Square Online is an ecommerce platform that enables you to sell online and offer curbside pickup and local delivery. Its features include inventory management, shipping tools, and integrations with Square POS and social media apps. It has a free plan and paid monthly fees that start at $12 (billed yearly), plus a processing charge of 2.9% + 30¢ per transaction. Square Online is best for businesses that want to add an online component to brick-and-mortar stores, such as restaurants, retail outlets, and professional services shops.
Square Online Pros and Cons
The free option is filled with Square ads and branding
All-in-one ecommerce and payment processing solution
Needs a Square account to get started
Easy to set up and use
Who Square Online Is Best For
- Businesses that have brick-and-mortar stores and want to launch an ecommerce shop: Square Online’s tools enable you to create a website, process orders and monitor inventory online, and sync in-store and web orders.
- Cafes and restaurants that want to offer online ordering
Square Online Pricing
Square Online’s pricing page shows a free option and three paid monthly plans (billed yearly) that cost $12 and up. These fees do not include the 2.9% + 30 cents charge per transaction. The main difference between the plans is access to premium features like custom domains, abandoned cart emails, and a real-time shipping rate calculator.
2.9% + 30¢
Numbers of Products
Offer Pickup, Delivery, and Shipping
Publish to a Custom Domain
Abandoned Cart Emails
Real-Time Shipping Calculator
*Paid in full at the start of a billing cycle
This option provides the basic tools you need to start selling online. In addition to the features listed on the table above, the Free plan offers Instagram integration and automatic inventory, order, and item syncing with Square POS. If you want to learn how to launch your store, then read our article on how to set up Square Online’s free store.
Designed for those who want to publish to a custom domain, this plan includes everything in the free version but without the Square ads and branding. Domain use is also free for one year.
This option is for those who want to further grow their business with integrated ecommerce capabilities. It covers everything in Professional plus the ability to post customer reviews on your site and to fulfill orders with discounted shipping labels. It even has abandoned cart emails to help remind shoppers to complete their purchases.
If you want to scale your large business and are looking for further discounts, then you may want to consider this plan. It covers everything in Professional but with the provider’s lowest processing rates, highest shipping discounts, and access to a real-time shipping rate calculator.
If you choose to deliver orders to customers, Square Online charges 50 cents for in-house delivery or $1.50 for on-demand delivery. Also, if you want a custom domain, you will be asked to pay additional domain fees that start at $12 per month. Here are more details on how Square’s pricing works.
Author’s Note: Square Online Store’s free plan is valuable as you get to set up and launch your store without the need for technical know-how. However, it comes with the following trade-offs: Square advertising is reflected on your site’s footer, your site address reflects “square.site,” and you only have Square as a payment option.
Square Online Alternatives 2020
Most ecommerce and multichannel businesses
Starts at $29 per month
Starts at $29.95 per month
Starts at $18 per month
Square works a lot similarly to Shopify, and they both offer user-friendly POS software, online store and ecommerce functionalities, and integrated payment processing with industry-leading omnichannel and contactless payment tools. The biggest difference between Square and Shopify is that Square’s POS and online store products are free to use, whereas Shopify requires a monthly subscription. Read more about the two products here.
Square Online Features
Square Online is designed to provide businesses with the necessary tools to set up and run an ecommerce site. Here are some of its key features.
Website design: The Square dashboard offers video tutorials and step-by-step instructions on building your single-page or multi-page online store. You can choose the features you need, such as pickup orders, collecting emails, shipping products, or displaying a contact form. While the provider offers limited flexibility in customizing your store’s appearance, you can add your logo and choose a color and font style.
Delivery options (local delivery or curbside pickup): Give your shoppers the option to order items online and pick them up at your curbside or have them delivered to their doorsteps. You can set the estimated delivery time, delivery fee, and minimum delivery order value, as well as in-store pick-up hours.
Store management: Generate coupons, accept gift cards online and in-person, and send order-status text alerts to customers.
All-in-one shipping tools: Print labels, select carriers, track shipments, and save up to 55% on UPS shipping rates.
Automatic sync with Square POS: The integration with Square POS automatically keeps online and in-person purchases and inventory in sync. You can use Square to update your stock to reflect the following changes: stock received, inventory recount, restock return, and loss of stock due to damage or theft.
Payment processing: The only drawback with Square Online Store is that you can only use Square as your payment processor. However, PayPal, Google Pay, and Apple Pay can be added as an option if you are subscribed to the Performance or Premium plan.
Square Online’s store for retailers: You can create and publish your online store with the help of Square’s site builder and immediately start selling on the internet. You can also ship orders to customers, offer local delivery, or provide curbside pickup, all while ensuring that both in-store and online sides of your operations are in sync.
Square Online checkout: Use checkout links to enable your customers to purchase anything you want to sell online without having to create an ecommerce website. You can send clients a checkout link through email, by posting on social media or your blog, or via your Square Marketing campaign. Using the service is free, and you will only need to pay the standard processing fee of 2.9% + 30 cents per transaction.
Square Online ordering for restaurants: Square Online can be linked with Square for Restaurants for a seamless web ordering experience. If you’re accepting orders via your Square Online Store, customers may use Square Gift Cards and other eGift cards to place pickup or shipping orders.
Instagram integration: You can connect your item library to your Instagram account to make your posts shoppable and eventually turn your followers into buyers. To start, you will need an Instagram Business account.
Other integration options: Square Online offers integration with Facebook and Pinterest.
SEO and marketing: Your website is mobile-responsive—which is essential for Google ranking—and SEO headers and descriptions can easily be set up per product. Marketing features include abandoned cart emails and product reviews. Contact forms can also be used to collect email addresses and survey responses.
Most Helpful Square Online Reviews
Users who gave positive Square Online reviews described it as user-friendly, while others said that it provides great customer service. Meanwhile, those who gave negative feedback pointed out its limited customization capabilities, whereas others dislike that it has only a few payment options.
Easy to use
One user who left a positive comment on Capterra said that is easy to use, even for those without technical know-how. She said that the platform asked all of the right questions so that she can get her online store up and running in no time.
Limited payment options
One user who left a negative comment on G2 said that Square Online might not be suitable for high volume merchants because it offers limited payment options. He also noted that its pricing system isn’t clear and predictable due to the per-transaction fees and other add-ons.
Square Online Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What types of payments can I accept on my online store?
Square Online lets you accept all major credit cards, Google Pay, Apple Pay, and Square Pay.
Can I sell on social media platforms using Square Online?
Yes, you can sell on social media platforms, such as Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook.
Is it PCI compliant or certified?
Yes, Square Online complies with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard, which is a guide created by the five largest credit card companies with the goal to reduce costly consumer and bank data breaches.
Our Top Ecommerce Software Picks
If you aren’t sure if Square Online is right for you, then this article on the best ecommerce platforms examines our top choices. Our payments expert, Meaghan Brophy, looked at a variety of solutions and narrowed our recommendations down based on price, ease of use, and features like payment processing, inventory management, additional sales channels, and integrations.