Square Terminal Review 2022

Square Terminal is a smart credit card reader from an industry-leading company.
Square
Square Terminal
4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3
  • $299.00
  • pro
    Accepts swipe, dip, and tap payments
  • pro
    Accepts digital wallet payments
  • pro
    Automatically manages payment disputes
  • con
    Processing costs can add up
  • con
    Some connectivity complaints

Data as of 5/4/22. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

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Current Square customers looking to upgrade from a mobile reader to something more substantial need look no further than this terminal. If you’re not a current Square customer, the Square Terminal is a smart tool that can take care of any in-person processing no matter the payment type.

Plus, you don’t have to start paying monthly fees for a new processing provider if you buy Square hardware. Square’s processing and point-of-sale features are free because Square makes all its money in the processing fees. That makes this terminal a turnkey solution for business owners new to processing who don’t want any fuss or contracts.


Most affordable all-in-one POS solution: Square

Square readers are everywhere for a reason. It's easy to get started, reasonably priced, and scalable as your business grows.


Square terminal pricing

The Square terminal can be purchased for a $299.00 one-time-payment. Or, you can purchase the terminal with monthly payments using Square’s own financing. You just need to fill out an application and then decide if you want to pay off the terminal in 3, 6, 12, or 24 payments.

Square Terminal is great starting point for small businesses

The Square Terminal can accept swiped, dipped, and tapped payments. It’s also accepts payments from mobile wallets, allowing customers to pay you even if they forgot their credit card.

On top of accepting all essential payment types, the Square terminal can easily connect you with the rest of Square’s point-of-sale infrastructure. You can hook the terminal up to an iPad, phone, or computer running Square software.

If you become a Square software whiz, you can easily track your accounting, manage employees, and create product promotions—all of which are offered by Square for no monthly fees.

Compare Square Terminal to competitors

Terminal
Price
See Plans
Square Terminal$299.00
Square Register$799.00
Clover Flex$799.00
Clover Mini$749.00
Ingenico iCT220$140.00

Data as of 6/14/22. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

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Square Terminal drawbacks

Square’s processing fees can add up

Square presents an interesting financial conundrum. On the one hand, it can save you money on processing if you don’t process a high volume of transactions every month or if your processing needs are irregular.

On the other hand, Square can be more expensive than other processing solutions if you consistently process more than $2,500 per month. These calculations all come down to the monthly fee. Square doesn’t have a monthly fee while processors with better processing rates do have a monthly fee.

So you do have to decide if the lack of a monthly fee is something you want. This decision is easy if you're processing under $2,500 per month because you’ll actually save money with Square. But, if you process more than that, the Square Terminal may not be the most cost-effective option for you.

Some users have complained about connectivity issues

In our meta-analysis of user reviews from diverse online sources, we noticed a number of people complaining about connectivity issues. The card reader would have trouble connecting to the internet via Wi-Fi or it would suddenly disconnect in the middle of business hours.

Luckily, we found that these complaints were not universally consistent among reviewers, with many having little-to-no connectivity issues. So it looks like if there is an issue, it may have to do with an uncommon manufacturing error or a software bug.

Square Terminal key features

No long-term contracts

Square’s pay-when-you-transact business model means you’ll never have to worry about being stuck in a contract if you decide Square isn’t for you or you need to pause processing for a few months. This makes Square’s processing flexible with the ebbs and flows of your business.

This is one of the primary reasons we love Square. It’s free to get started and free to leave.

Easy-to-use hardware

We found that most users of the Square terminal found its interface simple and uncluttered. Many raved about how easy it is to set up and bring around. The portability of the device as well as its sleek software and intuitive interface make the Square Terminal a cut above some of the uglier and more technical readers on the market.

Automatic dispute management

With Square, you don’t need to worry about security and disputes. All transactions are processed through Square’s merchant accounts, so they handle all disputes and shoulder almost all of the PCI security burden.

This is a way the Square Terminal can save you time and headaches and allow you to stay focused on your business operations.

The takeaway

With Square, you don’t need to worry about security and disputes. All transactions are processed through Square’s merchant accounts, so they handle all disputes and shoulder almost all of the PCI security burden.

This is a way the Square Terminal can save you time and headaches and allow you to stay focused on your business operations.

Related content

Square Terminal FAQ

How does the Square Terminal compare to Clover products?

There’s no simple 1:1 comparison between terminals because processing hardware always comes bundled with the point-of-sale technology it’s built on. In our view, the Square processing ecosystem is a bit better than Clover, but the Clover readers are a bit more feature rich.

The key to making a Clover reader work is to combine it with a great processor like Payment Depot. With Square, there’s less planning and forethought needed to get the most out of the reader. You just buy the reader and then process on the Square platform.

How long does the battery on a Square Terminal last?

Most estimations concur that the terminal can last just over a day on one full charge. It’s perfect for farmers markets, pop-up shops, and food trucks.

Does a Square terminal need Wi-Fi?

The Square Terminal can be either connected to Wi-Fi or with an ethernet cable.

Methodology

We examined the Square Terminal in depth, paying particular attention to its price relative to other readers in the market in addition to reliability and ease of use. The terminal did very well in all of these categories. We also looked at the Square processing platform and compared it to other top processing platforms. Finally, we analyzed user reviews across the internet looking for common issues in addition to consensus praise.

Disclaimer

At Business.org, our research is meant to offer general product and service recommendations. We don't guarantee that our suggestions will work best for each individual or business, so consider your unique needs when choosing products and services.

Andrew Mosteller
Written by
Andrew Mosteller
For four years, Andrew has been writing copy to help business owners expand, manage, and advertise their unique brands. His upbringing in an entrepreneurial family nurtured a passion for small business at a young age. Andrew’s father, an equity fund manager, taught him the ins and outs of investment financing and owning and operating a successful business. Now he brings his expertise and experience to entrepreneurs as a regular contributor on Business.org.
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