch is a great gift, and is now a better value than ever.

But allow me to present another option for the iPod Touch – it can double as an outstanding mobile business productivity device.  That’s right, with the help of the 400,00 titles strong App Store, you can turn a “fun and games” device into a business expense. Read More

Square Mobile Payment System Adds Key New Features

In my opinion, the easiest way for a small business owner to accept credit card transactions is via the Square service/credit card reader. Their is no merchant account needed, the transaction fees are very competitive, and you can easily swipe credit cards using the Square credit card reader that attaches to your iPhone or Android device via the headphone jack.

Square has stepped up its game and now makes the actual credit card experience better by making the transaction process faster. It has improved the transaction speed by eliminating a number of screens that slowed the process down. According to Square, an entire transaction can now be done in approximately four seconds. Read More

Square Moves Towards Mobile Wallet Reality with Card Case

Square was one of the first companies to make mobile credit card payment processing simple and easy for small business owners via its credit card readers and complimentary mobile app. If you’re not familiar with Square, it’s a free device that turns your tablet computer or smartphone into a point-of-sale (POS) device. Just plug in the small, square reader into the headphone jack of your iPhone, iPad, Android phone or tablet and you’re taking credit card transactions at the low, flat fee of 2.75% per transaction.

Today, the Square team is making it easier for small businesses to accept payments via a mobile wallet that customers use to start a tab, receive their goods and pay without ever touching a credit card or wallet.

Card Case is a new venture by Square that essentially puts a mobile wallet on a consumer’s iPhone or Android smartphone that they can use at any Square-enabled business. Users can store credit card information for each business they frequent. Upon entering the business, users can enter their name, select their virtual card from the Card Case app, order their stuff, and Card Case takes care of the rest.

In addition to the mobile wallet app, Card Case also doubles as a directory that will help users find “Squared up” businesses and help small biz owners reach a larger, more technology-aware customer base. Once businesses and customers find each other, Card Case can also provide customers with a product list, food/product menu, or deals/promotions the business might be offering.

Finally, with Square functionality built into Card Case, receipts are automatically sent to the customer per the email address they added to Card Case. This means businesses that use Card Case can stop fumbling around with those receipt rolls in that POS device that always seem to get jammed at the height of “rush hour” business traffic.

Like it? Love it? Hate it? The fact of the matter is that the future of financial transactions my look something like the Card Case service that Square has devised. It’s only a matter of time before Card Case, NFC technology, and QR Codes make your smartphone the most important tool in your everyday life.

To find participating locations and more information on how to start using Card Case as a consumer or a business, get Squared Up and visit the Card Case website.

Competition in Mobile Credit Card Processing Helps the Business Owner

In a move that seems designed to take some of the wind out of Square’s sails (who just this week received an investment from Visa), Intuit’s GoPayment mobile credit card swiping service is dropping their per transaction fees.  The clear winner here is neither Square or Intuit, though, but the business owners and entrepreneurs who are using these devices.  Fees don’t affect consumers, but they do directly impact bottom lines.

Square Reader on Sale at Apple

This is pretty cool. In an attempt to make even more waves in the mobile credit card processing arena, Square has teamed up with Apple to sell the Square card reader online and in Apple retail stores. Previous to this announcement, the readers were only sent via snail-mail to users who went through the Square sign up and activate process. Now Square has some help from Apple to get the popular readers into small business owner’s hands.

The Readers are $9.95 and are also available in black. If you’re an early adopter like me and signed up as soon as they were being offered, you only had a choice of white. For those with a little more patience, you will be rewarded with your choice of white or black. Those of us who MUST have a black reader to match our Apple gadgets (God only knows when the white iPhone 4 will officially surface), you can still buy it at full price, but Square is offering customers a $10.00 transaction credit when a new Square account is activated. That’s only fair since original customers who signed up were issued a free reader.

All of same features still exist for new Square users who buy the reader at Apple:

  • Quick and easy sign-up
  • No complicated contracts or monthly fees
  • Simple pricing—2.75% per transaction
  • Free Square mobile App for Apple iOS and Android devices

If you’re a small business that won’t swipe enough credit cards to require a full merchant account, but want to offer your customers more ways to pay—march into your local Apple store, pick up a Square reader, sign-up, and get to swiping.