by Grace Barone
POS systems have advanced tremendously in recent years. When there are so many solutions available, it can be challenging to know where to begin. Clover vs. Square is a hot topic when it comes to choosing a POS system. They both provide a variety of features and advantages that can help you optimize your operations and boost your bottom line. Which one, though, is best for you? We'll examine the difference between Clover and Square in-depth to help you in select the ideal POS system for your small businesses needs.
How POS Systems Benefit Your Business
If you're a new business owner you may be wondering why you would even want one of these modern POS systems? What's wrong with a traditional cash register set up? Well, since technology as a whole has progressed so much, its important for businesses to keep up. The advancements have opened many doors for POS systems, making the point of sale world much more customizable and safe. Here are some reasons why investing in a modern POS system is important for small businesses.
Accept Multiple Payment Types
Traditionally, the point of sale was the place where transactions occurred, where customers bought their items. In an old-time general store, the POS was the cash register or the ledger where the shopkeeper recorded the sale. Today’s POS systems also refer to the place where a customer makes their purchase, but tablets and monitor screens have replaced the old-style paper ledger. In some cases, the POS isn’t a physical location, but instead a virtual shopping cart or online checkout. Today’s POS systems let merchants accept cash and checks, like back in the day, as well as credit and debit cards, EBT, Google and Apple pay and even crypto currency. Increasingly, POS systems can accept mobile and contactless payments as well.
Allowing a merchant to accept multiple forms of payment is a benefit for the business and its customers. When you accept swipe cards, chip cards and contactless cards, you can take payments from a broader range of customers. You don’t have to worry about turning away people because you are “cash only,” nor do you have to worry you’ll have to turn people away because they only have a swipe or chip card.
Protect Your Business From Liability
POS systems can help protect your business from liability. While magnetic swipe cards were the norm in the U.S. well past the time the rest of the world was using EMV® chip cards, things changed on Oct. 1, 2015. Starting then, businesses that accepted credit cards and that hadn’t adopted a POS system that had chip-reading technology were on the hook for any fraud that took place.
Smoother & Safer Transactions
From the customer’s point of view, the POS system a business uses can mean more security and a smoother purchase experience. Several years after the liability shift took place, customers who wanted to pay with a chip-enabled credit or debit card might raise an eyebrow or feel a little nervous about giving their business to a company that still uses magnetic swipe readers. Credit card companies no longer require a signature on credit card transactions because of these advancements. POS systems have the ability to bypass signatures while some credit card machines do not. Additionally, modern POS systems take advantage of new technology to process transactions a lot more quickly than older systems, meaning customers are in and out in less time.
Easier to Run Your Business
Beyond improving the purchase experience for customers and merchants, POS systems can also make it easier to run your business. If you have a customer loyalty program or participate in any customer relationship management, a smart POS system can manage and keep track of the program for you. Today’s POS systems also often offer inventory management features as well as employee tracking features, such as time clocks, shift scheduling and payroll.
Head to Head Comparison of Clover vs. Square
Now that you know the benefits of modern POS systems, its time to get into what this whole blog is about. Clover vs. Square. The reason these two options are very popular, but also difficult to choose between is because they are very similar. It's hard to figure out what the differences are and how the differences between the two can affect your business operations. Here is a side by side comparisons of both options:
- Square and Clover both provide a wide variety of services, including customer relationship management, employee management, inventory management, and more. Barcode scanners, receipt printers, and kitchen printers are just a few of the hardware choices available with Clover. In contrast, Square provides a free mobile card reader for people who want to take payments while on the go. But, Clover also has options for mobile card readers as well. There are two different options for Clovers mobile card readers, the Clover Flex and the Clover Go
- Pricing: There are no additional fees or hidden costs with either Clover or Square's price. For in-person payments, Square levies a fixed fee of 2.6% + 10 cents, and for internet payments, 2.9% + 30 cents. Contrarily, Clover offers more pricing options, with monthly prices ranging from $9.95 to $69.95, depending on the hardware and functionality you require. Clover is just a hardware company and pricing is dynamic and will be set by the processor. This gives you the ability to negotiate your rates with your credit card processor or even process with your existing processor and merchant account if they are a Clover provider.
- Both devices have a touch screen display. The attractive look of both is part of the lure. Having the touch screen makes them both very easy to use as well, large touch screens make navigating the device for employees and customers a breeze. Square is marketed as more of a plug-and-play device, highlighting its user friendly functionality. The learning curve may be slightly greater with Clover, but that's because there are more choices for customization. Since you have more control over your device, there's more to learn.
- Square and Clover both include several integrations with well-liked third-party applications, like accounting software, marketing tools, and other applications. Clover has their own app market with an app for nearly every business type. Just like the app market on your phone, some apps are better quality than others. The Clover app market offers free trials for all apps, so if you find that something isn't working well for your business, you aren't stuck with it.
Clover vs. Square. Which one Should you get?
There's no definite answer as to which POS system you should get. The choice between Clover and Square ultimately depends on the particular needs and demands of your business. While Square might be a better option for some companies, Clover might be a better fit for others. It's critical to carefully weigh both alternatives and select the one that best serves your company's goals.
I would say square is a great option for businesses who are just starting out or process a smaller amount. There are limits to what the Square systems can do which makes it a good entry level system. If you're planning on expanding your business the Clover systems may be a better choice. With Clover, you can grow the system with you business. You can start out with something like the Clover Mini or the Clover Flex then expand to a Station or Duo or maybe even a Kiosk. Every device integrates with each other so if your business is expanding, you won't need to pitch the system you have and get an entire new one.
Clovers support is also superior. If you purchase your Clover device through VMS. We have our very own customer support and Clover specialist. So all of your needs are quickly taken care of. If you're interested in getting a Clover system for your business, visit getvms.com or contact us at (888) 902-6227.