Can I Buy A Used Clover POS? Here’s How To Avoid Scams
If you're looking to buy a used Clover POS system, the pitfalls are numerous. There are better ways to find a new Clover machine.
Can you buy a used Clover POS? Absolutely! Should you? No!
While you can certainly find a used Clover POS system for sale on eBay or Amazon, buying one is never a good idea. Used Clover POS machines are not reprogrammable, and new systems are always sold with a merchant services contract, which you should never enter into lightly. Buying a used machine from a private seller on a site like eBay or Craigslist means their merchant contract won’t transfer to you, and the merchant services providers selling Clover POS machines on a site like Amazon are not usually reputable companies.
Keep reading for all the used Clover POS scams out there and how to avoid them, plus some POS system alternatives if you decide Clover isn’t for you.
Table of Contents
- Why You Can’t Reprogram A Clover Machine
- Common Clover Equipment For Sale: Pricing Guide
- Common Clover Scams & Tactics To Be Aware Of
- Where To Buy A Clover Machine
- Clover Not For You? Here Are Some Good Alternatives
- FAQs: Used Clover POS Systems
Why You Can’t Reprogram A Clover Machine
Many merchant services providers can reprogram terminals so you can reuse equipment from a previous provider. Clover doesn’t allow that—your device is locked to whatever merchant services provider you got the machine from. This means you can’t buy a used Clover POS and have your MSP reprogram it.
The problem with an unreprogrammable system is that you will be stuck with whichever merchant services provider you buy your Clover from. And not all merchant service providers are created equal. Some of them have good customer service; some have terrible customer service. Some charge lots of hidden fees, while others are fair and straightforward about the fees they charge. Some require years-long service contracts, while others are month-to-month.
As you might imagine, being stuck with a poor-quality merchant services provider is a nightmare for any small business.
Common Clover Equipment For Sale: Pricing Guide
Clover POS is sold by many different banks, merchant services providers (MSPs), and even retail stores, such as Sam’s Club. You will almost always pay the MSRP if you purchase your POS equipment from Clover.com, but pricing can vary if you buy from another party.
Use our table as a guide for Clover POS costs (based on Clover MSRP).
Clover Equipment Costs
|Clover Station Solo||Clover Station Duo||Clover Mini||Clover Flex|
|Hardware Included||Station, cash drawer, receipt printer||Station, customer-facing display, cash drawer, receipt printer||Clover Mini with built-in receipt printer and scanner (cash drawer sold separately)||Clover Flex with built-in receipt printer and scanner (cash drawer sold separately)|
|Compatible Software Plans||Register, Table Service, Counter Service||Register, Table Service, Counter Service||Essentials, Register, Table Service, Counter Service||Essentials, Register, Table Service, Counter Service|
|Monthly Hardware Payment Plan (If you can’t purchase in full)||$120/month||$130/month||$45/month||$35/month|
Common Clover Scams & Tactics To Be Aware Of
A common Clover scam is for a seemingly low-priced Clover system to be sold with a predatory merchant services contract that will cost you a small fortune in the long term. Another scam is a POS hardware scam that involves sellers hawking used Clover equipment online without mentioning that the hardware is unusable because it can’t be reprogrammed.
What To Know Before Buying On eBay
It is not difficult to find a Clover machine for sale on eBay. Some used Clover POS systems on eBay are sold “untested” or “as-is,” which usually means the system is unusable and can only be junked “for parts.” New Clover systems are also sold on eBay with a merchant services account.
The main issue with Clover POS systems sold on eBay is that a merchant services contract is not something you should enter into lightly and certainly not something you should enter into on eBay. Most merchant service providers who sell Clover on eBay are not providing a fair deal, as they can easily sneak hidden fees and long-term commitments into their contracts.
What To Know About Buying On Amazon
Like eBay, Amazon’s marketplace allows MSPs to sell Clover POS hardware with merchant service contracts. The concern with buying a Clover POS on Amazon is that you can’t trust a random Amazon seller to provide a good merchant services contract.
Most merchant service providers selling Clover hardware on Amazon are fly-by-night companies you’ve never heard of. Even though they may be selling for less than MSRP and advertise low processing rates, you have no idea what level of customer service they offer, their warranty policy, or what added fees they may charge.
Where To Buy A Clover Machine
There’s nothing wrong with shopping for a Clover machine for sale online, as long as you buy from a reputable company. Don’t buy used Clover equipment on eBay (it won’t work) or buy a new Clover system on Amazon (it will come attached to a shady MSP).
So where do we recommend buying a Clover machine? Fortunately, several high-quality merchant services providers sell Clover POS with a fair and transparent payment processing contract.
If you prefer to use a payment processing model such as interchange-plus or cash discount, you have options. Dharma Merchant Services or VizyPay are great places to start. We’ve put together an excellent resource about the best Clover resellers, which you should read to find a good Clover POS deal.
How To Choose The Right Clover Machine For Your Business
To get the right Clover machine for your business, you have to consider the hardware, software, and merchant services aspects of your POS system. You have to find a Clover machine that’s compatible with the software plan you want to use, the size and weight you want, and a merchant services provider that offers the Clover machine you want.
These are some things to consider when looking for the right Clover hardware:
- How portable do you want your Clover machine to be?
- How large do you want your POS screen to be?
- How much space do you have on your counters (if any) for a POS machine?
- Do you want customers to be able to verify their orders?
- Do you accept large volumes of cash?
- How much do you want to spend on your Clover POS?
As an example, let’s say you run a food truck. You’ll want a Clover machine that doesn’t take up too much space and works with the software plan you want (which will probably be the Counter Service Restaurant plan). You’ll want customers to be able to use their phone or hold their card up to a card reader, but you may also want a larger screen for actually inputting orders.
In this case, you could stick with the lower-cost Clover Flex to take orders and payments. You could also purchase a Clover Station Duo and place the Clover Mini part of the setup just inside your window so customers can verify orders and pay on their own screen while you take orders on a larger one, which takes more physical space and initial investment but could be worth it in the long run when you’re not awkwardly passing a mobile POS machine back and forth with customers.
After you find the right Clover machine(s), you have to find a solid merchant services provider that offers good merchant agreements and reasonable payment processing rates for your business. Learn how to negotiate a merchant agreement for the best contract terms.
Clover Not For You? Here Are Some Good Alternatives
If you’re learning for the first time that Clover POS equipment is not reprogrammable or reusable with a different merchant account, you might be reconsidering whether you want to buy a Clover POS at all.
Clover is one of the best POS systems, but many merchants want a more flexible system that allows them to purchase pre-owned POS equipment. Or, you may want POS equipment that you can reprogram for use with a different POS software or merchant account down the road.
The following are a few alternatives that provide more flexibility than Clover when it comes to POS equipment. For a more comprehensive look at available Clover competitors, read our post on the best Clover alternatives for small businesses.