Small businesses used to have a hard time getting approved to accept credit cards. Getting set up for a merchant account involved passing a credit check, agreeing to a long-term contract, paying monthly fees even if you didn’t accept any payments, and acquiring specialized equipment often with another monthly payment.
Square and its competitors have changed all that. Easy to get set up. No long-term contract. No monthly fees. “Equipment” is just your phone and a tiny plastic doohickie.
This has been a game-changer for small businesses, making many location-independent, letting others take cards “every once in awhile.”
- Food vendors can go mobile.
- Farm stands don’t have to get a phone line.
- Service providers can take payment on any site.
- Small town businesses aren’t constrained by the lack of local banks or merchant services.
- Fair and festival vendors can finally take cards.
At a recent conference, I had a few books on hand that I wanted to take reimbursement for. Square worked perfectly, and I even borrowed fellow speaker Sheila Scarborough‘s Square credit card reader since I forgot mine. (I already had an account, I just forgot my reader.)
Want more info? Read our Square credit card review.
Tell us in the comments: how have mobile credit card devices changed your small town business?
- Community engagement planning: old way vs. Idea Friendly way - October 3, 2021
- Boost your maker economy with a “Made in” day - September 17, 2021
- How a ghost town made something from nothing with a folk festival - September 3, 2021
- Rural business idea: sell foraged fruits and more - August 3, 2021
- Best practices for rural housing - July 19, 2021
- How to be more open to new ideas #IdeaFriendly - July 3, 2021
- Market your small town as a movie filming location, attract movie and game fan tourists - June 28, 2021
- Survey of Rural Challenges 2021 results, analysis of themes from 2015 through today - June 7, 2021
- What makes a small town a micropolitan or nanopolitan? - May 22, 2021
- Improving Rural Housing: turning blighted dilapidated houses into new homes - May 7, 2021