A point of sale system (POS) makes it easy for you to collect cash and credit card payments. Such a system will also gather all the data related to your customers, inventory, and sales.
Undoubtedly, a modern POS solution saves you time, and money, and enhances the relationship you have with your customers.
Unfortunately, with so many POS companies in the market, it can be hard to make an informed choice.
Top among the most popular point of sale companies we have are Square and Clover. Both Square and Clover POS solutions are user-friendly, flexible, and reliable.
However, there is a notable difference between Clover fees vs. Square fees. Additionally, the two systems have more differences that make them ideal for different business purposes.
If you can’t decide between Clover vs. Square, we can help you make an informed decision. Below, we provide a Clover POS vs.Square POS comparison, so you can decide which of the two is perfect for your business.
Clover POS vs. Square POS Systems: What’s the Difference
Let’s start by looking at how these two systems stack up in terms of cost, software, hardware, ease of use, merchant account, features, e-commerce integration, and customer support.
1. Cost Effectiveness
If you’re wondering how these two POS solutions differ when it comes to cost, here’s a comparison of the two based on their monthly fees, transaction costs, and hardware costs
When it comes to monthly fees, the Square for Retail plan is free. However, if you have the premium Square Plus plan you’ll have to part with $60 per month. The good thing with this plan is that you’ll enjoy additional features such as barcode printing, forecast reporting, and bulk inventory management.
Clover also has a free plan for hardware users using the Just Payments software plan. However, the no-hardware users’ monthly fees start at $9.95 while other Clover hardware users’ fees range between $19.95 and $89.85.
The transaction costs for both systems depend on the hardware you choose.
For Square, the in-person transaction costs include 2.6% plus ten cents, while the in-person transaction costs for Clover are 2.6% plus ten cents or 2.3% plus ten cents.
For keyed-in and online transactions, Clover charges are 3.5% plus ten cents. Square charges are 2.9% plus 30 cents and 3.5% plus 15 cents for online and keyed-in transactions, respectively.
Hardware Costs, etc
Both Square and Clover have mobile and countertop devices available for payment processing.
Square has a free mobile card reader, while Clover has one that will cost you $69. The Clover wireless reader costs $49 while the Square wireless reader retails at $49.
Clover also has several stationary registers retailing at $749, $1349, and $1649 while Square’s register costs $799.
Also, the Clover handheld terminal costs $499 while the Square terminal retails at $299. Square doesn’t have a tablet terminal but Clover has one that will cost you $749.
When it comes to additional costs, Square is a plug-and-play system that doesn’t have setup costs. On the other hand, although you won’t need any training to start using Clover devices, setup costs may apply in certain circumstances.
Both Clover and Square have software features that are meant to ease your business operations.
Let’s look at the available software from these two POS solutions.
Clover provides its users with various paid service software options
- Payment Plus which retails at $4.95 per month
- Register Lite which retails at $9.95 per month
- Register which retails at $39.95 per month
- Counter service restaurant at 39.95 per month
- Table Service Restaurant retailing at $69.95 monthly
The basic features included in the Clover’s POS software plans include e-commerce integration, bill spitting, table mapping, discounts, tipping, contactless dining, and remote order firing
Square has a free service software option.
The system also has other paid service options that include:
- Square For Retail at $60 per month and the premium option at $299 per month
- Square For Restaurants at $60 monthly and the premium option which starts at $299 monthly
- Square For Appointments is free for individuals but retails at $50 per month for 2 to 5 employees and $90 monthly for 6 to 10 employees
Some of the features included in Square’s software are credit card payments, e-commerce integration, team management, barcode label printing, item management, and automatic reminders.
Both system apps can integrate with different software platforms including Scheduling, GoDaddy websites, Wix, and WooCommerce
Clover is known for its high-quality hardware systems, while Square simple hardware is easy to use and is also reliable.
Another advantage of choosing Square is that the company offers a free card reader that you can use with mobile devices.
Unfortunately, Clover doesn’t have a free option.
Square hardware products include:
- Square Register – The Square Register costs $999, and it’s made up of a comprehensive payment register. The system can process credit card payments, and it also comes integrated with the Square POS app
- Square Terminal – This portable terminal that costs $299 has a functional POS, and it can connect to a wireless network.
- Square Stand – This is another portable terminal that will work with several contactless payments. It can also be used with iPad, iPad Air, and iPad Pro, and it only costs $169
- Square Card Readers – This terminal accepts different forms of payment including contactless payment readers, chip cards, and magstripe card readers
Clover has four hardware products as explained below
- Clover Station – This countertop POS comes with a cash drawer and a large HD display screen. An additional feature provided with this POS is a credit processing unit. Also, this hardware option comes in two versions, the Clover Station Solo and The Clover Station Duo.
- Clover Flex – If your business uses handheld payment devices such as tablets and smartphones, then this POS is for you. It’s wireless, and it can operate via Wi-Fi which means you can accept payments from anywhere.
- Clover Go – This is another hardware option that is perfect for businesses that use smartphones and other handheld devices to process payments. This POS accepts credit cards that have magstripes and security chips. This portable device also allows your business to process contactless payments made from your customers’ tablets and smartphones
- Clover Mini – The Clover Mini retails at $899 and is very much like the clover Flex device but a bit smaller. The good thing about this POS is that it is cloud-based, meaning you can access payment-related files and applications from any device
4. Merchant Account
If you’ve just started accepting credit card payments, and you don’t have the time to shop for a merchant account, Square POS can help. The company offers its POS devices with a merchant account included. When you buy a POS device from this company, you also accept to become a sub-merchant under the company’s merchant account.
On the other hand, Clover merchant devices don’t come with a merchant account. When you buy a POS device from Clover, you can open a merchant account directly with the company or get one from any of Clover’s partner financial institutions. While using Clover’s devices may mean dealing with other vendors when it comes to merchant account services, it also means that if you have an existing merchant account that is supported by Clover’s POS, you won’t have to switch when it comes to using this company’s devices.
5. Ease of Use
Both of these companies offer easy-to-use software and terminal options. Both companies’ terminals are user-friendly, lightweight, and compact.
Both terminals also have an in-built receipt printer that you can use to print receipts for your customers.
Notably, the Cover Flex terminal is a bit smaller as it has a 5” touchscreen compared to the Square’s 5.5” screen. Also, Clover’s flex terminals have barcode scanners.
Some of the features that come with the Clover POS system include:
- Menu editing
- Staff management
- Automatic software updates
- Provide data on top customers
- Track sales and revenue
- Printable reports
- Employee management
- Customer order tracking
You can access the below features from Squares POS devices
- Accounting system integration
- Credit card processing
- Adjustable taxes
- Discount management
- Inventory management
- Sales reports
- Customer directories
- Customizable loyalty reward programs
7. E-Commerce Integration
If you have an online store, you may be wondering which of the two company devices is suitable for your e-commerce platform.
Square offers e-commerce service plans that you can embed on your e-commerce website. Also, the company has a free online store maker that you can use to set up your online store.
Clover doesn’t have an e-commerce website maker, but you can use one of the Clover app integrations to create your site. You can also gain access to this company’s e-Commerce plans at a fee through partnering with BigCommerce which is the company’s online partner.
8. Customer Support
While Clover offers 24/7 customer support, Square customer service hours are from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Unfortunately, customer experience with Square support in the past hasn’t been good, as the company can be hard to reach sometimes.
In addition, the fact that customer support isn’t available all the time puts businesses that work 24 hours at a disadvantage, as they can only get support during the provided customer service hours.
Benefits of Using Square’s POS System
Some of the advantages of choosing Square over Clover’s POS system include:
- Cheaper– Square is ideal for new and small businesses that are on a budget. The pricing is lower as there are no monthly fees. Besides, this company’s hardware systems are cheaper, and new business owners can even start with the free swipe reader as they wait for your business to scale up
- Merchant account included – Square is suitable for new businesses that might also be looking to open a merchant account. With this company, you don’t have to shop around for merchant service providers.
- Straightforward pricing– Square has a transparent pricing model as all POS cards cost the same. Besides, there are no different monthly or transaction fees for the various hardware options
- E-commerce support– If your business has an established online store you can use Square’s online checkout on your site for free. Besides, if you need to set up your E-commerce site, you can use Square’s free online store maker.
Benefits of Using Clover’s POS System
The benefits of choosing Clover POS solution over Square’s are explained below.
- Flexibility – When it comes to credit card processing, Clover offers more flexibility than Square. With Clover you can use a merchant account of your choice provided it’s compatible with Clover’s software. This is unlike Square which processes its payments using its merchant account.
- Scalable and customized options – Clover is perfect for businesses that are looking for scalable and customizable features. For instance, the company offers apps such as employee management, sales reports, dining table management, and inventory management that businesses can use to customize the services to their needs. Besides, most of these add-ons can be found on Clover App at no cost while Square often provides the add-ons with extra costs.
- Customer support – Clovers customer support is available 24/7 which is ideal for businesses that are open all day and night.
Clover vs. Square POS System: Which One to Choose For Running Your Business
Both Square and Clover offer state-of-the-art POS systems.
However, when it comes to choosing the best payment processing solution between the two, you may have to consider factors such as the size of your business, budget, how long you’ve been in business, and the volume of your cash and credit card sales.
Square is ideal for start-ups that are looking for an all in one POS and credit card processor. Square is also affordable as its software is cheaper compared to Clover’s. Also, it has low startup costs and its hardware is also affordable.
Although Clover might still work for your new business, you will have to shop for credit card processors. Besides, the high upfront investment might lock out most new businesses.
However, this is not to say that Clover isn’t the payment processing solution that your business needs.
Clover POS system offers reliable features and functionalities that are perfect for businesses that are looking for a flexible payment processing solution. With Clover, you can use a merchant service account of your choice, which can save you transaction costs in the long run.
Also, you don’t have to worry about your credit card transactions being suspended, something common with Square merchant account users.
Further, Clover offers customizable and scalable features and their customer support is also reliable as it is available 24/7.
Square and Clover are both wonderful POS solutions. The choice you make between the two depends on your business needs.
While some businesses appreciate that they do have to shop for a merchant account provider with Square, others are glad that Clover allows them to customize their POS system according to their needs.
So, which is your preferred POS system among the two? Let us know in the comments section below.