Payment options have come a long way since the days of a simple ‘cash or check?’ question. These days you can pay with your debit or credit card, on your phone, over the phone, through a reader, with a tap, and on and on. The possibilities are almost endless in 2022.
Therefore, as a small business owner, or someone who is taking payments of any type, it is crucial to have a portable card reader that works for you and your needs.
Let’s dive in and discover some of the best mobile card readers available on the market. From the cheapest option to those with tons of functionality, there is something on this list to fit every need.
Best Overall: Square
Because price structure can be one of the most perplexing aspects of accepting credit cards, small companies that use Square adore how easy it is to use. A big part of this is that Square’s processing fees are simple and transparent, which is one of the main reasons for this.
The pricing model that Square utilizes is known as a flat-rate model, and this means that regardless of the brand of card that your client uses – credit or debit, regular or rewards – you will be charged the same rate.
This rate structure can save you money each month if you process a low volume of credit cards or if your customers frequently use American Express or premium rewards cards, or both factors combined.
Rates are still different depending on the type of processing technologies you use, the Square operating system (or app) you use, whether you take cards in online or in person, and if you are using a Square card machine or key in the card details.
Rates also vary depending on whether you accept cards in online or in person. It may sound complicated, but once you determine the method by which you wish to accept payments, the pricing is straightforward and straightforward.
Best for Pop-Up Shops: Shopify
If you are the proprietor of a small business, a hobbyist, or even a full-scale company, it appears that Shopify has a solution that is tailored to meet your needs in almost any market you are operating in.
The fact that the Shopify point of sale app and card reader integration can be used to process transactions while the user is on the move and from virtually any location is a major selling point.
The app is certainly impressive because it enables transactions to take place using a wide variety of different cards; however, it has additional value because it also provides monitoring, synchronization of purchases with customers, inventory checks, and a great deal of other functionality.
The other advantage is that it can also tie in this transaction data to your online or e-commerce site, which means that content, customers, and stock can be managed much more effectively. This opens a whole new world of possibilities.
Cheapest Fees: Clover Go with National Processing
Clover has many kinds of point-of-sale systems, from base stations to portable devices. Professional reviewers say that they are easy to use and look good. Clover does not offer free hardware like some of its competitors, and, depending on the payment system you choose, this can be a bit pricey. But you might be able to set up a payment plan.
Clover devices can be bought from third-party sellers and work with several payment systems, but if you want to use Clover as your payment processor, you need to buy all of your hardware directly from Clover.
One of the best things about Clover is that it has a lot of different integrations that users can use to customize their experience. You can connect accounting and payroll software, like Gusto, or even apps made for your industry, like Bark Membership POS. Clover also has several apps for mobile devices.
You can take payments from anywhere with the Clover Go app, and your customers can place orders or join your loyalty program with the Clover app. Both can be downloaded from Apple’s App Store and Google Play.
Most Customizable: TakePayments
For a totally customizable payment card reader that many big-name mobile payment companies fail to offer, look no further than to the TakePayments payment system. They have several different options to choose from depending on your needs and their equipment is sleek and user friendly.
Payment terminals from TakePayments run on Bluetooth and Wi-Fi and have long battery lives so you are not constantly charging them. Contracts with TakePayments start at 30 days and you are never locked into a contract. Next day settlements ensure you get paid, right when you want. TakePayments also gives you a dedicated account manager to help you every step of the way.