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Manage Purchase Orders With Square for Retail

With Square for Retail Plus and Premium subscriptions, you can easily create, edit and manage purchase orders to stock up on products, track vendors, and receive inventory. Note: Purchase orders are not available with Square for Retail Free.

Create a New Purchase Order

Online Square Dashboard

  1. Go to Items > Inventory Management > Purchase Orders.
  2. Click Create Purchase Order.
  3. Enter purchase order details, such as vendor name, delivery location, date expectancy, and item information.
  4. Click Create or Save as Draft.
  5. Add your vendor’s email address and add an optional note. To see the purchase order before hitting send, click Preview Email.
  6. If you’d like a copy of the purchase order, select Send me a copy, Save as PDF, or Save as CSV.
  7. Click Send or Done.

Square for Retail App

  1. From the Navigation bar, tap Inventory. Note: If you’re using Square for Retail on an iPhone, tap the list icon to view your inventory.
  2. Tap Purchase Orders > Create purchase order.
  3. Select an existing vendor or tap Create new vendor to add a vendor you’re working with for the first time. Tap Continue.
  4. Using the search bar or a compatible barcode scanner, select the items to apply to the purchase order. Tap Continue.
  5. Enter more purchase order details, like unit cost and quantity, and tap Continue to review your purchase order.
  6. From the Review order screen, verify all the information is correct and either tap Save to continue working on the purchase order at a later date or tap Create to finalise the purchase order.
  7. From the “Send copy of purchase order screen,” you have the option to send a copy to yourself and the vendor, as well as leave notes specific to the purchase order.
  8. Once you’re finished, tap Done.

Note: The ability to create purchase orders in the Square for Retail app is not available on Square Register at this time.

Important to note

  • A maximum of 500 unique items can be added to a single Purchase Order.

  • Once you’ve created a purchase order for an existing vendor, the item variation will be associated with that vendor and the cost to purchase from that vendor. Items associated with a Vendors will be visible under the Item Library tab of the vendor's profile.

Automatically Generate a New Purchase Order Online

  1. Go to Reports > Inventory Reports > Inventory Sell-through on your online Square Dashboard.

  2. Select the item(s) or variation(s) in question to populate the Create purchase order screen.

  3. Confirm all applicable information is correct.

  4. Click Save as draft to save the purchase order for a later date or Create to create the purchase order.

Note: You may notice a banner at the top of the Purchase Orders section in your online Square Dashboard that suggests you will run out of specific items soon. From this banner, you should have the option to Create Auto POs, which will prompt you to auto-generate purchase orders for the suggested items mentioned in the banner.

Import a Purchase Order

With Square for Retail Plus, you can save time creating purchase orders by importing a CSV or Excel version of the purchase order via the online Square Dashboard.

Prior to importing a purchase order, we recommend downloading Square’s import template. You can do so by clicking the link below, or by visiting the Items section of your online Dashboard.

While we recommend downloading Square’s import template to make the process easier, you can also use a template of your own choosing, as long as it’s a CSV or Excel file.

After filling out the template, you’re ready to import the CSV or Excel file. To do so:

  1. Go to Items > Inventory Management > Purchase Orders on your online Square Dashboard.

  2. If you’re working directly from a new purchase order, you will also see the option to Import there.

  3. Click Import.

  4. Drag and drop the file into the Import purchase order pop-up, or click select it from your computer to upload the template directly from your files. Note: If you have not filled out the template, click Download template to get started.

  5. Click Import.

  6. Select the appropriate item identifier by choosing either the item name, SKU or GTIN to help easily identify duplicate items during the import process. Note: Square recommends selecting either SKU or GTIN as the appropriate item identifier for ease of use.

  7. Click Next.

Note: All item identifiers must match exactly one item or variation for the import process to be successful.

If you’re using your own template, you’ll need to go through the column matching process during the first portion of the import process. To do so:

  1. Click the Import button to begin the import process and upload your personalised template.

  2. Once uploaded, you’ll see the Match document columns screen. From here, use the drop-down menus to confirm each Square purchase order attribute is matched to the correct column in your import file.

  3. Click Next to continue the import process.

The import process can take up to a minute, but usually only lasts a few seconds. Make sure to keep an eye out for any error messages that appear during the import. Once the import is complete, the newly created purchase order will appear at the top of the purchase order list available in your online Square Dashboard.

You can also import any existing purchase order drafts that are already associated with your account by exporting the draft. To do so, click ••• next to the purchase order draft and select Save as CSV.

Manage Existing Purchase Orders

Edit Online

  1. Go to Items & orders > Items > Inventory Management > Purchase Orders.
  2. Click the purchase order you wish to edit.
  3. Click Edit Order > update the order details.
  4. Click Save.

Note: Editing a purchase order does not automatically generate a new email to your vendor. To ensure they receive the updated order information:

  1. From Purchase Orders, click ••• to the right of the purchase order.
  2. Click Send as Email.
  3. Include a note to explain that the purchase order has been updated.
  4. Click Send.

Edit via Square for Retail app

You can also edit an existing Purchase Order directly from the Square for Retail POS app on any compatible device (iPhone, iPad, Square Terminal and Square Register). To get started:

  1. From the Navigation bar at the bottom of your screen, tap Inventory. Note: If you’re using Square for Retail on an iPhone, tap the list icon to view Inventory.
  2. Tap Purchase Orders > tap the appropriate purchase order under the “Active” list.
  3. Select the item(s) needing update to open the “Modify Receiving Item” screen.
  4. Edit the appropriate information and repeat those steps for any affected items.
  5. Tap Save to finish editing.

Cancel a Purchase Order

To cancel a purchase order from your online Square Dashboard:

  1. From the Purchase Orders tab, click__ •••__ next to the purchase order you’d like to cancel.
  2. Click Cancel Order.

Note: After a purchase order has been cancelled, it will be moved into the Archived Orders section. It is not possible to cancel purchase orders from the Square for Retail app at this time.

Receive a Purchase Order

Online Square Dashboard

  1. From the Purchase Orders tab, click the purchase order you have received.
  2. Click Receive All or Receive None. To partially receive inventory, click Receive in the product row.
  3. Enter the amount to partially receive.
  4. Click Save.

Square for Retail App

  1. From the Navigation bar at the bottom of your screen, tap Inventory.
    • If you’re using Square for Retail on an iPhone, tap the list icon to view Inventory.
    • If you’re using Square for Retail on Square Register, tap the list icon on the left-hand side of the screen.
  2. Tap Purchase Orders > tap the appropriate purchase order under the “Active” list.
  3. Tap Select items to receive > check off the appropriate items to be received > tap Next.
  4. For the received items needing modified, tap Receive in Full to receive the full quantity, or tap Partial Receive to receive a partial quantity > tap Save.
  5. Tap Next again to view the Purchase Order Summary and tap Done to complete the receival.

Important to note

  • Purchase orders do not currently support ordering or receiving decimal quantities — only whole numbers.

  • If inventory is damaged or will not be fulfilled for some other reason, click Update next to the impacted line item. Marking items as damaged, stolen (theft), or as a loss, will not reflect on your Cost of Goods Sold report.

  • When you receive a purchase order, you can enter shipping and handling or other costs by clicking Add Fee. Additional costs will be included in your Cost of Goods Sold report. Keep in mind, adding additional fees will not affect the unit cost of the individual items in the purchase order.

Add or Create Items From a Purchase Order

If you’ve already created the items to include in a given purchase order, just start typing and your library will populate as a drop-down for you to choose from. If you need to create an item for a purchase order, you can manually enter the item name, price, and unit cost on the spot.

Create an item from a purchase order online

  1. From Purchase Orders, click Create.
  2. Type the name of the item you would like to create.
  3. Click Create Item.
  4. Enter the item details, including SKU, price, and cost.
  5. Click Save.

Create an item from a purchase order in the app

From the Navigation bar, tap Inventory. Note: If you’re using Square for Retail on an iPhone, tap the list icon to view Inventory.

  1. Tap Purchase Orders and select Create purchase order.
  2. From the item search bar, type the name of the item you want to create.
  3. Tap Create item.
  4. Enter the item details, including the SKU, price, and cost.
  5. Tap Save.

Your newly created item will automatically populate in your purchase order. Note: A maximum of 500 unique items can be added to a single Purchase Order.

Additionally, on the item creation page, if you click View All Item Properties, you can add other information such as the locations your new item is carried, or item variations.

Set Unit Cost with Purchase Orders

When you receive stock using a Purchase Order, the unit cost for the items in the purchase order is automatically saved.

To set unit cost with Stock Received:

  1. Go to Items & Orders > Items on your online Square Dashboard.

  2. Search and select an inventory item to adjust.

  3. Select a location to adjust inventory for > select Stock Received.

  4. Add a count of 1 or more.

  5. Add a unit price > Save.

Read more about setting and updating your unit costs.

Print Barcode Labels for Purchase Orders

You can print barcode labels for purchase orders from your online Square Dashboard.

To get started:

  1. Go to Items & orders > Items on your online Square Dashboard.

  2. Click Actions > Print Labels.

  3. Click Select from Purchase Order. You’ll see your purchase orders listed—including the PO number and vendor name.

  4. Select the applicable purchase orders > Done.

Note: When labels are printed directly from a purchase order for a fractional quantity, the pre-populated quantity count for how many labels will be printed must be rounded up to the nearest integer.

Read more about creating barcode labels with Square for Retail.

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