My wife and I love to find deals through Craigslist, thrift stores and even by dumpster diving. As they say, “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure.” Typically, my wife and I hunt for children’s items, but every once in awhile, we’ll find a great piece of furniture that needs a little TLC to become as good as new. Sometimes, we even resell the items for a nice profit.
When we put up a sales ad, we always specify that the customer bring cash. However, more and more people are moving towards electronic payments. In fact, Americans used cash for 32% of their retail purchases in 2015. This was a drop from 2014, when 40% of American used cash for these purchases (source: Wall Street Journal).
Recently, someone asked us if we would be willing to accept a credit card. Admittedly, no one had asked this to us before. My wife and I didn’t have the faintest clue how to even accept a purchase this way. While my wife and I are well familiar with PayPal, we had never used a mobile reader device to swipe a credit card on the spot.
Mobile Card Readers (MCRs)
For those who are unaware, a mobile card reader is simply a device that can be attached to a smartphone or tablet that can turn the device into a point of sale. Most card readers can accept all types of debit and credit cards.
When I started to do some research, I learned that in 2017, more than $721.4 billion will be exchanged vehicle mobile payments (source: Visa). This projected figure is a 14x increase since 2010, when payments reached $52.9 billion. In fact, by 2020, the preferred method of payment by both consumers and merchants may be mobile payments.
Businesses are embracing the technology, whether it’s buying a coffee from Starbucks or getting groceries from Whole Foods.
Lucrative for Small Business Owners
My sister is an accomplished artist and a small business owner. I asked her how she handles payments from her customers. She indicated that most still pay by a physical check, but more and more attempt to pay with credit cards. Because of this, she uses a mobile card reader for credit card payments. She currently uses Square, but I recently let her know about SumUp, the leading mobile point-of-sale company in Europe that is now branching out to the US.
Because MCRs are so lucrative for small business owners, she is now exploring the SumUp option. MCRs make sales more efficient, saving business owners from hassle and time.
Square charges $49 for its device, while SumUp regularly charges $69 for its device, but SumUp’s device is currently on promotion for only $39. SumUp offers a better product because its technology is superior. Square requires two devices for the one EMV credit card chip (Europay, MasterCard, and Visa) card reader that accepts all credit cards with chips. As many of you know, the chip technology has drastically cut down on counterfeit fraud rates. EMV chip and PIN technology directly contribute to your security.
One of the best features of SumUp is that you can combine the physical card reader with the SumUp App. This essentially creates a tiny mobile cash register, making transactions easy, efficient, and highly portable.
While there is no global standard regarding mobile payments, there is currently a push to create a single technology that would set the regulations across all countries. Until then, it seems as though SumUp has the best MCR technology on the market.