This Day On The Street
Continue to site
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

The Time Is Now for Mobile Payments

The partnership with Square will also have benefits for other local merchants that are simply located near a Starbucks, given that the application has a GPS location device.

"Square is going to message [consumers] with other opportunities, offers, coupons, what have you, for relevant small businesses or stores that are in that proximity," says Daryl Colwell, vice president of business development at MediaWhiz, an integrated digital media agency.

Other mobile players

Square isn't the only mobile services provider aiming to take a bigger piece of the growing mobile payment space. From MasterCard (MA - Get Report) and Visa (V - Get Report) to eBay's (EBAY - Get Report) PayPal and Intuit's (INTU - Get Report) GoPayment, lots of companies are positioning themselves for the "inevitable."

Small businesses may find Square's option cheaper than using Visa, MasterCard, Discover or American Express, which have more complex pricing structures. A merchant will pay a flat 2.75% if they use Square's app or hardware to swipe a card. (Of course the fee is more if the transaction is keyed in.)

"Square is a lot cheaper for small merchants on small-ticket items, particularly after Visa and MasterCard raised their debit processing fees on small businesses," says Anisha Sekar, vice president of credit and debit products at NerdWallet, a credit card comparison website.

This doesn't imply small businesses should blindly jump into the mobile payments arena. Most importantly, decide if integrating mobile payments is right for the business and its customers.

"Before you jump into any of this, see how you're customers would like to pay," says Peter Shankman, social media strategist, adding, "They need to do what works for them and their customers."

For instance, similar to the payment concept being used by Apple (AAPL) in its retail stores, instead of having 20 people waiting in line to pay, have salespeople walk around using a mobile device to quicken the payment process.

NerdWallet's Sekar tells businesses to proceed with caution.

"I wouldn't recommend that a small business rush to get Square simply because of Starbucks," she says. "Mobile payments have yet to catch on among older consumers and many remain leery of security concerns. Moreover, this is a relatively new technology, and small businesses that don't have the time or resources to follow developments closely may find themselves whipsawed."

-- Written by Laurie Kulikowski in New York.

To contact Laurie Kulikowski, send an email to: Laurie.Kulikowski@thestreet.com.

To follow Laurie Kulikowski on Twitter, go to: http://twitter.com/#!/LKulikowski

>To submit a news tip, email: tips@thestreet.com.

RELATED STORIES:



Follow TheStreet on Twitter and become a fan on Facebook.
Disclosure: TheStreet's editorial policy prohibits staff editors, reporters and analysts from holding positions in any individual stocks.
2 of 2

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Options Profits

Our options trading pros provide over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • Actionable options commentary and news
  • Real-time trading community
SYM TRADE IT LAST %CHG
INTU $105.77 0.00%
EBAY $28.12 0.00%
MA $97.40 0.00%
SBUX $57.93 0.00%
V $75.34 0.00%

Markets

Chart of I:DJI
DOW 17,689.86 -56.12 -0.32%
S&P 500 2,103.84 -4.79 -0.23%
NASDAQ 5,128.2810 -0.5040 -0.01%

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs