Every business is unique. Because of this, many may find that none of the off-the-shelf point-of-sale systems meet all of their business’s requirements. Some industry-specific POS packages are available for specific verticals, such as auto repair shops, beauty and nail salons, video rental stores, dry cleaners and more. But Clover® provides hardware and software point-of-sale solutions to ensure that businesses—no matter the size, scope, or vertical—can run with ease and efficiency.
Clover, a First Data company, builds the largest open-architecture point-of-sale solution designed for small and medium-sized business owners. Its products are changing the consumer/merchant experience for the better by offering the gamut of payment options and making transactions secure, seamless and faster. With Clover, First Data has endeavored to form the biggest open-architecture operating system for commerce-enabling solutions and applications for business owners.
A lot of Clover merchants, prior to working with Clover, ran their businesses with paper and pen. Clover’s first product, a full POS terminal, proved too big of a leap for some who were used to smaller-scale bookkeeping. So Clover instigated developing a host of more accessible devices through which merchants could still access Clover’s revolutionary platform. With these smart terminals, Clover was able to reduce merchants’ anxiety about the transition to technology.
With an initial launch about four years ago, Clover was designed to be a consumer-facing wallet model, focused on payment integration to make transactions easy. But founders John Beatty and Leonard Speiser quickly found it tough to integrate with a traditional point-of-sale system. The industry standard was closed, with fragmented systems that didn’t allow for significant expansion and that weren’t adaptive to the needs of customers or merchants.
As a result, the team behind Clover leapt at the opportunity to craft a next-generation POS on a platform-first model, enabling a developer ecosystem that could enhance the product for many types of small businesses.
About the Creator of Clover
John Beatty, the founder and CEO of Clover, is a technology-first entrepreneur, and his history as a developer goes pretty far back. At the age of 12, he got his first developer contract with the Kansas Drug Enforcement Agency. He graduated high school a year early and finished his college degree in three quick years.
John’s attention to detail is one of the reasons behind Clover’s technological successes. That quality has inspired many of Clover’s features, such as the devices’ EMV-processing time, which is significantly faster than any competitor, clocking in at around 3 seconds. Clover was also the first line of devices to support Apple Pay in the U.S. These innovations reduced transaction time, increased customer satisfaction and helped merchants keep their lines moving.
Shaping the Business With Innovative Solutions
Clover solutions include the Clover App Market, which is one of the most significant points of difference in the POS industry. For anyone starting a business, there are countless challenges to anticipate. Among them, competing with larger-scale businesses in the same vertical. Businesses are now expected to provide customer-facing offerings such as loyalty programs, gift cards and other programs typically associated with large companies, regardless of scale.
Through apps from the Clover App Market, merchants of all sizes can easily provide all of these offerings and more—and customize them to fit their particular needs. Merchants can use the Clover’s Insights app, for example, to recognize the location of their primary customers while selecting the space for a second location. This is a capability that used to be reserved for companies with the resources to collect and analyze “big data.” With Clover, even a corner pizza shop can now access this type of high-value information.
At the base of it all, merchants are more passionate about their industry and products—cupcakes, craft, beer, yoga—than they are about business administration. Clover takes great pride in providing merchants with tools to run their business so that they can focus their energies on the passion that sparked their business in the first place.
Merchants can use Clover’s devices simply as payment terminals, but as they gain comfort and conﬁdence—and as their business grows—Clover can grow with them.
SMB merchants represent a wide continuum of technological savvy. Some want to use every capability of their point-of-sale device, while others are looking for stark simplicity. As part of the merchant onboarding experience, Clover focuses on helping merchants customize their point-of-sale system to their specific scale, needs, interests and comfort level.
Clover in the Future
Today, more POS systems across the industry are transitioning to cloud-based platforms. Clover is ahead of its competitors in that regard, with over 250 connected apps in the Clover App Market already.
When creative business owners can find simple tools that allow business owners to compete with large and well-resourced corporations, the entire marketplace wins. Clover is currently prepping the next generation of powerful and easy-to-use software and hardware that can help small businesses get paid and sell more. Clover will soon offer platform extensions to allow them to serve new audiences, including multi-location businesses that need device management from a central location. As merchants grow, Clover intends to grow right along with them.