How To Deactivate Your Square Account & 5 Things You Need To Do Beforehand
Take care of these simple tasks before you close your Square account to ensure a seamless transition.
Square offers one of the quickest and easiest setup processes in payment processing and is one of our favorite solutions for small businesses. Still, there may come a time when your business outgrows Square or no longer needs credit card processing. When that happens, you’ll want to know how to cancel your Square account.
Below, we’ll walk you through Square’s offboarding process and how to tie up any loose ends you might have before shutting down. Note that Square calls this process deactivating your Square account, though we will use “cancel,” “delete,” “close,” and similar language; they all mean the same thing in this context.
It’s important to realize that Square retains your information after deactivation, and there’s currently no way to purge your data from its systems completely.
Table of Contents
- 5 Things To Do Before You Deactivate Your Square Account
- 4 Steps To Delete Your Square Account
- What To Do After You Close Your Square Account
- Find Other Resources For Your Small Business
- When Is The Right Time To Delete Your Square Account?
- Do You Need To Deactivate Your Square Account?
- Common Questions About Deleting Your Square Account
5 Things To Do Before You Deactivate Your Square Account
Before you deactivate your Square account, you’ll want to make sure you’ve gotten your house in order. Make sure you’ve done or at least thought about the following things before you close your Square account.
Find Alternative Software Options
A good sign that you’re ready to shut down your Square account is that you haven’t used it in a while. This applies to both the core payment processing features and any additional Square business software you’re using, such as scheduling software or inventory tracking.
If you aren’t shutting down your business entirely, you’ll need alternative software to perform the tasks that you’ll no longer be using Square for. It’s a good idea to have these in place in advance and be comfortable with them.
Download Financial Statements
Square keeps track of important sales data that you’ll need during tax time as well as for your internal metrics going forward. Since you won’t be able to access this information after your account is deactivated, you’ll want to make sure you’ve exported all the necessary data in advance.
If you’ve sold more than $600 in a given tax year, you should qualify for a Form 1099-K from Square. If it’s available, you can download your 1099-K from Tax Forms in your Square Dashboard. If you deactivate your account before one is issued (January of each year), it will be mailed to the address you gave when you made your account once it becomes available.
You can also download your payment history. Under Balance, you can select a date range for the data you want to export. Select the locations you want to export, then click Export to download a CSV file of your payment history.
Download Customer & Inventory Info
If you’re about to delete your Square account, remember that you’ll no longer have access to Square’s record-keeping functions. If you’ve been relying on Square to keep track of your customer or inventory information, you’ll want to export that information before you deactivate. Having lists that you can easily upload into another program will reduce downtime and save you the trouble of rebuilding your lists.
You can export your inventory by navigating to Items on your Square dashboard. Select Actions -> Export Library. You can then choose to export your inventory list as an Excel or CSV file.
The process for downloading your customer list is similar. You’ll go to Customers -> Import/Export -> Export Customers from your Square dashboard. Click on Download to export your customer list as a CSV file.
Cancel Active Subscriptions
To avoid any ongoing charges, Square recommends manually terminating any subscription-based services you’ve been using on your account before you close it. These include services such as Payroll and premium levels of services, such as Square for Restaurants.
Most of these can be managed from your Account settings under your Square Online Overview.
Transfer Square Banking Funds
Square’s banking features are a convenient way to get your money quickly by bypassing slow bank transfers. While Square should have your non-Square banking account information on file to cash you out from when you initially signed up, you’re better off not leaving this to chance if you want to avoid any holds on your funds.
To close your Square banking account from your desktop, select Balance-> Locations. After selecting a location, click on the gear icon and select Square Checking-> I’d like to close my account. After being prompted to deactivate your Square Debit Card, select Close and switch back to transfers.
In the Square mobile app, you instead tap through Balance-> Checking -> Get help with checking -> I’d like to close my account. Close your Square Debit card when prompted, then select Close and switch back to transfers.
4 Steps To Delete Your Square Account
Once you’ve tied up all your account’s loose ends, you’ll be ready to deactivate your Square account.
The actual deactivation process is pretty straightforward, consisting of the following steps:
- Navigate to the Deactivate Account option
- Select a reason for deactivation
- Enter your 2-Step Verification code, or have a verification code emailed to you
- Confirm deactivation
You can start the deactivation process from the Square Dashboard.
From your user profile in the upper right corner, go to Account Settings-> Personal Information -> Deactivate Account:
2. Select A Reason For Deactivation
After you click on Deactivate Account, you’ll be prompted to select a reason for closing your account. Choose the most relevant option, providing additional comments if you so choose.
3. Enter Your 2-Step Verification Code Or Have A Verification Code Emailed To You
Next, you’ll need to enter your security information to confirm that you have the authority to shut down your account. Depending on how you’ve configured your account, provide the necessary password and/or verification code to move on.
4. Confirm Deactivation
Finally, Square will give you one last chance to reconsider your life choices. Read the accompanying warnings and, if you aren’t deterred, hit the big red Deactivate button.
And that’s that. Or is it?
What To Do After You Close Your Square Account
Closing your Square account will stop future transactions, but it’s not an escape plan from any existing obligations you might have from when your account was active.
Here are some things you should do after you delete your Square account.
Square still has your email on file and may send you information regarding any outstanding obligations you may have. You’ll note above that you’re still liable for buyer refunds, chargebacks, and disputes.
It also isn’t a bad idea to save any verifications you receive about account closures or pending funding holds, assuming you didn’t completely close out your balance before closing.
Review The User Agreement
If you have any concerns about what your liabilities are and aren’t after deactivation, it may not be a bad idea to review your Square User Agreement. Note that Square waives any responsibility for losses you experience related to the termination of services.
Have A System For Resolving Any Remaining Issues
Since you can’t use Square to resolve refunds, disputes, and similar customer issues, you’ll need to have a system in place for resolving them should they arise. If you’re using a new payment processor, you’ll need to familiarize yourself with its policies to see if you’re able to use its infrastructure to handle legacy transactions. Failing that, you may have to get creative, either offering refunds through more direct means, store credit, or gift cards through your new provider.
And, of course, speak with a lawyer if you have any liability concerns.
Keep Passwords In Case You Need To Reactivate
Gone isn’t forgotten. As we’ve mentioned, Square retains some of your basic account information. While there’s no direct way to reactivate your account yourself, you can contact Square Support and request to have your account reactivated.
Find Other Resources For Your Small Business
We mentioned earlier that you should try to have alternative services in place before you close your Square account. Luckily, you have a lot of other options.
For starters, check out our feature: Looking For An Alternative To Square? These Are The Best Square Competitors For POS & Payments.
In addition, you can check out these comparisons and alternatives for specific Square services:
- Stripe VS Square
- Square VS QuickBooks
- Shopify VS Square
- Square Payroll VS Gusto
- Square Capital Alternatives
- Best Credit Card Readers For Small Business
- Best Retail POS Systems
- Best Restaurant POS Systems
When Is The Right Time To Delete Your Square Account?
Square aims to be a simple, one-stop shop for small businesses, but this approach comes with some pros and cons. Many businesses will eventually outgrow Square. Let’s take a look at when you may want to start looking up how to close your Square account.
- You have Consistently High Transaction Volumes: Flat-rate transaction fees are very convenient at low volumes, but as your number of transactions goes up, the payment model becomes more expensive.
- You Want Better Rates: Square is set up to save businesses money on monthly maintenance. It does this by having relatively costly transactions. When you have a higher transaction volume, you can benefit from processors offering interchange-plus pricing or subscription pricing.
- You’re Going International: Though it’s improving, Square has limited support for international commerce.
- You Want Your Own Merchant Account: Third-party processors such as Square are convenient and have fast sign-up processes, but they also tend to have more issues with account holds and freezes. When your business matures, you may want to have your own merchant account.
- You’re Adding A High-Risk Service Or Product: Square doesn’t serve businesses in most high-risk industries.
- You Need More Advanced Software: Square’s jack-of-all-trades approach to business software is great for many small businesses, but if you need highly specialized software, you may want to go with a more flexible processor.
When You Shouldn’t Close Your Square Account
Closing out an account performing as many functions as Square does is a decision you shouldn’t make lightly. You may want to reconsider deactivating Square in the following scenarios.
- You’ve Still Got Transactions Pending: While you can close your account at any time, you’re making your life more difficult by closing it while you have transactions pending. Remember, once you deactivate, Square wipes its hands of your affairs.
- You Haven’t Exported Your Files: Make sure you export all the files you need to salvage from Square before closing your account.
- You’ve Been Lured By An Introductory Rate: Beware too-good-to-be-true offers from other payment processors, especially if they come with long-term contracts.
- You’re Worried About Upkeep Costs: So long as you cancel your subscription services and stop using Square as your payment processor, there’s no cost to keeping your account open.
Do You Need To Deactivate Your Square Account?
It may be weird to read about how to deactivate your Square account at the end of an article, but we wanted to point out that there aren’t actually that many advantages to doing so.
With the exception of subscription services, Square doesn’t charge anything to keep your account open. You may still want to close the account for peace of mind or reduce the number of open accounts your business has, but remember that it’s actually easier to resolve any outstanding issues while your account is open.