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There are seemingly countless point-of-sale solutions available, so figuring out which one is best for you is tough. You want to streamline the checkout process, manage inventory, and generate sales reports but need to figure out which tool is the best for the job. I've got you! In this post I make things simple, leveraging my experience managing my own business and having used dozens of different tools to bring you this curated list of the best POS software for small business.

What Is POS software for small business?

Small business POS software refers to digital solutions used by smaller enterprises to process transactions, manage inventory, and generate reports, providing them with the tools needed to conduct sales efficiently. Therefore, they typically include features like transaction processing, inventory management, sales reporting, employee management, and customer relationship management.

A POS system provides a financial controller with up-to-date information on revenue generation and inventory that they can monitor and analyze to assess the overall cost structure and profitability of sales channels.

Overviews Of The 10 Best POS Software For Small Business

Below, you’ll find overviews of my top POS software picks. Each overview contains a summary of standout features, integrations, available pricing details, and some notable pros and cons.

Best for integrating payment management with analytics

  • Free demo available
  • From $99/month

Stax Pay is a payment processing platform that provides businesses with integrated solutions, including payment acceptance, automated billing, and compliant surcharging. Its all-in-one POS and business management software allows for secure in-person and online payment processing, as well as the integration of necessary tools, like accounting software, within a single dashboard

Why I picked Stax Pay: I selected Stax Pay because it offers a unified business management platform that supports both in-person and online credit card payment processing. This all-in-one approach is ideal for small businesses looking to consolidate functions like invoicing, scheduling of recurring billing, payment tracking, and financial management. I also like that the platform offers robust analytics and reporting capabilities to monitor trends, refunds, and transaction history.

Stax Pay Standout Features and Integrations

Standout features include scheduled and automated payments, synchronized in-person and online transaction information, and integrated business tools. The platform also offers a compliant surcharging feature that allows businesses to pass on credit card processing fees to customers.

Additionally, Stax Pay offers a suite of POS capabilities for different payment scenarios, including SaaS platform integration, ACH payments, online and mobile payments, and in-person transactions.

Integrations include Slack, Zapier, Microsoft Office, Google Suite, and CRMs. You can also integrate payment processing capabilities into software and mobile apps with comprehensive mobile software development kits in Javascript and Python.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • All-in-one tools and point-of-sale solution
  • Recurring billing and invoicing tools
  • Cost-effective with potential savings on processing fees

Cons:

  • Potential additional costs
  • May not be best suited to low-volume businesses

Best omnichannel POS system

  • The first month is free and the following three months are only $1/month
  • Plans start at $31/month

Shopify POS is software that helps streamline business operations by unifying sales channels. By focusing on omnichannel solutions, Shopify helps deliver a more consistent customer experience.

Why I picked Shopify POS: I selected Shopify POS because it’s specially designed for omnichannel retailers. Customers and employees will have a predictable experience and workflow whether the order is an online, in-store, or ship-to-home order.

Standout features include real-time inventory monitoring so companies with multiple sales channels can ensure their most up-to-date inventory numbers are syncing across channels, helping avoid canceled transactions and surprise out-of-stock alerts.

I also like how Shopify’s real-time syncing also applies to customer data. It used to be difficult to analyze customer behavior when dealing with multiple sales channels—but Shopify makes it simpler by unifying customer data records across channels and automatically tagging transactions to a specific customer account based on factors like the credit card used.

Integrations include PayPal, Stripe, Authorize.Net, Square, QuickBooks, Xero, FreshBooks, Mailchimp, Klaviyo, Zendesk, Google Analytics, Metrilo, ShipStation, and Easyship.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Competitive payment processing rates for high-volume businesses
  • Customer relationship management and data-tracking features
  • Precise inventory management and tracking (with omnichannel syncing)

Cons:

  • Many features require two paid subscriptions: Shopify + POS Pro, which starts at $89/month
  • No free tier ($39/month + processing fees is the cheapest option)

Best for small businesses saving on fees

  • Free account available
  • From 0.50% + $0.25 per transaction
Visit Website
Rating: 4.4/5

Helcim's POS software for small businesses is designed to facilitate the acceptance of payments through various channels, including in-store, online, and mobile transactions.

Why I picked Helcim: I selected Helcim because it emphasizes transparent pricing without long-term contracts or hidden fees. It also provides a secure environment for processing payments, adhering to industry-standard security protocols.

Helcim Standout Features and Integrations

Standout features include an integrated system that allows businesses to manage sales, track inventory, and process payments using a single platform. It includes invoicing, customer management, and reporting tools to help business owners keep track of their sales and customer interactions.

I also like how Helcim offers a suite of services such as merchant accounts, POS systems, card readers, and an online payment gateway, which are designed to support the transactional needs of businesses across different industries.

Integrations include Xero Payments, QuickBooks, Great Exposure, Foxy.io, and WooCommerce.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Terminals and printers can be connected via USB or Bluetooth
  • Excellent value for money
  • Quick and easy application and approval processes

Cons:

  • Lacks a manual or instructions
  • Card terminal can be clunky for clients

Best for direct, low-cost processing

  • Free plan available
  • From $13.95 plus 0.29% + 1.55% per transaction

Merchant One is a payment processing service that offers businesses the ability to accept and manage credit card transactions.

Why I picked Merchant One: I selected Merchant One because it offers various tools designed to assist small business owners in managing day-to-day sales activities, tracking inventory levels, and understanding customer purchasing patterns. Merchant One's POS software is also part of a broader suite of services that includes merchant accounts and payment processing, aiming to provide a comprehensive system for small businesses to handle their financial transactions.

Merchant One Standout Features and Integrations

Standout features include competitive pricing structures, including interchange-plus pricing, which can provide businesses with transparency and potentially lower processing costs. This pricing model separates the interchange fees charged by card networks from the markup charged by the payment processor, allowing businesses to see the exact costs involved.

I also like how Merchant One supports a wide range of payment methods, including credit and debit cards, electronic checks, and mobile payments.

Integrations include First Data Corporation, Fifth Third Bank N.A., Maitre'D, Micros, Paytrace Gateway, Payeezy Gateway, Payflow Pro, Authorize.net, Aloha, and USAePay.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Offers a variety of hardware options
  • User-friendly interface
  • Provides a mobile app for on-the-go payments

Cons:

  • May not be suitable for low-volume businesses
  • Limited transparency in contract terms

Best for hardware options

  • Free demo available
  • From 2.3% + $0.1 per transaction

Clover offers POS and small business management systems for all types of businesses—whether you need a countertop POS or a handheld device.

Why I Picked Clover: I selected Clover because of its high-quality hardware options. Clover has handheld, mobile, and countertop POS hardware, and multiple terminals and devices that you can easily link together to customize your system.

Clover Standout Features and Integrations:

Standout features include the ability to accept multiple payment options (all major credit cards, mobile payments, cash, and even check scanning). This makes it easy for customers and ensures you don’t miss any sales.

I also like that Clover has team management and scheduling features built into the POS software.

Integrations include QuickBooks by Commerce Sync, Thrive Inventory, Digital Loyalty, Time Clock, and Skipcart Delivery.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • 24/7 phone support
  • Offline functionality
  • Countertop, portable, and mobile POS devices

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • No free hardware

Most versatile POS software

  • Free plan available
  • From $36/month plus 2.9% + $0.30 per transaction
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Rating: 4.3/5

Square is a popular POS software that offers a versatile feature set. Its simplicity, ease of use, and customization options can work for any type of business.

Why I picked Square: I selected Square because it’s as close as you can get to a one-size-fits-all POS system. By that, I mean that it’s a genuinely versatile software suite (which comes with optional Square-branded hardware) that can be deployed in-store or online.

Standout features include Square Appointments to help service providers manage appointments, integrated payment technology, and industry-specific applications tailored for restaurants and retail operations.

I also like Square’s built-in loyalty program options for businesses looking for ways to manage promotions and incentivize repeat customers.

I was also impressed with Square’s build-to-suit pricing model, which lets you mix and match hardware. So if you don’t want to use Square’s hardware, they let you use their software with hardware from other vendors like Vend, TouchBistro, or Toast.

Integrations include WooCommerce, Shopify, Magento, BigCommerce, Zoho Books, FreshBooks, QuickBooks, Xero, Mailchimp, TouchBistro, and Upserve.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • All card types (Visa, Mastercard, AMEX, Discover) charged at the same rate
  • Offline functionality
  • Mix and match hardware options

Cons:

  • Some Square users report the internal fraud warning system is over-sensitive
  • Limited user support

Best POS software for restaurants with multiple locations

  • Free product demo available
  • From $0 per month plus 2.6% + $0.10 per card transaction.
Visit Website
Rating: 4.3/5

Toast is a POS software with a focus on restaurants, hospitality, and restaurant chains. It’s designed to centralize operations across multiple locations so you can more easily manage sales, product orders, and staff.

Why I picked Toast: I selected Toast because it has restaurant-specific features like digital ordering and portable, handheld POS systems so your servers can take orders and accept payments at the table.

Standout features include time-specific pricing (for 2-for-1 happy hours or seasonal specials) and integrated front-of-house and back-of-house workflows that can make it easier to manage restaurant chains or a multi-location retail business more efficiently.

I also really like Toast’s restaurant-ready hardware. Their handheld tablets are waterproof and drop-resistant.

Integrations include Axial Shift, Craftable, Marketing Vitals, Recipe Costing, Backbar, ChowNow, DeliverZero, WineView, MarginEdge, Lunchbox, and Tenzo.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Waterproof, durable POS hardware and handheld devices
  • Integrates with most popular restaurant software
  • Free version available for single location

Cons:

  • Slow performance during peak hours
  • Payment processing fees are less transparent and vary by card issuer

Best for delivery services and take-out restaurants

  • Free demo available
  • From $99/month.
Visit Website
Rating: 4.2/5

Revel Systems is a cloud-based POS software that gives you multiple options for food delivery. Revel was the first company to bring an iPad-based POS to market.

Why I picked Revel Systems: I selected Revel System mostly because of its restaurant-friendly features. Since take-out is so commonplace these days, restaurants have to adapt to the rise in pickup and delivery orders (and the high fees charged by third-party delivery services).

Delivery can be handled via in-house teams on the Delivery XT software or outsourced via Revel Driver XT (fulfilled by DoorDash).

Standout features include a Customer Display System (CDS) I found easy to understand. I was particularly impressed with the customer relationship management (CRM) tool, which allows you to quickly take customers' personal details and contact them with relevant marketing.

I also like the online ordering system (Online Ordering XT), which pairs well with Revel’s multiple delivery fulfillment solutions.

Integrations include eConnect, FreedomPay, Give Gift Cards, Gratuity Solutions, Homebase, Incentivio, LevelUp, Paytronix, Pepper, Quickbooks Online, Thanx, Value Tec, and Wand.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Lots of integration options
  • Multiple fulfillment options for delivery orders
  • CRM tools

Cons:

  • Minimum three-year contract required
  • High subscription fees

Best POS software for e-commerce brands

  • 14-day free trial
  • From $99 per month
Visit Website
Rating: 4.1/5

Lightspeed POS is a tool that optimizes the sales process by allowing you to manage multiple offline and online stores in one place. It’s particularly useful for ecommerce firms with multiple online sales channels.

Why I picked Lightspeed: I picked Lightspeed due to its intuitive omnichannel setup for retailers. You can use it to sell on Amazon, Facebook, Instagram, eBay, and Walmart—as well as on your own websites and physical store locations.

Standout features include automatic stock synchronization across channels and out-of-the-box support for sellers on Amazon and eBay. I think Lightspeed does a good job of unifying inventory levels, pricing, and promotions across internal channels and third-party platforms.

I was also impressed by Lightspeed’s retail analytics and reporting capabilities. There are over 50 pre-built reports that can shed light on sales volume, customer behavior, and pricing strategy. While not quite as capable as a dedicated business intelligence or corporate performance management software, Lightspeed has more advanced analytics than many competitors.

Integrations include iZettle, Mailchimp, Planday, Podium, SKU IQ, Vantiv, Homebase, Cloudbeds, Planday, Moneris, and Accumula.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Data analytics
  • 24/7 customer support
  • All plans include a free register

Cons:

  • Moderate learning curve
  • Upgrades can get costly

Best POS software for retail stores

  • Free 14 days trial
  • From $99/month
Visit Website
Rating: 4/5

Vend is a relatively simple POS platform from the same company behind Lightspeed (another of my picks). It aims to make the sales process quick and easy.

Why I picked Vend: I like Vend because it’s really easy to learn how to use—which is particularly helpful for retailers with high employee turnover rates that are frequently training new hires. It’s designed for in-person retail sales, but also offers ecommerce integrations and omnichannel support.

Standout features include flexible checkout options. You don’t have to void sales when a customer forgets part, or all, of their order—the parked sales option lets you put the transaction on hold until the customer can come back and complete the transaction. You can also split checks, offer store credit, and let customers put things on layaway.

I also found the multi-store functionality particularly easy to grasp.

Integrations include Deputy, Quickbooks Online, Timely, Xero, Shopify, WooCommerce, Square, and PayPal.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Multi-store functionality
  • Compatible with third party hardware
  • Supports many payment processors

Cons:

  • No phone support with basic plan
  • Only compatible with the Google Chrome browser
Tools Price
Stax Pay From $99/month
Shopify POS Plans start at $31/month
Helcim From 0.50% + $0.25 per transaction
Merchant One From $13.95 plus 0.29% + 1.55% per transaction
Clover From 2.3% + $0.1 per transaction
Square From $36/month plus 2.9% + $0.30 per transaction
Toast From $0 per month plus 2.6% + $0.10 per card transaction.
Revel Systems From $99/month.
Lightspeed From $99 per month
Vend From $99/month
Preview Image - <h2 class="c-block__title b-summary-table__title c-listicle__title h3" > Compare Software Specs Side by Side</h2>

Compare Software Specs Side by Side

Use our comparison chart to review and evaluate software specs side-by-side.

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Other POS Software Options

There were some more tools I shortlisted during my research. They didn’t quite make the cut for my main list, but might still be worth investigating further.

  1. Payment Depot

    Best for ecommerce, mobile, and physical payment terminals

  2. PayPal POS

    Best for no commitment

  3. eHopper

    Best for value

  4. TouchBistro

    Best for restaurant management

  5. STAX

    Best for high transaction volumes

  6. NCR Silver

    Best for remote teams

  7. ProMerchant

    Best for transparent pricing and personalized support

  8. ShopKeep

    Best for small retailers

  9. KORONA POS

    Best for mid-size retailers

  10. Agiliron

    Best for omnichannel businesses

  11. NetSuite

    Best for enterprise-level businesses

  12. Epos Now

    Best for scalability

  13. Odoo ERP

    Best for integrated business management software

  14. Stripe Terminal

    Best for integration of online payments

  15. Brilliant POS

    Best for advanced inventory management

Selection Criteria for Small Business POS Software

Here’s a short summary of the main selection criteria I used to develop this list.

Core Functionality

At its core, POS software should enable your business to:

  • Build carts/orders: Team members should be able to easily scan items or add product SKUs manually. Ideally, this should be a quick and simple process, as many small businesses frequently hire new staff. And for food service firms, having the option to take digital orders directly at the table (using a tablet or other mobile device) is a big selling point.
  • Calculate sales tax: POS software needs to be able to quickly and accurately calculate sales tax amounts on a state and local level (and federal, for options available in countries with a federal sales tax).
  • Process payments: POS software should be able to accept and process credit card payments, including Visa, Mastercard, American Express, and Discover—as well as cash payments, gift cards, mobile wallets, and perhaps even pay-over-time providers.
  • Track inventory: POS software should also provide at least basic inventory management features. When a sale is completed, internal inventory records should be updated automatically. Larger companies may wish to also use inventory management software.

Key Features

The features offered by POS systems can have a significant impact on your business. Some basic features to look out for include:

  • Customer management features: It’s beneficial for POS systems to collect and compile customer data for the purposes of marketing and customer loyalty programs.
  • Loyalty programs: POS systems should also have the capability (if desired) to implement customer loyalty programs, customer rewards, and gift card programs to encourage repeat business.
  • Sales reporting and analytics: POS software should provide a bird’s-eye-view of metrics looking at revenue, daily sales volume, etc. Ideally, it should be able to compare factors like sales by location and daily sales vs. long-term averages.
  • Employee management features: Many POS systems also include employee management features, like scheduling, time clocks, and even payroll (though many firms will also use external software for some of these workflows).
  • Versatile deployment: Most POS systems these days are cloud-native, making them relatively easy to deploy in a variety of situations. Ideally, POS software should be able to be used on physical registers, tablets, smartphones, and other devices.

Usability

You’ll want a POS system that’s easy to use. Remember, POS platforms will likely be used by many employees—including those who are relatively new on the job. It’s great if a POS system is able to run several elements of your business, but it should be able to do so with relative ease of use.

Integrations

Integrations allow you to connect your POS system to other business software.

It’s particularly important to choose a POS system that integrates with your accounting system, along with whatever inventory systems or payroll software you’re using too.

Also, be sure your POS software supports your payment processing systems. Most POS platforms offer their own payment processing, but you may not necessarily want or need to switch over.

People Also Ask

Point-of-sale software prompts plenty of questions from small business owners and financial operations teams. Here are answers to some of the most common questions people have about POS software.

What are the different types of POS systems?

The common types of POS systems are:

  • Cloud-based POS, with remote storage and access of information.
  • Mobile POS, on devices like tablets or smartphones.
  • Traditional POS, with hardware and software in a static physical location, including terminals and receipt printers.

How much does a POS system for a small business cost?

Most POS systems have a three-tiered cost structure that includes: the monthly costs, the hardware costs, and the payment processing fees.

Monthly costs can range from $0 to $500+ per month, hardware prices can range from $0 to $1,000+ per unit, and payment processing fees are typically between 2.4% + $0.09 per transaction to 3.5% + $0.30 per transaction.

Summary

After reading through this list, hopefully, you’re closer to finding the POS software that’s a good fit for your team.

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By Simon Litt

Simon Litt is the Editor of The CFO Club, where he shares his passion for all things money-related. Performing research, talking to experts, and calling on his own professional background, he'll be working hard to ensure that The CFO Club is an indispensable resource for anyone seeking to stay informed on the latest financial trends and topics in the world of tech.

Prior to editing this publication, Simon spent years working in, and running his own, investor relations agency, servicing public companies that wanted to reach and connect deeper with their shareholder base. Simon's experience includes constructing comprehensive budgets for IR activities, consulting CEOs & executive teams on best practices for the public markets, and facilitating compliant communications training.