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Square Get Started Guide

Getting set up to accept payment cards on Square only takes a few minutes but don’t miss out on our entire suite of products and features that can help you run and grow your business.

This 5-step guide can help you take payments faster, significantly reduce employee training time, generate robust sales and inventory reports, and reduce your administrative time.

What if I get stuck?
You can contact us by email or by telephone Monday through Friday between 09:00 and 17:00 GMT.

Use this guide for reference, or share it with your team by saving or printing this page. Right-click anywhere on this page to save or print.

The products and features that you choose to use may depend on your business type or industry, the size of your business, and number of employees.

Step 1: Get Set Up to Take Payments

Use this section to order your hardware and set up your secure Square account so you can get paid quickly once you start accepting payments.

Account Creation

To Do Steps Why?
Yes Create Account with a Business Email Address Use your business email address when creating your account to keep your business and personal info organised. Important alerts and updates are sent to this email address.
Yes Enter Business and Personal Info Help Square verify your account and recommend useful features for your business type.
Yes Enter Bank Account Info Get transfers within 1–2 working days. You can also add additional bank accounts from the Account & Settings tab of your online Square Dashboard. Linking your bank account immediately ensures Square can send you funds as quickly as possible once you start accepting payments.
Yes Order Hardware Make sure you’re set for opening day by ordering your hardware at least 5 days early since delivery takes some time. If you need a reader urgently, you can get one in-shop from one of our retail partners.
Yes Download the Square App Get the Square app – the point-of-sale system designed to grow with you– to accept payments in you shop or on the go.

Step 2: Set Up your Account on Square Dashboard

Your online Square Dashboard is your business headquarters, where you can take care of everything from adding locations, employees, and items, to customising your account, viewing your sales reports, and more.

Account Security

To Do Steps Why?
Yes Set up Security Question If you forget your password, a security question helps you quickly reset it.
Yes Turn on 2-Step Verification 2-Step Authentication provides an extra layer of security for your Square account.

Location Setup

To Do Steps Why?
Yes Add Locations and Addresses Set up locations to slice and dice sales date, update inventory, and manage employees across all your stores.
Yes Add other Bank Accounts If you have separate bank accounts for each location, you’ll need to visit the Bank Accounts tab in your online Square Dashboard. Select a location, click Add external bank account, and complete the bank verification process.
Optional Add Deposit Tags Match deposits to specific locations with deposit tags.
Yes Add Web and Social Media Sites Your website and social links appear on digital receipts. This is also a great way to get more online traffic.
Optional Set Your Close of Day If your business closes after our payment cutoff of 17:00 GMT, setting a close of day lets Square group and send transfers based on a full day’s business activity. Stick with Square’s default close of day to receive all funds collected before 17:00 GMT as soon as the next business day. Review our transfer schedule to see how quickly you’ll receive your funds.

Receipt Setup

To Do Steps Why?
Yes Customise Receipts and confirm your business details Customise your receipts and help set the right expectations around your store policies. Your logo appears on customers’ digital receipts and helps them recognise your business and their purchases. You can choose from a framed or full-width logo for your receipts.

Dashboard Library Setup

To Do Steps Why?
Optional Create Categories Categories classify items into different groups like Hot or Cold Drinks and control which items print on kitchen tickets.
Yes Create Items Items created in your online Square Dashboard display at the till, which increases checkout speed and provides detailed reporting, so you know what you’re selling.
Optional Create Modifiers Let customers tailor their orders with modifiers and get better item-level data.
Optional Create Discounts Discounts for neighbours? Employee meals comped? Create euro and percentage discounts for items or an entire sale.
Yes Create Value-Added Tax (VAT) and Manage Your VAT Settings Set up VAT and the items it applies to and let Square calculate the total automatically. The tax report shows total tax collected. Set up conditional tax rules so they work in tandem with your Dining Options.
Optional Set up Inventory Know exactly how much inventory you have and when you need to restock by setting up Inventory Management.
Optional Set up Dining Options Note how and where an order will be used (e.g. ‘For Delivery’, or ‘Takeaway’) to help your employees prepare orders correctly. This information also appears in your reports.

Accept a Deposit for Items

You Can Steps Why?
Charge for deposits when selling certain items Create non-taxable items to track deposits Accept deposits from customers by creating separate items to track. Use descriptive names, like Bottle Deposit or Drink Deposit, each with unique prices.
For example, one deposit item can be titled 15c Deposit with a unit price of €0.15.
Important: Deposits need to be added manually to the cart in addition to the item itself. For example, if your customer is buying 5 containers, you will need to add 5 deposit items.
All payments are subject to Square’s processing fees.
Refund of deposits Process a refund for deposits Refund your customers the deposit they paid when purchasing certain items from your business.
Select the transaction from the Transactions tab in your Square Point of Sale app or online Square Dashboard, and choose the deposit amount to refund to the original payment method.
Note: At present, you cannot process card refunds for card payments that were taken outside of your business.
See our Payment Terms for more information on how refunds work. When you process a refund, the processing fees are not refunded by Square.

Disclaimer: Nothing in the guidance above should be construed as legal, financial or tax advice. Square does not warrant that taking these steps meet the requirements by local laws and regulations. Please always consult a knowledgeable professional advisor.

Team Setup

To Do Why?
Create owner passcode This will allow you, as the owner or admin, to be able to access your Square POS to get full access.
Customise Permission Sets Customise permission sets (Team Permissions) to ensure your team has the right level of access.
Set up Square Shifts Square Shifts enable you to track your team’s timecards, create work rotas, track commissions and more. Free and paid versions available depending on the size of your team and features needed.
Assign Permission Groups, Passcode, and Location After a team member is created, assign them to the appropriate permission group to restrict their access to parts of your online Square Dashboard or the Square Point of Sale app.

View Analytics

To Do Steps Why?
Yes Transaction History, Summaries and Reports See how your business is performing by the hour, week, year and more to make informed business decisions.
Yes Tie Deposits to Transactions Click a deposit in your online Square Dashboard to see all transactions included in a deposit.
Yes Learn about other Reports Create reports from your online Square Dashboard that include items, discounts, taxes, payment method, employees and more.

Step 3: Set Up Hardware and the Square App

Once your hardware arrives, you can connect your compatible Apple or Android device to start taking payments. This section will show you how.

Device Setup

To Do Steps Why?
Optional Create Device Codes to Sign Employees into other Devices Let employees or managers log in to the Square app on their own device or without using your Square email address or password, and pair devices to specific locations. Pro Tip: Securely save the Device Code as a note on the device, for easy access. Also note that Device Codes cannot be re-used on additional devices.
Optional Configure Items Grid, Tile Color and Name Customise the layout of the Square app to locate important items, discounts, and categories quickly.

Square Point of Sale Settings

To Do Steps Why?
Optional Set up Tipping Prompt your customers to enter a tip and customise how tips are added to a sale (% or custom amount), or disable tipping if it’s not customary
Optional Set up Cash Drawer Management Track how much cash should be in your cash drawer at any given time. Note: return to Permissions in your online Square Dashboard if you want to allow employees to ‘View Expected Amount In Cash Drawer’
Yes Turn on Staff Management settings If you’ve created team member permissions, roles or set up Guest Access in your online Square Dashboard, it’s now time to put passcodes to work, enable shift tracking, access detailed team member reporting and more.
Yes Create Guest Access Create access for anyone to take payments in your Square account and manage the permissions of this guest group.
Optional Turn on Open Tickets Create tickets you can modify before charging customers. Close out the ticket when the customer’s ready to pay. Return to Permissions in the online Dashboard if your wish to allow Employees to ‘manage all Open Tickets’, or ‘Delete or Void Saved Items in Open Tickets’.
Optional Turn on Customer Management Add customer profiles to your directory from the Square app. Learn more about your customers’ past purchases and preferences.

Hardware Setup

To Do Steps Why?
Optional Connect Cash Drawers An Ethernet-interface receipt printer connects via Wifi to the Square app running on a tablet and, via a cable, to a supported cash drawer to automatically open the drawer after a sale, so you can keep track of your cash with every sale. Note: Support for connecting a cash drawer without an Ethernet printer, or to a smartphone(s) or a Bluetooth printer is not available
Optional Connect USB Printers Print customer receipts and order tickets with a receipt printer. USB printers connect directly to a single Android devices via a USB OTG (On-The-Go) adaptor. Make sure your device supports USB OTG or USB Host mode. Note: Support for connecting to USB printers is not available on iOS devices.
Optional Connect Ethernet Interface Printer Ethernet printers are a great option if you need to connect more than one printer to your iOS or Android tablet or smartphone(s). Connect multiple printers to a single mobile device, or multiple devices to a single Ethernet printer, all via a shared Wi-Fi network.
Optional Connect a Bluetooth Printer Bluetooth printers are a great option if you don’t have an Ethernet interface, and for businesses on the go. While you can connect multiple Bluetooth printers to a single mobile device, you can only connect one mobile device to a single Bluetooth printer.
Optional Configure Printers Connected printers and KDS screens appear in the Square app so you can customise which items or categories of items are printed. If you’ve connected multiple printers to the Square app, designate which items or categories of items print to which printer.

Step 4: Train Your Team and Go Live

Now that your account, online Square Dashboard, and hardware are set up, you’re ready to train your team members. We recommend running through a few simple scenarios to make sure you, your managers, and your team are ready to jump in. 

Team Training

To Do Steps Why?
Yes Accept Payments and Split the Bill with Square Point of Sale Let your team members practise adding items with modifiers and discounts to the cart. For food and beverage businesses, practise splitting the bill, selecting a dining option and saving items to an open ticket.
Yes Accept Cards with the Square Reader Let your team members take a few chip + PIN and contactless payments to practise using the Square app and the Square Reader.
Yes Manually Enter Card Info Learn how to enter the card number if the card or customer isn’t present, phone orders for example, or if you don’t have your reader.
Yes Accept Other Tender Types Practise recording cash, cheques, third-party gift cards, and other tender types. When payments is recorded as Cash or Other Tender, money for these transactions is exchanged directly between your business and your customer and will not be deposited by Square.
Yes Clock In and Out Give each team member their own passcode and show them how easy it is to clock in and clock out.

Manager Training

To Do Steps Why?
Yes View and Modify Timecards Show managers with Dashboard access how to modify timecards, view reports, or clock out forgetful team members.
Yes View and Manage Cash Drawers Start and end a cash drawer session, perform paid in/paid out, and print a cash drawer report.
Optional Issue Full or Partial refnds If you’ve restricted permissions for issuing refunds to managers, review steps to process a refund.
Yes View and Print In-App Reports View, print, or email your daily sales summary directly from the Square app.
Yes View and Reply to Feedback If you take a test payment, you can leave sample feedback and view it in your online Square Dashboard. Practise replying to feedback and refunding the sale.

Step 5: Grow your Business with Square

Once you start accepting payments with Square, expand your business with partner integrations, marketing and more. 

Connect with Third-Party Apps

To Do Why?
Create Custom Apps Square’s existing tools are just the start. Create custom apps for your data or connect with the services you already use.

Engage with your Customers

To Do Steps Why?
Optional Upload Customer Directory Manage your customer information from your online Square Dashboard or the Square app.

Sell Online

To Do Why?
Set Up Square Online Create a powerful, professional eCommerce website with Square’s eCommerce partners and track all your sales in one place. Connect your Square account to accept online payments and sell your items. If you’re working with a developer, integrate with Square using Square’s Developer Tools.

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