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STAY AWAY FROM SQUARE!!!Just like most people have already said, Square is nothing short of a scam, don’t know some people can use it without any incident. We are an online business for 5.5 yrs and have been using PayPal Express/Standard almost exclusively with no incident. Opened Square to try something different and that was bad news. Opening account and taking credit card was a breeze; Getting the funds you collected to your bank account, well not so much. First they need to verify your bank account, which is fine. After a few days and a couple of transactions later, they send you an email asking about your business documents, invoices, your linkedin profile, how you advertise, external links like yelp, etc, etc. (why don’t you ask all of that before opening the account and let us take credit card payment?) Provided all of that and an hour later got the same automated email saying that they are deactivating my account (which means you will never be able to speak to anyone over the phone) since they found a pattern of high risk transactions (we sell babies’ cloth diapers and have processed TWO transactions using Square), hold my funds for 90 days and that is that. For a small business like us, not having access to our funds for 90 days can literally bankrupt you. I highly doubt that there is a human being actually looking at the individual business to decide whether it is high risk or not (so it does not matter what documents you are submitting). They seem to have a algorithm that does that and it is deeply flawed. My story is very similar, if not identical to lots of the comments here. What Square is doing is, IMO, criminal and they need to be held accountable. At the same time, my advice is to STAY AWAY from them !!!
Ok…FINALLY deposited funds on December 15 after holding them since December 7 and December 9 respectively. Numerous telephone calls, numerous messages, hours and hours of conversations with representatives that could do NOTHING. Never a returned phone call from emails or messages left on answering machine. Micky Mouse outfit.
Flint accounts tend to be more stable, and since there is no added hardware there is less chance of malfunction. Flint doesn’t have all of the point-of-sale features that Square has, but what they do have tends to work very well the vast majority of the time.
The company at least seems to be addressing complaints about customer service on its social media channels, and not just the @SqSupport Twitter channel. You can message the Facebook page directly if you need help. All of its social media channels are active, with a good mix of important news, helpful blog posts, and funny content. This is absolutely essential, and I like that Square is addressing a really broad range of merchants and their needs. I personally know lots of artists who rely on the service, and quite a few local restaurants. But there are many, many others who do, and all of them have unique needs and preferences.
you indicate square is in the process of fixing some of the things (holding funds, cancelling accts., poor service support, no reasons given for taking certain actions because of security issues with no explanation as to what the security issue is)
iOS devices overall seem to function well with Square, but because the Android ecosystem is so diverse, you may have different experiences using the app. As far as Android support goes, things are a bit spotty. Amazon Kindle devices aren’t compatible at all. Any other Android devices need to be running Android 4.0 or higher for the basic reader, with GPS and Google Play enabled. To use the Contactless + Chip reader, you’ll need Android 4.4 or higher.
I suggest a real merchant account with a rep who is your first point of contact. As long as the average ticket is more than $20 there are much lower fees available. Paypal rates are also higher, that is why there are no monthly fees.
Yep! Square loses money on many transaction scenarios, including about 100% of American Express transactions, since retail AMEX transactions are 2.89% + $0.10. Small transactions are particularly troublesome, since no per-transaction/authorization fees are charged for card-present with Square. Square’s overall profitability is a popular area of speculation.
The main problem as we see it is the inability to deal with open tickets, which renders Square useless in a sit down restaurant, casual or not. It works for our over the counter Juice sales, we would love to use the online order feature; but the missing open ticket is an absolute show stopper. Unfortunately. So now we are looking at Touch Bistro, while hoping daily to see a feature upgrade from Square.
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So to be clear, it might be someone else’s fault, but if you get a chargeback, it is on YOU small business owner, to get that sorted out AND KEEP CASH ON RESERVE to cover Square’s profits, and to do all this within 15 days
Poor customer support, rather no customer support. Squareup lists a phone support number but requires a Customer Code in order to accept the phone call. I have an active account and have logged onto the site and searched through accounting and dashboard pages and found no Customer Code. The support page doesn’t even provide instructions on obtaining code. It appears to be purposely hidden to reduce support calls from customers.I’ve had an account for almost 3 years with Square and never really needed to speak to customer support so this was a complete surprise when I noticed my deposits were no longer being made but my customers were being charged. The funds are just sitting with Square in pending deposit status. The only option I had was to submit a service ticket through the online form which generated a case number but that is not accepted by the phone filter system. I expect better customer support from a financial service company.
You should show the landlord that the transaction has posted as complete and the money has been taken from your account. You may need to call your bank to see what they can do to prove that the transaction has occurred. Then you should encourage the landlord to contact Square to see if something went wrong on their end, and to check their transaction history. And then, if you want to be nice, you should suggest that they begin to process rent either as direct bank account transfers (which are often free, you just need to provide your acct and routing numbers), or via a service like Dwolla that only charges $0.25 per transaction and will NEVER hold a transaction. Otherwise you should insist on writing a check.
Poor customer service, they hold funds for 60 or 90 days depending on their mood. No phone number to call, email support only. Have reported them to the BBB. Had my account deactivated by them with no explanation and a total refusal to explain why. Now my money is tied up with these folks. My guess is the use the held funds to deposit in short term investments. Just a guess. Some have suggested they use CD investments. As soon as I finally get my money I will be able to continue doing business. For now I am having to borrow money from my personal finances.
Hi, Tom … our family has a seasonal income tax service. This year we have had several requests from our clients to pay with debit or credit cards. Since we don’t expect a large number or cards to be accepted, we are considering using Square for the simplicity. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thank You
Unfortunately, unless you’re actually making use of Square’s inventory tools, there’s not a convenient way to pull a report about what you’ve sold, specifically. If you would like to give your artists information about the products that sold in a neat report, there are two ways I am aware of that you could do that:
For aggregated accounts, sudden account terminations are very common and often come with no warning and little explaination. This includes companies like Stripe and Balanced Payments, as well as Square and PayPal Here. Communication and account stability are usually better with full-service merchant accounts, but even then sudden account closure and withheld funds are possible depending on the processor’s Risk department.
We have been using Square up for Credit cards for several years. Deposits always arrive within 3 days to our bank account.We have begun in the last month to use the Square Register. After the first weekend we are overjoyed with it. we have bar coded our stock and checkout is quick and accurate.We will be opening a Square Market store in the near future. Only issue I see with that is the market loads up all the inventory on the first page that you access. This can take a while to render when you have over 700 items.I would recommend Square up to any small business which has a shoestring budget.
Creating categories, products, discounts, product modifiers, and tax brackets is simple from the Square Dashboard and the app. It is nice that Square syncs between the Point of Sale app and its dashboard. Changes made and items added to one will appear when you log into the other. The mobile app is quite functional for managing your sales if you can’t get to a computer. You can control (almost) everything from both the app and the web, and that’s very important.
NOT FOR USE WITH SQUARE STAND! If using a Square Stand consider the Square Stand Starter kit which has a printer that plugs into the stand. The printer in this kit must be plugged into your router.    
Scam!!!Im a contractor and used square on two small invoices without a problem.The third invoice was for$2,800 and they deactivated my account.They said through an email that it would be 90 days before I get it back.I can’t get anyone on the phone.Its strange how when we were setting the account up with a lady named Sarah ,they answered on the first ring.I have contacted the Attorney General and have gotten no help.Caution!!!
dollars per Forbes) is using our money for his needs and to boot not paying any interest on our funds that has been held hostage for 35 days. Just doesn’t seem right that someone can hold money back with no consequences.
I am a 1 person operation. I use Square for an online shop, credit card processing, international sales and payroll. I love the simplicity and the low fees. You only pay fees on what you charge. You don’t pay just for using their service.
I accept that they have the right to terminate for any or no reason as that is in the user agreement. However, I do NOT accept that they can hold my money for 90 days without prior notice. There is nothing in the user agreement that mentions a holding period of 90 days for ANY reason, I have never had a refund, dispute or chargeback and this was a repeat customer that charged with them many times.
I know how completely frustrating this is. We hear the same thing from a lot of Square users. Unfortunately, Square is within the scope of the law in this case. If you read their User Agreement, you will find that they reserve the right to withhold funds if they believe there is a risk that the transactions may be problematic. Specifically, see sections “19. Reserve” and “28. Our Collection Rights for Chargebacks.”
Aside from that, you can write down the payment details and key them in later when you have service. Or you can call in the payment details (assuming phone access but no data access) to someone else who can process the payment from a virtual terminal or the payment app.
Square Point of Sale (formerly Register) has everything you need to start, run, and grow your business from your Android point-of-sale device. Get the latest processing features for your merchant terminal with regular app updates.
DO NOT DO BUSINESS WITH THESE THIEVES THEY WILL FIND ANY EXCUSE NOT TO DEN YOUR TRANSACTIONS.I AM CURRENTLY IN CONTACT WITH THE BBB TO ATTEMPT TO GET THESE THIEVES TO RELEASE MY MONIES. HERE IS THIER WELL HID INFO:
I too am a writer, and have been using Square for over a year with occasional sales of books at fairs, etc. The only problem I had was a problem with the reader, which Square replaced at no cost – everything works fine now, my funds transfer within a day or two.
In your article you say if you had a small/low transaction business you would recommend square. Do you consider a bar/grill grossing around $250k to fit into that size? We currently only accept cash or local check with an tam on site.
We have been back and forth with customer service and the dispute team and it has not be helpful. Our company is suffering because of the Square’s lack of communication and actions. It took about 4 days to be contacted by the Square after seeing a withdraw of $5,745.66 on our account from the Square. You cannot get a hold of customer service without a code and I could not find my code anywhere. I called several times a day and emailed at least 5 times and was still not contacted by anyone.We are a small family owned business who had a stubborn customer who made a dispute, but it did not take long for them to realize they were wrong and cancel the dispute. They made our account negative a few times and tried multiple times to take out the money. The dispute was canceled by our customer and the Square still took out the $5,745.66 from our account. The Square should have canceled the debit immediately but instead debited our account 3 days after the dispute was canceled. This has taken up a lot of our time and we cannot conduct business without that money. We are a small business and something like this puts us in a bind. We have vendors to pay and projects to start and we can’t run smoothly because of the Square. I am very disappointed and will be looking for a replacement for the Square. I will not be recommending the Square to anyone and I will be reviewing on every page I can find to stop people from getting the Square. We just started our business and the Square has made this nothing but difficult.
The free Square Dashboard app works in sync with Square Point of Sale and lets you view your live sales data in seconds. You can access powerful analytics, and easy tools to help you track and improve your business.
Have processed 2 relatively small payments so far. No problems yet. The last cc company I signed up with completely ruined my credit (TMS, Merimac Capital…they use about 12 various names) and was a huge scam (still in an expensive legal situation with them) so this one is less frightening than the last while I try to re-build my credit and can research reputable cc processing companies (maybe through my bank next time).
But if you are just starting out, your process payments infrequently, or you are still processing a low volume each month, Square could be an amazing tool. Even mid-sized to larger businesses can benefit from everything Square offers.
Thanks for the article. I ran across it while trying to verify info from a merchant services rep. He came in hawking his product and informed me that all the customer’s credit card info is stored in the phone or pad used with the Square swiper. Have you heard this or do you know it to be true. I cannot find any info from other sources. Thanks! Our experience with the Square system has been problem free so far.
For Square, the protocol is often “shoot first, ask questions never.” If they deem an account or transaction high-risk for whatever reason (it’s unlikely that they will ever explain to you in detail their rationale), then they will pull the plug to minimize the risk. And after they close your account, it’s very difficult – maybe impossible – to get live customer service, as you have already found out.
Based on comments, I see most people have issues with Square holding up the $$$ in case of larger transactions ($5000+). Is that a case for a small business like a coffee shop where an average sale is between $4-$10, with no more than $1,000 in gross daily sales.

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