By Kim Artlip, Columnist
Nothing is more frustrating for me than attending an event only to find out the vendors only accept cash. I don’t always carry much cash and usually I have used mine up working my way from the door to concessions to merchandise tables. So that makes me think now, how much cash are wrestlers losing because they only take cash?
We all know that merchandise accounts for quite a bit of your take on many travel weekends for wrestlers so let’s talk about how you can maximize your sales.
Many people only carry credit or debit cards nowadays, and unless you have an ATM sitting in your venue, you’re going to miss out on some sales. Luckily, once you learn how to take credit cards at your table, you’ll be able to increase sales and make it more convenient for shoppers.
Square is a popular service that offers a free mobile app and reader. Square remits funds as fast as one day. Swipe payments without a connection in offline mode and pay the usual rate per swipe. Card information is encrypted at the moment of swipe. Square doesn’t store data on your device after a payment has been processed. No monthly fees, and no commitments. Available on iOS and Android. Price: Swipe is 2.75 percent, manual entry is 3.5 percent + 15¢. Reader is free at sign-up; tap and chip reader is $49.
PayPal Here provides a free app and reader to accept credit and debit cards, send invoices, track cash, and check payments. Get tools to manage inventory and employees. Create and send customized invoices. At launch, PayPal Here automatically connects to your most recently used card reader. No monthly fees, setup fees, cancelation fees, or processing minimums. Available on iOS, Android, and Windows. Price: Swipe is 2.7 percent, manual entry is 3.5 percent + 15¢. Readers start at $14.99.
QuickBooks GoPayment from Intuit is a free app and reader to accept magstripe and EMV chip debit and credit cards, along with Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Samsung Pay. Transactions appear in QuickBooks for hassle-free bookkeeping. Available on iOS and Android. Price: Swipe is 2.4 percent + 25¢; manual entry is 3.4 percent + 25¢. Readers are free at sign-up.
EMSplus is a low-cost provider with a free app and reader. The app features email receipts and invoicing, cash register mode with product categories and pictures, tip functionality, and more. Securely store customer data, modify records, and generate reports. EMSplus also offers round-the-clock support, live chat, and voice authorization. With no monthly or annual fees, the swipe rate of EMSplus is the lowest rate of this list. Available on iOS and Android. Price: Swipe is 2.25 percent, manual entry is 3.5 percent + 15¢. Reader is free with sign-up.
With the Shopify point-of-sale app and reader, accept credit cards on the go or in your retail store. Find products, process orders, take payments, swipe credit cards, produce receipts, and control it all from your iPad or smartphone. Your Shopify online store automatically synchronizes with Shopify POS to manage your entire business from one dashboard. Product and inventory updates in the Shopify admin will instantly take effect in Shopify POS. Available on iOS and Android. Price: Swipe and manual entry are as low as 2.4 percent, depending on the Shopify plan.
PayAnywhere is a customizable mobile app and reader to accept credit card payments and manage your business. Create and send email invoices and recurring invoices. Get funds deposited as soon as the next business day. Create an item library with barcodes, multiple prices and modifiers, and enter the quantity on hand. Quickly add or scan items with your device’s camera or connect a compatible Bluetooth barcode scanner. Plans start as low as 1.69 percent per transaction with a $12.95 monthly fee with a variety of readers available. Available on iOS and Android. Price: Pay-as-you-go plan is 2.69 percent, manual entry is 3.4 percent + 19¢. Free reader with sign-up.
Credit Card Terminal offers a feature-rich app and reader for mobile payments. Features maps, signatures, receipts, refunds, history, and more. Review and refund transactions from the app or the website. Accurately compute sales tax. Easily toggle on or off by tapping. Encrypts transaction data during your sale and destroys sensitive card information, so it’s not stored on your system. Available on iOS, Android, and Windows. Price: $39 per month. 2.9 percent + 30¢. Reader is $79, free for new merchants.
Giving your customers the convenience and flexibility to use their credit cards increases your chances of making the sale, especially if you have a few high ticket items that the average shopper won’t have enough cash to purchase.
It’s also a little more secure. You don’t have to have a large quantity of cash in an old tackle box and you don’t have to go to the bank to get a bunch of bills in small denominations for change.
It will also help you bring in more customers. When you advertise about the event, you can let prospective customers know they can pay with their credit cards or digital wallet. It will pique interest and help drive people to your table/booth.
We want to drive more fans to purchase and making it easier and giving more options is a great way to get started.
Wishing you luck on your merch tables and until next week, ignite your fire, and follow your dreams.
The Treasure Coast’s Only Pro Wrestling Company