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*** In December 2018, Clover announced that the original Clover Station is considered "end of life" or being phased out. Support and software upgrades are available until December 2022.***
The newer version of the system, the Clover Station 2018, will be the available POS model going forward. We're leaving this profile with information about the original clover for historical purposes.
Many businesses love the modern design with sleek brushed aluminum and glass accents. Okay, efficiency and looks – that sounds great, but what about features, cost, and reviews from others who’ve used it? We’ll take a look at all of that in this Clover Station review and profile. Watch the video below or jump down to read about features.
The basic Clover station includes a touchscreen display, high-speed printer, and cash drawer. A single power source for both the touchscreen and printer reduces cord clutter at the checkout area. The system also includes a high-resolution camera that can be used to scan barcodes or QR codes. (The latter may be important if you plan on accepting Chase Pay, which will be QR-code based rather than a tap-to-pay NFC/contactless mobile option.)
You can accept traditional credit and debit cards and newer technologies such as EMV chip cards and NFC technologies like Apple Pay. In addition to accepting payments, you can process refunds, reprint customer receipts, save and reopen orders, and process exchanges.
The Clover solution offers a variety of applications you can add depending on your business needs. For example, restaurants can easily create and edit menus, and retailers can track and manage inventory. Businesses can also set up multiple users, track employee shifts, and more. Note that some features may only be available in a paid plan while others are included at no additional charge. More information about paid monthly plans is in the section on pricing at the end of this Clover review.
Clover is offered by and processes payments through First Data, one of the nation’s largest payment processors. This doesn’t mean that you need a merchant account directly with First Data, but you will need one from a processing company that is compatible with the First Data platform. Fortunately, that’s a lot of companies, including many that place certified quotes through the CardFellow system.
Your pricing for accepting credit cards through a Clover Station will vary depending on your processor. Need something more exact? Use CardFellow’s free quote request tool to get fully disclosed quotes from processors that can support the Clover POS.
One important note is that as of 2016, Clover systems are NOT reprogrammable. That means that you will ONLY be able to use your Clover station with the processor you originally purchase it from. Keep this in mind when searching for a processor, because if you want to switch processors after purchasing a Clover station, you’ll need to purchase a new Clover (or other POS system) in order to work with a new processor.
The Clover station includes a built-in encrypted card reader that secures cardholder data at the time of swiping. Additionally, the Clover system backs up sales data to a remote server and uses a secure connection to send data. Using a Clover POS also requires that you use TransArmor, First Data’s security suite. TransArmor is an additional monthly charge.
Just need the quick technical details about the Clover POS? Here you go:
Communication and Connectivity
The Clover station offers Ethernet, wireless, and Bluetooth connectivity options. The station also includes 4 USB ports for quick plug-and-play connection of optional peripherals.
Display and Touchscreen
Included touchscreen display is a generous 11.6” for easy viewing.
Size and Weight
The Clover station in the basic configuration measures 11.0” x 7.5” and 9” from countertop to the top of the display. The system weighs 5 pounds.
The included Clover station printer is ideal for printing receipts quickly, and uses 3-1/8” x 230’ thermal paper rolls. The Star kitchen printer takes 3-1/8” x 150’ rolls.
The Clover system supports optional accessories like a handheld barcode scanner for easy inventory scanning, kitchen printers for order printing direct to the kitchen, label printers to create custom price stickers, and weight scales for produce or any product sold by weight, including frozen yogurt. Clover has recommendations for brands of each accessory, as follows:
Clover recommends the ID Tech ValueScan II Mid Range CCD Scanner, but also supports the Motorola DS9208 and Unitech MS180.
Clover recommends the Star Micronics SP742ML printer, built to withstand the temperatures of a kitchen environment. The two-color printer offers clear printing for easy reading. Orders can be printed in multiple languages. An Asian-character version is also available.
Clover recommends the Brother QL-710W printer, able to print over 90 labels per minute, allowing merchants to create custom price stickers, barcodes, address labels, and more.
If you sell products by weight, such as frozen yogurt shops or fruit stands, Clover recommends the CAS SW-RS weight scale, supporting up to 20 pounds. Merchants can weigh items in grams or ounces, and the scale automatically passes information directly to the system for accurate transactions.
Clover stations are also compatible with additional accessories, such as external PIN pads, extra cash drawers, locking lids, and coin trays.
While the Clover Station has plenty of great features, it does have some limitations.
If any of these features are important to you, consider non-Clover POS systems.
Exact costs vary depending on where you buy your Clover Station, but the system starts around $1,000. This cost is in addition to the pricing to accept credit and debit cards (which is set by your processor) and the costs of a software plan if you purchase one. Software plans start at $9/month and provide additional features like inventory management. The screenshot below provides a list of features by plan:
Clover software plans can seem a little complicated. We provide more details about the plans and choosing the right one in our article on Clover software plans.
You can access reports from the terminal or remotely from a computer using an internet merchant dashboard. View cash and credit totals for the day, view receipts by employee, and run reports of discounts and refunds processed. Data can be exported to Excel or QuickBooks for easy integration with the rest of your reporting and accounting functions.
PayHub Payments answer:
To export a report you must log into the Clover back office at www.clover.com. ?Once you log in, select the "Reporting" icon and select the report you would like to run. ?When the report is generated an "Export Reports (CVS)" link will appear on the right side of the screen at the top of the report. ?Click on that link and the report will export to Excel.
Dharma Merchant Services answer:
The easiest way is to login to your clover account online, at www.clover.com. Once logged in, click reporting to get to the report you wish to export. Once you're viewing the proper report, simply click Export Results (CSV) - it's a link at the upper-right hand side of the data you're viewing. That's it!
The Clover Station looks great, very sleek, and has some really good features. The biggest drawback is that at the time of this review, it can't be reprogrammed to use with another processor. You can only use it with the company you buy it from, so if you want to switch processors in the future, you'd need to buy a whole new POS system.