With the advent of the mobile credit card reader, businesses can now use their Smartphone’s or tablets as terminals. The size of the business no longer matters, because almost anyone can now accept credit card payments. Even that person selling hot dogs on the street corner can comfortably give his customers the options of swiping their credit cards if they have run out of cash.

Best of all, you do not need a fancy setup to be able to use your mobile card reader; all you need is your smart device, a chip, internet and an easy to download free app.

Why are Mobile card readers becoming more popular?

The business landscape is changing, and so are consumers. Consumers are now more concerned with convenience and the use of credit cards allow them to make purchases without having to carry around cash.

Before, having a credit card terminal at the business premise was a preserve of few companies. Small businesses that did not transact large volumes did not see the need to have terminals at their workplaces. However, the mobile readers have made it very easy for any business of whatever size to transact credit card business with ease.

What do you need to get a mobile reader for credit cards?

All you need is a smart device like an iPhone an iPad or any Android device, download the relevant app, pair it to your phone using Bluetooth, and you are good to go.

You can use the mobile reader anywhere as long as you have an internet connection. There are usually no monthly contracts, and payments are per card transaction. In countries like the UK, mobile card readers do not have a monthly fee; neither do they require that you sign a lock-in contract.

However, to be able to enjoy certain features, you may need to join a monthly plan which will require you to spend some money.

What to consider when buying a mobile reader for your credit cards

What are the startup costs?

Your mobile reader should not cost you anything before you can start taking payments.  Even if there is a fee, it should be one that is low so that it does not impact on your bottom line.

What are the transaction fees?

 Any mobile credit card reader that takes quite a bit of money out of your profit is not a good fit, especially if you have a small business.  Consider what your average sales are, and decide how much you will be comfortable paying in terms of transaction fees.   

What features do they have

Look for a mobile reader that will accept swap (Magstripe) payments, EMV chip, and NFC payments.

Is it easy to use

The mobile reader for your cards should be easy to use, so that you and your customers have no problems, anytime you’re making payments

Is it flexible

Flexibility should be a key consideration because you need to be able to use your reader even when you are on the move.

Shopify Point-Of-Sale Review

We will review one mobile reader for your credit cards so that you have a clearer indication of what to look for when shopping for one.

Shopify Point-of-sale

We consider this an excellent mobile reader whether you are selling on or offline. You get a free chip reader and magstripe, you can sync your inventory with the reader and the app, making it very convenient for e-commerce sellers.

Pricing

The transaction fees for Shopify POS are competitive, but you should note that to get a free mobile reader for your credit cards, you will have to sign up for a monthly plan of not less than $9 per month. The fee you pay will give you access to Facebook store which is an excellent plus for your business.

Features of the Shopify POS

The Shopify POS comes with the e-commerce store, the mobile reader for your credit cards, and you can manage inventory, sales, discounts and customer profiles on it.

Inventory management with Shopify

Once you have your Shopify online store, using the web portal, you can add items onto your inventory.  You can see this inventory both on and offline. Your inventory will sync automatically so that you always know what stock you have available.

Reporting

With the Shopify POS, you will always know what is happening in a business. You have access to the records both online and offline.  You can also get a report on taxes, fees, and net profit. It will, therefore, make it very easy for you to know which products you need to stock up on based on performance.

Customer Management with Shopify POS

You have the option of building your customer profiles including contacts and any other information you need to have. You can use the notes field to jot down any interesting tidbits about your customer that you may want to remember at a later date.

The information you save will make it very easy for you to push appropriate marketing information to your customers, based on their profile.

Discounts

Using the Shopify web portal or mobile app, you can run campaigns or discounts to entice your customers.

What they could improve on with the Shopify POS

  • The major disadvantage with Shopify POS is that you will not be able to access payment if you are offline.
  • If you have an Android device, it will also not work for you because it only operates on the iOS platform.
  • You have to subscribe to a monthly plan for you to get a mobile reader for your credit cards.

Final thoughts

When shopping for a mobile reader for your credit card,   get one that gives you good value-for-money due to the features it has. Readers should be easy to use, allow you to manage your business; whether it is taking inventory, making sales or profiling your customers. Also, consider if you will need to make monthly payments so that you can factor it into your expenditure.

You may also want to read about POS for your business in India: https://help.shopify.com/en/manual/sell-in-person/payment-methods

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