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8 Best Liquor Store POS Systems

These liquor store-focused POS systems not only meet your point of sale needs but also provide the tools to help you take your business to the next level.

    Nicolette Kier
  • Last updated onUpdated

  • Matt Sherman
  • REVIEWED BY

    Matt Sherman

    Lead Staff Writer

Advertiser Disclosure: Our unbiased reviews and content are supported in part by affiliate partnerships, and we adhere to strict guidelines to preserve editorial integrity.

The best liquor store POS systems allow business owners to take sales, manage liquor bottle inventory, and have age verification tools at the register. They also offer online ordering, loyalty programs, loss prevention tools, and revenue-generators like a bottle subscription club and event ticket sales.

We reviewed several retail POS systems based on pricing, inventory management tools, and liquor store-specific features to help you find the best POS system for your liquor store.

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CompanySummaryNext StepsSummary
Lightspeed Retail POS

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  • Best for high-end liquor stores
  • $89+/month ($69+/month with annual billing)
  • Monthly/annual contracts, early termination fee
  • Best for high-end liquor stores
  • $89+/month ($69+/month with annual billing)
  • Monthly/annual contracts, early termination fee

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Square For Retail

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  • Best free liquor store POS
  • $0/month-$60/month/location
  • Monthly contracts, no termination fee
  • Best free liquor store POS
  • $0/month-$60/month/location
  • Monthly contracts, no termination fee

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Revel POS

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  • Best for multilocation stores and franchises
  • $198+/month
  • Standard three-year contract, early termination fee
  • Best for multilocation stores and franchises
  • $198+/month
  • Standard three-year contract, early termination fee

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KORONA POS

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  • Best loss prevention features
  • $59+/month
  • Monthly/annual contracts, no termination fee
  • Best loss prevention features
  • $59+/month
  • Monthly/annual contracts, no termination fee

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Shopify POS

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  • Best POS with eCommerce features
  • $39-$399/month ($29-$299/month with annual billing)
  • Monthly/annual contracts, no termination fee
  • Best POS with eCommerce features
  • $39-$399/month ($29-$299/month with annual billing)
  • Monthly/annual contracts, no termination fee

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IT Retail

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  • Best for grocery stores and markets
  • $199+/terminal/month
  • Custom contracts
  • Best for grocery stores and markets
  • $199+/terminal/month
  • Custom contracts

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POS Nation

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  • Best for convenience stores
  • $149+/terminal/month
  • Custom hardware and software contracts
  • Best for convenience stores
  • $149+/terminal/month
  • Custom hardware and software contracts

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mPower Beverage

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  • Best for large liquor distributors
  • $120/month+$1,000 upfront investment
  • Custom contracts
  • Best for large liquor distributors
  • $120/month+$1,000 upfront investment
  • Custom contracts

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Read more below to learn why we chose these options.

Table of Contents

What Is A POS System For A Liquor Store?

A POS for a liquor store is software that allows you to take cards and digital payment methods in addition to cash. Good liquor store POS systems also have in-depth inventory and employee management, customer engagement, and online ordering functions.

8 Best POS Systems For Liquor Stores

Your POS should help you reduce shrinkage, offer good payment processing options, and allow online liquor sales. We think the best options are:

Compare The Best Liquor Store POS Systems

Pricing POS Hardware Cost Payment Processing Fee Free Trial
Lightspeed $69-$399+/month $299-$349+ 2.6%-2.9%
Square $0-$60/month/location $49-$1,189 2.5%-2.9%
Revel Systems Custom Custom Custom
KORONA $59+/month Custom Custom
Shopify $29-$399/month $49-$459 2.4%-2.9%
IT Retail $199+/terminal/month Custom Custom
POS Nation $149+/terminal/month Custom Custom
mPower Beverage $120/month + $1,000 upfront investment Custom Custom

Lightspeed Retail: Best For High-End Liquor Stores

Lightspeed Retail POS

Total Rating 4.1
Pricing3.7

Ease Of Use4.4

Features4.3

Customer Service4.1

User Reviews4.0

Pricing

$89-$269/month ($69-$199/month billed annually)

Contract

Monthly, annual, and custom

Equipment Cost

$199-$329

Pros

  • Highly customizable loyalty program available
  • Appointment booking for tastings and catering
  • B2B customer accounts, quotes, and invoices
  • Excellent inventory management

Cons

  • Add-ons are pricey
  • Must use Lightspeed payment processor
  • Early termination fee

Lightspeed Retail liquor store POS system

Lightspeed Retail liquor bottle purchase order.

Why We Chose Lightspeed Retail POS For High-End Liquor Stores

We appreciate how customizable Lightspeed's inventory and vendor management system is, as well as the numerous add-ons available.

With Lightspeed Retail, it's easy to track large amounts of inventory, set automated purchase ordering rules such as reordering points and desired inventory levels, and generate inventory matrices to manage multiple bottles from a single brand. It's also easy to offer quotes for special catering orders, create liquor bottle catalogs and customer accounts for B2B clients, and offer bottle shipping and local delivery.

Lightspeed works especially well for high-end liquor stores that want to hold in-store events, start wine subscription clubs, host private parties and tastings, open custom loyalty programs, offer custom ordering and drink pairings, and more. This system is elegantly designed for liquor stores at a relatively affordable price.

Note: Lightspeed Retail offers a 14-day free trial with no credit card required.

Lightspeed Retail POS Pricing

Lightspeed Retail POS Plans Price  When To Use
Lean Plan $89/month ($69/month billed annually) For single/multi-location retail business looking for strong inventory management and a customizable POS interface
Standard Plan $149/month ($119/month billed annually) For single/multi-location retail businesses looking for eCommerce and accounting features
Advanced Plan $269/month ($199/month billed annually) For single/multi-location retail businesses looking for a strong loyalty program and advanced business reporting

The above plans only include one POS register. Extra POS register software costs $59/register/month.

Many of Lightspeed’s best features, such as Lightspeed Subscriptions and appointment booking, cost an extra monthly fee. Additionally, third-party software integrations cost extra.

Lightspeed Retail Liquor Store POS System Features

Lightspeed Retail POS Features Availability
Multi-Store Support
Contactless Payments
Multi-Channel Selling Standard plan and up
Gift Cards
Customer Loyalty Advanced plan
Marketing Tools Standard plan and up
Online Ordering Standard plan and up
Inventory Management
Reporting
Menu Management
Delivery Management
EBT Acceptance
Employee Management
Text Messaging

Lightspeed Retail’s excellent bottle inventory management features include the ability to:

  • Quickly add and edit item catalogs from vendors
  • Create master purchase orders to mass-order from different brands all at once
  • Set automated reordering points, using inventory reports to create a par level and designate ideal reordering quantities
  • Allow customers to backorder items and get alerts when favorited items are back in stock
  • Integrate your Lightspeed Retail bottle inventory with a bottle deposit integration to get refunds on empty bottles

High-end liquor stores that sell limited edition bottles, want to sell to B2B customers such as restaurants or event venues or want to get into catering will appreciate Lightspeed’s special ordering and appointment booking features.

You can create B2B catalogs, allow customers to log into accounts to get special bulk pricing, generate quotes that convert to order invoices, and allow customers to book appointments.

Lightspeed Retail POS systems for liquor stores

Lightspeed Retail wine order quote for B2B restaurant customer.

Appointments can be used to schedule private tastings, discuss catering plans, and even rent out your location as a tasting or party venue. In fact, Lightspeed’s appointment and event management capabilities are what make it one of the best wine POS systems on the market.

Last, we must mention Lightspeed’s online ordering capabilities. You can build custom bottle club subscriptions using Lightspeed Subscriptions, and sell online using Lightspeed eCommerce. Allow people to order for in-store pickup, ship items with custom shipping methods, and integrate your POS system with Drizly, one of the best third-party delivery services, to get more online exposure in your local area.

Hardware Cost & Options

Lightspeed Retail POS hardware

Lightspeed Retail POS register, Bluetooth barcode scanner, and online storefront.

You can purchase a Lightspeed Payments-compatible WisePOS e-card reader for $299 and an iPad for $329.

Lightspeed offers accessories such as an iPad stand for $199, a cash drawer for $129, a barcode scanner for $199, a label printer for $124, and a receipt printer for $399.

Contact a Lightspeed representative and ask about a discount on a retail POS hardware bundle.

Payment Processing Costs

All new and existing merchant have to use Lightspeed’s built-in payment processor, Lightspeed Payments, which charges a flat rate of 2.6% + $0.10 for in-person transactions and 2.9% + $0.30 for online transactions.

Contract Requirements/Warnings

Lightspeed offers month-to-month contracts and annual contracts.

We always recommend starting with monthly plans until you decide you’re completely satisfied with your purchase since many POS providers (including Lightspeed) charge an early termination fee if you cancel your plan early. Lightspeed’s early termination fees can get pretty substantial depending on the length of your subscription.

Like many other software providers, Lightspeed will automatically charge you for another subscription term unless you inform a Lightspeed representative within 90 days (for those with a longer contract) or 30 days (for those who signed up for a monthly plan) of your renewal date.

To qualify for Lightspeed’s 30-day hardware warranty (14 days for Apple products), you must verify that you have received your Lightspeed hardware purchase within five business days of receiving it.

Get Started With Lightspeed Retail POS

Read our in-depth review

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Square For Retail: Best Free Liquor Store POS

Square For Retail

Total Rating 4.6
Pricing4.2

Ease Of Use5.0

Features4.8

Customer Service4.8

User Reviews4.7

Pricing

$0-$60/month

Contract

None

Equipment Cost

$0+

Get a free card swiper from Square at no cost when you create a free account. Claim your card reader.

Pros

  • Free in-person selling on unlimited POS devices
  • Free online ordering website
  • Pickup and delivery options are available
  • Free subscription membership setup

Cons

  • No built-in ID scanning
  • Inventory limitations

Square POS system for liquor stores

Square Online free liquor store online ordering website.

Why We Chose Square For Retail As The Best Free Liquor Store POS

We love how accessible the Square for Retail app is both with price and user experience. Small liquor store owners can start selling their products online and in person with almost no upfront investment. Customers can pick up their online orders in-store at a designated time, or you can offer delivery (even if you don't have the staff for in-house delivery).

You also have customer engagement options on the free plan, including sales, discounts, gift card offers, and social media advertising through Square's numerous social media integrations.

Square's free plan may not work for the level of inventory or the number of vendors you work with. At some point, you may need to upgrade to Square For Retail Plus, which is also very affordable.

Note: Square for Retail is free to sign up for. There is a free 30-day trial available on Square for Retail Plus plans.

Square For Retail Pricing

Square For Retail Plans Price  When To Use
Free Plan $0/month (2.6% + $0.10 processing fees) You have a retail store with basic inventory and reporting needs
Pro Plan $89/month (2.5% + $0.10 processing fees) You have a small to mid-sized retail establishment with advanced back-end needs
Premium Plan Custom pricing (2.5% + $0.10 processing fees) You sell more than $250,000 a year

Square’s free plan is only available (and only advisable) for retailers with one location. You may use an unlimited number of POS devices in any one location.

Most of the features that high-stock liquor stores need, such as bulk importing items and vendor management, are only available on the Square for Retail Plus plan. On the Plus plan, you get one register per location. Each additional device costs $40/device/month.

Square also offers add-ons such as:

  • Square Loyalty: $45+/month; offer a points-based reward program to your repeat customers
  • Square Marketing: $15+/month; send automated email and text campaigns about upcoming specials, member opportunities, new releases, and more

Square For Retail Liquor Store POS System Features

Square For Retail Features Availability
Multi-Store Support
Contactless Payments
Multi-Channel Selling
Gift Cards Add-on
Customer Loyalty Add-on
Marketing Tools
Online Ordering
Inventory Management
Reporting
Menu Management
Delivery Management
EBT Acceptance
Employee Management
Text Messaging

Square For Retail’s most unique feature is its completely free online ordering site builder, which allows you to:

  • Create your own branded website using an intuitive website builder
  • Set up an age verification popup on your website
  • Offer online ordering for pickup, local delivery, and shipping
  • Place request forms to take catering orders, get details about special events, or order specialty liquor
  • Offer wine club memberships with varying tiers and payment terms
  • Create events and sell tickets online

Square liquor store POS system

Square POS catering request form on liquor store online ordering website.

If you don’t have the staffing to deliver alcohol, Square integrates with DoorDash, so you can always offer delivery on demand.

Prospective customers will be able to find your products when they search for local liquor store listings with the Google Local Product Listings integration, which will drive more traffic to your store without you having to spend any money on advertising.

Hardware Cost & Options

Square POS hardware

Square POS register and customer-facing display.

The only hardware you absolutely need to use Square for Retail is an iPad or iPhone and a $49 Square contactless card reader ($69 for the newly released second-generation card reader.) However, most liquor store businesses will want a countertop setup that includes the $799 Square Register or the $149 Square Stand, plus peripheral equipment such as a barcode scanner and cash register.

Square hardware kits start at $579 for Square Stand kits, which include a Square iPad stand with an integrated card reader, a cash drawer, a receipt printer, and printer paper.

You may also purchase a Square Register kit, which includes Square’s proprietary register device with a second screen that acts as a customer-facing display, cash drawer, receipt printer, and printer paper, for $1,189.

Payment Processing Costs

You cannot use an outside payment processor with Square for Retail.

On the free version of Square for Retail, Square Payments charges a flat rate of 2.6% + $0.10 for in-person transactions. On the paid version, Square charges 2.5% + $0.10.

Square charges a payment processing fee of 2.9% + $0.30 for online orders, no matter which subscription plan you enroll in.

Contract Requirements/Warnings

Square for Retail contracts are month-to-month, and you can cancel at any time without consequences. The company also has a great hardware warranty.

The only caveat is that since Square is a payment service provider (PSP) rather than a dedicated merchant account provider, the security algorithm is more sensitive; large or suspicious purchases can sometimes trigger a flag on your account (warranted or not). However, most merchants do not experience this problem with Square.

Get Started With Square For Retail

Read our in-depth review

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Revel Systems: Best For Multilocation Stores & Franchises

Total Rating 4.0
Pricing3.6

Ease Of Use3.9

Features4.7

Customer Service4.2

User Reviews3.8

Pricing

Quote-based

Contract

Three-year commitment for lowest rate

Equipment Cost

Call for quote

Pros

  • Retail and restaurant features
  • Strong offline mode
  • Highly customizable system
  • Great multilocation inventory management

Cons

  • Long-term contract
  • Early termination fee
  • No built-in ID scanner

Revel Systems stock transfer between locations.

Revel Systems stock transfer between store locations.

Why We Chose Revel Systems POS For Multilocation Stores & Franchises

Liquor store owners can do almost anything with Revel Systems software. Whether you want to operate multiple locations, franchise your existing liquor store, become an alcohol caterer or consultant, become a featured vendor at a special event in your city, start your own subscription program, or even turn part of your retail store into a restaurant, you can do it with Revel.

Revel has almost limitless potential but doesn't make the day-to-day operations too complicated. The POS register interface is easy for employees to use, and the online ordering page is easy to navigate. You can restrict inventory changes so that only certain employees can update stock levels and vendor information.

This system is not a light investment, but it may just be the right investment for many liquor store owners to take their business to the next level.

Note: Revel does not offer a free trial, but you can sign up for a free guided demo. Ask lots of questions during the demo to get a sense of the system.

Revel Systems POS Pricing

Revel POS Plans Price  When To Use
Revel plan Quote-based: three-year commitment for cheapest plan Use if you are committed to the product and have a need for high-end features.

The advertised pricing has a two-terminal minimum, meaning that the lowest you can pay for this system is $198/month. This price is also only available for business owners who agree to Revel’s standard three-year contract and use of Revel’s in-house payment processor.

However, many of Revel’s best features, including its online ordering features and delivery management, require an extra monthly subscription.

There’s also a mandatory one-time $674 implementation fee, which covers your Revel software setup and personalized training.

Revel Systems Liquor Store POS System Features

Revel POS Features Availability
Multi-Store Support
Contactless Payments
Multi-Channel Selling
Gift Cards
Customer Loyalty
Marketing Tools
Online Ordering
Inventory Management
Reporting
Menu Management
Delivery Management
EBT Acceptance
Employee Management
Text Messaging

Revel has a retail and a restaurant POS system rolled into one software package, so you can sell anything from fresh snacks to entire made-to-order meals along with alcohol. Revel also has a built-in online ordering and delivery system, a catering management system, and a strong offline mode, so you can cater events or sell on-location at vendor events.

Revel has made handling inventory at multiple locations as smooth as possible by including stock transfers between locations, price adjustments based on locations, different low-stock alerts for items in different locations, and preferred vendors depending on each store’s location. You can also change the percentage markup for an individual item or a group of items as a simple way to update your profit margins.

Plus, Revel has created a unique establishment hierarchy tree for franchise owners to manage different locations, accept royalty payments from franchisees, and restrict franchise manager settings so that they can manipulate the POS at their individual locations but not on a company-wide level.

Revel Systems POS system for liquor store

Revel Systems multilocation management settings captured on 3/13/2023.

There are great security features available within the Revel ecosystem, including blind stock takes and till counts so that you can see discrepancies, extensive employee permission settings, and even security camera integrations, so you can have an eye on all locations from one centralized area.

Hardware Cost & Options

Revel Systems POS register

Revel Systems POS register, customer-facing display, receipt printer, and card reader.

All prospective Revel users must get a hardware quote from a Revel representative. You may then purchase hardware directly from Revel or get permission from Revel in writing to purchase specific hardware on your own.

All Revel software, including POS systems, self-serve kiosks, and kitchen display systems, run on iPads or proprietary hardware from providers like Epson.

Payment Processing Costs

Revel offers its own in-house payment processor, Revel Advantage. Revel will ask for information related to your time in business, average transaction size, and sales volumes and then give you a custom quote on payment processing rates.

You may also work with a third-party payment processor, such as Tyro, Moneris, or Adyen, although Revel may charge an added monthly fee if you do.

An added recurring fee may be worth it if a third-party payment processor can offer a much lower rate than Revel (and Revel doesn’t agree to match a better offer).

Contract Requirements/Warnings

Revel’s standard contract length is three years, but we always recommend negotiating a month-to-month contract to start with whenever possible.

This is especially true when it comes to Revel Systems, which has an early termination fee of twice the monthly amount you would have paid over the rest of your contract term, or $15,000, whichever is greater.

Contracts are automatically renewed yearly after your initial contract, but you can cancel it by giving a Revel representative at least a 30-day notice.

Revel is a great POS system, but you should be really sure about this software before committing to it long-term.

Get Started With Revel POS

Read our in-depth review

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KORONA POS: Best Loss Prevention Features

Total Rating 4.4
Pricing4.9

Ease Of Use4.1

Features3.7

Customer Service5.0

User Reviews4.4

Pricing

$59-$69/month

Contract

None

Equipment Cost

Contact for quote

Pros

  • Automated inventory audits and reordering
  • ID scanner availability
  • Several theft prevention measures
  • Choice of payment processor and POS hardware

Cons

  • No integrated security camera
  • Lacking some popular software integrations
  • Interface is slightly dated

KORONA POS system for liquor stores

KORONA POS liquor store employee user role.

Why We Chose KORONA POS For The Best Loss Prevention Features

KORONA offers several liquor store-specific inventory functions, including ID scanning for age verification and third-party software integrations, but its real selling point is the loss prevention features available.

Liquor store owners won't have to worry about theft because they'll be able to quickly weed out employees who are stealing at the register or from the shelves. They also won't have to worry about loss in terms of overstock or spoilage since KORONA provides inventory alerts and inventory level optimization recommendations. You can automatically generate reports on inventory performance so that you know what to order (and what to cut from your automated reordering cycle).

KORONA offers a lot of freedom in terms of payment processors and hardware compatibility, which is rare among the liquor store and convenience store-specific POS options on this list.

Note: KORONA offers an unlimited free trial for you to explore all KORONA has to offer at your own pace before committing to a paid subscription.

KORONA POS Pricing

KORONA offers two monthly plans as well as the following best retail POS system add-ons:

  • Plus: $20/month/terminal; includes advanced inventory management features like order level optimization and the ability to create different product pricing for each location
  • Invoicing: $10/terminal/month; includes features like quotes, rentals, and invoicing
  • Ticketing: $50/month/gate; includes features like ticket tiers and printing, customer management, and entry gate management
  • Franchise: $30/month/franchise; includes features like automated royalty payments and consolidated inventory management
  • Integration: $45/month/integration via KORONA’s open API

Other features, such as self-serve kiosk hardware and software, require a custom quote.

Note: You get a discount if you pay for a year in advance.

KORONA Liquor Store POS System Features

KORONA is a versatile POS system with excellent retail features. It’s best for businesses that may experience an excess of theft and businesses that are interested in franchising since KORONA has franchising capabilities on its higher-tier plans.

Register features include ID scanner prompts, an integrated ID scanner, the ability to pause transactions, transaction monitoring, and detailed cashier reports. It’s possible to integrate KORONA with a liquor store-specific loyalty program, and customers can redeem them at checkout.

You can reduce theft at the register with loss prevention measures, such as forced drawer closing, price change restrictions, blind till counts, manager override requirements, and easy inventory audits.

KORONA POS system for liquor stores

KORONA POS liquor store register manager functions.

KORONA offers a smartphone-based inventory scanner app to perform physical inventory counts without purchasing additional hardware. You’ll get overstock, low-stock, and slow-moving stock alerts so that you can optimize your ordering practices. You can set ideal stock levels for automated reordering and even monitor where shipments are in the delivery process. Employees can receive orders in the back office dashboard, at the register, or on the smartphone-based app.

An eCommerce store builder is available on all KORONA plans. Your website includes an online age verification function, preordering capabilities, custom shipping settings, and multistore support.

Hardware Cost & Options

korona liquor pos

KORONA POS register, barcode scanner, and receipt printer.

KORONA doesn’t list hardware pricing on its website but mentions that its software works on most desktops and tablets.

You can integrate your POS with card readers from Verifone, PAX, Genius, and Econduit. Epson and ESC/POS are common receipt printers that integrate with KORONA. You can add just about any cash drawer or barcode scanner to your setup.

KORONA states that it offers hardware leases and financing, but you can choose your own setup if it costs less.

Payment Processing Costs

KORONA doesn’t include in-house processing, but it integrates with several processors, including Merchant Warehouse and Merchant Payment Systems, as well as various others using Genius and PAX payment terminals.

Contract Requirements/Warnings

KORONA contracts are month-to-month, with the option to pay for a year in advance for a discount. However, if you agree to a hardware lease through KORONA, make sure you read the fine print, since leases can cost you a lot of money over the years (and we generally don’t recommend equipment leases.)

Get Started With KORONA POS

Read our in-depth review

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Shopify POS: Best For Online Sales

Total Rating 4.3
Pricing4.3

Ease Of Use4.9

Features3.9

Customer Service4.8

User Reviews4.4

Pricing

Starts at $29/month

Contract

None

Equipment Cost

$0-$500+

Pros

  • National order shipping (where legal)
  • ID scanner integration
  • Several inventory software integrations
  • Transparent pricing structure

Cons

  • Weak offline mode
  • Add-ons can get pricey
  • No third-party delivery app integrations

Shopify wine & liquor pos

Shopify POS liquor store inventory.

Why We Chose Shopify POS As The Best POS For Online Sales

We're big fans of the fact that Shopify seamlessly connects your online and offline sales. With easy inventory management, advanced shipping functionalities, multichannel sales options, and the ability to buy online for local pickup or delivery, Shopify is a strong choice for liquor stores that have created specialty products and want to sell nationwide (where legal, that is).

Plus, Shopify's POS works on mobile devices, which means you can sell bottles at local events, and your inventory will automatically sync across sales channels.

Features not built into the Shopify platform, such as ID verification (online and in-person) or third-party delivery services, can be found via an app on the Shopify app store. You can even integrate your Shopify eCommerce store with another POS software if you decide on a different in-person sales solution.

Note: Shopify offers a free three-day trial, no credit card required.

Shopify Pricing

Shopify POS Plans Price  When To Use
Basic $39/month ($29/month billed annually) If you have a growing eCommerce business with occasional in-person sales
Shopify $105/month ($79/month billed annually) If you want additional reporting and reduced payment processing fees
Advanced $399/month ($299/month billed annually) If you want advanced reporting and additional discounts on processing fees
Shopify Plus $2,000+/month If your high-volume or large business needs an enterprise-level solution

Shopify’s eCommerce pricing plans range from $39/month to $399/month. You get 25% off if you pay for an entire year upfront. Each eCommerce plan (that comes with a full store) offers the “Shopify POS Lite” app for free.

For more retail features, such as store pickup and unlimited staff accounts, you’ll need the $89/month/location Shopify Pro subscription, which you can add to an eCommerce plan.

Alternatively, Shopify now offers its POS Lite app and POS Pro apps as separate products. This means that you don’t need a Shopify eCommerce subscription to sell in person and with a simple online store (not a full custom Shopify online store).

The POS Lite app without an eCommerce subscription costs $5/month, but Shopify charges such a high transaction fee for sales that signing up for an eCommerce plan (all eCommerce plans come with the POS Lite app) is a better solution for everyone except very small retailers. The POS Pro app without the eCommerce plan is good if your sales are mostly in-person.

Your payment processing rate decreases on higher-level plans. Businesses with larger transaction volumes should strongly consider upgrading to save money in the long run.

Additionally, while there are many free Shopify apps on the company’s app market, some require you to sign up for a paid subscription.

Shopify Liquor Store POS System Features

Shopify POS Features Availability
Multi-Store Support Supports multiple inventory locations
Contactless Payments
Multi-Channel Selling
Gift Cards
Customer Loyalty
Marketing Tools
Online Ordering
Inventory Management
Reporting
Menu Management
Delivery Management
EBT Acceptance
Employee Management
Text Messaging

Though Shopify is primarily known for its stellar eCommerce sales software, it has built an in-person sales app into its core product offering. Businesses that are interested in starting a nationwide wine and spirits club, selling specialty items around the country, distributing alcohol online to restaurants and bars, or performing any other online sales (where legal) can benefit from Shopify’s multichannel selling features.

Shopify’s online selling features start with a great website builder that offers themes for small catalogs, large catalogs, and wholesale, plus an age verification popup, customer accounts, and promotions. Shopify’s admin dashboard includes a shipping suite full of tools to make shipping locally and nationwide (where legal) simple, automatically synced inventory, so you never sell what you don’t have, the ability to print shipping labels, and shipping discounts with major postal carriers.

Shopify POS system for liquor stores

Shopify online liquor store template.

Offline sales features include several ID verification scanner apps, employee permissions, a mobile smartphone-enabled POS app, and the ability to build custom inventory management flows. Local shoppers can buy online and pick up in-store or buy in-store for local delivery.

Many important inventory management features for liquor store owners are not built into the Shopify platform. However, you can get almost any specific feature you need in the form of an app from the Shopify app store. There are apps for purchase ordering, B2B sales, managing alcohol taxes, and building retail catalogs (including a wine-specific catalog-building app), among the thousands of apps available for all sorts of functions.

Hardware Cost & Options

Shopify POS hardware

Shopify POS register stand with card reader.

The Shopify app itself runs on most phones and tablets.

The Shopify Chip & Swipe Reader, which is the bare minimum requirement for taking card and mobile phone payments, starts at $29. The most expensive hardware is the $639 Shopify Star® mPOP™ With Scanner, an all-in-one customizable retail hardware package that’s recommended for liquor stores.

Not sure what equipment your retail POS system needs? Read our post on Shopify hardware choices, which includes pricing and where to source your hardware.

Payment Processing Costs

Shopify payment processing ranges from 2.4% to 2.7% for in-person transactions, depending on which monthly plan you subscribe to. Online payments range from 2.4% to 2.9% (plus a $0.30 flat fee) per transaction.

You can also integrate an outside payment processor, though Shopify will charge a transaction fee ranging from 0.5% to 2%. That extra transaction fee may be worth it if you can get a good payment processing rate with a merchant services provider.

Contract Requirements/Warnings

Shopify plans are month-to-month, with no hidden fees or obligations. However, Shopify does offer a 25% discount on annual plans.

One thing to be aware of is that, like Square, Shopify Payments (powered by Stripe) is a payment service provider, not a merchant services provider, so you won’t get a dedicated merchant account. This type of payment processing model can lead to account stability problems for some merchants.

Get Started With Shopify POS

Read our in-depth review

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IT Retail: Best For Grocery Stores & Markets

IT Retail


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Pros

  • Extensive inventory management
  • Built-in ID scanner
  • Excellent security at register and receiving areas
  • EBT, WIC, weighted item, fresh food sales capable

Cons

  • Pricing is not transparent
  • Must purchase proprietary hardware

IT Retail POS system for liquor stores

IT Retail beer bottle inventory management.

Why We Chose IT Retail POS For Grocery Stores & Markets

Many grocery stores and markets may not yet have considered adding a liquor store component. Other prospective liquor store owners see themselves selling an entire line of retail items or selling food in addition to liquor.

We love IT Retail's focus on providing all the software features and sturdy hardware that a hybrid business needs to organize inventory, create a fast checkout experience, monitor employee activity, and even sell prepared food, all under one roof. It's a scalable option, so if you open more locations or checkout lanes, you won't need to switch to a new system or make any major back-end modifications.

IT Retail allows you to build a custom loyalty points program and associate customers to their loyalty accounts with a loyalty card and phone number. Before customers complete their payment, cashiers are prompted to ask if they want to use their points.

Note: IT Retail does not offer a free trial. You may sign up for a free demo.

IT Retail POS Pricing

IT Retail has a “build and price” page that allows you to get a free quote on a hardware/software plan (for one market) based on the number of lanes you want to put in your store and the kind of hardware you want to add onto your basic IT Retail proprietary hardware setup. You don’t have to contact anyone for a quote — quotes are automatically generated and emailed to you.

The company also offers the following prebuilt packages (only available for businesses with one location):

  • Flex Monthly: $199/month/terminal (pay monthly for your POS software and hardware)
  • Freedom Standard: $1,499/terminal (one-time hardware fee) plus $99/month (software fees)
  • Freedom Premium: $1,999/terminal (one-time hardware fee) plus monthly software fee

The above packages require you to use IT Retail’s in-house payment processor.

IT Retail Liquor Store POS System Features

IT Retail is one of the best grocery store POS systems that has also been adapted for general retail and foodservice establishments. This is why, in addition to liquor sales, you can sell EBT/WIC-eligible items, weighted items such as produce or fresh salad from a salad bar, and made-to-order meals.

IT retail liquor store POS system

IT Retail grocery and liquor store cash register user interface.

IT Retail requires ID verification when scanning an age-restricted item such as a bottle of wine or a six-pack of beer, which allows them to scan a mix of products in one order while maintaining ID verification laws. If a customer doesn’t have their ID on them, cashiers can suspend orders and take other patrons while waiting on the ID.

There are thorough inventory management features, including case breakdowns, automated purchase ordering, expected versus actually received stock, and blind stock counts. It’s easy to create preplanned price changes, use one-click percentage markup adjustments, make pricing adjustments by vendors (handy for when vendors change prices on multiple items), and use shrinkage management features. Stores that offer multiple types of items can specify which items require an ID when creating or updating an item.

This system also has great security features. The POS itself scans through every transaction and flags any suspicious activity. There’s also an electronic diary of all customer transactions, so it’s easy to monitor employee and customer activity. Plus, IT Retail integrates with Remote Eyes, a security system that can monitor the register, receiving areas, and more.

Hardware Cost & Options

IT Retail POS hardware

IT Retail POS register with integrated weight scale, receipt printer, and card reader.

You may pay for your hardware on a monthly basis or all at once. You can use IT Retail’s build and price tool to get a fast, no-contact quote on how much you can expect to pay for your exact system setup.

IT Retail’s base hardware offering includes a touch PC, barcode scanner, receipt printer, cash drawer, pin pad, and customer display. You may add additional barcode scanners or register scales to your hardware package.

Payment Processing Costs

IT Retail offers its own in-house payment processor with flat-rate and interchange-plus pricing. You must get a quote from IT Retail for your specific payment processing rate.

Contract Requirements/Warnings

IT Retail is a highly customizable system, so you must read your contract thoroughly to make sure you’re getting the best terms.

There are no returns on hardware, so make sure IT Retail is the right POS for you before buying your hardware upfront.

IT Retail advertises that it provides the lowest payment processing rates, so shop around with other payment processors for a lower rate, then approach IT Retail and ask them to match the lowest rate.

Get Started With IT Retail

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POS Nation: Best For Convenience Stores

POS Nation


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Pros

  • Alcohol, tobacco, and lottery inventory management
  • Integrated security cameras
  • Built-in ID scanner
  • Automated purchase ordering

Cons

  • Pricing is not transparent
  • Must buy proprietary hardware
  • Dated interface

POS nation convenience store POS ID scanner.

POS Nation integrated ID scanner at checkout.

Why We Chose POS Nation For Convenience Stores

POS Nation tops our list of the best POS systems for convenience stores because it provides everything a convenience store would need to sell and report on. We appreciate that it was built to easily handle convenience food, cigarette, vape, liquor, and lottery ticket sales.

Inventory management is designed for breaking down cases of alcohol and tobacco, easy reordering of items that are low in stock, and mix-and-match sales. You can get reports on inventory performance, employee activity, lottery sales, and more to assess the overall health of your convenience store business. Lots of security features help reduce shrinkage.

Plus, POS Nation has a solid loyalty program for attracting the neighborhood locals to your shop over and over.

Note: POS Nation does not offer a free trial. You may sign up for a free demo.

POS Nation Pricing

POS Nation has a “build and price” page that you can use to get an idea of how much you may pay per month for POS hardware and software.

The company also advertises the following prebuilt packages:

  • Flex Monthly: $149/terminal/month (pay monthly for your hardware and software)
  • Freedom: $999/terminal (one-time hardware fee) plus monthly software fee

POS Nation Liquor Store POS System Features

Like IT Retail, POS Nation is a POS system meant for businesses selling various everyday items. However, POS Nation puts a strong focus on lottery, cigarette/cigar, and vape sales in addition to retail food and drink sales.

POS Nation has an age verification prompt at the register, an integrated ID scanner, case breaking for liquor and tobacco products, and state-specific sales reporting to comply with your state’s liquor/tobacco laws. You can also start a cash discount program at the register to avoid payment processing fees.

The system includes automated purchase ordering, label printing, and the ability to group related items in an inventory matrix for easy reordering and price adjustments. You can easily set up mix-and-match bottle sales, food and drink specials, and scheduled discounts.

POS Nation liquor store POS system

POS Nation liquor inventory.

POS Nation combines POS transaction and order-receiving monitoring, employee permissions, blind and forced till counts, and integrated in-store security footage to help minimize shrinkage, which is a huge problem in the convenience store industry.

There’s also a limited eCommerce sales functionality built into POS Nation, with local pickup and delivery options available.

Hardware Cost & Options

POS Nation hardware

POS Nation register, card reader, receipt printer, barcode scanner, and customer-facing order display pole.

Your entire hardware package, including an ID scanner, will come with custom pricing. You’ll have to contact POS Nation to get detailed hardware pricing.

Payment Processing Costs

POS Nation has partnered with merchant service providers, such as Worldpay, Heartland, and North American Bancard, to offer payment processing services. POS Nation advertises that it will provide a payment processing rate comparison among its processor partners and help you fill out your own merchant account application.

However, do your own independent research (i.e., get quotes from merchant services providers) to ensure you get the best payment processing rates possible for your business.

Contract Requirements/Warnings

You can’t return your upfront hardware purchases, so make sure POS Nation is right for you before sinking money into proprietary hardware investments.

You can cancel a monthly plan with no early termination fees, so consider signing up for a plan that allows you to pay for the hardware and software on a monthly basis before committing to a long-term subscription.

Get Started With POS Nation

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mPower Beverage: Best For Large Liquor Distributors

mPower Beverage


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Pros

  • Excellent large inventory and wholesale management
  • Several store reports available
  • Good purchase ordering/receiving functions
  • Customer/order recall available on POS

Cons

  • Only works with Windows devices
  • Large upfront investment
  • Interface is slightly dated

mPower Beverage liquor store POS

mPower Beverage liquor store POS checkout interface.

Why We Chose mPower Beverage POS For Large Liquor Distributors

We like that mPower Beverage offers excellent inventory management, purchase ordering/receiving, and store reporting features, which make it easy for liquor distributors to determine how much stock to bring in and where to transfer items, and to optimize their profit margins.

mPower users get two Windows-based apps: mPower POS and mPower Back Office. The POS itself offers strong customer management, security features, and inventory information on-screen. Customers can order for layaway, request store items, and use store credit. On the mPower Back Office software, you can automatically generate vendor information and need-to-order lists, and send off purchase orders via email, fax, or printing.

While the interface itself is a bit dated, we appreciate how thoroughly the POS and back office functions were designed.

mPower Beverage POS Pricing

mPower Beverage requires a $1,000 upfront investment in a single register and costs $120/month. Each additional register has an upfront fee of $250 and an added $120/month.

mPower Beverage Liquor Store POS System Features

mPower’s best POS features for liquor distributors are 1) the ability to pull up customer orders and payment information at the POS so that established customers can pick up their orders and you can offer layaway at the register, and 2) the ability to apply promotions to different customer groups.

The best back office features include:

  • Detailed Store Reports: You can generate 70+ reports on anything from customer activity to employee sales to product movement for any custom date range you choose. This will inform your future business decisions such as targeted promotions for your most valued customers.
  • Security Features: Business owners can choose who gets to see reports, order merchandise, set par levels, and authorize sales. While mPower Beverage is a locally-installed system, you can also set up remote admin management with the same security feature settings.
  • Purchase Ordering/Receiving: It’s easy to set minimum/maximum item levels, get low-stock notifications at any location, and get suggestions on purchase order/inventory transfer actions. You can easily create a list of need-to-order items by vendor and the software will automatically generate purchase orders for you, automatically populating vendor information. Then you send orders off via email, fax, or print and receive full/partial orders as they come.
  • Inventory Entry/Monitoring: mPower Beverage provides several inventory entry detail options such as age, country of origin, supplier information, and even options such as organic and kosher. You can choose whether items can be used to build kits, whether they may be transferred to another location, and vary prices by location/customer type. You can monitor any inventory movement of any product, as the software automatically records any action a user performs related to that product (e.g. a sale, transfer between locations, stock update, advance orders, etc.)

mPower Beverage POS for liquor store

mPower Beverage Back Office store reports.

Hardware Cost & Options

mPower Beverage works with Windows devices, and the company will remotely install the software on Windows 10 or 11 devices. You must pay per POS software license, but you may install mPower Back Office on any number of devices.

The company states that you may purchase hardware such as cash registers, ID scanners, receipt printers, and barcode scanners from a third-party source or from mPower Beverage.

Payment Processing Costs

mPower Beverage offers in-house payment processing and states that the software integrates with third-party payment processing, but does not share any information on integration partners with merchant services providers.

Contract Requirements/Warnings

mPower Beverage provides custom contracts for users. Be on the lookout for any early termination fees.

Get Started With mPower Beverage

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Methodology

Merchant Maverick has been researching and reviewing POS providers since 2012. Our writers have tested over 100 different point of sale systems, evaluating pricing, features, ease of use, customer service, and user reviewers. Read more about how we rate POS providers.

When comparing different POS software systems, we consider many data points, including relative pricing, the depth of niche features offered, the price of hardware, and any associated payment processing fees. Our lists of the best providers include only apps we’ve deemed worthwhile from multiple vantage points. The POS vendors we pick share qualities such as widespread availability, accessibility, user-friendliness, and reasonable pricing. We also look carefully at niche features, such as check-splitting, inventory management, eCommerce, loyalty programs, gift cards, and more.

We spend an average of 10-15 hours researching and updating each one of our lists, making sure the providers included meet our internal standards for quality and reputation.

80+

Vendors evaluated

65+

Attributes assessed per vendor

20+

Features weighed

30+

Combined years of experience


How To Choose The Best POS System For Your Liquor Store

Here are some universal questions to ask yourself to help narrow down your choices.

Do You Want To Sell Anything Besides Liquor At Your Store?

Some liquor store owners want to focus solely on bottle sales, and most of the best retail POS systems have inventory management capabilities for stores like this.

However, if you plan on building a little cafe or adding a liquor section to a full-scale market, you’ll need a POS system with perishable inventory management capabilities, the ability to tag ID-required items, and possibly some basic quick-store restaurant ordering features.

If you plan on opening a convenience store, you may want to offer standard convenience store items, such as lottery tickets and tobacco products. Your POS should have integrated lottery payout and cigarette case breakdown functions.

Do You Want To Sell Liquor Outside Your Storefront?

If you’re planning on catering, attending local vendor events, selling to restaurants or bars, selling at farmers markets or popup events, or hosting your own events at locations other than your main storefront, you should ideally find POS software that has a strong offline mode. The best mobile POS systems allow you to sell from just about anywhere.

This will ensure that you can always take orders no matter where you are. You’ll most likely use an iPad, smartphone mobile POS, or a provider-specific mobile device to complete orders on the go. There are many iPad POS systems available if you’re loyal to the Apple brand.

Of course, if you plan on selling liquor online, you’ll need a strong eCommerce website or ordering platform. Liquor stores with specialty products may consider a POS provider with nationwide shipping settings and local delivery capabilities. Look into eCommerce POS integrations for more information.

If you’re selling at multiple locations, make sure you’re handling your accounting accordingly as keeping up with multi-store inventory can be tricky. There are many POS systems that integrate with QuickBooks that still provide the functionality a liquor store owner needs.

Do You Plan On Expanding Your Storefront Locations?

Some POS options are better suited for expansion than others. If you’re interested in having multiple locations or franchising your business, choose one with strong multi-location POS inventory management and individual store performance reports. POS reporting can be very basic, but there are advanced POS reports you can use as well.

Try to pick a POS that’s easy to use so that multiple employees can quickly get trained on checkout and stock takes. Also, choose a system that has several employee user permissions to reduce the chances of theft or careless mistakes on the back end of your business.

What Payment Processing Options Are Available?

No matter what kind of store you decide to run, you want the best payment processor available. For smaller stores, it may be best to work with a payment services provider instead of getting a merchant account.

However, if you have a substantial number of sales and your business is stable enough to be considered “low risk,” then it’s time to consider getting a dedicated merchant account with the lowest payment processing rates (but with reasonable monthly merchant account fees) possible.

If you expect your sales to grow quickly (or you already have a substantial sales volume), you should pick a POS that has several payment processor options available or one where you have the ability to renegotiate your current payment processor rates.

How Much Are You Willing To Pay For Your System?

Business owners, especially those with a tight budget, always have to consider a software’s price above all. The cost of POS can vary from provider to provider, but there are good free POS systems.

If you have very little funding to invest in your POS system, find a system that has the features you absolutely need but not a lot of advanced features. Once you pull in more revenue (and have more inventory and sales channel needs), consider switching to more expensive but more feature-heavy software.

Which Liquor Store POS System Is Right For Your Business?

A POS system for liquor stores can help you with many pain points. For example, a liquor POS can help you manage your large inventory, easily updating your prices and discounts. A good liquor store POS may even send a purchase order for you when stocks fall below a certain threshold. There are also many instances of theft in the industry, and a liquor store POS system can help improve your business’s security.

As you decide which POS system to choose, read up on how to read and negotiate a good merchant agreement, and check on your liquor liability insurance!

FAQs: Best POS System For Liquor Store

How much does a liquor POS system cost?

A liquor store POS costs between $0 and $300/month (or more), depending on the POS provider, number of terminals and locations, and advanced features.

What's the best POS system for a bar?

The best bar POS systems include Square, Clover, Lightspeed Restaurant, Revel Systems, and TouchBistro. The right bar POS for you depends on your business size, budget, and service offerings.

How do you log liquor store inventory using a POS system?

You log liquor store inventory using your POS system’s built-in bottle inventory and vendor management functions or by integrating your POS with alcohol-specific inventory software.

The best liquor store POS systems have case and bottle breakdown, mix-and-match discount settings, and easy purchase ordering capabilities.

Is it legal for liquor stores to sell online?

It is legal for liquor stores to sell online in certain states. Be sure to check your state’s liquor eCommerce sales requirements before creating an online store.

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Nicolette Kier

Nicolette Kier

Senior Staff Writer
Nicolette began writing on small business topics in 2020. After hundreds of hours researching, testing, and assisting small business owners with web building and point of sale software, she is now an expert on all things eCommerce and point of sale. She has a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Pittsburgh and resides in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Nicolette Kier
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