Art Fair Insiders

Call for Artists, Making Money at Juried Art Fairs, Craft Shows and Festivals

Podcast: Credit Card Processing for "Mobile Merchants" 101

Thursday, April 25, 2 pm ET

Making the sale and making it easy for you and your buyer

Talking about:

  • terminals, wireless & wired
  • iPhones
  • iPads & tablets
  • PayPal
  • PCI compliance & fees
  • merchant support
  • pay-as-you go processing
  • monthly charges
  • and getting the biggest bang for your buck

Steven Ballan, vice-president of 1st National Payment Solutions, one of the pioneers in providing merchant accounts to non-bricks and mortar merchants, lays out the current "best practices" and answers questions about making smart choices in your credit card processing options.


In light of the continuing discussion about credit card processing we'll speak with a merchant provider who has been in the business many years. 1st National stepped out years ago to provide services to artists and they have a long history in the business.

You can help make this podcast better by posting your questions below in the comments and also by calling in to the show: (805) 243-1338

Views: 1628

Comment by Meg Gerner on April 23, 2013 at 10:20pm
This is exactly what I need. Thanks so much for organizing this! In case, I don't manage to tune in, will there be a recording of the podcast that I can listen to later on?
Comment by Carol Torres on April 24, 2013 at 9:29am

My items are $30 or less and I don't need a "smart" phone.  I use a knuckle buster when I do outdoor shows and key in the sale on my PC after the show.  On average, I process 30 to 40 CC sales each show.   Is it worth the $$$ for me to own a phone that I would use a 25 times a year just to process CC sales?

Comment by Greg Lawler on April 24, 2013 at 10:23am

You want to consider how much of your "selling" time it takes to do a transaction with your knuckle-buster PLUS all the time to enter all those transactions later.  Taking your attention away from selling to process a transaction the old-fashioned (SLOW) way is COSTING you sales.  Bite the bullet and get yourself a smart phone to process transactions QUICKLY and you'll find yourself making more sales because you can focus on the selling process and not have your face buried, filling it out and asking for a signature while other customers stand around getting impatient and waltzing away while you're not looking.

Comment by Connie Mettler on April 24, 2013 at 11:26am

Good comments -- I'm putting them into my queue of questions. Thank you.

Meg, the podcasts are hosted on this site, downloadable as an mp3 to listen to later and also at this link on iTunes:

Comment by Meg Gerner on April 24, 2013 at 2:08pm
Thanks Connie! Good to know, I can find it again later. I have a question too. There seems to be an awful lot of options (Square, Salesvu, Intuit etc) and I want to know what's best for someone who's really just starting out. I have never tried any craft shows in the US and as I've just moved here, I'm afraid that it might be hard to open a merchant account. Which of these options would be best for a business like mine?
Comment by Alan Anderson on April 24, 2013 at 5:05pm

Carol, be sure to listen in - the old-school "Knuckle Buster" method is a very, very risky process with all the PCI rules that are out there.  You need to learn all about it.  It is very much worth the cost of a smart phone (or a tablet and hotspot) in order to process 400-500 transactions per year, for sure.  On top of that, Greg's analysis is spot on.  Your sales will increase on top of the time and security savings!  I can't speak for any other shoppers, but I would not even allow a vendor / store to use a knuckle buster or image of my card under any circumstances.

Comment by Olive Parker on April 25, 2013 at 1:46pm

Can we listen to it live?  If so, how?

Comment by Connie Mettler on April 25, 2013 at 1:50pm

Click on the link right up there on the top -- for the radio -- live at 2 pm, Olive

Comment by Sue Van Dame on April 25, 2013 at 2:04pm

I do not have a smart phone or cell phone and still use the knuckle buster. If a vendor only does a few shows a year with say maybe 100 transactions a smart phone seems pretty pricey. any other more affordable options?

Comment by Jim Harris on April 25, 2013 at 2:05pm

Why does 1National charge a $5 monthly fee for their mobile solution when all the others I'm aware of are free?

I understand the software 1National uses is Apriva.  I've been trying to find information on this app and if sales tax rates can be entered into the software for different locations.  I haven't been able to find anything from my web searches.  Can you point  me to a location to find out more about Apriva's software?


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