Mobile credit card processing

Mobile credit card payment processing software innovations now make it possible for your charitable organization or non-profit to broaden fundraiser possibilities.


How many times have you heard, “I’d love to donate but I don’t have any cash on me.” Or ,”Sure, I’ll donate. Oh, I only have a dollar.” Are there community events you have not participated in because you didn’t want to deal with the hassle of handling cash?

The Square application and Intuit’s GoPayment application offer an inexpensive solution and service that will allow you to take your cause marketing campaign directly to the hands of your donors.

Benefits of Going Mobile

Using one of these applications will open new fundraiser possibilities, attract more donors at your current fundraisers and may increase the average amount of donations per donor. Armed with the mobile credit card processing application, you are now able to identify new locations and times to take your cause marketing closer to your target donors. You are not limited to scheduled and advertised fundraisers. You will also attract more donors; some will come because it is more convenient to pay with a credit card than carry cash and some because they see you as a savvy organization. Better yet, those who donate will be more likely to give a larger contribution because few put only a single dollar charge on their credit card. Additionally, donors may also prefer the credit card option because they can easily get an electronic receipt for tax purposes.

How The Mobile Credit Card Solutions Work

Square and GoPayment enable you to accept credit card payments with your mobile phone or tablet. In a nutshell, you plug a card scanner, provided free by both companies, into your phone and swipe the credit card. The transaction is securely transmitted to and processed by the service provider, and the funds are deposited into your bank account within a day or two. The donor can opt to enter an email address or mobile number to receive an electronic receipt.

How Secure are the Transactions

At first glance, swiping a credit card through someone else’s phone may seem like a frightening proposition for the owner. However, the transactions meet the Payment Card Industry standards for security, and no credit card data is ever stored on the device. The card never leaves the owner’s care, and the data transmission is always encrypted from the point of swipe to the processing server. The secure transactions offer an additional bonus for charitable organizations because it is easier for donors to trust the safe-holding of their information when making payments

How much does it cost?

Both Square and GoPayment provide the software for free. Each provider charges a flat rate per transaction. Square charges 2.5% for every swipe with no monthly service fees. GoPayment offers a flat 2.7% per swipe option with no service fees and a 1.7% per swipe option with a $12.95 monthly service fee. GoPayment’s 1.7% option is the lowest cost option if you process more than $1000.00 per month. Both services are flexible and allow you to make changes or cancel at any time. The only startup cost is the cost of a phone or tablet if you don’t already have one.

Which service should you use?

Overall, Square and GoPayment are very similar. Square offers a free cash register application for the iPad. It allows you to set up one-click menu items (think $10 Silver Donor, $25 Gold Donor, and $50 Platinum Donor) and can connect to a cash drawer. Both systems support iPhones, iPads, and Android phones but only GoPayment offers two service fee options. Square’s application allows you to enter cash transactions so all of your payments can be tracked in one location on their website.

Both systems provide a website to manage your account, track payment history, and track deposits. However, GoPayment’s site allows you to download the data directly into QuickBooks financial software. Square allows you to export the data into comma delimited spreadsheets that can be analyzed in Excel or imported into other accounting systems.

The one you choose may depend on factors such as the devices you currently own, monthly receipt amounts, the financial software you use, and the configuration you want to use. If you expect to collect more than $1000.00 in payments a month, use QuickBooks or own an Android tablet, GoPayment might be the better choice. If you have an iPad and like the idea of a professional-looking cash register, then choose Square. If none of those factors apply, then try out both of them and get feedback from your donors.

How to Get Your Mobile Donation Campaign Started and Visible

  • Bring t-shirts or other cause related merchandise to sell at any informational briefings you may do within the community.
  • Set up a professional looking cash register to be used in a thrift shop, booths at a fair, or mobile concession stands.
  • Equip staff members with the devices and have them walking around greeting individuals at events rather than just sitting at a table with a display waiting for people to approach you. A good example is to have your staff approach winning bidders and allow them the option to pay on the spot. This will help reduce or eliminate the inevitable payment line that forms at the end of the auction.

Photo credit:  Tech News

Via Mashable