Not that there's been a lack of ways to pickup a Square credit card reader, but if you happen to find yourself in a Verizon Wireless store with a few extra bucks and the burning desire to open your own boutique business (and you're not craving coffee or a MacBook), you're in luck. As of today, VZW stores will be offering up the commerce device nationally for $9.97 a pop -- a price that comes with a $10 Square credit. Ka-ching. With $10 billion a year in payments at last count, that pricing structure seems to be working out for the company after all.
Accepting Mobile Payments Comes Full Circle for Small Businesses: Rounding Out a Business with Square
For some small businesses, accepting credit or debit cards can be an expensive, time-consuming and complicated process.
Fortunately for small business owners, wireless technology can provide a simple solution to allow businesses of any size to expand payment options for customers. Using a mobile payment tool such as Square, businesses from boutique shops, to plumbers, to professional services, to salon professionals and independent contractors can accept credit or debit card payments using their smartphone or tablet.
Beginning on Jan. 31, the Square Card Reader will be available nationally at Verizon Wireless stores. Running on Android and iOS platforms, Square will sell for $9.97 and comes with $10 credit to a Square account. There are no contracts, minimums or set-up fees.
It takes just a few minutes for a merchant to set up Square. After the Square app is downloaded, the user completes a few quick sign-up steps, links the service to their bank account, and within moments, is up and running.
Transactions are completed with a swipe of the card on the Square Card Reader followed by the buyer's signature. The seller can email or text the receipt to the buyer. The seller pays a fee of 2.75 percent for swiped transactions and 3.5 percent plus 15 cents for sales that are manually keyed in. The funds are deposited in customers' bank accounts generally within 24 hours. Customers can also manage their Square account online at www.squareup.com.
Now merchants have a better chance to close the sale when a prospective customer doesn't have enough cash on hand, but truly wants the product or service.
*Verizon is currently in the process of acquiring AOL, Engadget's parent company. However, Engadget maintains full editorial control, and Verizon will have to pry it from our cold, dead hands.