Sell non-physical items with Square Online

Creating items to sell non-tangible products (like online event tickets) is similar to the process of creating tangible goods (like bottled wine). The main difference is that you won’t need to set a fulfillment method for these item types, but rather send an email to your customers with additional information on how to redeem their purchase.

For information on other item types, check out how to Create and manage items from Square Dashboard.

About non-physical items

Non-physical items inlcude the following types:

  • Event: Sell tickets to events, and include an address/online link and times.

  • Digital: Lets you sell a digital file for download, like an ebook or song, that you can manually send to the customer.

  • Donation: Allow anyone to send donations for any cause of up to $5,000.

  • Other: Best for items you will fulfill manually.

Legacy item types

Note: These legacy item types are currently only available to Square Online sellers who had already created them in the past. Current sellers without these item types in their catalog won’t be able to create them. Improvements to these item types will come at a later time and will be made available to more sellers in the future.

  • Membership: Collect membership dues and registration fees for clubs and classes.
  • Service: Best for services for hire such as massages and hair styling.

Create a non-physical item

To create a non-physical item:

  1. From your Square Item Library, select Create item.

  2. In the Item type menu, select Change to choose a non-physical item type.

  3. Complete all other details (like add event information) and select Save when finished.

Limit non-physical item availability

Non-physical items will be available to customers worldwide by default since they're fulfilled digitally. To limit their availability, you can restrict sales of these items to specific locations with your Square Online shipping settings.

How shipping settings work to limit item availability

Customers outside of the shipping regions you set up in Square Online won’t be able to buy non-physical items. We compare their billing address to your shipping regions during checkout. If the addresses don’t match, they’ll be notified that the item isn’t available in their region.

Consider adding details about item availability to your item descriptions or store policies. You can edit store policies from your checkout settings in Square Online.

Note: By default, shipping information isn’t required for the purchase of non-physical items.

Set up shipping for items you want to limit

To set up shipping regions to limit the availability of your non-physical items:

  1. From your Square Online Overview page, go to Fulfillment > Shipping.
  2. Under “Shipping profiles,” select Add shipping profile.
  3. Give the profile a name (like “Non-physical items”) and choose your profile type.
  4. Select +Add countries and check any countries you want your non-physical items available in. This means non-physical items will not be available in any countries you do not check.
  5. Select Add rate and choose a rate option from the dropdown menu. If you’re only selling non-physical items, you can use the free shipping option.
  6. Select Save when finished.

Repeat this process for other regions you want to allow purchases from.

Manage worldwide availability of non-physical items

To manage the worldwide availability of your non-physical items:

  1. From your Square Online Overview page, go to Fulfillment > Shipping.
  2. Under “Digital item regional availability,” select Edit.
  3. Uncheck the boxes for the item types you want to limit. This means these item types will only be available for purchase in shipping regions you create.
  4. Select Save when finished.

Buyer experience

At checkout, customers will be notified that they'll receive an email from you later with additional information. Be sure to follow up with your customers, and send them any instructions or details they’ll need in order to redeem their purchase. If you prefer to send these emails automatically, check out our partnership with SendOwl in our Square App Marketplace.

Note: Due to the different delivery methods for these items, buyers must purchase them separately from items that can be shipped, picked up, or locally delivered.