Clover Mini – Sleek Yet Powerful

The Clover Mini has been a hit with small businesses, restaurants, bars and general retail stores that are keen on saving space or a minimalist aesthetic as it won’t hog any workspace. Its dimensions are 6.47” * 8.0” * 3.73” in size with a 7” antimicrobial corning gorilla glass display touch screen. It has an intuitive interface and diverse internet connectivity. It has a choice for Wi-Fi (802.11a/b/g/ n wireless), 3G or 4G Pentaband HSPA connectivity that requires a data plan. The POS device comes with an Ethernet cable and an external power adaptor with DC input.

The key features of this device include the size and stability; it could be placed on a counter top or even be mounted on a wall. It has a sleek, brushed aluminum body and white and glass accents to fit in with any décor. It has a front facing camera that helps in barcode and QR code scanning per item and an inbuilt printer that processes paper receipts. The customer approves payment by inputting a pin or imbedding an onscreen signature. This is a secure system that comes with multiple security layers such as Trans-Armor Solution that protects you and your customer’s information as well as multiple authenticated SSL solutions.

The Clover Mini is an EMV enabled Clover POS device. What this basically means is that it can accept multiple credit and debit payment types such as swipe with a magstripe, EMV with the chip plus pin or chip plus signature cards and contactless (Apple Pay). EMV is a smart card payment method based upon technical standard for smart payment cards, payment terminals and ATMs. This helps you and our customer be protected from fraud. The Mini device is built for speed to ensure fast, secure and reliable transactions handle rush hours more conveniently too.

Clover Mini is a POS device from selling at four hundred and ninety-nine dollars ($599). It can be purchased directly from Clover, from Fiserv formally known as First Data, or any other associated partner.

Clover Station with Clover Mini

Though this POS device can stand on its own, it is also bought together with the Clover Station to make Clover Station with Mini. This two in one device costs $1499. It is used by tethering the Clover Mini to the Clover station, the exception being the Mini will not accept payments. The system will also not incur a second software fee as the Clover Mini interface will be used as a customer facing screen with less available features compared to a stand-alone Clover Mini. It only displays the items rung in, total order of items and allows for self-payment.

The Clover Mini device is compatible with the three different software plans provided by Clover POS namely;

  • Payment Plus- requires no monthly fee.
  • Register Lite- This software plan goes for $29 per month.
  • Register Plan- most advanced software plan for $49 per month

All the plans are chosen after the selection of the device and it generally depends on the type of business to determine which plan is best suited for it and which monthly fee makes the most sense. These software plans allow for the operation of the device in meeting its expected obligations, so therefore fitting into the right plan is important to justify the expense. The hardware is pre-programmed before reaching the business to allow for easy set up.

The payment processing feature provided by the Clover software clearly explains how to process different transaction types depending on the method of payment.

  • Card insertion- This is considered an EMV sale, which is generated by a cashier when a customer uses a debit or credit card with a chip to pay for services or goods. A PIN has to be inserted in order to approve payment and an emailed, printed receipt or gift given according to the customer desires.
  • Card swipe- The cashier will process this as a credit sale. Debit and credit cards with magnetic stripe are used. The stripe facing down is swiped through the device, a PIN entered, onscreen signature imbedded and a receipt provided.
  • Scanning- This sale is completed by using cards with a chip, a QR code or a different code that is scanned. The customer or cashier holds the card 1” away of the contactless symbol on the device.
  • Manual entry- this type of payment requires the customer to key in their details manually as they press “enter” per page. The details include card number, CVV code and expiration date. An onscreen signature is captured and receipt provided.

With the Clover Mini device, a customer may choose to tip or not if the receipts and tips setting has been activated in the” customize your settings option”. Additional gratuity settings can be enabled to ensure the customer feels more in control.

Clover Mini has many more business management features to ensure effectiveness in service and operations. It appeals to a greater number of employees because of its design and visible app features that allow a staff member to operate it smoothly. Bartenders get bar tab and ticket transfer capability with pre-authorized payments from clients.  The managers and supervisors can easily view sale and management reports to keep up with hourly operations of the business. Its printing system uses a star SP700 printer and printer paper is available from Clover or any other retailer that sells supplies for point of sale systems. Use 50 rolls of 1-ply 3” * 165” paper.

The greatest surge in Clover Mini has been in restaurants and bars as it is easy to key in orders and process payment and the most important being managing floor plans by adding, moving and resizing as one can view all the activities on a screen. It tracks orders and customers per table to create a five-star experience and keep up with changing customer flow. Its greatest use is when partnered with Clover Dining from the Clover Market app. This offers smooth communication to the kitchen department by sending orders to the kitchen through printers and or display systems compatible with Clover POS that can be installed.

Other apps compatible with Clover mini include: customers, happy hour, sale, feedback, rewards and promos all provided by Clover. These apps do it all and can be combined to give a more personal and customized experience for customers throughout the shopping process. To see which apps are available visit the Clover Market app where you can find several options offered by Clover and other third party app developers.

Clover Mini Versus Square Stand

These two POS systems are the most competitive and have a very low variance in preference within the existing market. The Square stand holds a 9.7” tablet that is bought separately while the Clover Mini comes with its own inbuilt 7” tablet. The stand holding the tablet comes with a built-in magstripe card reader, payment processing functions, customer management, and basic inventory management, and the ability to manage tabs and split checks. The total cost for the stand only is only $169 but after adding the additional cost of a tablet, the price of both OS devices is almost similar.

The differences and similarities of Clover Mini and the Square stand are highlighted below:

Clover  MiniSquare Stand
Purchasing price is $599 as a full device.The stand is bought alone without a tablet at $169
Offers a smaller screen in comparison at 7” yet makes up for it in brightness and feel during operation.Screen size is at 9.7”
Basic inventory managementBasic inventory management.
The system connects to the weight scaleThe system connects to the weight scale
Built in magstripe reader, emv chip readerBuilt in magstripe reader
Scan QR codes  and barcodesDoes not have a QR code scanner
It has a printer that prints paper receiptsDoesn’t have a printing system
The Clover POS system charges per month subscription ranging from $0- $29.The Square POS hardware is $0 monthly thus cheaper.

The Clover Mini has only two features that a square stand doesn’t have and these are scanning codes and having a paper receipt printer. However, with the emergence of technology and centralization of communication, most people prefer email and messaged receipts. In regards to the price, square is better as an entry level POS but considering that you have to buy a tablet that costs several hundred dollars, the price comes at the same level as the Mini. A cash drawer may be bought and an app downloaded to make it compatible to the software in use.

Personal preference is the determinant with these POS devices as they basically tie in differences and both offer basic but similar functions. A high traffic business should probably consider the Clover Mini because of the diverse needs such as a receipt that’s necessary in corporations.

Guidelines of Operation of Clover Mini

This information can be found on the website of First Data and helps you get the most out of your service.

  1. Basic rules

  • Clearly indicate and display card systems acceptable to your customers.
  • Ensure that any charges charged to credit cards have not been overcharged to customers and also payable by you.
  • Always provide sales receipt to customers and also keep them safely away as a record to follow the enforced law by the card schemes.
  • Include all taxes in the amount charged on any transaction.
  • Respect customer privacy and don’t save their private and sensitive information
  1. Payment card recognition
  • Visa- These cards have a visa logo, holographic feature and a card security code. They comprise of Visa Credit cards, Visa Electron, Visa Prepaid and Visa and Visa Electron Mini Cards.
  • Master Card- The security feature is that all master cards despite the different design it indicates the name of the card issuer. They include the master card credit card and debit master card.
  • Maestro is a master card provided in UK and oversees.
  1. Commercial cards

They bring specific benefits business to business sales transaction. They bear the function of the card in front of the card. They consist of:

  • Purchase Card
  • Business card
  • Corporate card

There’s a free 59 page document on guidelines to use the Clover Mini to help with performance and security of your business. Most guidelines are on identifying different card processing systems and are easy to train for employees.

Clover Mini has many positive reviews and is a highly ranked purchase record amongst the Clover hardware.