Today, mobile payment technology is a must for businesses of all types, but especially for entrepreneurs who work from home. Taking payments via mobile apps expands the home-based business beyond your office walls. But it’s a challenge to figure out which system is right for your particular business.
Like PayPal, many of these new apps facilitate e-commerce and have many similar features. It’s the differences that will help you choose the one that is right for you. Outlined below are some mobile technology apps that assist processing transactions through your smartphone:
Business is moving to your smartphone!
• The Square system, a startup from Jack Dorsey of Twitter fame, is a straightforward approach to mobile credit card processing. With no monthly fees, no contracts, and no merchant accounts, Square is a good solution for those who only occasionally need mobile payment processing.
Square links directly with your bank account and accepts payments from all major credit card companies. With Square, both service setup and the card reader are free, and there are no contracts or monthly minimums required. The service costs are on a per transaction basis — 2.75% plus $0.15 per swiped card and 3.5% plus $0.15 per keyed-in transaction.
One downside to Square is that the service will only deposit up to $1,000 per week into your bank account; the rest is deposited in 30 days.
• Intuit’s GoPayment at $12.95 a month for iOS and Android devices is another great option for business owners looking for a mobile credit card processor. The hardware required for swiping credit cards comes at no additional charge, and transaction fees are competitive at 1.75% of total sales. GoPayment accepts all major credit cards and offers email receipts for customers.
If your business is already using QuickBooks or another Intuit Payment Solutions software, then GoPayment might be a great choice for you. It automatically syncs with your accounting software, helping you easily manage your books, even on the go.
Mobile payments let you expand your business beyond your office
• ROAMpay from Flagship Merchant Services, voted No. 1 by TopTenReviews, is a popular mobile payment solution for businesses on the go. With low transaction fees — 1.58% of each sale — and easy-to-use features, ROAMpay is the top of the crop when it comes to mobile credit card processing.
The card reader that attaches to your smartphone is free, and the total monthly access fee is $7.95, with no mandatory contract. ROAMpay accepts payments from all major credit cards and is compatible with Android, iOS, and Blackberry devices. The service also stores your customers’ contact information — a boon for future marketing campaigns — and sends email receipts.
• LevelUp is an app that accepts mobile payments from any customer, without a credit card, regardless of whether or not they have a smartphone. Merchants use a LevelUp terminal, which integrates with their existing POS system, to scan the quick response (QR) code on a customer’s smartphone or LevelUp card.
In addition to making mobile payments quick and easy, LevelUp lets businesses create unique loyalty programs for customers. Regulars automatically receive credit to their LevelUp account when they frequent their favorite merchants.
And the app gives business owners access to a range of powerful analytical tools, so they can keep track of customers and their purchases. LevelUp’s Interchange Zero payment network is free. The company doesn’t charge transaction fees or charge for hardware. Instead, merchants are charged for running marketing campaigns with LevelUp. Merchants pay $0.40 for every dollar of credit redeemed by a customer.
These are just some of the great mobile processing systems that are designed for the specific purpose of better handling your merchant transactions, allowing you to accept and receive payments anytime, any place, anywhere.
Sarah Boisvert is a writer who covers new technologies such as 3D Printing and mobile apps.
Photo Credits: Stuart Miles via FreeDigitalPhotos.net, adamr via FreeDigitalPhotos.net