Using Square at my recent vendor event: Gather in Oak Park! Photo credit: Sarah Lane
It really should not be a surprise to most people that I am such a fan girl with Square since they've helped me launch my business and grow. They even featured me in a Square Story (yes, that is my own horrible hand writing and drawings)! I follow them on social media, read their newsletters, visit their blog, and have gone to their headquarters in San Francisco for their speaker events. Online and in person I see a lot of people that do not use Square to it's full potential! It's really powerful once you delve deeper than taking "custom amount" payments. Here are all the services I use from Square and why they are critical to helping me run my business.
Square Payroll & Square Payroll App
Square Employee Management
If you have employees then this is also a MUST! By creating employee accounts you can decide what they can access on the Register. This includes allowing them to process refunds or take mobile payments. Before Employee Management my staff processed sales under my one account and since I didn't have a formal way of tracking time cards it was on the honor system.
With Employee Management each member of your team gets their own unique code. This allows them to run sales under their own name. Some benefits to this:
Square Online Store
By processing your sales on the Online Store Square will also continue to track your sales and give you analytics on what items and categories are selling best for you. This was an issue for me when I was using other e-commerce sites, everything would show up as a "custom amount" and sometimes tax was lumped into the price of the item (accounting nightmare).
It's also pretty mobile friendly and check-out is a breeze for your customers. Your customer's gift cards (the ones from Square) can be used on there and it even includes a page for eGift Cards! Another nifty feature is in store pick up. I imagine this was originally intended for coffee shops/cafes but I've had multiple customers use this. They will make a purchase in the morning and we will pack everything up for them and they'll swing by after work to pick up their purchase.
For my business we post on our blog weekly with outfit ideas. Once a month or so I'll create a newsletter type of email with our outfit ideas and link to the items in my Online Site... see where we're headed? It's all connecting. Now I'm giving my customers outfit inspirations, reminding them we're here, and linking to our new items to make sales while we're closed.
In the Marketing section it even tells you attributable sales which is the total number of in-store transactions made by customers who viewed one of your email campaigns and made a purchase within 14 days (tracked by credit card, email receipt, or loyalty). And when you send out promo codes it tells you your net sales and redemption ALONG with attributable sales.
I hope this post was informative and that it'll help you discover Square's other products. If you do not have a Square account you can sign up on their site: square.com or use my referral link and get free processing on your first $1k in sales.
If you have any questions about Square or their products feel free to comment or shoot me an email and I'll be happy to help! Thanks for stopping by!
Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by Square but all opinions, experience, and knowledge is of my own over the years.
When I first started my business I stressed over the small things that a lot of small business owners skimp on. The big one for me was hang tags. It was really important to me that I had matching hanging tags that displayed my logo, business name, and website. When I did research on the most affordable way to create hang tags I found really generic ones that I thought were hideous. At the time custom made hang tags were out of my budget (I started my business with $3k, I didn't want to spend more than I had to on tags!). So, I created my own and with a little bit of elbow grease I was able to save a lot of money and make a big impact
Why is it important to have branded hang tags?
Customers see your same logo on your website, profile photos, icons, email signatures, flyers, banners, etc. and you'll be using it on everything! Why would you not add it to the most important thing of all? Your products!
By having branded hang tags you will add a lot of value to your items. Customer's perceived value goes up because really, it is the small things that help create an experience! By letting your customers see your logo on everything you sell it will help put your brand and business in their head (slowly but surely).
Another great reason is new customers will also see your logo and look you up. Customers will buy your products to give as gifts and if you use a generic tag they are less likely to discover your business.
Convinced now? Here is how I did it for cheap, and you can too!
Creating your own hang tags:
Step 1: Designing your hang tag
Essentially you'll be ordering business cards for your hang tags. Since I was really bootstrapping it I decided to put two logos on one business card, so that I would get double the amount of hang tags.
The standard business card size is 2" by 3.5" and you can make the full card as a hang tag for even more of an impact! But if you want to be as budget friendly as possible then I recommend cutting them in half. If you decide to put two on one card then keep your logo size 2" by 1.75" in Photoshop or the photo editor you're using.
I added my logo and website but you can add whatever you like. The possibilities are endless in Photoshop! I also opted for white and black for a clean look.
When purchasing your business cards be sure to look up promotions on Vista Print. They always have them, I typically Google: "Vista Print 500 business cards for $9.99" - That is a Google result and it should always be current! So, if you add two logos to one card then you will have 1,000 hang tags for $10 + shipping!
Step 2: Cut in half *optional*
Step 3: Hole punch
Next you'll want to add the small hole punches. This will give it a more professional look versus poking a hole with a tagging gun. I suggest using a small hole punch so that the barbs on your tags won't slip through. At the shop we do one center hole at the top for clothing and two spaced out for earrings.
We use the same small hole punch for earrings but if you want to use a fancy earring puncher then here is this one. This one is nice if you get a lot of hoops, unique back pieces, pull through types of earrings, etc. Since we do not have this punch we often have to re-punch the holes at the bottom of the card.
TIP: We use blue barbs to hang the tags from the clothing. This helps further stand out and prevent people from wearing the items and re-tagging them to return. There are many color options and I'm sure you can find one to match with your branding!
Step 4: Circle tags *optional*
This step is also optional but if you want to create a circle tag it's pretty easy to do so! I bought this circle punch at Michael's but you can buy it on Amazon here. Just line it up from the bottom so the full design fits inside and punch it!
You'll then want to add a small hole punch at the top. This is where that twine comes into play. You can use the twine to tie it around items like purses, small accessories, scarves, etc.
We primarily use these tags for necklaces that do not come with earrings and sometimes bralettes and hats.
I hope this post was informative and helpful. If you create your own hang tags please share them with me, I would love to see your designs! Thanks for visiting!