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Credit card transactions at a live show

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Sean SmithCredit card transactions at a live show
by on Mar 9, 2009 at 5:55:14 pm

Hello. I am looking to accept credit card transactions (Visa/MC/Am Ex)for a convention in the near future. I will have my little 10x10, my vinyl shingle and my DVD’s to sells. Would someone please recommend a credit card application (hardware/software) so that I can easily process credit/debit cards sales from my laptop? I will not have an internet drop at my show booth. I was hoping to avoid the old-school slide machine unless it is my only option. I feel having both cash and plastic options will capitalize on an impulse purchases. Thank you for any feedback in advance.

"A lot of people can doodle, but serious people want to get paid. Picasso got paid."


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Mike CohenRe: Credit card transactions at a live show
by on Mar 9, 2009 at 6:53:58 pm

we have a phone based machine, like they have in many retail stores. You will need a regular phone hookup.


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Bill DavisRe: Credit card transactions at a live show
by on Mar 9, 2009 at 11:14:28 pm

Sean,

Having just set this up for a non-profit whose board I chair, I've got to say it's a bit complicated.

The hardware side is actually relatively simple. Any laptop can take a USB card reader and scan any mag stripe card into the system. (Actually it's fun, scan your own credit card or drivers license and look at all the data every scan sends out - It's kinda creepy)

Then something needs to parse that text stream. There are a lot of software options to do this. Shopping cart software, simple mac and pc storefront software, etc. But those have to connect to a merchant account and this is where some of the complexity comes in. You need to make arrangements for that merchant account to hook up with one of the electronic payment gateways in order to insure that the data goes to the right system, gets verified properly, then gets credited to YOUR account properly. this requires a separate service like Authorize.net These payment gateways typically require monthly contracts and extract their small percentage. Small volume users tend to get disadvantaged by the terms.

The alternative to these commercial systems is to rely on PayPal or iBill or similar services for small transactions. They hide the behind the scenes credit card complexity from the end user.

Hope this helps.



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Steve WargoRe: Credit card transactions at a live show
by on Mar 10, 2009 at 7:09:07 am

I just set our company up with a gateway firm that allows us to process by cell phone, wireless computer or land line.



Steve Wargo
Tempe, Arizona
It's a dry heat!

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5 Final Cut (not quite PRO) systems
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Sean SmithRe: Credit card transactions at a live show
by on Mar 10, 2009 at 2:38:40 pm

Thanks guys.

Bill & Steve, would you be able to recommend the company that you decided to go with?

"A lot of people can doodle, but serious people want to get paid. Picasso got paid."


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