Card payment machines are an essential tool for any small business in today’s cashless economy. However, they can vary in price, features and fees – so it’s important to choose the right one for your needs.
The most common type is a countertop terminal that sits on a shop or cafe till, usually connected to an internet connection and power supply. Portable credit card readers are battery-powered and connect to wifi for use anywhere within your premises.
Zettle, which is now owned by PayPal, offers a low-cost card reader and free payment app that makes it easy for entrepreneurs and small businesses to take payments. It doesn’t have monthly fees, commitments or hidden costs and its 1.75% transaction fee is very competitive compared to other options.
In order to use the Zettle card machine, you need a smartphone or tablet that has Wi-Fi, 3G or 4G data connections and is compatible with Bluetooth (you can also plug in a regular card reader). The card terminal connects with a SIM card, which comes pre-loaded with unlimited data at no extra cost. It can also be plugged into a docking station, which keeps it charged and prints paper receipts.
The terminal accepts all major credit cards and mobile wallets through chip and PIN or contactless taps. It is EMV-approved, PCI DSS-compliant and has a touchscreen interface that allows you to navigate the POS software directly on the device.
Although the terminal isn’t as feature-rich as some of the top-rated POS systems, it does offer a number of useful functions such as remote payments, chargeback protection and refunds. These features are all supported through the Zettle Go app that you download onto your phone or tablet.
Another important feature is that it allows customers to make payment links via email, which are then sent to them via a secure link in the Zettle Go app on their device. The link they receive is PCI-compliant and comes from a trusted source like PayPal, so it helps to reassure customers that their card details are safe.
You can also set up a gift card and add a discount or special offer on the checkout screen. This is very handy if your business sells gift cards and you’d like to keep track of your sales revenue.
This is a very straightforward process and only requires you to install the free Zettle Go app, which can be downloaded from the Apple App Store and Google Play. After you’ve done this, you can start taking payments from your device and using the reports in the Zettle Go app to manage your sales.
In addition, the Zettle app can be used to run a business card printing service and even send payment notifications to your clients, which is great for boosting customer retention. If you’re a business that deals with large numbers of people, you can choose a larger Zettle reader that will hold more payment cards and give you more space to display your contact information.
Unlike many of the other POS systems out there, Zettle has a dedicated team to support its customers. They are available on weekdays 9am – 5pm and can be contacted by phone, email or online chat. The company’s website also provides a Help Centre, which is full of guides and frequently asked questions.
Barclays is one of the UK’s largest banks, serving millions of customers and generating over $20 billion in total income in 2019. It offers a range of credit cards for both personal and business use, including airline, no annual fee, and low interest credit cards.
Barclaycard’s card payment machines are designed to help small businesses take payments from customers over the counter and online. Their machines are available in a variety of shapes and sizes and come with a number of features to suit different requirements, including the ability to accept contactless cards.
These machines are often located near the checkouts in retail environments, where they allow shoppers to pay for goods with their debit and credit cards without having to queue at the till. They are usually connected to a POS, but they can also be hooked up to WiFi or Bluetooth.
For businesses that sell items over the counter, Barclays also offers a desktop card machine with or without a PIN pad. This type of card reader is perfect for businesses such as clothing outlets, newsagents, bookshops, and supermarkets that are not able to fit a portable or mobile card reader in their premises.
The desktop card reader is available in two versions: a standalone device with a PIN pad and an integrated version (pictured) that saves space. It’s ideal for a business that needs to accept credit and debit cards on a regular basis, and has been designed with security in mind to prevent card skimming.
You’ll need to set up the card terminal before you can begin using it, and it takes a few days to process all of your transactions. You can then log into your virtual terminal from a computer or tablet to accept cards and make refunds.
As with many card providers, Barclays will offer you a standard merchant account and card processing agreement in one package. This means you get a fixed monthly rate for the whole deal, and you can cancel your contract at any time. The downside is that you’ll be charged an early cancellation charge if you decide to leave before 18 months.
This can be a bit of a pain to work around, especially for seasonal businesses or micro-merchants, so it’s worth getting a quote for a tailored pricing plan that suits your business’s needs. They also have a flexible pricing scheme that allows you to spread your costs by paying a percentage of each transaction.
They also offer a number of other services, such as a cash-back rewards programme that allows you to earn automatic cashback on purchases made at high street retailers and digital shops with Visa. They have also partnered with large companies to issue co-branded cards that offer a range of benefits, including airline miles and hotel discounts.
Tyl by Natwest
Tyl by Natwest is a UK-based payment provider offering virtual terminals, payment links and online payment gateways to help businesses take payments. The company is backed by the UK high street bank Natwest and aims to make card payments easier for businesses.
With a user-friendly pricing structure and straightforward contracts, Tyl offers a quick set-up process that includes 24-hour settlement periods to help small and micro businesses get paid faster. It also has an online portal that lets business owners view their sales and settlements on demand.
Customers can use the card machine on Wi-Fi and 3G/4G, and can also connect to an ethernet cable. They can accept a variety of cards, including Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and debit cards, as well as Apple Pay and Google Pay.
They offer a range of POS machines to suit different needs, including an all-in-one card reader for shops, a portable card reader, a countertop machine and a pocket card reader. The company also offers a loyalty programme that rewards business customers for their spend.
You can order a card machine with Tyl online or via the phone. Once you have your quote, you can choose to have the machine shipped directly to your business or pick it up from a local Tyl shop. Then, you can start taking payments and monitoring sales and settlements on the Tyl Portal for free!
The card machine can be customised to match your branding. It can come with a PIN pad and a credit card swiper, so you can accept all kinds of credit and debit cards. It can even be equipped with a barcode scanner and a cash drawer for inventory management.
In addition to the card machine, you can also opt for a business banking account with Natwest. This includes access to a business banking helpline. The helpline is open to answer your questions around payments 24/7, so you can get in touch when you have a problem or need help.
NatWest is a top-ranked business bank in the UK, and its cards can be used anywhere in the world, provided you charge them in pounds. They also have a number of features to help you grow your business, such as a mobile app and reporting tools.
As a NatWest Business Banking customer, you can also sign up to Worldpay. This is the UK’s largest and most trusted merchant account provider. It is also a leading provider of card processing solutions, and you can choose to have your payments handled by the bank’s own processor or by Worldpay.
If you’re a NatWest Business Banking customer, you could save up to 50% off the standard UK debit and credit card transaction fees with Worldpay. This is especially useful if you have a large amount of transactions per month, as you’ll pay lower rates.