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Create and Manage Items from Square Retail POS App and Square Dashboard

With Square for Retail Free and Square for Retail Plus, you can create and manage your Item Library directly from the Square Retail POS app on iPad and iPhone, Square Terminal or Square Register.

Create an Item with the Retail POS App

  • Tap ≡ More on the navigation menu.

  • Tap Items > All Items > Create Item.

  • Fill in the item details – including item image, stock quantity, unit type and precision, unit cost and an item description. The barcode SKU will automatically populate in the SKU or GTIN field.

  • Tap Save.

Note: When you create an item from the app, it will not be available at your other locations. If you’d like to enable an item across multiple locations, head to your online Square Dashboard.

Create an Item by Scanning a Barcode

When you scan an unrecognised bar code from Square for Retail Free or Square for Retail Plus for iOS, you’ll have the option to create an item on the spot. Note: Bluetooth-connected hardware accessories, including Bluetooth-connected barcode scanners, are not supported on Square Terminal or Square Register at this time. Both devices support USB barcode scanners.

To get started:

  • Scan a new barcode in the Retail POS app. You take this action from your cart view or while adding stock.

  • You’ll see a message notifying you the item is not recognised. Tap Create item.

  • Enter the item details. The barcode SKU will automatically populate in the SKU or GTIN field.

  • Tap Save.

Create an Item Using a GTIN

You can also easily create items by scanning a GTIN through your online Square Dashboard, Square for Retail POS app on iOS devices, Square Terminal or Square Register when subscribed to Square for Retail Plus. First, you’ll need to make sure you’re using a compatible barcode scanner and connect it to your desktop computer or laptop. Once you’ve confirmed the barcode scanner is connected, follow the instructions below to get started:

  • Go to Items & Orders > Items from your online Square Dashboard.

  • Click Create an Item.

  • From the Details section, select Auto create.

  • Scan the GTIN associated with the item(s) you’re wanting to create or search by name and click Select once the item appears under Top results found.

  • Select suggested variations to apply to the item or scan the GTINs associated with the variations you’d like to apply and click Add variation(s).

  • Click Save.

In addition to creating items through the Square Dashboard, you can create a new item by scanning a GTIN directly from the Square for Retail POS app on iOS devices, Square Terminal or Square Register. To do so:

  • From the Navigation menu, tap Items.

  • Under All Items, tap Create Item.

  • Tap Auto create and scan the GTIN associated with the item(s) you want to create using a compatible barcode scanner or the built-in camera on your device.

  • Select the item from the Auto create screen and tap Continue.

  • Select suggested variations to apply to the item or scan the GTINs associated with the variations you’d like to apply. Then tap Add variation(s).

  • Tap Save.

During the item creation process, you may see suggestions (highlighted in purple) for Category, Description, Price and other fields. These suggestions are based on information typically found online that is associated with the GTIN. Click a suggestion to apply it to an item. 

To prevent duplication, you’ll also receive a notification during the item creation process if the GTIN already exists in your Item Library.

Manage your Item Library

To edit your items:

  • From the Main Menu, tap Items.

  • Search for an item to update. Once you locate it, just tap it to bring up the item details page.

  • Edit the item information.

  • Tap Save.

Bulk-Edit Items

From your Item Library on your online Square Dashboard, you can:

  • Efficiently make bulk edits to existing items, descriptions and variations — you can bulk edit up to 250 variations at a time.

  • Sort the items using column filters.

  • Select attributes or columns to appear in the Bulk Edit Item view. Select from:

    • GTIN

    • SKU

    • Category

    • Price

    • Sold by

    • Locations

    • Description

    • Default unit cost (available on Square for Retail Plus)

    • Vendor (available on Square for Retail Plus)

    • Vendor code (available on Square for Retail Plus)

    • Channel Listing attributes

    • Custom Attributes

    • Use rich text formatting when updating item descriptions.

To bulk edit items:

  • Tick the box next to the item, then click Edit items.

  • On the Bulk edit items page, changes can be made to one cell at a time or across multiple cells.

    1. To select all cells in a column, select the column header.

    2. To select multiple adjacent cells, press Shift and click the first and last cells in the range.

    3. To select specific cells, press Ctrl or ⌘Cmd on your keyboard and click each cell.

  • To add or remove an image, click the image shown next to the item or variation.

  • Make the relevant changes to your items, images, descriptions or variations, then click Update variations.

Note: When bulk editing items, you may receive an error message if an item has been updated by someone else before your changes have been finalised or a duplicate value has been entered.

To delete an item:

  • Search for the item to delete it from your library.

  • Tap the item to bring up the item details page.

  • Scroll to the bottom of the item details page and tap Delete Item From This Location.

  • Select Confirm Delete.

Read more about managing your item library with Square for Retail.

Upload Images to Your Items

When you upload an image from your Square Dashboard to one of your items, the image will sync across both Square Online and Square for Retail. To upload images to your Item Library:

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

  • Click Create an Item.

  • Fill out your item details. In the Images section, you can drag and drop individual images or select multiple images from your device to upload. You can upload up to 250 images per item.

  • The primary image will appear first in the image queue, as well as in the Point of Sale tile at the top of the page. You can drag images in the queue in the order you prefer.

  • If needed, you can add images to Variations by selecting the item variation then clicking Add images. Select multiple images from the Image library window, then select Upload.

  • If you need to remove an image, hover your cursor over the image tile and click the trash can icon to delete the image from your Item Library.

  • Click Save once you finish making your changes.

All of your uploaded images will appear in your Image Library within the Images section of your Items tab in your online Square Dashboard. Supported image types are JPG, JPEG, PNG, SPIN and GIF files. Images can be up to 20 MB in size but images less than 500 KB are recommended for faster page loading speeds and more optimised search engine results. Images can be up to 2,560 pixels in width and 2,560 pixels in height allowing for a higher quality zoom on your images.

When uploading an image to items in your Point of Sale, the image for that item will also update in your Square Online Store or Square for Retail. It is not possible to have different images for the same items across Point of Sale, Square Online or Square for Retail at this time.

Note: Images that are 360 degrees or 3D are not supported at this time.

Suggest Item Images with Photo Studio

When you’re creating or editing an item, you have the option to use suggested images generated from Square Photo Studio library. The images are automatically offered based on the item name — so no uploading is required on your end. To get started with your online Square Dashboard:

  • Go to Items & Orders > Items from your online Square Dashboard.

  • Click Create an Item.

  • Enter an item name in the Name field and click outside of the field.

  • If we have a photo in our library that matches your item name, you'll see a suggested image on the screen with a prompt to Use image.

  • Once you select your image(s), click Save.

You can also use suggested images for singular item variations. From the Create Item screen, select Edit variation details and enter a variation name to pull up a suggested image.

Note: Always remember to click Save after uploading your own images or using suggested images from Photo Studio.

You can also add, upload and edit item images with Square Photo Studio in the Square Retail POS app. Learn more about using Square Photo Studio in the Square Retail POS app.

Automatically Generate SKUs 

If you’re using Square for Retail Free or Plus, the Automatically generate SKUs setting will be toggled on by default but you can toggle it off at any time by visiting Items > Settings > Inventory in your online Square Dashboard. Once you confirm the setting is on, you can start automatically generating SKUs by following these steps:

  • Go to Items & Orders > Items from your online Square Dashboard.

  • From the Actions drop-down menu, select Generate SKUs. Note: Your access to the Item Library may be limited for several minutes while the update takes place.

  • Once you’ve confirmed you would like to automatically generate SKUs by clicking the Generate SKUs button, all item variations missing SKUs will receive their own unique SKUs. If all of your item variations already have SKUs, you’ll see a pop-up confirming there are no more SKUs to generate.

  • Click Save.

SKUs will autogenerate any time you create a new item or item variation from the Square for Retail app on iOS or Square Register. SKUs will also autogenerate for items imported from your online Square Dashboard as long as the item variation doesn’t already have an SKU and the Automatically generate SKUs setting is turned on. 

For existing items, if the item or item variation has no SKU value and the autogenerate SKU setting is turned on in Dashboard, a Generate SKU button will appear. Select this button to generate a unique SKU for that item. 

Note: If your device is offline or does not have a stable internet connection, SKUs will not automatically generate and the Generate SKU button will not appear even if the setting is enabled.

Price Overrides

If you have multiple locations in your Square account, you'll have the ability to create and manage price overrides. Price overrides can be used to set the price of an item to be different between multiple locations without needing to create a location-specific item. To create a price override in your online Square Dashboard:

  • Log in to your Square Dashboard, click Items > Item Library, and choose an item for which you'd like to set a price override.

  • Click a variation to edit variation details and then click add price override.

  • Choose your price and select a location to apply the price override to. Once this is complete, click Done to save your changes.

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