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Shopify Vs Square – Choosing the Right POS Merchant Services for Your Business 2023

December 28, 2022 | Blog
Shopify vs Square is the battle of merchant service providers. Both these providers support in-person and online sales, payment processing, POS systems, and online store builders. We've compared them in detail.   Although Square and Shopify share many similarities, they have different features, pricing, ease of use, customer support, integrations, and other aspects. These differences make Square a better choice for certain merchants, while Shopify is better suited for others.   Continue reading to find out which payment processor is best for your business. For more information, check out our Square review or our Shopify review.   There are many ecommerce store options available on the internet, some of which are good solutions for brick-and-mortar stores. They can be used on numerous occasions.   The POS system is the most popular choice for many people. Hybrid entrepreneurs look for ways to settle on POS systems. This is not easy because many problems are involved in creating and organizing such a system. Finding the ideal ecommerce solution is difficult because so much business software is either ecommerce-based or designed to promote point-of-sale systems.   Shopify Vs Square   Shopify and Square are two of the most popular online sales platforms. Shopify and Square are the two most powerful online sales platforms. Both offer tools for small businesses, including point-of-sale systems and remittance processing options. Shopify and Square are available for free in the initial phase. However, there are processing fees to gain access to some additional features.   When choosing the right merchant services for your company, it is important to know the differences between each POS system. Many shopping carts, POS systems, and mobile apps are available to potential merchants today. Still, none is as popular as Square or Shopify.  

Tips to Consider While Choosing a POS System

  Whether opening your first store or upgrading to a platform capable of supporting your growth, a POS system purchase is not something to take lightly.   Finding the right POS system for your retail shop cannot be easy. What are the most important questions to ask when shopping for a new POS system? What are the most important features to ensure your business grows and prospers?   The right technology can make or break sales performance. Our research showed that 68% of retailers believed adopting new technology benefits their business.   Do your research before you commit to anything, and take the chance of investing in something you don't need.   These questions will help you determine what to look for when looking at a POS system.  

How does a POS handle inventory management?

  Your inventory and customer service are the heart and soul of your retail business. A system must be able to keep up. This means you need a system that can keep up with changing technology.   Complex inventory should be manageable, including serialized items or products with multiple attributes, such as jeans that differ in size and color. You should also be able to add custom tags to products to organize and manage items that can be grouped thematically, if not at the category level. For example, you do not want seasonal inventory cluttering up your POS after the season ends. It will be easier to archive inventory if you can tag it.   Do not settle for inefficient purchasing processes. You should be able to use your new POS system's purchasing tools, such as creating and sending purchase orders from within the back office. A report should be available that will show you when you must order new stock.  
  • Organizational tools such as product matrices and customizable categories, tags, and tags
  • A tool for importing items to set up your stock quickly.
  • Ability to manage serialized inventory
  • Native purchasing functions include the ability to store vendor data, build-in purchase orders, and reorder points
 

How does the POS System sync with your online and retail stores?

  Imagine a store that never shuts down. That's the power and potential of an omnichannel retail business.   Online and in-store retailers generate significantly more revenue than those selling only through one channel. According to Lightspeed, in a recent survey, Omnichannel retailers outperformed single-channel retailers in sales growth.   The right POS can help brick-and-mortar stores build online shops and sell via any channel. Two systems can't be separated. A commerce platform is essential to streamline online selling.  
  • Synchronization of the web with your physical stores to manage inventory, sales, and order requests
  • Reports consolidated on total sales, sales by physical stores, and sales from your eCommerce company
  • You can extend your brand consistency across sales channels
 

How does the POS System empower your staff?

  Customers have all the resources they need, including the internet and their family members. Many customers have done their research before they go into a store. They are prepared with all the questions and ready to get in. 81% of shoppers conduct their research online before making a purchase.   Smart mobile technologies can help retail employees feel informed, just like their customers.   An efficient POS system should not waste employee time or cause them to want to rip their hair out. It should give them all the information they need immediately to serve customers and guide people through the store. When you think about technology for your store, they are the ambassadors of your brand.  
  • For every employee, secure logins
  • Dashboards that can easily be customized to fit the needs of every employee
  • An intuitive interface that reduces training time
  • Capacity to fill in detailed inventory entries, including photos
  • Employees will feel at ease using these easy-to-use tools
 

Are you able to offer a personalized experience?

  Using the information from the previous question, it is important to ensure that your new POS system provides your customers with the best possible experience.   Your system should be able to store customer profiles and purchase histories so that your employees can make personalized product recommendations. It doesn't matter if a sales representative is on a shift or how experienced they are. Every customer that walks through the door can feel like a loyal, regular customer.   Make sure your POS system has built-in loyalty tools. You can add more tools as necessary. To encourage repeat visits, you should be able to set up financial incentives such as loyalty dollars or money spent.  
  • Store purchase history stored in customer profiles
  • Ability to use the POS app on an iPad so that employees can service customers from anywhere in the store
  • Loyalty Integrations that allow you to make the most out of your customer data
 

Is the POS supporting your success?

  People are different. Different retailers are different. Although the principles are similar, each store and employee is unique and has their workflows, challenges, and preferences.   A good vendor will help you determine if the software is right for you (if it will make your store successful) and provide onboarding support. They will also offer technical support if necessary. You mustn't be left behind after the purchase has been made. Ask about any post-sales support offered by your vendor.  
  • There are many ways to contact the support team: phone, online tickets, or live chat.
  • Local channel partners--specialists who provide on-site consultation, installation, and troubleshooting services
  • Various training materials are available, including product information, online help, videos, and webinars.
  • Online product reviews and customer satisfaction ratings published
  • Managers and employees can attend onboarding sessions
  • A social media presence online to communicate more closely with the company
 

Does the POS System offer Reporting and Analytics?

  Legacy systems meant that retailers couldn't always see the whole picture of their business. While goods came and went, business managers only had a rough idea of their profits and performance. The times have changed.   Retailers can't afford to take risks in today's highly competitive marketplace. While many have turned to data to help them make business decisions, only 16% of those who use it are experts in the field.   A good POS will tell you where you need to improve and how you are doing. To identify the best sellers and improve sales performance, you should be able to access the data that your POS processes every day.  
  • Reports showing your top-selling products and lowest-selling products. Top-performing sales associates. Busiest hours. Top brands. Online vs. in-store sales.
  • Dashboards that highlight the information you require
  • Access to relevant information is easy for better decision-making, such as inventory purchase and staff scheduling.
 

What should you look for in a POS system?

  In its simplest form, a point of sale is the location where sales are made. A cash register or checkout page on an online store. A combination of hardware and software is used to operate a POS. The software can be run on hardware or independently for virtual transactions.   A POS system is more than a payment processor. It can also perform many other functions that are related to a transaction. What are these functions? Any POS that is worth its salt should be able to do these things:  

Processing Payments

  It is essential to accept payments from major credit card networks such as Visa, MasterCard, and American Express. Keep in mind the many ways credit card transactions can be done. People can now pay by swipe, dipping a card, or using contactless payment methods like Apple Pay. A POS system that can process all three payment methods will help you maximize your earnings. You will also need your POS to process online payments if you have an ecommerce shop.  

Checkout

  Your POS should be able to manage all logistics related to checkout. This includes receipt delivery (digital or physical), tax calculation, shipping options, and the ability to apply tips, discounts, gift cards, and other features.  

Employee Management

  POS systems can make it easier to manage your employees through features such as tip reconciliation and time tracking.  

Inventory Management

  Because POS systems are responsible for tracking the outward flow and inventory of your business, they should also help you track where it is. They will notify you when inventory is low and automate ordering new stock.  

Customer Relationship Management

  POS systems can store valuable customer information. A good POS system will use that information to build customer relationships.  

Reporting

  A POS can provide valuable insight into your sales performance by analyzing your transaction history.  

Integrations

  You can expand the functionality of your business by integrating more applications with your POS.  

Mobile App

  Your POS must provide a mobile app that allows you to manage your business from any location at any hour.   What will this all cost you? There are three main expenses associated with POS systems: software costs, processing fees, and hardware costs. A small percentage of the payment is processed plus an additional flat rate fee (usually for ecommerce transactions). The software fee is a cost for the use of the POS software. Most POS providers charge this fee, but not all.   The hardware fee is the cost of purchasing hardware from a POS provider that permits you to accept payments. It could be a small smartphone plugin or a large countertop register. You have more options when it comes time to purchase the right option for your business.  

Shopify Vs Square: POS

  We've mentioned that both Square and Shopify offer high-quality POS solutions. The key difference is in the POS app.   Square's Point of Sale app is completely free. It's completely free to download, and there are no hidden fees.   Shopify charges a monthly fee. This alone may convince you to choose Square. Let's look at the pros and cons of each POS system.   Shopify's POS system was only available for iOS users before 2016. This meant that Shopify development companies with Android devices couldn't access the resourceful app. Shopify's POS app is now available to Android and iOS users since January 2016. Like Shopify, you can access Square's POS app on Android and iOS. It's worth noting that users still prefer iPads for POS.   Square's Square for Retail app is the exception to this rule. This premium plugin is only available for iPads and offers more advanced features. Let us have a look at head to head comparison of square vs shopify in detail.  

What is the Shopify POS System? How does it work?

  Let's begin with the fundamental question: What is it? Shopify point-of-sale is a solution that lets you link your online shop with your traditional store and then manage it all together.   Shopify manages all processes in your online or traditional store, such as sales and product management. This allows you to sell online and offline simultaneously. This is possible by adding your stationery shop to Shopify as a sales channel.   This tool helps Shopify web developers your orders, customers, products, payments, and other functions. Shopify POS connects the point-of-sale and back-office, allowing you to use a system for both online and offline sales. Integration with Shopify POS is easy.   Shopify has two versions of its POS system. They differ in price and functionality. Below, we'll be discussing the Shopify POS pricing.  
  • Shopify POS Lite comes with all plans, so there are no additional fees. However, the functionality is limited. The Lite version has all of the functions necessary to manage retail sales. This includes purchase and order processing, as well as payment transactions. You also get complete product management, customer profiles, marketing, and community functions.
  • Shopify POS Pro, the full version, offers many nice features that may not be the most needed but are especially useful for stationary retail. We are referring to services when we discuss how retail can survive in the future.
  These are some examples of Shopify POS functions that create value for customers.  
  • With the Pro version, online purchases can be picked up in-store. Notifying customers when goods are available for collection allows you to meet customer needs for easy online shopping and faster delivery.
  • Shopify POS Pro allows you to exchange or return products purchased online or in another retail location.
  • You can easily ship products purchased online. Shopify POS Pro allows you to quickly specify shipping costs so that the total price can be calculated quickly. The customer can pay in-store and continue walking without carrying bags.
  Shopify does more than allow you to create and manage an online shop. Shopify also offers support for shop owners, such as integrating and managing additional sales channels. It also provides customer support tools, including live chat and Shopify POS integration, so that you can get assistance with technical issues.  

Shopify POS: Main Functionality and Features

  We want to show you the Shopify POS features and how to manage your Shopify shop. Before you install the Shopify POS system, take a look at these. All the functionality is available with the cheapest plan.  
  • Home. You can see a summary of your shop's activities directly on the homepage. What number of visitors are you getting? How much did you make in turnover? What total amount of products you sold, and what channels were they sold? Which of your products is most popularly sold? These key figures will give you a quick overview of the most important ones.
  • Orders. Orders are immediately listed once they have been placed. This is the most important information about an order.
  • Products. There is no limit to the number of products you can sell, even if you have the most expensive plan.
  • You can create categories if you have a wider product range.
  • Vouchers. You can also sell (physical) products in your online store.
  • Customers. This tool comes with its customer management system.
  • Statistics. All relevant key figures are clearly shown so you can always see how your business is doing.
  • Apps. The Shopify App Store is the best part of the solution. It offers a wide range of apps that automate and simplify your shop management and can even help you to grow your business.
  • Pages. New pages can be added at any time.
  Shopify POS allows you to use the following advanced features to your advantage.  
  • Accept multiple payment options. Shopify POS allows split offers and multiple payment types to be accepted in one transaction.
  • Gift cards. You can make gift cards that you can exchange in-store or online.
  • Personalized sales. Personalized line items can be added at any time and your chosen price.
  • Unlimited product range. Everything is clear: there are many products.
  • Discounts. Shopify POS lets you offer discounts at checkout in dollars or percentages.
  • Shipping addresses. It is possible to save a customer's contact information and address.
  • Integration with the accounting program. Shopify POS can integrate with accounting software like QuickBooks and Xero.
  • Barcode support. Each product can be linked to an existing barcode or equipped with a brand-new one.
  • QR codes can be assigned to certain products.
  This is not a complete list of all features: we have chosen a few main ones.  

What is Square Point of Sale?

  Square Point of Sale, a cloud-based POS system that can be used with iOS and Android smartphones or Square's point of sale hardware, is available. Users can manage customers, inventory, payments, orders, and customers. There are additional tools to manage customer loyalty, marketing, employees, and payroll.   Square provides magstripe and chip card readers that accept debit and credit cards and Apple Pay and Google Pay payments. Square Virtual Terminal allows payment collection via a computer. Merchants can enter card details, and no card reader is needed.   Square Point of Sale allows businesses to sell in person, online, or in the field. Merchants can create a connected online store and sell via Instagram and Facebook. They can also offer curbside pickup and local delivery. Shipping is available -- no code is required.   With every card swipe, the built-in customer database can track customer preferences. Merchants can automatically add key customer information to create profiles. They can also search and sort customers to view purchase history, target email marketing campaigns, and send personalized messages to keep customers coming back.   Square Dashboard and the built-in sales report on the POS allow merchants to access their sales data from any device. They can also view hourly sales reports, track transactions and deposits, and get real-time hourly reports for each location. Square POS allows merchants to manage their inventory from any location.   You can import products via CSV. Names, prices, and quantities can all be modified at any time. Users can receive daily stock alert emails informing them of low or non-existent stock. Inventory levels can also be exported to printable spreadsheets.   For a stress-free experience, everything is integrated into your POS. You don't need to sign any contracts or read manuals.  

The Key Benefits of Square Point of Sale

  There are no contracts, fine print, or manuals. Switch, and your team can start calling customers within minutes.  

Flexibility Customization

  A POS system will streamline your day and make running your business easier. You can start with the basics and add additional features to suit your business. For a stress-free experience, everything is integrated into your POS.   MasterCard, Visa, and Discover cards can be used to make payments. Payments can also be made offline without the need for an internet connection.  

Personalized Customer Experiences

  Find out what your customers love. When you make a sale, track the items they buy and their preferences, and give feedback.   You can store payment details for your regular customers and charge them at the checkout by simply pressing a button.  

 Streamline Employee Management

  Merchants can give employees access to data by giving them passcodes. All transactions can be linked to employees so users can track who is responsible and how tips or commissions are reconciled. Employees can clock in and out using timecards at the point of sale. Overtime calculation can also be done automatically. Users can edit hours.  

Drive Business Growth

  To see the performance of your business, look at current sales trends. To see which strategies are working, review historical data. You can use your POS's inventory and sales reports to identify new opportunities and the best products to sell.  

Shopify Vs Square: POS Hardware

  What about POS hardware? What can Shopify and Square offer you in this area?  
  1. Square POS Hardware

  Square's simplest piece of equipment is the 'Reader. This is a great option for those just starting to take payments. The charging dock can be attached to the register to charge it. The Reader is lightweight and portable. It accepts contactless cards, chip, pin, and contactless cards, along with Apple Pay and Google Pay. The Reader can also be used in conjunction with your smartphone.  

The Square iPad Stand

  Square and Shopify have hardware that can be used with iPads to access their POS software. Both companies have iPad stands that can be used to set up cash registers.   Square comes with its iPad Stand, card reader, and dock. The same stand also comes with a USB hub that allows you to connect to various hardware devices quickly and easily. The stand can also pivot so customers can use the iPad screen to enter their pin. It also comes with a long cord that makes it easy to find a place for the stand in your store.   The stand also includes security features that lock the iPad to the counter. This will come in handy if you are worried about theft.  

Square Terminal

  Square Terminal is an all-in-one device that can handle both receipts and payments. This makes it easy to accept payments and print receipts right on the spot. It is also useful for vendors who are traveling to conventions or fairs. Check out our Square Terminal review for more information.  

Square Register

  The Square iPad stand includes everything you need to start taking payments. The Square Register goes one step further. The Square Register is a fully integrated point-of-sale terminal that allows for out-of-the-box selling. You don't need any additional tablets or apps.   A display is included with the register that displays what your customers are buying. The same screen can also take payments. Similar to Square's iPad stand and the USB hub, the register allows you to attach additional hardware.  

Other Square Accessories

  Square has many accessories that can be plugged into your terminal to complement your store. You can find USB receipt printers, cash drawers, kitchen printers for restaurants, and USB barcode scanners.  
  1. Shopify POS Hardware

  Shopify POS offers a Tap & Chip Card reader, just like Square. The USB cord can charge the reader or buy a separate dock. This can also be used to raise the reader to an ergonomic height.  

The Tap & Chip Case

  Shopify sells an iPhone that has an integrated tap-and-chip reader. This allows you to make payments while on the move.  

Shopify Retail iPad Stand & Retail Kit

  Shopify offers an iPad Stand with an AC cable and power adapter. If you want something more complete, the retail kit is for you. The kit includes a mini dock cable, mounting kit, card reader, and dock.  

Shopify Vs Square: A Quick Comparison of POS Hardware

  Shopify has fewer hardware options than Square, and you must use an iPad or smartphone. Square's Register is a great way to get all the information you need in one.   Shopify is more focused on mobile POS hardware. It's safe for us to say. Although the iPhone case can be a smart way to take payments quickly and cheaply, Square offers more options and better integrations.   Additionally, Square's hardware tends to be white, while Shopify's hardware is typically black.  

The Key Takeaway

  What does this leave us with? It's difficult to determine a winner after all that data has been processed.   As we have seen, Square offers a wide and affordable POS app that is very popular. Square is famously the first company to allow card payments to be made across a wider market.   Shopify was launched initially as an eCommerce platform. Shopify is well-known for simplifying processes involved in creating, launching, and administering online shops - online selling has never been easier for small business owners.   Both companies have seen significant growth over the last few years. Square now offers a wide range of business products, including an ecommerce platform. On the other hand, Shopify has expanded its reach with its reliable POS system. Both companies offer similar features and services, so they are now very similar.   Shopify appears to have more advantages than Square in terms of offering an ecommerce platform. Not least because of its great design and customizable options. However, Square is perfect if you only need to create and launch one online store.   Square is a very good POS system. It seems more cost-effective than Shopify.   This does not mean that Shopify's POS system is a poor investment. Shopify offers unparalleled support and quality to store owners. This covers all aspects of your business and gives you total control over every aspect of your company.
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