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How to Get Started with Square

Want a fast, secure way to accept payments -- without contracts, monthly fees, or hidden costs? Square makes it easy!


  • Step 1: Install the app Download Square's free app to a compatible mobile device. Then, open the app and create an account.
  • TIP: Go to "": for a list of compatible mobile devices.
  • Step 2: Set up processing Visit "": to set up credit card processing. Input your personal information, including Social Security number and date of birth. Next, enter a permanent mailing address where your free Square card reader can be shipped.
  • Step 3: Input your bank account Link your Square account to a U.S. bank account. Enter your banking information, and Square will make 2 small deposits. When the deposits appear on your statement, which may take 2 to 3 business days, log in to again and enter the amounts to verify your information.
  • Step 4: Activate processing When your reader arrives, just open the app on your device and plug the card reader into the headphone jack. You're ready to start accepting credit card payments!
  • Step 5: Swipe a card To make a transaction, enter the price of the item you're selling. Then, swipe the credit card through the reader smoothly and quickly, keeping the card parallel to the reader and the magnetic strip against the reader's thickest part. If swiping fails or the card is too worn you can type in the card information.
  • Step 6: Finish the transaction Once Square authorizes the card, customers should sign for their purchase with their finger. Messy signature? Shake to clear it and try again. Then, tap "Continue" to finalize the payment -- it should deposit within 4 to 5 days. Square e-mails a record of the transaction to you and a receipt to your customer, making the process completely paperless.
  • TIP: Use the Payment tab in the Settings menu to allow customers to add tips to their purchases, either by a percentage or a whole dollar amount.
  • Step 7: Get data Visit "": for an itemized list of your transactions, broken down by date, tips, tax, and payment method. Click on any transaction to see associated metadata, including where and when it occurred and its processing fees.
  • Step 8: Use it everywhere Use Square whenever and wherever you want -- at yard sales, for small businesses, even to settle up with friends. With Square, you can accept payments anywhere, anytime.

You Will Need

  • Square app
  • Compatible mobile device
  • Internet access
  • U.S. bank account
  • Social Security number
  • U.S. address
  • Square card-reader

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