Mobile Credit Card Readers by the Numbers

For starters, this is less design oriented and more small business oriented. I was recently looking to accept credit card payments and wanted to go with an easy solution. I immediately started researching the pros and cons of mobile credit card readers. I'll tell you right now, there is some good information out there (sometimes rather lengthy). These articles for instance:

PCWorld:  Square vs. Intuit GoPayment: Mobile Credit Card Systems Compared


Inc: PayPal Here Takes Aim at Square

Both Square, Inuit GoPayment, and PayPal Here offer similar services with no startup fee and no transaction fees for general use, just a low per transaction percentage. There are, however, a couple different fee structures that I wanted to provide a quick evaluation for (something I did just to make sure I was getting the best bang for my buck). Note that there are various additional charges for keying in CC numbers, running AMEX, etc., but are comparable, if not identical  and reasonable.  So for ease of analysis, I assumed the majority (or all) of the charges are run through the reader and are not AMEX.

In the end, I suppose not everything is purely financially driven. It seems as though Square is winning for ease of use and device compatibility, GoPayment is ahead in the sturdiness and Quickbooks integration, and Here is directly linked to your PayPal account in which you can have a linked debit card with 1% cash back on purchases. Here is actually in really high demand since its launch and has been having a hard time supplying the demand. On a personal note, I like the story behind the Square company (started out as a tech startup here in SF) and their entertaining launch videos.

So, in the end, I think I'll be trying out Square at the Free/2.75% rate until I start running over $1300 a month, at which point I'll give GoPayment a try. If things really start to blow-up, I'll switch back to square when running over $15,000 a month for their $275 a month plan. I guess it really does come down to the numbers on this one (except for choosing that initial use).

square vs intuit gopayment vs paypal mobile payment solutions

...and then there's Google Wallet. We'll wait to see how that one takes off, but the potential is high.