Clover vs. Square: Which POS System Is Right for Your Business?

Mantis Funding August 07, 2023

Clover vs. Square: Which POS System Is Right for Your Business?

Point-of-sale (POS) solutions from Clover and Square provide brick-and-mortar businesses with a way to process credit card and mobile wallet transactions. While both systems function similarly for merchants and customers alike, there are a few fundamental differences.

One such difference is that Clover requires business owners to create a merchant account through their proprietary Fiserv or a supported third party, while Square automatically sends payments into an account it owns before disbursing them to the business owners.

Learn more about the differences between the two services.

Square vs Clover: At a Glance

Feature Square Clover
Credit Card Processing Square Reader ($49) plugs into mobile devices and syncs with the Square app. Clover Go ($49) plugs into mobile devices and syncs with the Clover app.
POS System Square offers different options: Standard Register Stand ($799), Terminal ($299), Stand ($149). Clover offers options: Station Duo Wifi ($1,799), Mini ($749), Flex ($499).
Software Square provides a free app, with additional features available for a cost. Clover offers paid service plans (Payment Plus, Register Lite, Register) and integrations.
Payment Processing Fees Square charges 2.6% + 10 cents for tap, chip, and swiped payments; 3.5% + 15 cents for keyed-in payments. Clover charges 2.3% + 20 cents for in-person transactions; 3.5% + 15 cents for keyed-in transactions.
Rewards and Loyalty Programs Square charges $45/month for rewards program setup and maintenance. Clover includes rewards program features in their monthly fee.
Customer Management Square allows creation of customer profiles with contact information and transaction history. Clover enables personalized experiences and easy review requests from customers.
Comparative Features of Square and Clover Payment Solutions

How Does a POS System Benefit Your Business?

Modern POS systems offer many benefits to businesses across various industries. Whether you run a restaurant or own a small retail store, these systems go above and beyond simply processing credit card transactions. Today’s POS systems often feature unique hardware and tools that empower business owners to streamline operations, track sales and inventory, and create customer reward programs. Learn more about their benefits below.

A POS system provides a streamlined checkout experience for both employees and customers. With user-friendly interfaces and intuitive functionalities, these systems simplify the transaction process and reduce wait times. Employees can quickly and accurately process transactions using touch-screen and card-tap capabilities while customers enjoy a hassle-free checkout experience.

POS systems also significantly increase efficiency within the business by automating manual tasks like price calculations and discount applications. With a modern POS system, you can save time and minimize errors in your day-to-day operations. Employees can focus on customer service and attending to other critical activities by streamlining routine processes.

Moreover, a POS system can help optimize a business’s inventory management. Accurate real-time inventory tracking is essential to avoid stockouts, overstocking, and unnecessary costs. Some POS systems automatically update inventory levels with each transaction, providing up-to-date information. With these features, business owners can make informed decisions regarding restocking, identifying popular products, and managing inventory efficiently.

Finally, a POS system can provide valuable customer insights by tracking sales data. With the right POS system, businesses can gain insights into customer preferences, purchasing patterns, and trends. Vendors can leverage these insights to create targeted marketing campaigns, personalized offers, and loyalty programs.

What Are the Differences Between Square and Clover?

Generally speaking, Square is a cheaper and more straightforward POS solution for smaller businesses looking for an easy way to get started immediately. Clover offers businesses more robust features at an additional cost. Learn more about the differences between the two POS systems below.

Square vs Clover: Credit Card Processing Comparison

Both companies provide businesses with card readers that feature contactless capabilities. Square’s Square Reader costs $49 and plugs right into your phone, tablet, or other handheld device.

Similarly, Clover Go also costs $49, plugs into mobile devices, and syncs with the Clover app so business owners can easily keep a pulse on their inventory and sales records.

Square vs Clover: POS System Comparison

When it comes to POS systems, Square’s standard register stand is priced at $799 and provides businesses with an all-in-one payment solution for all their transactions. Square’s register stand does not include Bluetooth pairing or outside POS integration compatibility.

Depending on your business’s budget, Square offers the Square terminal and the Square stand, smaller options than the standard register stand, at $299 and $149, respectively. The Square terminal is portable and features wireless capabilities, while the Square stand provides users with a mobile transaction processing solution that works only with contactless payments and chip cards.

In terms of software, Square offers a free app that is available to all users. For businesses that require more specific features tailored to their industries, they will need to pay extra for those capabilities. Square can also integrate with platforms like Wix, GoDaddy, WooCommerce, and Acuity Scheduling.

Clover offers a range of POS hardware and software options for businesses. The Clover Station Duo Wifi is a comprehensive payment station with a register and receipt printer, priced at $1,799.

The Clover Mini is also available at $749 for smaller businesses and accepts various payment types, including Apple Pay and Google Pay. The Clover Flex, priced at $499, is a portable card reader that accepts different card and mobile payments.

Clover provides three paid service plans for their software: Payment Plus, Register Lite, and Register. The plan you choose will depend on your business’s needs. However, where Clover really shines is with its integrations.

Clover offers easy access to integrations tailored to specific industries like retail and restaurants, enabling businesses to enhance their operations and efficiency through seamless integration with other software solutions.

Square vs Clover: Payment Processing Fees

With Square, merchants have to pay 2.6% plus 10 cents for every card tap payment, chip payment, and swiped credit card payment. For keyed-in transactions, that fee increases to 3.5% plus 15 cents per transaction.

Clover takes a fee of 2.3% plus 20 cents per transaction for all in-person transactions. For keyed-in transactions, this increases to 3.5% plus 15 cents per transaction.

Square vs Clover: Rewards and Customer Loyalty Programs

Businesses that want to implement a customer rewards program might benefit from choosing Clover. Clover already includes their rewards program features in their monthly fee, while Square charges customers $45 per month to set up and maintain their rewards programs.

Square vs Clover: Customer Management

Square and Clover come with robust features that allow business owners to create profiles for their customers to create personalized experiences and easier processing on return visits.

Square enables businesses to create customer profiles using their contact information and transaction history. Merchants can also use Square to save customers’ payment methods for faster checkouts in the future.

With Clover, businesses can use customer profiles and information to tailor a personalized experience for them. Clover also makes it easy to request reviews from customers for future improvements.

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Which One Is Right for Your Business?

Every business is different, and there is no one-size-fits-all POS solution. Square and Clover provide merchants with high-quality POS systems that cover an array of functions and capabilities. Smaller businesses may benefit from Square’s simplicity, while Clover may be the perfect choice for those looking to scale their operations.

What Businesses Is Square Best For?

Square is the best choice for small businesses or businesses just starting because of its free software app that works across all sorts of smartphones and other mobile devices. However, Square charges retailers and restaurants more for certain feature packages. Square is the best choice for businesses looking for fundamental payment processing features to integrate with their POS system.

What Businesses Is Clover Best For?

Clover is a fantastic option for growing businesses that need a POS system that will help them scale their operations. Without charging any extra fees, Clover provides businesses with an all-in-one solution to gather customer reviews, manage payroll, create employee schedules, and keep a pulse on sales trends.

Square vs Clover FAQs

Which POS system is better, Clover or Square?

The choice between Clover and Square for a POS system depends on your business needs and goals. We recommend Clover if you want a customizable solution to support your business’s growth and help you save money on transaction fees with its built-in merchant services account. On the other hand, Square offers straightforward and often cheaper pricing, making it suitable for budgeting purposes, especially if you’re satisfied with basic payment processing capabilities.

Is Square or Clover better for restaurants?

Both companies offer high-quality POS systems for restaurants. If you want something fast and cost-efficient, we recommend trying Square. Square offers bulk menu additions, customizable menus, self-serve QR code ordering, and various kitchen management tools.

If you’re an established restaurant willing to pay for more comprehensive features, Clover provides customized order solutions, customer management tools, and sales report capabilities.

Is Square cheaper than Clover?

In many scenarios, Square is cheaper than Clover. Square offers limited features, making it a perfect choice for startups and small businesses. However, Clover has more robust features that growing businesses may find helpful.

What are Square and Clover?

Square and Clover are modern point-of-sale (POS) systems for brick-and-mortar businesses and online merchants. Both companies also offer businesses employee management tools and other optional features.

Which is cheaper: Square or Clover?

Square offers a free plan, making it more affordable for smaller businesses and startups. Clover is pricier; however, it offers more comprehensive features for growing companies.

Square and Clover provide excellent POS solutions to help businesses of varying sizes streamline their payment and employee management processes. Square is a powerful yet simple POS solution for startups and smaller businesses working with limited capital. On the other hand, Clover is great for companies looking to expand their operations and require more features to track inventory and collect customer feedback.

Regardless of which POS system you choose, it’s imperative to explore every avenue to support your business’s health and growth. One resource many merchants are turning to is revenue-based financing with Mantis Funding. At Mantis Funding, our representatives are well-versed in working with various businesses across different industries to help them access the capital they need to expand and evolve in an ever-changing market.

No matter what you use to process your transactions, remember that Mantis Funding can help support your business’s needs with revenue-based financing options. Contact us for more information today!

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About Mantis Funding

Mantis Funding is a business financing solutions firm catering to small and mid-sized business owners in the United States.