This post has been brought to you by: SumUp (opinions are still mine though!)
If you’re like me (and you likely are if you’re reading this post), you’ve always got a side hustle or two running at once. You’re always looking for something to augment your income and help you pay off debt (or pay for that extra vacation). This blog is one of mine. I’ve also got a few things that I’ve got posted on my Etsy store. Nearly everything that I do is online. I don’t have to carry inventory, or attend swap meets, or anything of the like. But that’s not the case for all of you.
For some of you, there’s a very good chance that you’ve got to be mobile, and you’ve got to accept payments wherever your customer meets you. In the past, that has meant carrying a bit of cash around to make change with, and when the day has been good, carrying even more cash back with you. That can be dangerous. The other issue you will likely run into is that you’re likely to have a few customers like me who rarely carry more than a few dollars of cash, and want to pay for their purchase with their debit or credit card.
If you are one of those who makes sales while on the go, you need some way to process credit or debit transactions. Not only is it safer than carrying around a bunch of cash, but it will save you a heck of a lot of time and energy when doing your accounting at the end of the day. There are plenty of companies that offer these kinds of services. One that offers up both a super portable card reader and a portable cash register, is a company called SumUp. Unlike some of their competitors, their device connects to an app on your phone (iOS or Android) via bluetooth, getting rid of the dongle approach that can easily break. And there’s a couple of ways that you can accept cards through the device.
This is the old fashioned way of taking a credit transaction. The magnetic strip on the back of the cards holds all the card data. A quick swipe, and the reader reads that data, and processes the transaction. Easy peasy. Most of us are super used to transactions that work this way.
EMV chip transactions
Magstripe is the tried and true transaction process. But it’s also the one that makes it super easy for fraudsters to copy the data from the stripe and use it to perform fraudulent transactions. The EMV chip is the new technology that is meant to help prevent all of that. The chip is embedded in the new cards, and needs to be inserted into the reader. It has to be physically present to work, and it’s not as easily copied. It’s more secure, and it works well.
SumUp’s fees and limits match or best their competition, and their design is pretty cool too. Watch this video to see what it’s all about.
At the end of the day, if you’ve got a side hustle that has to be mobile, you need some sort of mobile card terminal. There are several options out there, and SumUp is just one of those. As the hustler, I would expect you to do your due diligence and make a decision based on what your business needs are. The only thing I can really tell you is that if you don’t have a way to process these sorts of transactions, you’re leaving money on the proverbial table. Don’t do that.