Payment Depot vs. Square: Which Solution is Right for Your Business?
It can be hard to differentiate between honest reviews and promotional materials in the payments industry. This makes choosing a payment processor difficult since you’re stuck trying to extract real information from oodles of sponsored marketing content.
We get it.
In this article, discussing Payment Depot vs. Square, we’ll strive to remain objective. After all, Payment Depot’s business model is rooted in transparency. And the cold hard truth is that, for some businesses, Square is a better option. Payment Depot is always upfront about this to merchants.
So let’s delve in and figure this thing out, shall we?
Features and capabilities
Payment Depot is a merchant services provider. This means that Payment Depot might take a bit more time to get up-and-running, but it offers heightened account security as compared to payment aggregators. Payment Depot’s defining feature is that it’s one of the few payment processors out there that charge a flat fee over interchange.
This is called interchange-plus pricing, and it means that, instead of taking a percentage of each sale you make (like most credit card processors), Payment Depot merchant services charges you a monthly fee plus a fixed fee on each transaction––making it easier to make money if your business has a high transaction volume.
Square, on the other hand, is a payment aggregator. Payment aggregators approve accounts quickly, but they also can suspend them for suspicious activity without forewarning. Because of this, payment aggregators work best for young businesses with low transaction volumes that need to get up-and-running quickly. Square charges a fixed fee per transaction, which makes it a great choice for businesses with lower transaction volumes that may wind up overpaying with a monthly fee.
Payment Depot’s pricing model is relatively simple. Its fee structure varies based on which of four packages you choose: Basic, Most Popular, Best Value, and Premier. Let’s take a look at Payment Depot’s fees for each package:
- Basic: $49 a month + interchange and a $0.15 transaction fee on each sale.
- Most Popular: $79 a month + interchange and a $0.10 transaction fee on each sale.
- Best Value: $99 a month + interchange and a $0.07 transaction fee on each sale.
- Premier: $199 a month + interchange and a $0.05 transaction fee on each sale.
What is interchange, you may ask? The interchange fee comes directly from the credit card company (such as Visa or Mastercard). Payment Depot’s interchange rates are the same as every other company. Click here for a comprehensive breakdown on interchange fees.
Square charges 2.6% + $.10 on every single transaction. Pretty simple. Square doesn’t charge a monthly fee, which makes it awesome for SMBs. However, by taking a substantial percentage from each transaction, Square rates wind up being more expensive than P.D.’s interchange-plus pricing model for businesses that process more than $2,500 a month.
So, back to the Square vs Payment Depot question: The option that’s right for your business will ultimately be determined by how much your business processes in transactions each month, the size of each transaction (since Square takes a percentage), and whether your business can handle the unexpected shutdowns that can come when working with a payment aggregator.
Alright, y’all. Here’s an area where Payment Depot really shines. Payment Depot offers award-winning 24/7 in-house customer service––meaning a Payment Depot rep who’s well-versed in their products is always on-call to answer your customer service questions. They also have a 90-day money back guarantee. So in the rare case that P.D. isn’t the most cost-effective option for your business, you can try something else without any hassle.
Square’s customer service proposition? Not so sexy. Square’s customer service hours run between 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. Pacific Time, Monday through Friday. You have to get a specific outreach code to connect with Square’s customer service reps, which is why Square is only rocking a measly 2/5 stars on ConsumerAffairs.com. However, Square also offers a robust online seller forum and customer support in the form of online content––articles, videos, etc.–– so there’s the opportunity to DIY problem solve if you’re so inclined.
Payment Depot’s virtual terminal is compatible with most credit card processing equipment and POS stations. If you prefer to buy hardware directly through Payment Depot, however that’s also an option. P.D. offers standard terminals, smart terminals, and full POS solutions from Clover, Swipe, Poynt, and Vital.
But Square is also no slouch in the hardware department. First of all, Square is notorious for its easy-to-use app interface. And Square registers, stands, and swipe stations are all relatively inexpensive––they’ll run you between $10 to $800, but you can also break your payment down into monthly installments on Square’s website.
Reviews and reputation
There’s really no better way to find out what to expect from a company than by taking a deep dive into their customer reviews. Payment Depot is BBB accredited and has an “A+” rating. Payment Depot are largely positive, and P.D. goes out of their way to respond to each and every BBB review. Most complaints about Payment Depot are from potential customers that were denied the service due to being in a high-risk business. Since P.D. is not a payment aggregator, they’re a bit more selective about who they do business with, but they also won’t shut down your account without notice… so it’s your call.
Unfortunately, Square is not accredited by the Better Business Bureau. Square is also reviewed with an “F” BBB rating, which is surprising from such a widely-adopted payment aggregator.
Square complaints state account security issues and long-term shutdowns without prior warning as some of the biggest detriments of working with the company––many customers are simply left without access to money sitting in their merchant account. Again, these are some of the issues that come from working with a large payment aggregator, but retailers who aren’t approved for merchant accounts are often left with no other option.
Bringing it all together
Payment Depot merchant services and Square Inc. are vastly different companies. The two most notable differences being 1) their fee structure and 2) the fact that P.D. is a merchant services provider and Square is a payment aggregator. As a result, Payment Depot is great for high volume credit card processing, while Square is more cost-effective for merchants that process fewer transactions and under $2,500 a year. Payment Depot helps mid to high volume merchants save an average of $400 a month on credit card processing.