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With so many different POS options available, figuring out which one is right for you can be tricky. You know you want to track sales and transactions in real time, maintain the integrity of financial records, monitor inventory costs, track product movement, and ensure efficient use of capital tied up in stock but need to figure out which tool is best. I've got you! In this post I'll help make your choice easy, sharing my personal experience having researched and compared dozens of point-of-sale tools to share with you the best POS system on the market.

What is a POS system?

A POS system, or Point of Sale system, is a combination of hardware and software used by businesses to complete sales transactions. It typically includes a terminal (computer or tablet), receipt printer, barcode scanner, and POS software to facilitate various functions related to sales and payment processing.

Key features include transaction processing, inventory management, payment processing (credit/debit cards, cash, etc.), sales reporting, and customer relationship management. Together, these features streamline the sales process, improve customer experience, and provide businesses with valuable insights about customer trends that impact financial performance.

Overview Of The 10 Best POS Systems

Here’s my list of the top 10 POS systems for 2024. In the reviews below, I’ll cover key features, strengths, weaknesses, and pricing.

Best for e-commerce businesses

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

Shopify is an e-commerce platform with more than 20,000 online stores. It allows individuals and businesses to build digital storefronts and catalogs, manage and process orders, and collect payments. While the company is best known for online shopping, its POS system can also process in-person transactions.

Why I picked Shopify POS: For entrepreneurs and small businesses, building a Shopify store is a way to start earning revenue without the expense of a brick-and-mortar storefront. When those businesses want to expand to pop-up stores or permanent locations, the Shopify POS is an easy way to make the transition.

Shopify POS Standout Features and Integrations:

Standout features include a customizable POS home page, where you can keep your most-used modules at the forefront. Shopify also touts its advanced inventory management and precise staff permissions feature.

Integrations include Mailchimp, Zapier, Hubspot, Buffer, Quickbooks, Xero, ShipStation, Etsy, SKU IQ, ShipHero, and Klaviyo.

Pros and cons


  • Order management tools
  • Mobile transactions
  • Online store builder


  • Limited hardware
  • Designed for e-commerce

Best for high-volume businesses

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

Helcim is a POS system and payment processing platform that emphasizes fee and rate transparency. They use an “interchange +” model. Interchange is the 1-3% that businesses have to pay to banks to move funds. This empowers businesses to choose the best payment processing rate they can find, to which Helcim makes only a small addition.

Why I picked Helcim: Along with their lack of setup and cancellation fees, Helcim’s pricing structure rewards you for selling more. That means that when you sell more products, you keep more and more of the profits. For high-volume businesses, the savings add up.

Helcim Standout Features and Integrations:

Standout features include the ability to process partial payments or deposits, as well as automatically create customer profiles that you can edit and add notes to. You can send invoices and email customers for continued engagement.

Integrations include Quickbooks,, WooCommerce, Magento, and Great Exposure. While pre-built integrations are few, Helcim does offer an API for customization.

Pros and cons


  • Mobile app
  • Virtual terminals
  • User permissions


  • Very few integrations
  • Requires 3rd party hardware

Best all-in-one system for small businesses

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

Launched in 2012, Clover is a cloud-based point-of-sale system and hardware collection which can be purchased directly or through a number of resellers. Along with credit and debit cards, Clover supports Apple Pay and Google Pay.

Why I picked Clover: Clover combines three important parts of business operations (point-of-sale, payment processing, and hardware) into one attractive system.

Clover Standout Features and Integrations:

Standout features include both virtual terminals and a wide range of hardware options. Clover also offers real-time reporting and sales analytics, which you can access anywhere from the Clover Go mobile app.

Integrations include Time Clock by Homebase, Thrive Inventory, BigCommerce, stockIt, Easy Labels, Magento, Yelp, and Paychex.

Pros and cons


  • Highly customizable
  • Customer loyalty program
  • Rapid deposits


  • Poor customer service reviews
  • Complex pricing

Best for direct credit card processing

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

Merchant One is a financial service provider that offers a suite of tools for businesses to process electronic payments. They provide a variety of point-of-sale (POS) systems, mobile payment solutions, and online payment gateways to accommodate different business models and transaction environments. 

Why I picked Merchant One: The POS systems offered by Merchant One come with features such as inventory management, sales reporting, and customer relationship management tools. These systems are intended to help businesses conduct sales transactions efficiently while providing insights into sales data and inventory levels.

Merchant One Standout Features and Integrations:

Standout features include support for a wide range of payment methods, including credit and debit cards, electronic checks, and mobile payments. Merchant One also offers encryption technology, tokenization, and compliance with Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) requirements to protect sensitive customer data.

Integrations include Clover Network, Inc., First Data Corporation, USAePay, Paytrace Gateway, Payeezy Gateway,, Aloha, Micros, Payflow Pro, and Maitre'D.

Pros and cons


  • Various hardware options
  • 24/7 customer support
  • Fast and easy setup


  • Occasional slow deposit times
  • Includes an early termination fee

Best for high-volume businesses in various industries

  • 3-month free trial
  • From $79/month

Payment Depot is a POS and merchant services provider that offers a transparent interchange+ pricing model. This helps businesses of all sizes save on transaction fees. The company's clear, straightforward pricing structure helps you avoid hidden costs, thereby better managing your cash flow.

Why I Picked Payment Depot: This platform's subscription-based pricing makes it a compelling choice for high-volume businesses. It offers a POS system for ecommerce, mobile, and physical payment terminals, making it flexible to various industries and business models. Whether you're a retail, service, restaurant or bar, or healthcare company, you'll be able to leverage their offering to better manage your cash flow and payment processing.

Payment Depot Standout Features and Integrations

Standout features include a free payment gateway, as well as the tool's virtual terminal capabilities provided through partnerships like SwipeSimple. This allows merchants to process payments online, via mobile, and over the phone without incurring additional gateway fees. The software is also compatible with POS systems like clover and vital select, and offers a user-friendly interface.

Integrations include Shopify, WooCommerce, BigCommerce, PrestaShop, and OpenCart. It also integrates with payment systems such as and business management systems like Revel Systems.

Pros and cons


  • Comprehensive equipment offerings
  • Cost-effective for businesses with high transaction volumes
  • User interface is straightforward and intuitive


  • Limited to US-based, non-high-risk merchants
  • Not ideal for low-volume businesses

Best for ease of set up and use

  • Free plan available
  • From $36/month plus 2.9% + $0.30 per transaction
Visit Website
Rating: 4.4/5

Founded in 2011, Square is a payment processor and point-of-sale system offered by Block, the technology company behind TIDAL, Afterpay, and Cash App. Square started out as a simple and inexpensive way for small businesses to accept credit and debit cards, but it’s now a POS option for larger businesses as well.

Why I picked Square: Known for its simplicity and ease of use, Square is a good way for any business to get a POS system up and running. And, because there are no setup fees and you can use your own device as a virtual terminal, it costs nothing to start using Square.

Square Standout Features and Integrations:

Standout features include the ability to set up and sell through an online store, as well as selling through Facebook and Instagram. As your business grows, you can add on tools for loyalty programs, managing your cash drawer, and even payroll.

Integrations include Zapier, Quickbooks, Groupon, Drupal Commerce, Wix, WooCommerce, Uber Eats, Xero, Linktree, Bookkeep, and Ovation.

Pros and cons


  • No contracts
  • Hardware at a range of price points
  • Easy to get started


  • Incompatible with Windows OS
  • Rates too high for large sales volume

Best for Small Restaurants

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

Initially an app to connect restaurants and customers for starting and splitting a tab, Toast is now a restaurant POS system that enables both online and in-person transactions. Used by more than 70,000 restaurant locations, they offer POS solutions for single locations, small chains, and enterprise brands.

Why I picked Toast: With integrations for food delivery apps and an online ordering page that’s directly tied to the POS, Toast enables small and local restaurants to expand their sales channels. And because the starter plan has no monthly fee, it’s an affordable option for tight budgets.

Toast Standout Features and Integrations:

Standout features include 24/7 support across phone, email, and web channels for all subscriptions. While the system is cloud-based and can be accessed anywhere, it also has an offline mode to avoid unexpected interruptions.

Integrations include Doordash, Uber Eats, 7shifts, CrunchTime, Homebase, Hotschedules, Punchh, Restaurant365, Sauce, and Grubhub.

Pros and cons


  • 24/7 customer support
  • Pay-as-you-go hardware option
  • Online ordering page


  • Must use Toast’s payment processor
  • Charges for canceling and changing plans

Best for customer loyalty programs

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

Revel Systems is a cloud-based POS system that has been serving restaurants and retail stores since 2010. Its security and flexibility make it popular with multi-location businesses and enterprise chains.

Why I picked Revel Systems: While a few of the other POS systems on this list allow you to implement some sort of loyalty program, Revel Systems takes it a step further. Its loyalty program enables personalized email and SMS marketing and promotes program membership within the POS.

Revel System Standout Features and Integrations:

Standout features include inventory management and a sophisticated analytics and reporting suite. Revel Systems also has a unique solution to complex orders (like coffee drinks). With Conversational Ordering, employees can ring in items the way the customer orders to avoid repeating details. And “Always On Mode” allows you to continue taking card payments if the internet is interrupted.

Integrations include CrunchTime, Deputy, HotSchedules, Ovation, Restaurant365, Thanx, Wisely, Punchh, Quickbooks, MarketMan, and Homebase.

Pros and cons


  • Offers self-serve kiosks
  • Enterprise restaurant management
  • Inventory management


  • Poor customer service reviews
  • High price point

Best for multi-channel retail

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

Lightspeed is a commerce platform and POS system with solutions for retail stores, restaurants, and golf courses. It also offers robust inventory management features, including multi-location tracking and stock purchasing within Lightspeed.

Why I picked Lightspeed: Like restaurants, the digital transformation of retail stores has accelerated since the COVID-19 pandemic. Lightspeed allows retailers to sell in their stores and across numerous online channels, all while maintaining centralized inventory and sales data.

Lightspeed Standout Features and Integrations:

Standout features include the ability to manage multiple channels and stores (not to mention suppliers) from one platform. You can use Lightspeed to sell on Facebook, Instagram, Amazon, Walmart, and eBay.

Integrations include MailChimp, Kangaroo Rewards, Homebase, Podium, RetailNext, SKU IQ, Ticket-IT, and Swiftcount.

Pros and cons


  • Extensive documentation and help content
  • Multi-location inventory management
  • Customizable reports


  • Unclear hardware pricing
  • No free option

Best for complex menus and inventory

  • Offers a free starter plan
  • From 2.99% + $0.15

Aloha Cloud is the most recent iteration of the Aloha POS system, made by NCR Corporation. With more than 100,000 restaurants using Aloha, the name is sometimes used interchangeably with “POS.” The cloud-based version offers a mobile app and helps your restaurant manage in-person and online orders.

Why I picked Aloha Cloud: Aloha Cloud is incredibly popular among restaurants because it’s designed with their needs in mind. As someone who worked in the service industry throughout college, I really appreciate how much focus Aloha puts on the employees’ user experience, making it easy for servers to manage large, complex menus. And management can streamline inventory by managing it in the same system.

Aloha Cloud Standout Features and Integrations:

Standout features include a consistent user interface across devices so employees can work quickly on any hardware. Aloha Cloud also has an employee portal for submitting availability and time off requests, which is something I would have really loved to have during my time working in restaurants. Aloha also offers a kitchen display system to eliminate paper tickets and streamline back-of-house operations at restaurants.

Integrations include 7shifts, HotSchedules, DoorDash, Stax, CrunchTime, Quickbooks, AllianceHCM, QSROnline, and SailPlay Loyalty.

Pros and cons


  • Barcode scanning
  • Inventory management tool
  • User-friendly


  • Limited integrations
  • Pricing is not transparent
Tools Price
Shopify POS Plans start at $31/month
Helcim From 0.50% + $0.25 per transaction
Clover From 2.3% + $0.1 per transaction
Merchant One From $13.95 plus 0.29% + 1.55% per transaction
Payment Depot From $79/month
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
Aloha Cloud From 2.99% + $0.15
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.

Compare Software

Other POS System Options

Along with my recommendations above, here are a few more POS options that are worth considering:

  1. Lavu

    Best for customization

  2. ProMerchant

    Best for a highly customizable POS solution

  3. eHopper

    Best low-cost option for retail

  4. TouchBistro

    Best all-in-one system for restaurants

  5. PayPal Zettle

    Best for PayPal users


    Best for tickets and events

  7. GoDaddy

    Best e-commerce features

  8. talech POS

    Best for a diverse toolset

  9. Epos Now

    Best hardware bundles

  10. CardConnect

    Best integrations and customization

Selection Criteria For a POS System

Here’s a short summary of the main selection and evaluation criteria I used to develop my list of the best Point of Sale systems for this article:

Core Functionality

Any point-of-sale system needs to enable a business to take orders, ring up items, and produce a bill of sale for customers. POS systems also need to enable you to collect payments, even if you use a third-party processor. I looked for sales systems that work with cash, cards, and mobile wallets.

Key Features

  • Item Catalog: Systems need to enable you to create a catalog of the items your business sells. Moreover, I considered how easy it was to find items through categories and search functions.
  • Online and In-person Sales: The ability to take both online and in-person orders is increasingly important for businesses of all sizes.
  • Reports: Your POS system should offer at least basic reporting capabilities to analyze sales trends.

Pricing and Fees

Because POS systems are entwined with payment processing, I considered both the monthly cost of the system itself, as well as the transaction fees that each payment accrues. For this list, I included the transaction fees associated with using the POS system’s default payment processor (if it had one).

Hardware Needs and Compatibility

Most businesses will need terminals through which to use a POS system. While evaluating these companies, I researched what hardware (POS terminals, card readers, receipt printers, etc.) the system offers and whether the system is compatible with third-party terminals. I looked for options with a range of hardware price points.

Customer Support

Because businesses use POS systems at all hours of the day and night, I looked for options with 24/7 support. I also considered through which channels customers could access support (phone, email, chat, etc.). Finally, I studied user reviews to learn how helpful real customers found the support they received.

People Also Ask

Still have questions about POS systems? Here are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions.

What businesses need a POS system?

Nearly all restaurants and retail businesses need a point-of-sales system to quickly and easily ring up orders, both in-person and online. It’s not uncommon, however, for service-based businesses (plumbers, painters, etc.) or entertainment or events-based businesses (movie theaters, amusement parks) to also use a POS system.

How much does a POS system cost?

Point-of-sale systems come in a wide range of price points, beginning with free plans. If you use your own device and a free POS system, transaction and payment processing fees would be the only cost. Many POS systems, however, charge a monthly fee, which can range from $15 to hundreds of dollars. You also have to consider the cost of POS system terminals and hardware. Some systems offer a free terminal, but hardware can also run into the thousands of dollars.

What hardware do POS systems need?

The hardware you need depends on the size and operations of your business. It’s possible to use some POS systems through your computer or mobile device. This is often called a “virtual terminal.” Most businesses, however, will need at least one POS terminal that allows employees to ring up orders and collect payment.

Is a POS the same as a payment processor?

Some POS systems include a payment processor, but they are two distinct technologies. A payment processor enables the transfer of funds from the customer to a business. If you simply key in a transaction amount, a processor can be used without a POS system. To quickly ring up purchases, send orders to a kitchen, or scan barcodes, you will need a POS system. While some POS systems require you to use their default payment processor, others allow you to choose your own.

Point of Sale, On Point.

Your POS system has a huge impact on both your customer and employee experience. I wish it were as simple as pointing at a single best system, but their different features and pricing structures make it impossible to declare a single winner. I’ve narrowed down the field, and now you can use these summaries to find the right POS system for your business.

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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.