Square and Xero: The Integration SMBs Will Love
Every once in a while, a solution comes along that just seems too good to be true. That’s how many small business owners felt when Jack Dorsey, the co-founder of Twitter, released Square, a simple and affordable mobile payment solution. Now, small business accounting solution provider Xero is sweetening the deal. Xero recently announced a partnership between their SMB accounting software and Square, offering businesses the best of both worlds when it comes to accepting, managing and tracking credit card transactions and payments.
How Square Leveled the Playing Field for SMBs
Square allows any business, regardless of size, to accept credit card payments without the traditional costs of purchasing a credit card reader or cash register. Using a small (we’re talking about the size of a quarter) card reader, SMBs and even single-person sellers are able to accept more payment types, and can even accept and record tips.
In many ways, Square levels the playing field for SMBs. With both low upfront and long-term costs, Square allows small businesses to appeal to consumers’ preference for paying with plastic. To keep operations simple, Square charges based on what your business makes, so there are no fees aside from the per-swipe or per-manual transaction cost. Even more useful, Square can accept payments using many of the devices people are already using, including smart phones, iPads and Android devices. In fact, you have likely seen Square in action in one of the following common retail environments: the farmers market, mall kiosks, street sellers and even at local garage sales.
Why Small Businesses Love Xero
Even before this integration, Xero stood out as a top small business accounting solution with a comprehensive collection of features. Last year, Xero was given an honorable mention in Accounting Today’s 2013 Top New Products, and the company saw an 83-percent increase in operating revenue from last year. With Xero, users gain free online support, mobile tools, multi-currency reconciling, financial reporting, payroll and inventory functions, contact management and more, all on a sleek, user-friendly dashboard.
Square and Xero: Better Than PB&J
If you aren’t sold on these two products yet, these new integration qualities will likely sway you. Here’s a rundown of the new capabilities Xero’s integrations with Square will provide for users:
- Square transactions will automatically feed into Xero, eliminating the costs and errors associated with manual data entry.
- Xero will make sense of Square transaction data from the previous day, allocating all payments, refunds, fees and sales tax to their corresponding accounts.
- Xero breaks down transactional data from Square into a helpful invoice, where users can view sales, taxes, fees and tips for complete financial transparency. Since both solutions operate in the cloud, SMBs can access this data anywhere, at any time.
- Square users can view real-time financial data within Xero’s income statements and balance sheets.
For a complete overview of the benefits, check out this video from the Xero blog that explains the new integration capabilities:
Why Does This Integration Matter to Small Businesses?
Every small business is looking to cut costs, operate efficiently and earn more revenue. The integration between Square and Xero can help SMBs and one-person sellers achieve all of these goals by automating tasks that would have required valuable time in the past. Deep integrations between best-of-breed solutions usually improve the user experience for both solutions, and this partnership between Square and Xero does just that.
For small businesses already using Xero, you might consider making the switch to using Square as your credit card processing solution. With negligible up-front costs and no long-term contract, switching to Square presents few drawbacks. By integrating Square, Xero users will gain increased visibility of their business financials, from the initial point of customer transactions through monthly reports. Xero customers will also benefit from being able to automatically view outstanding payments and money owed directly from the accounting dashboard.
For SMB owners and sellers currently relying on Square, take inventory of your current accounting solution. Does it still handle your company’s needs? How long does it take you to input, organize and make sense of Square transaction data on average? If you find that you’re spending hours on tasks like these, or that your current accounting solution isn’t up to par, choosing Xero may be the smart option. For those who just want to get their feet wet, Xero offers a 30-day free trial that can let you test the product before you commit.
If Square and Xero aren’t your cup of tea, compare the top-rated accounting software in our Top 15 Accounting Software report. Here, you’ll find side-by-side comparisons of the top products.