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Is a Credit / Debit Card Reader necessary?

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  • Is a Credit / Debit Card Reader necessary?

    Hi everyone - I need some advice.

    I'm doing my first events in the next few weeks - both small, one's a school fete and one's a house based event.

    I'm wondering if it's necessary to have a Credit / Debit card machine (which I don't have at the moment).

    I mainly do cakes but also do some handmade cards and jewellery to tie in as presents etc.

    Thanks
    Ursula

    website: www.fantasyicing.co.uk
    Twitter:

  • #2
    not really i wouldn't bother especially for school fates as paretns are more likely to have cash
    Racheal
    www.soapsudsandsalts.co.uk

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    • #3
      If you are only doing small events I would not worry. Most people come with cash or a cheque book and if not you can always make arrangements for letting them have an item after you receive payment. If you were selling high price items and at bigger events then perhaps you would need to think about considering further.
      Cynthia
      http://iforjonesdesigns.website.orange.co.uk

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      • #4
        It is an expensive item to have - very few people have asked me if they can pay by card and when I say I don't have that facility they give me a cheque, no one has, to date, refused to buy or walked off because I don't have a card reader.
        It's a personal decision of course but for the type of fairs you mention I would think cash and perhaps the occasional cheque would be offered.
        Hope you do well!
        Terry xxx
        You can't have everything. Where would you put it all?" - Steven Wright
        Website Twitter Facebook Blog Folksy

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        • #5
          I agree with all the above, maybe one day in the future it may go that way but for now most people expect to pay cash/chq at craft events
          Web: www.randmphotography.com
          Twitter: www.twitter.com/dolts007

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          • #6
            Unless you are seriously investing in fairs and the like, a card reader is probably way beyond your means.. you first have to set up a merchant service (for which you pay a fee!) and then usually rent the terminals on top.. you have to take a serious amount of money to recoup the overheads, plus the card company takes a percentage of the sale on top..

            One alternative worth considering is taking a laptop with wireless networking dongle, then anyone with a card can pay by paypal as long as you have wireless reception where you are.... yes they take a higher transaction fee, but there are no overheads in terms of set up or equipment rental..

            Apple were also advertising applications on the iPhone that will process credit card payments.. but given the high cost of the phone and contract, possibly no cheaper unless you already have or can justify the phone!! (and you still have a service charge for card processing)

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            • #7
              We have invested in a card machine to offer the facility to all our exhibitors at our fairs and to help with on-line bookings etc but they are very very expensive. Set up fee was £400, monthly fee is £27 and you also pay a fee for every transaction on top of this which will cost you another £15 per month.
              Liz
              http://www.soapiehandmadesoaps.com
              [email protected]

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              • #8
                I made enquiries with my bank yesterday and the price they quoted me is - £172.50 incl VAT for the terminal (one of fee), monthly rental £31.05 incl of VAT, which equates to £558.90 for 18 months contract. Debit card charges @ 40p per transaction and credit cards at 2.5% per transaction.

                You have to weigh up whether its cost effective for you and the price of the items you sell as you will have to incorporate the cost of the above when you are pricing up your products. I have found that I nearly lost a couple of sales because I didn't have the card facilities. Luckily there was a cash machine nearby that my customers could get to. I dread to think how much I would have lost otherwise.
                Anita
                http://www.itsamistryjewellerydesigns.com/
                https://twitter.com/Anita_Mistry
                https://www.facebook.com/ItsamistryDesignStudio1

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                • #9
                  Mobile broadband/laptop and PayPal works well. I think even this is only worth it if you sell relatively high-priced items, though.
                  digital stamps for cardmakers: http://www.handmadeharbour.co.uk
                  blog: http://handmadeharbour.blogspot.com
                  hand painted personalised plaques, clocks, canvases, etc: http://www.1stuniquegifts.co.uk
                  blog: http://www.1stuniquegifts.co.uk/blog

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                  • #10
                    If you have an iPhone, there is an application you can download which is for accepting payments by card. Just saw an advert for it. Handy if you have an iPhone anyway.

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                    • #11
                      My husband is getting an iPhone and said I can use it for fairs to accept Paypal payments, hopefully customers will go for it. Had a look at the app for the iPhone to use as a card reader. The app costs £29.99 then you have to have Paypal pro which is £20 per month then for each transaction you pay 20p plus 3.5% up to sales of £1500 per month the percentage goes down in increments after that.

                      hlh
                      Karen
                      www.angelicfolk.co.uk
                      Bespoke clothing for your little angels
                      http://angelicfolk.etsy.com
                      http://www.facebook.com/#!/angelic.folk?ref=profile

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by tipsylipsy View Post
                        My husband is getting an iPhone and said I can use it for fairs to accept Paypal payments, hopefully customers will go for it. Had a look at the app for the iPhone to use as a card reader. The app costs £29.99 then you have to have Paypal pro which is £20 per month then for each transaction you pay 20p plus 3.5% up to sales of £1500 per month the percentage goes down in increments after that.

                        hlh
                        Ooh, quite expensive option then. I would think this would only be worth it if you're selling a lot and regularly.
                        digital stamps for cardmakers: http://www.handmadeharbour.co.uk
                        blog: http://handmadeharbour.blogspot.com
                        hand painted personalised plaques, clocks, canvases, etc: http://www.1stuniquegifts.co.uk
                        blog: http://www.1stuniquegifts.co.uk/blog

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Thanks for the advice everyone - I have decided to stick to good old cash and cheques for now and see how it goes.
                          Ursula

                          website: www.fantasyicing.co.uk
                          Twitter:

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                          • #14
                            Hope it goes well for you.

                            Good luck
                            digital stamps for cardmakers: http://www.handmadeharbour.co.uk
                            blog: http://handmadeharbour.blogspot.com
                            hand painted personalised plaques, clocks, canvases, etc: http://www.1stuniquegifts.co.uk
                            blog: http://www.1stuniquegifts.co.uk/blog

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by wendy View Post
                              Ooh, quite expensive option then. I would think this would only be worth it if you're selling a lot and regularly.
                              Yes, it's not a thing for 5 transactions one month, nothing for two, and so forth.. but if it works OK, and you already have an iphone, it's cheaper to set up than the solution Auntybib went for..

                              Another of lifes little annoynaces.. the Banks push us to a cashless society.. because it is apparently easier and "cheaper".. when in fact all it is is a system that ennables them to charge rather than the "free" one we had before.. (OK, I know they charge for handling coinage these days!!) Robbers the lot of them!

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