Wondering how to get a credit card reader for your business?

You’re in luck.

Getting a credit card reader has become a simple process. If you’re already set on ordering a mobile credit card reader from PaySimple, you can do so here.

On the other hand, if you’re looking for a resource to help you determine how to select the right credit card reader for your business, then you’ve come to the right place.

The main thing to understand here is that credit card readers are only as good as the software that supports them. While obtaining a credit card reader is quite simple, it shouldn’t be done hastily. Picking the wrong payment processing software can cost your business a small fortune in additional hours, overcharged fees, and missed sales.

How to Get a Credit Card Reader

Here are Four Factors to Consider:

1. Does the payment software offer e-commerce solutions?

You might assume that all businesses have realized that the internet has changed the business landscape in a permanent way, but the truth is that many businesses are still running a few decades behind the times.

While vetting various payment softwares, be on the lookout for the capability to access a virtual terminal. A virtual terminal is the name given to the web version of a physical credit card terminal. These virtual terminals allow businesses to take payments over an internet connection without needing to physically swipe a card. This is a must have for any business that intends to keep up with the times. Can you imagine the impression a customer would get if you didn’t use the internet? It’s kinda like that.

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2. Does the payment software offer a mobile payment solution when I’m on the go?

Mobile card readers plug into a smartphone and sync with the payment software allowing businesses to swipe payments when they are in the field or at trade shows.

The greatest benefit of mobile card readers is that they allow for improved business cash flow. With mobile swipers, not only do you get paid more quickly, but you also create a more seamless experience for your customers. Without mobile swipers, your only alternative is to complete your product or service for your customer and to then send an invoice later. What business enjoys having money tied up in Accounts Receivable? None! However, by accepting payment at the time of the value delivery, your business creates a fluid and painless process for your customers while delivering a faster cash flow for you. Win, win!

3. Does the payment software offer recurring billing?

Recurring billing is the holy grail of sustainable business models–sell a customer once and then deliver for that customer on a schedule, all the while billing on a recurring schedule. While many businesses successfully employ this billing approach, surprisingly few payment solutions offer recurring billing options.

When picking your payment solution, make sure to look for this option. Even if you don’t currently bill your customers on a recurring basis, you might do so in the future. Switching payment solutions can be a pain, but you can save yourself that hassle by picking the right solution from the start.

4. Is the payment software competitively priced?

Pricing should definitely factor into your decision making and we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention it.

When looking at pricing, you have two parts to consider: the fixed and variable components. Fixed costs are those that remain the same every month, regardless of the volume of transactions. Variable costs, on the other hand, are those that fluctuate with volume–the more you sell, the higher costs you’ll incur.

Most of the time, if fixed costs are low, variable costs will be higher, and vice versa. The question you should ask yourself is this: how much volume do I plan to process and what would my total fees be?

Let’s take an example:

Company 1 has a $50.00 monthly fee (fixed cost) but charges 2.49% on transactions (variable cost).
Company 2 has no monthly fee (fixed cost) but charges 2.70% on transactions (variable cost).

Which of these options is less expensive? That entirely depends on how much volume you intend to process!

$1,000 in monthly volume:

1: $50 (fixed) + $1,000 x 2.49% (variable) = $74.90 (more expensive)

2: $0 (fixed) + $1,000 x 2.70% (variable) = $27.00

$25,000 in monthly volume:

1: $50 (fixed) + $25,000 x 2.49% (variable) = $672.50

2: $0 (fixed) + $25,000 x 2.70% (variable) = $675 (more expensive)

So, the effective cost of each provider varies greatly depending on the size of your business. Depending on the volume of dollars processed, either of these example companies can have the better pricing.

P.S. PaySimple’s software does all this and more–are you ready to order that swiper now?

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Gareth Pronovost

Gareth Pronovost

Gareth Pronovost is a finance expert, Excel wizard, and a certified business coach. He's worked with over 150 small business owners and loves turning those "boring accounting and finance numbers" into actionable insights. He can be found on YouTube working Excel magic in his vlog "Entrepreneurship by the Numbers."

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