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4 ways to use square in your small business (or your global business)

Jen A. Miller | April 23, 2014
Small businesses increasingly turn to Square to process payments without the hassle (and expense) of custom card-reading hardware. There are other benefits to the service, including analytics and online sales modules, as well as opportunities for larger enterprises to better serve customers.

Revolution Coffee Roasters' version of Square has buttons for different sizes and types of coffee, which lets the business see what's selling.

Set Up an Online Business Portal

Revolution Coffee Roasters also sells coffee beans through the Square Market, which is an online shopping site that opened in June 2013. In addition to selling beans nationally through the Square Market, the company uses the service to collect payments for its weekly home deliveries.

The company opted for Square Market, says McFadden, because of convenience: "The automation was easy for us," he says, and setting up the site was free.

In addition, payments taken through the Square Market are deposited in the same way as the money made from sales in the store. Businesses are charged the same 2.75 percent transaction fee as they are on in-person sales. Likewise, Square Market sales are tracked along with those made in the store, and "all order details are visible in the merchant's Square dashboard," Ferdon says.

The Square Market lets businesses using Square in the store sell their wares online. (Image courtesy of Square.)

Let Grab-and-go Customers Check Out Fast

Square has become popular with small businesses, but it's also used by big businesses. At Starbucks, for example, where patrons can pay — and, now, tip — using Square Wallet (which connects to their credit or debit card) on their Android and Apple phones.

In February, meanwhile Square and Whole Foods Market announced a new partnership that will allow customers to use the Square Wallet at specific venues inside Whole Foods stores — such as the deli, coffee bar, pizzeria and beer and wine bars.

The Square system won't replace the traditional cash register system. Instead, Whole Food shoppers stopping in for something quick, like a cup of coffee, won't be stuck waiting to pay behind someone buying three carts' worth of groceries.

"Together with Square, we'll deliver options to expedite checkouts, and we look forward to developing new concepts to further simplify and improve grocery shopping," Walter Robb, co-CEO of Whole Foods Marketing, says in a statement. "Square's forward thinking vision and technology makes them an ideal partner to create a convenient, responsive experience for our customers."

The program was rolled out instantly at dozens of Whole Foods locations, with the goal of reaching the hundreds. Ferdon declined to share the specific schedule.


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