Call for Artists, Making Money at Juried Art Fairs, Craft Shows and Festivals
I'm hopping on the tech bandwagon and looking into the credit card swipers that plug right into your usb port, as I have mobile broadband on my Mac. Paypal is advertising their version, and I already accept Paypal on my website, just wondering if anyone has tried them out as a merchant service provider. They're advertising a "$30 a month flat fee, one flat % rate for all cards" which sounds...well, I'm not sure. I've gone through 2 merchant service providers, I'm really annoyed by the way I have to be RIGHT ON TOP of every statement because they "slip up" on some part of our contract, it seems. Anyone try them?
You might look into this new plug in for phones. The guy that invented Twitter invented this: https://squareup.com/features
Sounds like a pretty good deal.
I'm sitting here doing my research this Sunday afternoon, and yes, I found the Square (up?) also, which runs on either the Droid or Iphone. The startup costs seem cheaper than Paypal, but need to continue researching and get info from my peeps here. I've heard that AT&T service is sketchy in the southwest, and I'm going to be in Scottsdale doing the Fine Art Expo for 3 months, so I guess it'll be the Droid. I have to admit, as someone who insists their phone is just a phone, the Droid is waaaaaay cool, when I checked them out at the mall!!
I have a Droid Pro, and I love it!
it is great to be able to get my e-mail and what not, without having to drag the laptop. Keeps me connected, without all the gear and hassle. Have not, as yet used my square, but have it. March will be my first show with square (if I have any cc consumers).
We used the Droid with the square up swiper for the last 3 shows. People didn't care about the receipt from our experience. We sent a number of them to their email accounts, really no sweat to do that. It worked great for us and they will raise the $1000 a week limit with almost no hassle, but you do have to fill out some paperwork and let them check you out. It's been a good deal for us.
The more I look, the more I like the SquareUp program.. Customer service maybe isn't as good, but I've only contacted my current merchant service provider a couple of times in a year and a half, so I could live with that. I really like the idea of being able to make a sale anywhere, and not having to worry about having the expensive card reader! I think companies like this are really going to change the face of small businesses in the next couple of years. Forget all that tiered card crap!
Did you get the square? Do you like it? Printing receipts? Info will be appreciated.
I'm using Verifone vx670 (N American Bankcard) and I like it but am interested in reducing my overhead. The tiered charges drive me nuts. Seems like such a waste of money along with the monthly fees, etc., etc.
Caroline - you might want to search the forum a little more, below are just a few of the posts over the past year on the Square, Intuit GoPayments and other options.
Personally we tried both Intuit and the Square and had issuess occasionally due to lack of data coverage. One of our shows was in a cruise ship terminal that had WiFi connectivity as well as our Verizon coverage but things didn't always connect the way they were supposed to and we couldn't use either the Square or Intuit 100% of the time.
We switched to Roam Pay that has a store and forward option for when the data connectivity is an issue.
Hope this helps, there are several other posts as well if you search the forums.
Well, I have been using my Square for over a year now and I love it! Aside from the straightfoward, non-tiered 2.75% fee on all swiped transactions, there is the uber kewl factor. I have had no problems with connectivity, but I also went with Verizon because of their coverage. It's been over a year since I launched this post, and it's going to be interesting to see what's evolved in CC processors in that year. Munks posted a link to this evolving technology, Dwolla, and I can't wait to see how it works:
I love my square. I have now had two credit card terminals (min. $250 each) die either right before a show or during a show. The second terminal was with Teamac and they did give me good service and reasonable pricing. Then I lost my cell phone at a show. Now that I have an IPad and a Droid I plan on getting a second square to keep as a backup. Total redundancy, I love it. And if I don't have connectivity I can just pull out the knuckle buster and put the charges in later. The email receipts keep me on my toes about asking customers if they would like to be on my email list. On the Ipad I can put in thumbnails of my photographs and the receipt will have a picture on it of what they bought. And customers do love the uber cool. If they want a paper receipt I still have a receipt book and I write them one up.
Thank you all for your input. I will have to digest this and check the links, etc.
Happy New Year!
I wouldn't use PayPal because of the $30/month fee. I use ProPay because there is no monthly fee at all. After much research, I found ProPay to be way more affordable than the others; especially if you only do a few shows a year. ProPay also has a reader, though it doesn't work on my old smart phone. Until I get a new Droid, I've been processing via the web on my current phone.
Be careful about that "Square". I've read several articles about security issues because it doesn't encrypt the data before transmission.