EVERYTHING You Need To Know To Take Credit Card Payments On Your Mobile Phone (For Small Business, Contractors, Owner-Operators, Single-Person Vendors)
The cashless economy has been on the rise for some time now.
The last decade has seen a huge shift away from cash towards card payments, and we’ve arrived at a point where it’s simple, affordable and safe to accept credit cards by phone.
If you’re reading this, you’re likely wondering; how do I accept credit card payments on my phone easily and affordably?
Maybe you’re a small business owner who is keen to go cashless or want to make it easier for customers to make payment by card.
These days, it’s no longer necessary to buy an expensive, clunky machine, or even use a free, lightweight machine for that matter.
Why would you when you have the option of simple, effective and inexpensive mobile credit card processing apps to get the job done?
All you need is your smartphone, a Merchant Account Provider and an app like Charge that allows you to accept these payments easily with low fees.
You can also purchase an mPOS card reader that allows you to tap a card and process the transaction on the spot, though this technology is now outdated.
We’ll get to that later…
With the right app, you don’t need anything other than your phone to accept credit cards by phone.
This kind of payment method is a game-changer for small businesses, contractors and vendors across all industries that offer in-person retail sales.
From retail to beauty, construction and tourism, if you want to streamline the payment process, accepting card payments by phone will provide you and your customers with a smooth and simple experience.
You’re not limited by in-person transactions either, as these apps can be used whether you’re in person or not, making it possible to accept and process transactions from anyone, anywhere.
It may sound daunting, especially if you haven’t set up a payment system before, but we’ll address everything about how to accept credit card payments on your phone in full.
Let’s get into it…
What Are The Benefits Of Accepting Card Payments On Your Phone?
Being able to accept credit card payments on your phone offers many distinct benefits for a business and its customers.
The most obvious upside might be the convenience of customers not having to carry cash, though the positives go way beyond this for customers and business owners alike.
Let’s take a look at some of the many benefits of embracing this technology…
Respond to customer preferences – Consumer trends show that people expect to be able to pay by card. Show your customers that you’re listening to their needs and use an app to take credit card payments.
Boost your sales – Accepting mobile credit card payments can create opportunities to boost your sales.
You’ll avoid lost sales opportunities too, like if a customer didn’t have cash on them, needed to leave to get it and decided not to go through with the purchase.
Using a mobile payment method also encourages impulse buys from those customers who didn’t set out to make a purchase.
As a business that can accept credit card payments on a smartphone, you will be prepared for and ready to process the transaction.
Reduce expenses – Mobile processing apps that accept mobile credit card payments not only boost sales opportunities, they can also reduce business expenses.
As a business owner, there’s no need to fork out a heap of money on bulky, traditional card payment technology.
With so many different brands offering mobile processing apps with no sign-up or membership fees, there are options for all budgets, making it an affordable way to accept payments on your phone.
While the options and costs vary depending on the provider you choose, they are more affordable than older, traditional card payment technology options.
Less margin for error – When you only need your phone and an app to accept credit cards on your mobile phone, there’s less chance you’ll be caught in a situation where you can’t accept payments.
Using older mPOS technology that requires external hardware like a card reader increases the chances of something going wrong.
If your device runs out of battery, breaks or you forget it, you’ll have no way of accepting credit card payments by phone at all.
How many sales would this cost you?
On the other hand, people are rarely caught without their smartphones these days, meaning you’ll be prepared no matter the situation.
Allows for contactless purchases – While mobile card payment technology wasn’t made with social distancing in mind, being able to accept contactless payments on your phone has made it a lot easier to reduce contact and still make purchases.
The Covid pandemic saw many businesses successfully embrace the no-contact method for in-person retail sales and continue doing business under the ‘new normal’.
No Delay to get started – When you sign up to a mobile app aPOS that doesn’t require you to buy a card reading device to process payments, you don’t need to wait to set up devices or for them to arrive to start processing payments on your mobile phone.
Easy Integration – Mobile processing apps and credit card readers are easy for small businesses to integrate and allow for smooth transactions.
They’re also compatible with most devices, whether you want to accept credit card payments on Android or iOS.
It’s easy and convenient for both you as a business owner and your customers, simply swipe or tap your customer’s card and complete purchases right on the sales floor, or on-the-spot wherever you are.
Improved security – When you accept credit card payments by phone you will of course have less physical cash and store less cash on your premises.
Additionally, mobile payment options provide security from data breaches, protecting your data and your customer’s payment information.
Accept payments from anyone, anywhere: You can use our app called ‘Charge’ or a similar app to receive credit card payments from anyone, regardless of their location.
You’re not just limited to in-person payments, you can also take different types of payments on your phone including pre-authorized payments, payment requests, one-off payments and subscription payments.
We will go into that more shortly.
Improve customer experience – It’s not only good products and services that customers value. Customers value all aspects of the experience, and for many that includes a seamless payment option.
If you can accept credit card payment on your phone, the process is streamlined for your customers, giving you a competitive edge.
Accepting Different Types Of Payments On Your Phone (How It Works)
So we’ve had a look at the benefits, though you may still be thinking, but how do I accept credit card payments on my phone quickly and cheaply?
Let’s get to that right now…
To start making these payments all you need is.
- A smartphone (Android or iOS)
- An account with an online payment processing platform
- An aPOS (Application Point of sale). An aPOS is the latest version of payment programming that came along after mPOS (Mobile Point of Sale) devices.
Once you have these three things, it’s simple and easy to accept credit cards on your phone.
While it is not required when using an aPOS app, some people may still choose to use some kind of mPOS device like a card reader.
Some aPOS apps will be compatible with mPOS devices, but you need to check on a case by case basis.
Charge supports the recently released Stripe Reader M2 device and BBPOS Chipper 2X BT card readers.
These devices can be bought directly from Stripe and used to accept credit card payment on Android versions of the Charge app.
Please note, these add ons are not currently available to accept credit card payments on iPhone / the iOS version of the Charge App, though this support will be added later in 2022.
Now we’ve taken a look at the ‘how’ in ‘how to accept credit card payments on your mobile phone’, let’s look into the different types of payments you can use…
These different payment types have been developed and adapted for use on smartphone apps to allow businesses and customers to process payments and make purchases in the way that works best for them.
Figuring out how to accept different types of payments can be daunting, though the process is straightforward when using a reliable and user-friendly app.
Even if you’re used to taking card payments by phone, you’ll find this breakdown of the different payment types clears up any confusion.
So let’s break it down…
Contactless Phone Payments
Contactless phone payments such as in-person payments are the most common way to accept credit card payments by phone, but this is not the only way to do it.
Your other options include pre-authorized payments, payment requests, one-off payments and subscription payments.
In-person payments are definitely the most common way that businesses take card payments on mobile phones.
An in-person payment is one when customers swipe or tap their credit cards or enter their payment details for an in-person retail sale.
These are the payments you make in person, whether it is contactless or with the assistance of a card reader.
How do you accept in-person payments on your phone?
Apps like Charge have been built to make it easy for businesses to accept credit card payment without machines like a card reader or clunky EFTPOS machine.
They’re easy to use and make processing payments, including in-person payments, as quick and easy as possible.
To use this method, all you need is a Stripe account and the Charge App.
Here’s a simple breakdown of how to accept credit card payments on phones using the Charge app:
- Tap the “+” icon on the app to create a new payment.
- Enter the payment amount and a purchase reference.
- Make the payment by tapping, swiping or scanning the customer’s card or manually entering in the customer’s payment information.
- Press charge card.
- You can send digital receipts (SMS or email) if your customer wants to provide this optional information.
- That’s it! The payment will be processed immediately and details of this purchase can be viewed on the payments screen.
Pre-authorized payments will not suit every business model, though it is an available method to accept credit card payment on cell phone apps.
These payments are not payments as such, but rather a temporary hold or reservation of funds made by a merchant on a customer’s credit card.
Pre-authorized payments do not actually process the payment, though they can be converted into a payment later on or cancelled completely.
During the hold period, these funds are unavailable to the customer to spend elsewhere.
While they cannot access these funds during the pre-authorization period, no money has been debited from their account.
For example, car rental companies or hotels often use this function as a form of deposit.
These businesses may process the pre-authorized payment in the event that there was damage to the vehicle or if guests did not show up to the hotel.
This payment method works as a safeguard for businesses to ensure the customer’s payment information is valid.
By putting a temporary hold on the amount, you ensure that you will receive your payment.
How do you accept pre-authorized payments on your phone?
Using pre-authorized payments is not the most common way to receive credit card payments on your mobile phone, though it is completely possible depending on the app you choose to use.
Some apps do not offer this type of payment, or they require that the transaction be reviewed on a case by case basis.
The way to accept a pre-authorized payment or any way to accept credit cards with phone applications will vary depending on the application you use.
For businesses using the Charge app with their Stripe account, the pre-authorization process is straightforward.
Simply follow these steps:
- Tap the “+” icon on the app and select the “Pre-authorized Payment” option.
- Enter the amount of money to charge and the customer’s card details.
- Tap “Charge Card”
- This process on the Charge App will put a hold on the amount entered and will not actually charge the amount on the customer’s card. The payment will be automatically cancelled 7 days after the transaction.
- To proceed with the payment before this time, there is a “process” button at the bottom of the screen.
- Enter the amount you want to process (either less than the initial amount of the pre-authorized payment or the full amount) and this amount will be charged to the customer’s credit card.
This feature is an easy way to accept credit card payments with your mobile phone even when you’re not in the same place as your customer and makes this process simple, paperless and easy for all involved.
A payment request is a link sent to a customer by a merchant. This payment request link redirects the customer to a secure checkout, where they can enter their payment details and make the requested payment.
Payment requests are a favorite method of payment among small businesses, owners and contractors who are used to sending out invoices for their services.
An added bonus is that you can use your payment processing platform to keep track of your payments, making sorting through your accounts easy.
Payment request links can be sent in several ways including by SMS, email, Messenger or Skype.
It’s an easy option for sellers to get paid faster compared to if they sent a traditional invoice and needed to wait for payment. This way, your part is done in just a few clicks.
How do you send out a payment request on your phone?
Here’s how to send a payment request using the Charge app:
- Tap the ‘+’ icon and select ‘Request Payment’.
- Enter the payment amount and description alongside the email address or mobile phone number of your customer. Tap the ‘Send Payment Request’ button.
- If you selected the email option, it will be sent automatically. If you selected a mobile phone number, you will then be asked to select your application of choice to share the payment request. E.g. SMS, WhatsApp, Messenger or Skype. After selecting the application, tap ‘send’. Your customer will then be sent the payment request.
- The payment request will be displayed as “Pending” until the customer’s payment information is received. It will then be displayed as ‘Charged’.
- The payment request will be automatically cancelled if payment is not processed within 7 days.
If you work with international customers and are wondering ‘how can I accept credit card payments on my phone from different currencies?’, the Charge App allows for this.
You can send out requests and take card payments in different currencies with low fees to process the transaction.
A one-off payment is a payment to a business or person that does not establish a continuous relationship between the merchant and customer.
In fewer words, it means it is processed just once.
These kinds of payments can be made through the in-person payment method (and when you’re not in person if you manually enter the payment details), a pre-authorized payment or a payment request.
How do you accept one-off payments on your phone?
To accept card payments on phone apps like Charge as a one-off payment, the steps are the same as for ‘in-person payments’.
- Tap the “+” icon on the app to create a new payment.
- Enter the payment amount and a purchase reference.
- Make the payment by tapping, swiping, scanning the customer’s card or manually entering in the customer’s payment information.
- Press charge card.
- You can send digital receipts (SMS or email) if your customer wants to provide this optional information.
- The payment will be processed immediately and details of this purchase can be viewed on the Stripe dashboard.
If you’re a business with an ongoing offering, you can use Charge and set up a subscription payment system to accept credit card payments on your mobile phone.
Subscription payments are those that can be set up when a customer authorizes a merchant to charge them repeatedly for goods or services on a specific schedule (e.g. weekly, bi-weekly, monthly or yearly).
In this kind of payment type, the merchant and customer will arrange how long the payments will continue (e.g. For 12 months or until further notice)
Subscription payments are a great option if you have customers you charge on a regular basis for a service like gym memberships, personal trainers or another kind of ongoing insurance or membership.
How do you set up a subscription payment on your phone?
To set up a subscription payment using Charge:
- Tap the ‘+’ icon and then select ‘Subscription payment’
- Select the schedule for the payment (e.g. weekly, fortnightly, monthly, yearly) and for how long the payments will continue (e.g. after 12 payments, until further notice).
- Enter the amount of the subscription, the customer’s payment information and their contact information, then tap ‘Charge Card’.
- The first payment will be processed right away and the customer will receive their receipt via SMS or email automatically.
- The following payments will continue as per the chosen schedule.
Merchant Account Providers For Mobile Credit Card Processing – How Does It Work?
What is a Merchant Account Provider and how does it help you accept credit cards on your phone?
A Merchant Account Provider is a type of software that gives businesses the tools to accept credit card payments for their goods and services. They are also known as a payment processing platform.
These platforms can handle transactions in person and online and some even include tools to help businesses track inventory.
Credit cards are the preferred payment method in today’s economy, meaning a merchant account is an essential part of most businesses.
If you run a business and want to be able to accept credit cards on your phone, a Merchant Account Provider is a must-have.
These days, the process of signing up and navigating a payment processing platform is simple for businesses of all shapes and sizes.
In fact, these systems provide a user-friendly way to navigate all those complicated aspects of having a business.
Let’s take a look at what is involved to sign up to a Merchant Account Provider so you can get started and reap the benefits of accepting credit card payments on your phone.
When considering what Merchant Account provider to sign up for, you will want to consider the following aspects:
● Sign up process
● Cost of having an account
● Fees on transactions
Many businesses who want to accept credit cards with their cell phone are small businesses, meaning that the Merchant Account Provider they choose should provide an affordable service.
It makes little sense that you would pay a large sum of money to sign up, maintain your account and accept transactions when you are a small business.
Knowing this, let’s look at an affordable option.
Millions of businesses around the world, from your favorite cafe or food truck to successful startups, use Stripe’s software to accept payments and manage their business online.
They choose to use them as a third-party processor because they offer a great product and affordable, competitive rates to use their service.
And as soon as you sign up, you don’t have to wait around before you start to accept credit cards on your iPhone or Android device.
What is the process to sign up for Stripe?
Let’s take a look at the process of signing up to Stripe to get an idea of how you can get started using a reliable Merchant Account Provider and understand how to accept card payments on your phone.
Sign up process – It takes just minutes to sign up to Stripe and after that, you can start using the platform to accept payments. There are no fees involved in the sign-up process.
There’s also no need to spend money on hardware, like card reading devices, which means you don’t need to wait to start processing payments.
Cost of having an account – Unlike many of their competitors, Stripe does not charge a monthly fee.
Fees on transactions – Stripe has integrated per-transaction pricing with no hidden fees
Interface – Stripe offers an attractive and easy to use interface so you can easily manage all your payments from the Stripe Dashboard.
Work With a Stripe Verified Partner
If you choose Stripe as your Merchant Account Provider, it’s a good idea to choose a Stripe Verified Partner app to complete the software needed to accept credit cards with your phone
What do we mean when we say a Stripe Verified Partner?
As a leading payment processing platform, Stripe has a number of Stripe Verified Partners that they have approved as compatible with their system.
Stripe helps to ensure their partners meet global compliance and regulatory obligations and are offering the latest payment technologies.
This also ensures that you can accept credit cards on your phone easily, that the transaction goes smoothly and you get paid fast.
Stripe works with Charge as a Stripe Verified Partner, so you can be sure that the systems are compatible.
Mobile Apps To Take Credit Card Payments Using Your Phone
The answer to the question ‘how can I take credit card payments on my phone?’ has a simple answer and only a few steps to achieve it.
You’re going to need a mobile app, or APOS (Application Point of Sale) so that you can make the sale.
You already know about Merchant Account Providers, so let’s get into Mobile Apps that allow you to accept credit cards by phone.
An aPOS is a mobile application or software that does the same job as a traditional cash register; it takes the payment for the sale.
Unlike a cash register though, it also sends the encrypted payment information to your Merchant Account Provider to be processed in just a few easy taps.
Still with us?
An aPOS is a new and improved version of mPOS (Mobile Point of Sale) technology that first enabled users to accept card payments on their phones.
An mPOS involves the use of an external card reader, though now an aPOS allows you to accept credit card payment through an app without the need for a fiddly card reader that can further complicate the process.
Mobile apps are an essential component in accepting credit card payments on your phone, so naturally, you will want to choose a good one.
Things you want to consider when choosing a mobile app to accept card payments on your phone:
● Do I have to pay fees?
● Does this app accept credit and debit cards?
● Is it easy to use?
● How does it protect my data and my customer’s information?
● Are they a Stripe Verified Partner?
The best app for accepting credit card payments is one that is trustworthy and reliable. You want to make sure you are protecting your information and your customer’s payment details.
Similarly, you don’t want to choose an app with huge monthly fees.
If you’re a business that doesn’t want to pay large sign up or monthly fees, consider downloading Charge as your aPOS.
You only pay a low fee on actual payments made and they are a “Stripe Verified Partner”, so you can relax knowing you’re in safe hands.
We’ve spoken a lot about credit cards, but can you accept debit card payments on iPhone and Android devices too?
Yes, you can.
Most reliable mobile processing apps and Merchant Account Providers will allow you to accept both credit and debit cards.
When you use a mobile processing app like Charge, which is built especially to use with Stripe, you can process all major credit and debit cards.
This is why it’s a great idea to choose software that is reliable and proven to be compatible with the merchant account provider.
The supported cards will vary depending on the country you’re in, but you can check here to see what cards are supported in your country.
How can I take credit card payments on a smartphone – Is iOS or Android better?
When you’re choosing software to take card payments on your phone, it’s important to know if it is compatible with your mobile device.
The age-old question of what is better – iPhone or Android – doesn’t have a correct answer.
It’s a highly contentious question, but ultimately it all comes down to personal preference.
They are both good options that are compatible with wireless payment technology like mobile aPOS apps, allowing users to accept credit card payments on Android or iOS.
The good news is that most of the main aPOS applications and payment processing platforms are compatible with both and allow you to accept credit card payment on Android and iOS.
Some platforms, however, only cater to or work better with one operating system.
If you want to make a choice that can do both, Stripe supports both iOS and Android. Similarly, with the Charge app, you can accept card payments on your mobile quickly and easily.
How To Accept Credit Card Payments On My iPhone?
So, can you accept credit card payments on your iPhone?
The answer is yes, absolutely!
And there are many benefits when you accept payments on your iphone too.
People love iPhones and Apple products because of their sleek designs, attractive operating systems and the credibility of the company.
It’s known and trusted, and people like that.
iOS is also a stable and secure operating system, which is an important consideration when you’re using a product to take payments and are dealing with sensitive data like your customer’s payment information.
Now, let’s look into how to accept credit card payments on your iPhone.
To get started, all you need to do is sign up with a compatible provider like Stripe and download your aPOS system.
Once you’ve installed the apps from the Apple Store and signed up, you’re ready to accept credit card payment on your iphone.
When the moment comes to process a payment, simply tap ‘add payment’ and scan or enter your client’s card details to charge the card.
Something to note for Charge customers who want to take credit card payments on an iPhone…
Stripe has recently released the Stripe Reader M2 and the BBPOS Chipper 2X BT card reader.
While it is compatible with Android, the Charge app for iOS is not currently enabled for accepting credit card payments on iPhone. This support will be added to Charge later in 2022.
Don’t see this as a disadvantage though, as using aPOS systems like Charge is the most modern, efficient and secure way to accept credit cards on an iPhone without needing a card reader.
How To Take Credit Card Payments On My Android Phone?
Is it possible to accept credit card payments on Android devices?
Yes, it sure is.
Let’s look into how and why this is an appealing and viable option.
Android phones have a powerful operating system and allow users to choose between a wide range of phone brands.
When compared with iOS devices, they are a more affordable option too, making them a more accessible and appealing option for many.
Just like with iOS, you can also accept credit cards on Android phones in an easy, straightforward and secure way.
If you’re ready to accept credit cards with an Android phone, you’re only a few easy steps away.
To begin, sign up with an Android compatible Merchant Account Provider like Stripe.
You’ll also need an aPOS system like Charge.
Now that you’ve downloaded the app and signed in, you’re ready to accept credit cards on your Android phone.
When it’s time to make your purchase, scan or enter your client’s card details. The payment will then be processed before arriving in your account.
If you still want to use an external mPOS device to accept card payments on your mobile, you can use the Charge app for Android which is enabled for use with Stripe’s recently released Stripe Reader M2 and the BBPOS Chipper 2X BT card reader.
Solutions For Accepting Credit Card Payments For Small Businesses
Are you a small business owner asking ‘how can I accept credit cards on my phone?’
If yes, you’re in luck, because this payment system is perfect for you.
There are mobile POS systems designed for low-volume businesses, so just because you are a small business, it doesn’t mean you can’t set up a payment system that is professional, efficient and helps you thrive in your business.
Let’s take a look at a few different examples of how different small business types can accept credit cards with their cell phone.
What’s Involved In Accepting Credit Card Payments By Phone For Contractors?
Are you a contractor who wants to know how to accept credit cards with your phone?
Yes, we are talking to you electricians, plumbers, builders, roofers, carpenters, flooring contractors, handymen, cabinet makers and painters.
Many of these contractors work on high-value jobs, and when that’s the case, it’s not practical to be paid in cash or to wait a long time for clients to pay invoices.
When you use your phone to accept payments, you have different options of payment types at your disposal.
You can accept an in-person payment and close the job on the spot, or send out a payment request (like an invoice, only it’s all digital and is sent to a customer’s email or phone number).
When you use this system, your Merchant Account Provider makes it nice and easy to manage invoices, payments and accounting too.
When you accept card payments on your mobile, it’s a game-changer for your business.
The payment process becomes a whole lot smoother for you and you provide a range of easy payment options for your clients.
Everyone wins, right?
Using this kind of payment system means you get to spend less time on tedious accounts and more time on the important things.
What’s Needed For Taking Credit Card Payments By SmartPhone For Beauty Businesses?
So, you work in the beauty industry and want to know how to take card payments on your phone?
Beauty businesses such as in-home hairdressers, beauty therapists, massage therapists, hairstylists, makeup artists and tanning salons can reap the benefits of taking payments using their phones.
It’s not just beauty services for humans either, businesses like mobile dog groomers can get on the trend too.
Whether you visit your clients at their home, run your business from your place or have a shop or store, having a range of payment options will make it all the better for you and your clients.
Working in beauty, you’re already using a lot of different products to get the job done.
Using aPOS mobile app to accept payments means you have one less thing to think about.
If you’ve got your phone, you’ve got all you need to accept payments.
Plus, with just a few taps, you can process payments, e-mail receipts to your clients and have the funds in your bank.
People come to your business to leave looking and feeling better, why not take the experience to the next level and make the payment process as seamless as possible?
How Can I Accept Credit Card Payments By Mobile Phone For Food Trucks, Coffee Vans?
How do I take credit card payments on my phone as a food truck owner? What about as a coffee van, market vendor or another kind of food-related business?
And if that’s you, you’re in luck, because these payment systems are practically made for you.
If you’re reluctant to get started because you don’t know if it’s worth it – consider this…
The vendors who only take cash will likely miss out on sales from impulse buys or people who don’t have cash on them to make a purchase.
It would suck to be that vendor.
Thankfully, using aPOS technology to accept payments is low-risk, as you only pay a fee on actual purchases made.
Perhaps you’ll find you make many more sales when you offer customers this payment option.
What about if you are a business that often trades at multiple locations simultaneously?
Many vendors with staff are faced with this situation, but thankfully there is no reason why your business can’t use this system.
In fact, it’s perfectly set up for a situation like this. It’s possible to login into your Stripe account on as many separate devices as you want or need.
There’s no issue if the devices use different operating systems either, so you can use the same account to accept credit cards on phones that are Android, iOS or a combination.
For example, if you have several people that sell at several different weekend markets, you can log into your Stripe and the Charge app using multiple user logins and all simultaneously use the system and process payments.
How Do I Receive Credit Card Payments By Cell Phone For Creatives And Freelancers?
Want to know how to take credit card payments with your phone if you’re a freelancer or creative?
If you’re working a job in person, like a musician or performer playing a gig, you can use your aPOS system to accept payments on the spot.
These kinds of jobs often pay in cash (or beer) but you now have the option to accept credit card payments on your phone.
On the other hand, you might normally send out invoices.
Instead of having to write up an invoice to send, you could send a payment request to your client and have all the details of the payment saved on your payment processing system.
What Companies Offer Credit Card Processing On a Mobile Device For Home Services?
Being able to accept credit cards via a payment app is a great option for businesses who offer home services like cleaners, landscapers/gardeners, exterminators and even dog walkers or pet sitters.
Having the option of this payment method provides benefits for both sides of the transaction.
Quite often, the cost of these home services is more than just a few dollars.
Being able to accept credit card payments app makes it a lot easier for you and your client.
Imagine a situation like this: Someone has a cleaner coming to do a deep clean of their home and a lawn mowing service to tidy up the back yard…
Instead of having to go out to get cash for both of the workers, there is the option to pay them by credit card using a mobile app.
Sounds easy right?
There’s no need to go out of the way to organize the payment. The whole experience feels a whole lot more relaxing.
On the other side of the same coin, the home service provider gets their payment right away and doesn’t have to carry a bunch of cash around and make trips to the bank to deposit.
In a situation like this, it could be the best way to pay for and accept payments for both parties.
Home services can also make the most of the payment request payment type, which works similarly to sending out an invoice.
With the contact number or email of your client and a few taps, you can send out a payment request to your client.
You won’t lose any of your important records doing this either, as you can keep track of them through your Merchant Account Provider like Stripe.
How Can I Take Credit Card Payments By Phone At Markets?
As a market stallholder, being able to accept payments on a phone is an absolute game-changer.
It doesn’t matter what you’re selling. Whether it’s arts, crafts, clothes or a food-related business, a system like this will help you sell your wares at conventions, art shows, and other pop-up events.
This system is particularly convenient for artists, creatives and businesses who sell niche, one-off or limited edition pieces.
These can be big sellers at markets, though it’s not common that someone has enough cash on them to pay for something like a locally made art piece.
The same goes for independent consultants or people making direct sales to customers.
If you run Tupperware parties or product sampling parties, being able to accept credit card payments with your iPhone or Android device will bring significant advantages.
You can sell anything from makeup products and clothing to candles and kitchen products.
The system works for selling online or at pop-up events too, so you’re not limited by location.
The customer will appreciate the smooth buying experience and you can enjoy receiving payments quickly through an easy to use mobile system.
You can process the payment, email a receipt to a customer if desired and have the funds in your bank account, all in just a few taps.
During busy retail moments, this process can be a whole lot faster than a cash transaction or another payment method, meaning you can get to the next customer more quickly.
If you use a payment processing platform like Stripe, you won’t be charged monthly fees either, so if you didn’t have a successful day, month or year, you don’t have to fork out a bunch of money.
How to accept credit cards on your phone as a restaurant or cafe?
Restaurants and cafes can reap the rewards of this payment system.
Let’s see some examples of how to accept credit cards on your phone in a restaurant or cafe.
When customers are dining in, instead of having them come up to the counter to pay, you can use your phone to process credit cards right at the table.
Let’s say your business is trying to reduce physical contact, a situation so many businesses were faced with as a result of the Covid-19 Pandemic.
You might be sticking to take-out ordering instead of dine-in options, but with this setup it’s easy to take payments at the door or even accept payments outside.
For businesses like drive-through coffee places where the customers don’t get out of their car, you can accept payments at a drive-through window in just an easy tap.
Similarly, you can take payments at a walk-up window if this is the system your business uses.
How Much Does It Cost To Accept Credit Cards Using A Phone?
The cost involved to accept credit cards by phone varies depending on your provider.
All services have some kind of cost, but each provider chooses how they pass them onto their customers. This means that some of these platforms are more affordable than others.
Some will charge sign-up fees, monthly fees or charge an additional rate for certain services, while others don’t charge in that way at all.
Although the specific costs will differ based on the provider, you can expect to pay credit card processing fees for these payments.
To get the best rates and find the cheapest way, you’ll want to look for a mobile POS system designed for low-volume businesses.
There are different price models to look out for from providers, so here’s a handy explanation of each so you know what they mean when you’re comparing the market.
Flat-rate pricing – A flat-rate pricing provider gives you just one rate for your transaction, regardless of the amount. It offers certainty, as you always know what you are going to pay for each transaction. But chances are, you will pay a lot more this way.
If you process high-value transactions, you might do better under this model, otherwise, the fees set by the provider are high enough that they cover a large profit margin.
Interchange-plus pricing – An Interchange-plus pricing model is a transparent option as it breaks down what the real cost is of processing a credit card, helping you get the lowest rate possible.
The cost is based on the interchange rate, plus a markup from the processor like a percentage or flat fee per transaction.
Tiered Pricing – Tiered pricing is when platforms segment the pricing of their services to suit their target markets. This can mean you buy a basic package for the basic functionality or an advanced one for more features. This way, you only pay for the service you want.
Subscription / Wholesale – Some providers will offer different pricing models if you have a unique business model or you accept large payments volume.
To look at some specific examples of costs involved for you to take card payments with a phone, we will look at the cost involved with using Stripe as a payment processing platform with Charge as the aPOS mobile app.
● No sign-up fee
● The mobile app is free to download from Apple Store or Google Play.
● No monthly fee or ongoing subscription price
● Online payments – 2.9% + 30c on successful card charges
● In-person payments – 2.7% plus 5c on successful charges.
If you never process a transaction, it’s free to use Stripe. This model makes it ideal for small businesses.
The platform provides the opportunity for business growth without taking a big financial risk.
The fees on Stripe vary depending on the country you are in, so read here for more about Stripe’s payment details.
● No sign-up fee
● The mobile app is free to download from Apple Store or Google Play
● No monthly fee or ongoing subscription fees
● 1% fee per transaction.
Using Charge to process payments involves a small fixed fee of 1% in addition to the standard Stripe Fees.
You don’t have to pay for external card readers either, just download the app and start taking payments.
Just like with Stripe, you can enjoy a smooth payment technology every day, but if you’re having a period of low sales you don’t have to stress about the cost of the service.
Is mobile credit card processing safe?
Is it possible to accept credit card payments on my phone safely?
The short answer is yes, mobile credit card processing is completely safe and reliable.
Like anything though, the level of safety will depend on how safe you make it.
So, how to take payments on your phone safely?
The best way to ensure it is safe for both you and your customers is to use a reliable aPOS app and online payment processing platform.
The great news is this important step is also very easy, with plenty of reliable options out there including Charge and Stripe.
Why does this make it safe?
A reliable and trustworthy company will do everything to make sure all of your customer’s data is safe.
Trustworthy aPOS apps and online payment processing platforms do not store any sensitive information on your device.
Sensitive information is transferred through an encrypted service between the application and credit card processor, protecting you and your customer’s payment information.
To give yourself and your customer’s further peace of mind, use a private WIFI network.
Taking precautions like these make mobile credit card processing safe, if not safer, than processing credit card and debit card transactions in other ways.
How are payments using my phone different from mPOS?
Accepting credit card payments on phones is now much easier since the development of aPOS (Application Point of Sale), which is a streamlined and updated version of the mPOS system.
An mPOS (Mobile Point of Sale) is a physical machine that you can connect to your mobile device to handle payments.
An aPOS is an app, which means your system is entirely digital, allowing you to process payments wherever you are using only your phone.
Basically, aPOS is the new and improved version of mPOS technology that allows you to accept payments by phone only without the need for an external card reader.
All you need to do is make an account with an online payment processor platform, download an aPOS app on your device and you’re good to go.
While mPOS was a great stepping stone that allowed businesses to accept card payments on iPhone and Android devices, technology has since developed to make it a truly mobile system.
This removes the hassle of using multiple devices and makes it possible to take credit card payments on phones even in the moments you weren’t expecting to need to.
As long as you have your phone on you (let’s be real, we are rarely caught without it), you have all you need to process payments.
This makes aPOS a truly mobile system that is smarter, quicker, and more convenient for your business and your customers.
Can I process any type of credit card using my phone?
So by now, we know it’s possible, easy and safe for businesses to accept payments by phone, but can you process any type of credit card using an aPOS system?
The answer to this question will usually be yes, though of course, that will depend on your provider and what credit cards are supported by their system.
Stripe supports all major credit and debit cards for customers all around the world.
If you want to check which specific payment methods are available in your country, you can check Stripe’s Payment Options page and browse through the options.
As well as accepting all major credit cards including Visa, MasterCard, and American Express, Stripe also accepts gift cards and prepaid cards from the above companies.
There is no issue with processing cards from customers from or in different countries, though you will want to make sure that type of card is supported so Stripe can accept credit card payments through the app in the country where you are registered.
You are also able to process payments in a customer’s preferred currency, helping customers avoid conversion costs and increase their purchasing power.
Stripe can accept digital wallet payment methods such as Apple Pay, Google Pay, SOFORT, iDEAL, 3D Secure and Giropay.
Unfortunately, not all wallet payment methods are currently compatible with Charge, though this may be added in future app updates.
How can I get a free mobile card reader?
You may be able to get a free mobile credit card reader if you sign up for a payment processing platform that offers them.
But the good news as we mentioned above is… you no longer need one.
In the early days of mPOS technology some payment processing platforms like Square and PayPal Here would offer them as an incentive for people to sign up to their platform and some may still offer this deal.
As aPOS technology has developed, it’s no longer necessary to use a card reading device to enjoy the full functionality of an app and accept payments by phone without a mobile card reader.
In fact, using one can be less efficient and in some cases less secure too.
Why is that?
Some of the free card readers used to accept credit cards by cell phones are not EMV compatible.
EMV stands for “Europay, Mastercard and Visa” and is the technology used by credit and debit cards with an embedded chip. This means you cannot simply tap or swipe your card to make a purchase on the go.
EMV credit card readers are the more secure option and card readers without this functionality are now considered outdated.
To have this functionality and security, you are better off using a more modern aPOS system or making the investment for an EMV compatible mobile device reader.
Now if you made it this far, you’ve covered an in-depth look at how to take credit cards on your phone and are now pretty well versed in the topic.
The most important things for you to remember are as follows.
aPOS and Merchant Account Providers are safe, affordable and easy to use.
When you choose a reliable aPOS and Merchant Account Provider, they can be an affordable option and super user friendly.
You’ve just got to look at the fees and make an informed decision on which provider works for you.
They are also completely safe to use when you choose a provider who protects your data.
It’s appropriate for a huge range of businesses
Whatever type of business you run, from contractors like electricians to market vendors, knowing how to take card payments on your phone will be a game-changer for your business.
We took a look at some specific scenarios that you’re likely to run into in these industries too, to give you an idea of how it might work for you on the job.
aPOS is an updated version of mPOS
We looked at how aPOS mobile apps work, how to choose the best one for you. We also learnt the difference between aPOS and mPOS, and how the aPOS is the answer to accept credit card payments with your iPhone or Android alone, without needing any additional hardware.
So if you’re still asking how to accept credit cards on your phone, take a deep breath and scroll back to the top of this article.
The topic may seem daunting, especially if you’ve never used this kind of technology before, but once you get your head around it, you and your business can enjoy all the rewards.
You can get started with accepting payments on your phone with the Charge App now…