Square Case Study

Whispers of Wood, Biddulph

Branching out

The Staffordshire Moorlands, an area of quintessentially English countryside, is not quite where you would expect to find a creative Aussie selling hand-made wood artistry using the UK’s latest payment technology. But since starting Whispers of Wood in his garage-turned-studio, proud owner John Jacobs is doing just that.

John’s passion for woodwork came from his father, who had talent in carving ornate wood pieces like fire bellows. Now John runs his business, Whispers of Wood, selling creations made from different coloured woods – all locally sourced and all 100% handmade. In following the footsteps of his father, and his own love for his craft, John’s truly found his passion, “Wood artistry was my hobby, but now it’s my job too,” he says, “It’s great to be my own boss and do something I love every day. I drop my wife off to work in the mornings and get started in my workshop by 8 am.”

whispers of wood

Woodwork smarter, not harder

With a past in the IT business, John was ahead of the game when it came to giving his business the best possible start when it came to tech, saying “from the start it was really important that we could accept any ways our customers wanted to pay.” In fact, John was one of the first businesses in the UK to sign up for Square. His customers are also pleased to see the woodworking master offer the Square Reader for payment, “a lot of them are surprised that I even accept credit cards at all.”

John sets his wares apart with unique designs combining different woods, and sets his business apart with top payment tech. He even designed and built his own tools, including a kiln for drying and setting the wood pieces. This lets him create designs that are unique to Whispers of Wood.

Whittling out the stress

Like millions of happy Square merchants, John has come to rely on Square and its quick, secure and reliable payments which have removed the stress of cash and tracking payments from the multiple markets he visits each week. “Around half of my customers pay with cards now and Square is a really fast and reliable way to take payments, with competitive rates too,” he says. And what has having the power of Square on his side meant for his business? Well, less admin for one, and more sales for another, as John happily adds, “my biggest concern these days is whether I can make enough stock in the week to satisfy the demand!”

Whispers of Wood can be found in markets across the Midlands. Follow him on Twitter at @WoodWhispers to find his current market schedule.


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