Choose credit card machines for small business

Mobile GPRS and Bluetooth technology are both driving a revolution in credit card machines for small businesses – making payment transactions faster, easier, cheaper and more flexible.

It is no longer essential to have a hard-wired countertop payment terminal – the traditional credit card machine is now handheld and even to some extent virtual, bringing credit card machines for small businesses right up-to-date.

Different types of Credit Card Machines for Small Businesses

There are three different basic types of credit card machines for small businesses:

  • Countertop – Hard-wired system, with optional EPoS technology
  • Portable – Handheld device using Bluetooth or Wi-Fi technology and business Broadband connection
  • Mobile – Card reader/printer attached to a mobile phone using GPRS and connecting to a hosted merchant service to process payment transactions.

It may be necessary to have a combination of these eg countertop and mobile or portable credit card machine if you have restaurant or premises with various checkouts, or also attend trade fairs and exhibitions.

For restaurants with a shop attached, countertop and portable credit card machines for small businesses would cover both – portable credit card machines can be presented to the customer at dining tables for payment processing.

Multiple payment terminals using Bluetooth or Wi-Fi can also be connected using existing business Broadband – making credit card machines for small businesses even cheaper to run.

Choosing equipment for a credit card payment system

As well as a credit card machine, your business will also require merchant services offering a service plan for processing each credit card payment. Once you have set up a merchant services account, your provider will offer a selection of credit card machines on a rental basis, according to whether your business requires countertop, portable or mobile solutions.

You can also buy credit card machines for small businesses independently and choose a merchant services provider separately, if you prefer.

Merchant services and service plans are now a very competitive marketplace – and many of these services are now hosted or virtual, especially if you choose portable or mobile credit card machines for small businesses.
This can make accepting credit cards for payment much cheaper and faster and cut down on paperwork and accountancy.

The actual hardware you opt for is also an important decision, however, and some of the features and functions to look for are:

  • Processes Chip and PIN, contactless and MOTO (mail order/telephone order) transactions
  • Accepts all major credit and debit cards
  • Certified for contactless Visa payWave and MasterCard payPass transactions
  • Fast automatic authorisation of payments
  • Integrated keypad for small countertops
  • Prints receipts fast using an integrated thermal printer
  • Clear backlit display and keypad for different lighting conditions
  • Easy software downloads, back up and upgrades, plus reliable maintenance support
  • Easy installation
  • PCI PED compliant – since December 2007, PCI PED (Payment Card Industry Pin Entry Device) has been introduced to standardise systems and protect PIN numbers from fraudulent use.

To get acquainted with the sort of features credit card machines for small businesses can offer, some of the most popular models on the market are:

  • Casio VX-100 Android EPoS System with optional magnetic card reader or Chip and PIN reader is a traditional countertop cash register with EPoS capability, linking payments to other business systems such as stock control and CRM. The Casio VX-00 has a 10.4” touchscreen monitor built in and is splashproof, so is perfect for restaurants. Android technology means development tools are free
  • The Verifone VX570 Counter Top Payment Terminal is small and robust, with a thermal printer and 6MB of memory. The terminal is able to process credit and debit card payments quickly and has sufficient memory for add-on applications
  • The VX 810 DUET can be used both as a countertop payment terminal and a portable payment processing device. The device sits on a base unit and the handheld payment processor has an integrated keypad, fast thermal printer and a high speed modem
  • The 123Send GPRS Mobile Terminal works on the Vodafone or O2 networks and has transaction speeds of three to six seconds. The terminals can be bought with or without merchant services and have a repair option and 364-day support helpdesk.

For more information about the best credit card machines for small business, request free quotes without obligation from our agreed suppliers by completing the online enquiry form. Your quotes will be sent within 48 hours and our agreed suppliers are experts in SME solutions, so will be able to advise on the best credit card machines for your small business needs.

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