Online Payments 101: How to Start Selling with Square

Learn how Square processes credit card information so you can accept payments through your Mailchimp landing pages.

a duck accepting a credit card
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Posted by Square

• 4 min read

If you’re looking for a way to sell more this holiday season (and who isn’t), shoppable landing pages may be just the thing for you.

Selling directly on a landing page makes it easier to sell online, reach new customers, and track all your marketing efforts in one place. If you have an online store already, this is a great way to streamline your customer’s experience, test out products, and close more sales. If you’re totally new to e-commerce and don’t have a store yet, this is an easy way to dip your toes in the water.

Mailchimp already makes it easy to create landing pages (for free!) that provide a consistent experience across all your marketing touchpoints (email, social, etc.). Now you can add Square payments to those pages, giving your customers a seamless and secure way to buy.

But before you start building, let’s talk a little about online payments. After all, you want to understand how it all works before you ask your customers to hand over their information.

An introduction to online payments

You know the basics of credit cards: a customer inputs their credit card information on your site, it’s processed, and the funds usually land in your account in a couple of days.

But under the hood, there’s a lot more going on. From the time card information is submitted on your site to the time the money is deposited into your bank account, there are a number of different parties involved.

Between you and your customer, there’s also an issuing bank (the financial institution that provides your customer’s credit card and line of credit), the networks (like Visa, Mastercard, etc.), the acquiring bank (the merchant’s bank), and the merchant services provider. All of those stakeholders communicate to authorize, clear, and settle payments.

If you want to go deeper into how it all works, check out our Credit Card Processing Guide.

A merchant services provider like Square provides the hardware, software, services, and financial relationships needed for a business like yours to be able to accept and process credit or debit card payments. You might be familiar with how Square works for in-person payments. Well, it’s not too different for online payments. You can still accept any kind of card, including Visa, Mastercard, Discover, and American Express. Once you make a sale, your money is deposited directly into your bank account within 1-2 business days. (If you sign up for Instant Deposits, you can even get your money same day.)

Square charges 2.9% + 30¢ per online transaction. That’s it, there are no contracts or hidden fees. For that fee, we also handle PCI compliance, fraud protection, and dispute management. (That means full support for refunds, voids, and cancellations with a dedicated disputes team.) You can also access a free point-of-sale app so you know what sells best and how much customers are spending—all in real time.

Add Square payments to your landing pages

Now that you’ve got the basics on payments, you can start selling through your landing pages. Here’s how to do it:

Just add Square payments to your Mailchimp landing pages by dragging the payments block onto your page. Your Square POS catalogue syncs with Mailchimp so you can select which item you want to feature, customize the description and product photos, then publish. Really, it’s that simple.

Drive people to the page by promoting it with Facebook or Instagram ads, through email, or any other way you market. Any customers you drive to the page will be able to make a secure purchase right there—and that’s important. You want the quickest path to purchase.

We’ll process the payment, and you never handle the card data. You’ll be able to watch those sales in your Square Dashboard. Then just sit back, relax, and wait for those funds to deposit in your account.