Small businesses could face new fees on Venmo

FRESNO COUNTY, Calif. (KFSN) -- Fresh flowers and farm-fresh goods are a staple at Sweet Thistle Farms in Fresno County.

Paying by the app Venmo through a QR code has become a norm for small business owner Sarah Shoffner who is often out at farmer's markets or her farm selling to the public.

"This code comes in nice because you can leave it with the pandemic that started, you can leave it out on the table, a little bit further, so it's easy for people to not exchange cash. They pull out their phones, scan it and move on," said Sarah Shoffner with Sweet Thistle Farms.

Venmo announced users who receive payments that senders identify as goods and services will be charged a seller transaction fee of 1.9% plus $0.10 starting July 20.

These costs could impact many small businesses who use the app.

Sweet Thistle Farms does about 40% of its transactions through Venmo.

"We'll have to absorb it, it's kind of one of those overhead type fees, but at some point, you'll pass it along. We did increase our prices at the beginning of 2021. So I think it's something that Sweet Thistle is going to have to absorb this year," Shoffner said.

Shoffner said she's looked into other apps like apple pay, but Venmo seems to work.

Credit cards can charge varying rates and fees.

Businesses could purchase a point of sale system, but those are extra costs.

"Those hidden fees that come along with a business or continually increase, it's one of those things that I think, as a business owner, you have to plan for it at some point and make those adjustments throughout the year," Shoffner said.

She said the rising costs of business make things challenging.

Venmo says the fee for instant transfers will be 1.5% come August 2.

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