Square Expands Reach, Heads to Canada

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Square, the new method of accepting credit cards anywhere, is empowering small businesses, particularly merchants in the U.S. Recently, the company took its first step toward making its service available to businesses outside the country. Square is one of many tools making it easier for small businesses to sell their products and services to consumers. In this roundup, we’ll also take a look at other ways your business can market and sell.

A New Way to Pay

The next logical step. Square, with an estimated 2,000 businesses already using its services to take credit card payments from customers, for a total of $8 billion in annual transactions, is already a success in the U.S. Due to its close proximity and because its primarily English-speaking population presents no language barrier issues, Canada seemed the next logical place to test the mobile card reading/processing system. TechCrunch

It’s all in the cards. The Square team obviously hopes its simple and versatile service will be as big a hit with Canadian merchants as it has been in the U.S. The free mobile card reader attaches to the earphone jack of any iPhone, iPad, or Android device. The app allows any business to accept credit card payments securely and charges a low rate of just 2.75 percent per swipe. Square

Tips For Better Sales

Some stiff competition. A new payment system for retailers comes at just the right time, when merchants of all sizes including mom and pops face increasing competition. Here are some other new technologies that do things like collect information from past customer behavior, competitors, and other sources to help small businesses make better decisions on how to handle marketing and sales in the future. Buyer Zone

Out of sync. Ideally, marketing and sales efforts at any company should be aligned, maintains Act-On Vice President of Sales, North America, Chris Hardeman,. If your marketing and sales aren’t in sync, you are likely loosing potential revenue and spending unnecessary resources that don’t result in sales. Marketing Action Blog

How to relate. A big part of marketing and generating more sales today has to do with building better relationships with customers. Although relationship building is often talked about in social media, it is just as important in almost any kind of business. Here’s a clever post on what your pets can teach you about connecting with customers. AWeber Communications

A loyal friend. Customer loyalty programs are another great way of improving sales and of bringing those same customers back for more. Blogger James Stewardson shares these simple ideas for improving your customer loyalty program, thus improving your sales. From loyalty cards to finding other creative ways of making customers feel special, here are some ideas to start you thinking. UPrinting

When things go wrong. As important as how you treat customers when times are good, is how you handle relationships when things go wrong. Be sure to react appropriately when your company has made a mistake. The way you respond to errors, especially big ones important to your customers, determines the level of trust they will have for your brand in the future. Step By Step Marketing

Joshua Sophy Joshua Sophy is the Editor for Small Business Trends and has been a member of the team for 16 years. A professional journalist with 20 years of experience in traditional media and online media, he attended Waynesburg University and is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists. He has held roles of reporter, editor and publisher, having founded his own local newspaper, the Pottsville Free Press.