Stripe vs Square

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As a business owner, you know you need to have a solution to accept credit cards. The question is, who to turn to for this need? Stripe and Square are two of the biggest companies that provide credit card processing, on top of other things. This article lets you know the pros and cons of each.

Main Points of Stripe and Square

The main difference between these two giant companies is in which type of merchants they set up, generally. While any business type can get set up with either, of course, the common trend is if you are accepting in-person payments, use Square, and if you are accepting online payments, use Stripe. Both providers have international solutions as well.

Square is known for really modern and good hardware. You will find they have a plethora of options for POS solutions, mobile readers, and countertop terminals. They also have a robust app market to manage things like inventory, time shifts, taxes, and much more.

Stripe, meanwhile, is sometimes called the online version of Square. Stripe offers friendly payment processing APIs. A lot of businesses are able to use these and build out their own online payments solution. You don’t need to be a programming genius to use Stripe, but having someone on your team who can play with its code under the hood is important if you want to get the most out of it.

Stripe vs Square Fees

Cost will always be top of mind when it comes to accepting credit cards and Stripe vs Square fees. As a blanket statement, businesses will pay at least 2% when accepting credit cards, because that is what the card brands themselves charge. What you should aim to minimize, is what is paid to the processor itself.

Square and Stripe both operate on flat-rate models, meaning that whatever credit or debit card you accept, you pay the same rate. While there are more cost-effective options out there, this is easy to estimate what you will pay each month.

  • In Person Transactions

For transactions through a piece of hardware, Square charges 2.6% and $.10. Stripe charges 2.7% and $.05 per transaction.

  • Online Transactions

In this situation, Square charges 2.9% and $.30, which is the same amount that Stripe charges.

Overall, the price will most likely not be a massive swing piece if you are picking between these two companies when looking at Stripe vs Square. You can read about pricing in greater depth in our complete pricing guides to Square and Stripe.

Other Things to consider

Outside of cost, you will want to get a sense of a few things as a business owner. Most importantly, can you get your funds on time and can you speak with someone?

  • Funding Timeline: Both companies are set up to give you next day funding with your credit card transactions. However, since they are third party processors, you are not given your own Merchant ID number, you get rolled underneath their umbrella. They will set up your business to accept cards based on a certain algorithm (business type, size of transctiomn, etc), and if you run a rtranscation that is outside of their algorthim for you, you will see a delay in funding.
  • Customer support: Based on reviews, neither company has an amazing reputation for cusomter support, and that is by design. Both systems are meant to be user friendly and self serve.

Conclusion: Stripe vs Square

All in all, you can’t go wrong with either company. Most likely, you may want to stick to what they are known for. Square for in-person and Stripe for online payments. You may be able to save a little for online transactions using Square if you are a high-volume client.

Take some time to review their features and which are mandatory for you as a business owner. From there, it should be fairly clear which solution is right for your needs. Also, be sure to check out reviews of existing and past clients.

Interested in saving 30-40% compared to Square or PayPal? Talk to an expert at Payline and get a savings analysis today!


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