The Best POS System for Small Business (Feb 2023)
The best POS system for small business is a simple, affordable, and reliable tool for managing sales and in-person transactions. A point-of-sale system empowers businesses to take payments from consumers in-store and track the movement of inventory.
With a leading POS solution, you get a combination of hardware and software essential for keeping sales running smoothly, with minimal confusion.
Today, we’re looking specifically at POS solutions for small businesses. We’ve chosen our list based not just on the available selection of features, but also for factors like ease-of-use, affordability, and scalability.
Shopify is one of the most effective tools for sales in today’s digital world. The POS system is perfect for smaller companies who want to make the most of offline and online selling at the same time. You can set up in an instant and access fantastic CRM tools too.
Square POS is a fantastic POS for retailers, combining inventory tracking with a host of powerful features, like team management and collaboration. There aren’t any set-up fees to worry about, and you only have to pay when you’re taking a payment.
The Best POS for Small Business
We’ve chosen our selection of Point of Sale systems carefully for the needs of small businesses. Keep in mind, every company will have its own specific requirements when it comes to functionality and performance. It’s a good idea to consider your options carefully before diving in.
Best POS for Small Business #1: Shopify POS
Let’s start with our top pick. Shopify POS is one of the most popular ecommerce tools in the world, and for good reason. The easy-to-use ecosystem is trusted by more than 1 million businesses, with a host of useful features to explore, like in-built payment management, and a variety of plugins.
Some of the best features of Shopify POS include:
- Omnichannel sales support: You can sell easily across a range of channels, using solutions like QR codes, and mobile POS performance. There’s even a great centralized dashboard.
- Smart inventory tracking: If you’re using the right POS plan, Shopify allows you to track your inventory and use predictive analytics to plan for the future.
- Shopify Payments: Shopify has its own built-in payment processing solution, capable of accepting everything from Google Pay to Apple Pay.
- Employee management: There are staff management solutions allowing you to assign unique PINs to each member of staff, and grant access to features in an admin account.
- Marketing campaigns: You’ll also have access to a range of marketing tools, like the option to collect emails at checkout and leverage Google Ads
Shopify also has a range of mobile POS (mPOS) and standard hardware options, like card readers, starting from $29, and iPad retail bundles starting at $219.
Costs for Shopify POS will depend on the functionality you need. You’ll need a Shopify plan, which means at least investing in the $9 Shopify Lite plan, or the Basic plan at $29 per month. Then you’ll have to consider the transaction fees, which start at 2.2% for the first two Shopify plans.
If you upgrade to the advanced version of Shopify POS, (Shopify POS Pro), you’ll also have a monthly $89 fee to pay for each location, including the costs of hardware.
- Offline and online support for quick and easy transactions anywhere.
- Access to a built-in CRM system for tracking important customer information.
- Excellent customer service and support – perfect for small business.
- Built-in payment system helps to keep costs low.
- Very easy to set up and use once you’re familiar with Shopify
- Requires a Shopify plan to use the POS system
Who is it best for?
If you’re running a small business and you want to be able to take your online sales with Shopify offline, then Shopify could be the ideal solution for you.
Further reading 📚
Shopify POS Hardware: What to Get and How to Set It Up
Shopify POS Review (Feb 2023): Is it the Best Point of Sale System & Retail POS?
Shopify Pricing Plans and Fees (Mar 2023): Which Shopify Plan is Best for You? Basic Shopify vs Shopify vs Advanced Shopify
Best POS for Small Business #2: Square POS
Square is one of the better-known and most popular tools for POS management and sales by far. One of the most prolific companies in mobile POS technology, Square helps every business to accept payments quickly and effectively, in a range of different environments.
Square has supported more than 2 million businesses worldwide with setting up their offline point of sale systems. The company also offers access to tools to help take you online too, such as a free website building system. Features include:
- Inventory management: Extensive inventory management tools make it easy to manage your stock for your online and offline stores in one place.
- Team management: Tracking your employees hours, when they take breaks and other important factors can make a huge difference to your company.
- Customer profiling: Understand customer behavior by tracking previous purchases and create loyalty campaigns to boost sales.
- Reporting: Extensive reporting and analytics tools help you to understand your target audience and build more effective sales strategies.
- Integrations: Access a range of integrations for everything from Stich Labs, to Shopventory, and countless others to make the most of your sales strategy. There are tons of valuable tools to help you customize your store.
Square has access to a range of fast and efficient tools for payment processing with support for all EMV compliant cards, and extensive customization for certain kinds of stores. Hardware starts with readers for $49, and includes everything from the POS terminal for $299, to the POS Square register at $799 and a host of accessories.
The POS software is free to use, all you need to pay for is any hardware you’re going to be using, and the transaction processing fees. The company charges around $1.75 for processing chip and contactless payments. Customer orders and invoices are charged at 2.5%.
- Excellent customer service with support for online and offline selling.
- Intuitive and easy to use technology with clean reporting features.
- Free plan with no commitments or contracts to worry about when you’re getting started.
- Very convenient range of tools with a lot of customization options for hardware.
- Lots of useful analytics and insights into business growth
- Limited options for receipt printers
- Can get expensive over time if you add more hardware and tools
Who is it best for?
Square’s POS solutions are perfectly suited for small business owners, with a host of unique features to offer to help you sell effectively online and offline. If you’re setting up a small in-person store, this could be the perfect tool for you.
Further reading 📚
Square POS Reviews: Everything You Need to Know (Feb 2023)
Best POS for Small Business #3: Lightspeed POS
Lightspeed is a reliable and easy-to-use cloud-based point of sale system, which offers a wide range of features to the retail space. The company has evolved drastically over the years, refining the user interface and various features available to give business leaders the best possible experience.
The Lightspeed POS comes with a variety of excellent tools, including inventory management systems, so you can keep track of what you have available on any device. Some of the best features of Lightspeed POS include:
- Multichannel selling: Sell online as well as through a physical store and manage your inventory across both platforms at once.
- Marketing: There are a range of ways to improve your chances of sales with Lightspeed, including local ads through Google.
- Appointments: You can even use the Lightspeed POS for a service-based business, and set up a range of appointments and bookings.
- Easy interface: Everything in the Lightspeed ecosystem is designed to be convenient and easy-to-use, perfect for a small business owner.
- Scalable: The Lightspeed POS is relatively scalable, with a range of features and hardware options available.
The prices for the hardware tools available from Lightspeed aren’t evident on the website itself. You can access options like scanners, printers, and cash drawers, but you will need to contact the sales team to find out how much everything costs.
All of Lightspeed’s pricing plans are given on an annual basis, which makes it easier to plan for your full year of expenses. You can start with the Basic plan at $69 per month, and continue on with the standard plan at $99 per month, then Advanced at $169 per month, and Pro at $229 per month.
If you want to incorporate online sales, you’ll need at least the Standard plan.
- Excellent for multi-channel selling if you want to be online and offline simultaneously.
- Access to marketing tools means you can increase your chances of sales and profits
- Excellent analytics with a comprehensive environment for reporting and insights
- Fantastic support with free one-on-one onboarding sessions and 24/7 guidance
- Brilliant range of tools, including the option to book appointments.
- Can be very expensive for a smaller business to access all of the tools
- You can only run the software on certain operating systems
Who is it best for?
If you’re looking for a POS solution you can run quickly and conveniently on a Mac, then the LightSpeed POS solution might be great for you. This product is also particularly compelling for it s devotion to analytics.
Further reading 📚
Lightspeed Retail POS Review: A Definitive Guide for 2023
Lightspeed Restaurant POS Review: The Ins and Outs
Best POS for Small Business #4: Vend POS
When it first launched as a cloud-based system in 2010, Vend took the world by storm with its wide selection of powerful tools and features Today, it continues to be one of the top tools for driving seamless omnichannel growth for businesses of all sizes.
Available to try for free, Vend POS represents a compelling choice for small business owners in search of easy-to-use software and excellent functionality. The user-friendly interface is easy to learn and there are tons of great features, including:
- Comprehensive information tracking: It’s easy to keep a close eye on all of your sales, and your available inventory with the Vend POS convenient interface.
- Excellent inventory management: You can manage inventory across multiple outlets, automatically re-order stock and create various composites and variants.
- Real-time reporting: The real-time reporting and analytics tools allow you to make better decisions about your business in the moment.
- Custom receipts: Add company branding and other content into your receipts to make them stand out and highlight your professional nature.
- Tons of ecommerce integrations: Link to tools like WooCommerce, BigCommerce, Shopify, and Xero
Hardware isn’t available directly from Vend POS, but you can access a range of different tools, from cash drawers and card readers from the Storekit vendor.
The Vend plans available are simple and easy to understand, with no contracts, and the ability to cancel at any time. You also get a 14-day free trial to test the tools before you commit. Pricing starts with the Lite package at $99 per month, followed by Pro at $129 per month, and there’s an Enterprise package available by quote.
- Lots of tracking information for your inventory and sales
- Excellent customer service and support available across all plans
- Great usability with tools like quick keys to speed up your processes
- Fantastic reporting with real-time insights when you need details fast
- Wide range of custom integrations available
- Some limitations on global payment options
Who is it best for?
Vend is one of the easiest tools to use for small business owners, with excellent information available to help you keep track of your entire ecosystem.
Best POS for Small Business #5: Clover
Combining a range of features, from credit card transaction tracking to loyalty programs, in one environment, the Clover mobile point of sale system is a great customizable tool for small businesses. Companies can use this solution to manage everything from gift cards to employees in their retail businesses, with very little need for extensive training.
One of the things that makes Clover so convenient as a payment processor is its adaptability. The solution can integrate with various tools like QuickBooks, and it comes with a range of apps and add-ons for things like online ordering. Features include:
- Extensive reporting: Track all kinds of customer management information and keep a close eye on credit card payments over time.
- Online ordering: Use an add-on to access online ordering options, just like most ecommerce platforms. You can easily combine an online store with your POS.
- One touch transaction: The simple retail POS system is ideal for quick tipping, refunds, and other transactions with no complex back-end environment.
- Various payment options: Accept upfront payments in a range of different formats, with gift cards, debit cards, credit cards and mobile wallets.
- Versatile: Card reader features for a range of businesses, from personal service to restaurants and cafes
There are various hardware options available from Clover, including receipt printers, card reader options, and other requirements for your business needs. However, you’ll need to contact the team to get full prices for the best point-of-sale setup.
There’s no monthly subscription cost for your POS solution from Clover, but you will need to pay transaction prices, starting at 2.3% plus ten cents for each transaction. The costs you’ll pay will depend on the payment methods you offer.
- Mobile app perfect for mobile device users in the business world
- Integrations and add-ons for everything from email marketing to online orders
- Scale to suit your needs in a wide range of different locations
- Suitable for food trucks, service businesses, and a range of other retailers
- Easy to use environment to streamline your sales environment
- Can be one of the more expensive POS providers
- Slightly complicated initial setup
Who is it best for?
Clover is best for companies running small restaurants or service businesses. If you want to access everything you need for managing boutiques and other unique business environments in one, this could be the product for you.
Best POS for Small Business #6: Zettle
Another excellent pick for a mobile POS solution, Zettle offers a wide range of mobile Point of Sale features and hardware options like kiosks and credit card readers. You can use Zettle to extend the profitability of your online store, connecting your offline environment and iOS or Android apps to your ecommerce presence in no time.
The Zettle ecosystem is owned by PayPal, so you know you’re getting the background support of one of the biggest payment processing companies in the world. Features include:
- Omnichannel payments: Take online and offline payments in a matter of minutes with the same unified ecosystem.
- Wide range of hardware options: Choose between mobile applications or comprehensive hardware systems with fixed counters and card readers.
- Security: Excellent features for security and peace of mind built-in, thanks to the background support of PayPal. There are even automatic backups.
- Product libraries: Quickly create product libraries in the digital world and track your inventory offline and online at the same time.
- Staff accounts: Develop a range of staff accounts to keep a close eye on your team members and ensure the business runs smoothly.
Zettle offers a range of ready-made store kits if you want to access all the tools you need in one go, or you can buy standalone components. The mobile POS solution retails for around $79, while your first card reader will only cost $29.
There’s a flat-rate transaction fee of 2.29% and an additional $0.09 per transaction to consider with Zettle. Manual card entry transactions are charged at 3.49% plus an additional $0.09 per transaction, and custom pricing is also available for enterprise customers.
- Quick fund deposits – only takes 1-2 days to send funds to your account
- Excellent flat rates for processing basic transactions
- Lots of accounting software integrations available
- Convenient back-end environment with access to product libraries
- Backed by the power of the PayPal ecosystem
- No integrations with CRM platforms
- Monthly fee for building your ecommerce store
Who is it best for?
Zettle is ideal for all kinds of small businesses, pop-up stores, and retail stores if you want access to quick and convenient processing, with minimal stress.
Best POS for Small Business #7: SumUp
SumUp promises an easy way to manage your business across a range of different industries. There are more than 3 million companies using the ecosystem today, and you can link your offline cash register with your online business to make growth as quick and simple as possible.
The wide range of barcode scanners and hardware tools is what makes SumUp so unique in today’s landscape. The company seems to have a solution to suit every business need, no matter what kind of industry you’re selling services or products in. Features include:
- Tracking: A comprehensive business account ensures you can automate important actions like tracking your finances and making instant payments.
- Mobile app: manage everything from a smartphone or tablet with a convenient app available from the Apple or Google Play store.
- Bonus features: Connect your online store, create unique payment links and design invoices for your customers in the same place
- Customization: Choose from a range of POS features specific to your needs. Build a restaurant POS system, retail solution or something totally unique.
The prices of the SumUp hardware tools vary depending on what you need. Tools like the Air solution for mobile payments only cost around £17 for a beginner, which makes the barrier to entry very low. There are also standalone card readers available for £69.
For payment processing, there aren’t any subscription costs, but you will need to pay transaction fees, starting at 2.5% for online store, invoice, and payment links. Card readers will charge around 1.69% for each transaction.
- Excellent flexibility with lots of ways to customize your store
- Online and offline sales tracking in one environment
- Convenient tools to track inventory and customer interaction
- Free POS subscription – so you only pay for transaction fees
- Very affordable hardware options to suit any business
- Some limitations in terms of scalability
Who is it best for?
SumUp is ideal for small companies in search of a highly customizable solution for managing payments online and offline.
The Best POS for Small Businesses
Today’s small businesses have a lot of options to choose from when it comes to selecting the right point of sale solution. Aside from the options above, you can also consider a range of other market leaders, each with their own barcode scanners, cash register and software options.
The right solution for you will depend on which POS features you need most. Think carefully about the kind of business you want to run, and what kind of transactions you’re going to be managing on a daily basis. Do you need a solution that connects your online and offline store instantly, like Shopify? Or something customizable, like SumUp?
Good luck finding the POS that’s right for you.