The new generation of street-commerce

street commerce soho

A couple of months ago I was walking in SOHO, NY. Fancy and glamorous neighborhood in the heart of the Big Apple. It’s a very cool area, with tons of boutiques and expensive stores.

Nothing strange until I met a guy, an “artist”, selling his own creations just in front of the Apple Store. In his tiny stand he was showing his metal ornaments, handmade and customized with different phrases and quotes. Basically it was a simple knickknacks shaped to create a quote with an average price of $70. Now, I don’t want to discuss about pricing and utility of some kind of “art” but he was selling. Just in the middle of the street.

And not just taking cash with any authorization but with credit cards.

We it came the time to pay he just plugged in his iPhone a Square device and he was ready to swipe the client’s card. Easy, fast and handy.

The point is: now everyone can sell or offer a service along the street maybe even without a cart or a stand and with a regular tax id?

I can imagine future tellers, painters and apprentices rappers swiping cards on the streets. Funny scene!

The street-commerce is already here. A new way to sell 

But that’s not just for B2C or retail sellers. Even if you are a business consultant or a computer technician you can start receive payments right from your client as soon as you get your job done. This can be a good way to avoid terrible payments delays! ( a freelancer will love it :-))

street commerce

Now, Square is one of the most appreciated solutions to get credit cards payments directly on your smartphone. It’s easy and the app is great also to manage online payments. Square Register will track your sales and automatically retain a fee of 2,75% for every swipe (swipe $100 you get $97,25 in your deposit). The price is $10 dollars but you can get it back in your account once you activate it.

Square 2

More about Square

On the other hand there’s Paypal Here, pretty same device and same functions. Very intuitive and friendly Paypal’s backend and, of course, the useful online payment service typical of the eBay’s company. In this case fee is a little less, 2,70% on each swipe. Price is a little bit higher (around $15 dollars on Amazon)

Paypal Here credit card

Paypal Here

More about Paypal Here

Another solution, mainly used in Europe is Payleven. The functionalities and pretty similar but you also have a keypad. The device is not physically integrated with your smartphone but it is connected via Bluetooth. Price for transactions is also 2,75%.

Payleven card payments

More about Payleven

Are you going to open up a street commerce or use one of these gadgets for your store?

I can bet yes!