Groupon bundles iPad with Breadcrumb point-of-sale service
Groupon is rolling out Breadcrumb, a new point-of-sale platform enabling restaurants, bars and cafés across the U.S. to run their business via Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPad tablet, which is bundled into the system.
Breadcrumb enables merchants to merge or split checks, add or adjust menu items, specify guest notes and modifiers, set employee access levels, manage time clocks and view real-time sales and labor reports. Users also can rearrange tables with a swipe of their finger. Groupon notes that Breadcrumb does not require integration with computer servers, adding that all software updates are free and automatic.
Groupon offers Breadcrumb at prices beginning at $99 per month, with no upfront fees or long-term contracts; services include free installation assistance and 24/7 technical support. Businesses that sign up for the service receive Groupon's Breadbox, which includes an iPad with stand, cash drawer, credit card swipe, printer, router, wireless access point and cables. Groupon also offers the Breadcrumb App, available as a free download from Apple's App Store.
Breadcrumb is fully integrated with GrouponPayments, the new mobile transaction system introduced last month. With GrouponPayments, any U.S. merchant that runs a Groupon deal can now accept credit and debit payments by swiping the customer's card through a small dongle that plugs into their iOS device's audio jack. Retailers and restaurateurs can also leverage the app to scan and redeem Groupon offers, add tips, apply taxes, process refunds and email customer receipts.
GrouponPayments claims 1.8 percent plus $0.15 of each MasterCard, Visa and Discover transaction, and 3 percent/$0.15 of each American Express transaction, with no hidden costs or monthly fees. In addition, non-Groupon merchants can process payments at a rate of 2.2 percent (3 percent for AmEx) and $0.15. By comparison, rival Square offers merchants the choice between a 2.75 percent per-transaction fee or a flat $275 monthly charge, with no processing fee or additional costs, while PayPal Here charges businesses a flat rate of 2.7 percent per credit card or PayPal transaction.
Groupon presents daily bargains from retailers and restaurants in 48 countries worldwide. Mobile devices now account for one-third of the company's North American transactions, up 35 percent year-over-year. Groupon acquired the Breadcrumb platform in May 2012; financial details were not disclosed.
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