Professional window cleaners work on the go, so most of them do not accept any form of payment but cash. As we move into a cash-free society though, there is an increasingly high demand for companies that take credit cards. If your window cleaning company is able to accept credit card payments, you will instantly have a one-up on the competition. Here is a simple guide to help you do this.
A mobile credit card reader is a small device known as a dongle that you can plug into the headphone jack for your phone or tablet. This device will act as your credit card reader, and an app on your smartphone or tablet will act as the processing machine.
There are several mobile credit card readers on the market today, including:
Square is the reader that most people are familiar with because they were one of the first ones out there, but I have used PayPal Here before with great success. This success was partly driven by the fact that I pay for a lot of my web marketing products on PayPal, so I am already familiar with the way it is set up. The Amazon credit card reader just came out, and so far, the reviews haven’t been great. Nevertheless, you should explore your options and see what works best for you.
Note: Many mobile credit card apps also have a feature that allows you to take a photo of a check and deposit into your account from your phone. If this feature is important to you, make sure you seek it out.
Which mobile credit card reader is right for you? That will depend on several factors. All of the products we mentioned have transaction fees, usually around 2.75% to 3.25%. This is the portion of each payment that you will lose by accepting a credit card. There are also fees involved with transferring money from the credit card processor to your bank account. You need to look into all of this before choosing one reader to use.
In addition to the fees involved with the readers, you will need to make sure the reader you select is compatible with your smartphone or tablet. Most dongles are free to use if you request them directly from the company. If you buy the device from a retailer, you may have to pay a fee and then receive a rebate from the credit card processor.
Yet another factor to compare between readers is the amount of time it will take for money to transfer from your account to your bank. Square is usually faster than PayPal, but with PayPal, you can set up a business account for free and then register for a business debit card. Then you can spend money without having to transfer at all. The setup you choose is entirely up to you.
Since you will lose money with credit card fees, you will need to find a way to make up for that. There are two options: upcharge your credit card clients or upcharge all of your clients and then offer a discount for cash. Most businesses will understand if you have to charge extra for credit card processing because they have to pay that in their own operations. On the residential market, that may be a tougher sale.
While there is no requirement for you to accept credit cards for your window cleaning company, doing so will put you ahead of the competition. As long as you keep track of the incoming transactions, you will have no problems using a mobile credit card reader to process payments for your business.