Accept credit cards offline

Until today, I thought I had found the best solution for indie musicians who want to accept credit card payments for CDs and merch at shows: CD Baby.

CD Baby has a sweet deal, way better than any merchant account you get from a bank. And my band, Soulpajamas, has been using CD Baby’s credit card solution for years. It works and it’s a fair deal. Check it out for yourself.

But today I read about a slick new player in the market, called Square. It’s also geared toward small businesses that can’t afford minimum monthly fees.

With Square, you get a tiny card reader that plugs directly into any device with an audio input jack (like your iPhone). No monthly or hidden fees, no contract or merchant account required. The buyer signs on the touch screen of your smart phone. Receipts can be emailed to the customer.

Don’t get me wrong, Soulpajamas is still selling our CDs and downloads online using CD Baby. They offer great services for independent recording artists and we have no plans to leave. But for credit card payments at gigs (and anywhere else we sell CDs in person) we’re now testing Square.

Why isn’t every indie musician doing this?


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3 Responses to “Accept credit cards offline”

  1. Aron Says:

    Good Question, why aren’t they? How’s it working out for you? After getting squashed by CD Baby’s 13% charge I’m looking to get something new for the band. Would you recommend Square?

  2. songwriterstipjar Says:

    I can’t give a full recommendation for Square, because I haven’t tested it fully. The one time I used it to make a real sale, it took forever to make a connection, but it eventually did connect and charged the person’s credit card correctly. It might have been a weak area for cell reception. That won’t work if you’ve got a line of people at your merch table waiting to pay.

  3. accept credit cards google Says:

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