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What Is A QR Code Payment? Everything You Need To Know About Scan To Pay Methods

How do you pay with a QR code? Are QR code payments worth investing in as a small business? Keep on reading to find out more.

    Shannon Vissers
  • UPDATED

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

QR code payment options are offered at more and more small businesses. Also called “scan to pay,” QR payment technology is easy to implement. Accepting a QR code payment can be as simple as printing a code that your customer can scan with their phone’s camera. Your customers can also complete a scan-to-pay transaction by scanning a QR code on your POS screen, or by presenting a QR code your business can scan with a laser scanner. Importantly, your small business will need a QR code payment app to accept this modern payment form.

Keep reading to learn more about QR code payments and how to offer a “Pay with QR code” option.

Learn More About Our Top Picks

CompanyBest ForNext StepsBest For
Square POS

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  • 2.9% + $0.30 QR code processing
  • $0+/month
  • Suitable for any business type
  • 2.9% + $0.30 QR code processing
  • $0+/month
  • Suitable for any business type

Visit Site

Read More

PaymentCloud

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  • QR code processing fees not listed
  • Monthly pricing not listed
  • Suitable for high risk businesses
  • QR code processing fees not listed
  • Monthly pricing not listed
  • Suitable for high risk businesses

Visit Site

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Toast POS

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  • 3.5% + $0.15 for QR code processing
  • $0+/month
  • Suitable for restaurants
  • 3.5% + $0.15 for QR code processing
  • $0+/month
  • Suitable for restaurants

Visit Site

Read More

Clover POS

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  • 3.5% + $0.10 Apple Pay QR code payments
  • $14.95+/month
  • Suitable for restaurants, retailers, service businesses
  • 3.5% + $0.10 Apple Pay QR code payments
  • $14.95+/month
  • Suitable for restaurants, retailers, service businesses

Visit Site

Read More

Lightspeed Restaurant POS

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  • 2.6% + $0.30 for QR code processing
  • $39+/month
  • Suitable for restaurants
  • 2.6% + $0.30 for QR code processing
  • $39+/month
  • Suitable for restaurants

Visit Site

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Venmo

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  • 1.9% + $0.10 for QR code processing
  • $0/month
  • Suitable for most small businesses
  • 1.9% + $0.10 for QR code processing
  • $0/month
  • Suitable for most small businesses

Visit Site

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PayPal Zettle

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  • 1.9-2.4% + $0.05-$0.10 for QR code processing
  • $0/month
  • Suitable for small retail & small restaurant businesses
  • 1.9-2.4% + $0.05-$0.10 for QR code processing
  • $0/month
  • Suitable for small retail & small restaurant businesses

Visit Site

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Read more below to learn why we chose these options.

What Is A QR Code Payment? 

A QR code is a “Quick Response” code, a type of two-dimensional barcode that’s scannable with a smartphone camera or 2D barcode reader. QR codes can be used to share information or to complete a mobile, online payment.

To pay with a QR code, upon scanning a merchant’s code, the customer is prompted to open a website or QR code payment app where they can complete their payment electronically by entering their credit card details or using a mobile wallet like Apple Pay.

Businesses can also process QR code transactions by scanning a customer’s QR code. For example, the customer might have a plastic gift card with a QR code printed on it or a digital QR code saved in their mobile wallet.

How Do QR Code Payments Work?

There are a couple different ways to accept QR code payments at your business. Here’s how it can work.

Displaying A QR Code That Customers Can Scan To Pay

One way a customer can pay with QR code is by scanning your business’s QR code.

  • The Customer Needs a Smartphone: To pay with a merchant’s QR code, the customer needs to scan the code using their phone’s camera.
  • Can Be Digital Or Physical: The merchant’s QR code can be printed (e.g., on a sign or a receipt) or displayed on a screen.
  • Works In-Person Or Online: Merchants can display QR codes at their brick-and-mortar stores or online using their website.
  • You Business Needs A QR Code App: To generate a QR code, your business needs an account associated with that particular QR code app, such as Venmo, Square, or another software service.
  • Your Customer May Not Need An App: With some QR code payments, the customer will need to use a specific QR code payment app. But in many cases, the customer can scan your code and complete payment in a browser without needing to use a particular app or account.

Scanning A Customer’s QR Code

Businesses can also scan customers’ QR codes to collect payment.

  • The Customer Can Use An App Or Mobile Wallet: The customer may pay with a QR payment code saved to their mobile wallet or using a QR code payment app that lets them display a QR code linked to their saved payment information.
  • You Will Need That App, Too: To accept a customer’s QR code payment, your point of sale will need to be configured to use the same QR code payment app, service, or POS software that generated the code.
  • The Customer Can Also Show You A Printed Code: The customer’s printed QR code might show proof of a completed payment, such as with a physical gift card that has a QR code printed on it.
  • You Need The Right Equipment: To scan a QR payment code, your business will need a mobile POS device (smartphone or tablet) with a camera, or a 2D barcode scanner that can read QR codes.

7 Best Scan To Pay & QR Code Payment Apps

A QR code payment app should include features to make QR transactions as fast, painless, and universal as possible. Some important scan to pay app features include ease of use for customers, low fees for businesses, and POS system integration. Small businesses should consider these top QR code payment apps.

1. Square: Best For Versatility

Square POS


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Pros

  • No monthly fee
  • Multiple ways to accept QR code payments
  • Works for mobile, online, & brick-and-mortar businesses in any industry
  • Customer doesn’t need to have any particular app installed

Cons

  • Possible issues with account stability
  • Doesn’t integrate with third-party QR code apps like Venmo

Square Pricing

Square’s regular monthly price is $0/month, though the POS company also offers paid plans and paid add-ons. You do not need to be on a paid plan to utilize Square’s QR code payment features.

Square charges 2.9% + $0.30 on QR code transactions, which is the same price Square charges for all online payments.

Where Square Really Shines

Square is an all-in-one point of sale system you can use to take payments at your brick-and-mortar business, on the go, or online, using any combination of Square POS hardware options and add-ons. Square can be used for just about any industry and any size business, though it’s especially popular with quick-serve restaurants, small retailers, mobile businesses, and service-based businesses (such as hairstylists).

There are multiple ways to accept QR code payments at your business using Square. When completing any transaction on the Square POS app, the customer can scan a QR code on your POS device and pay on their own phone—and also add a tip, if they like. You can also print out QR codes on receipts or for a larger display, and offer online QR codes.

Square Features

  • Free QR code payment app
  • Comes with free online store
  • Square QR codes accept payments from all major credit and debit cards, Apple Pay, Google Pay, Square Pay & AfterPay
  • Accept printed, digital, mobile, brick-and-mortar, & online QR code payments

Contract Requirements/Warnings

Square contracts are pay-as-you-go/month-to-month, which means you can stop using Square at any time without incurring a penalty. However, Square does not offer users a dedicated merchant account, which can equate to less account stability compared to if you were to use a POS system with a traditional merchant account.

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2. PaymentCloud: Best For High-Risk Merchants

PaymentCloud


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Exclusive Promo: PaymentCloud will give you $200 if they can't beat your current rate. Get Your Quote

Pros

  • Reputable high-risk processor
  • Online & printed QR codes
  • Stripe alternative for high-risk businesses
  • Samsung Pay & Apple Pay integrations

Cons

  • Pricing is not transparent

PaymentCloud Pricing

Payment Cloud does not list its monthly or transaction prices (including prices for QR code payment processing) on its website. This is common practice among high-risk processors, as rates are usually customized for each particular business based on their business’s type, processing history, sales volume, credit history, and other factors.

Where PaymentCloud Really Shines

PaymentCloud differentiates itself from other payment processors not just because it caters to high-risk businesses, but because it is one of the few reputable processors in the high-risk processing space. This processor is so well-regarded that low-risk processors such as Stripe and Dharma Merchant Services commonly refer rejected applicants to PaymentCloud.

PaymentCloud allows high-risk businesses to accept a variety of electronic payment forms, including QR codes, via its acquisition of contactless mobile payment platform paysley. You can send QR payment links to your customers via a text or email invoice, or they can scan a QR code from a printed receipt. The customer then completes the payment on their phone by entering their credit card info or approving the transaction with Apple Pay or Samsung Pay. PaymentCloud QR codes are ideal for remote businesses that sell online, over the phone, via catalog sales, etc., as well as in-person retail.

PaymentCloud Features

  • Payment processing for high-risk businesses such as MOTO, adult, crypto, CBD, vape, & others
  • No need for customers to download QR code payment app
  • QR payment codes can be scanned from screen, printed receipt, or invoice
  • POS hardware options include Clover, Poynt, & others
  • Customers can pay with Apple Pay or Samsung Pay accounts
  • Can be used in retail, mobile, or eCommerce settings

Contract Requirements/Warnings

PaymentCloud does not list its contract information on its website. In general, lower-risk businesses may be eligible for month-to-month contracts, while higher-risk businesses will likely have to sign long-term contracts.

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3. Toast: Best Android Restaurant POS

Toast POS


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Pros

  • POS system designed specifically for restaurants
  • Built-in scan-to-pay system
  • Integrates with Apple Pay
  • Integrates with your marketing & loyalty

Cons

  • Card-not-present transaction fees charged for QR code payments
  • Long-term processing contract

Toast Pricing

Toast plans range from $0/month to $165/month (the free plan has higher credit card processing rate) and there are also custom pricing plans available. However, Toast’s QR code payment system, Toast Mobile Order & Pay™, is a paid add-on and Toast does not list the pricing for this add-on on its website.

Scan to pay transactions are charged at Toast’s card-not-present rate: 3.5% + $0.15 for Visa, Mastercard, and Discover, and 3.89% + $0.15 for AMEX.

Where Toast Really Shines

Toast is an Android POS system designed expressly for restaurants. This tech-forward system is an excellent choice for any type of restaurant business that wants to modernize its ordering system. In addition to built-in QR code payment acceptance, Toast has many other digital ordering and payment options, including tableside ordering devices for servers, online ordering with curbside pickup, delivery management, and mobile ordering with the Toast Takeout app. Toast also makes it easy for your patrons to both order and pay from their own phones with Scan to pay.

Toast’s QR code system works great for fast-casual setups with dine-in or takeout customers. To complete a QR code payment in Toast with Scan to pay, your customer scans a printed QR code to browse your menu, order, and pay, all from their mobile device. iPhone users also have the option to pay with Apple Pay. If you have the Toast Loyalty add-on, customers will also be prompted to sign up for rewards when they check out with Scan to pay.

Toast Features

  • Android POS hardware built for restaurants
  • Scan to pay add-on includes QR code menus, ordering, & payments
  • Collect guest data on each transaction that you can use with your marketing & loyalty programs
  • Prompts every guest to sign up for your loyalty program at checkout
  • Encourages higher customer spending with item descriptions, filters, & modifiers
  • Add-on options for payroll, KDS, gift cards, email marketing & more

Contract Requirements/Warnings

Toast requires a 2+ year contract and there may be an early termination fee if you depart your contract early. Before signing up for Toast, make sure you are ready to make a commitment to this POS system.

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4. Clover: Best All-In-One POS System

Clover POS


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Pros

  • Apple Pay QR code payments for restaurants
  • Venmo & PayPal QR code payments for any business
  • All-in-one POS system
  • Month-to-month pricing

Cons

  • Card-not-present transaction fees for QR code payments with Clover Dining
  • Customer must have Apple Pay, Venmo, or PayPal for QR code payment

Clover Pricing

Clover pricing and costs depend on your plan and how many devices you use. Clover Dining plans for restaurants start at $44.95/month for one device, and there is a starter plan for retail and other industries that’s just $14.95/month for one device. Note that these prices relate only to plans purchased directly from Clover.com.

As for transaction fees, Clover charges card-not-present rates for QR code Apple Pay transactions — 3.5% + $0.10. To accept PayPal and Venmo, you’ll just pay PayPal or Venmo’s fee to accept QR code payments (Clover doesn’t add an additional fee).

Where Clover Really Shines

Clover is a popular Android-based POS system that combines sleek hardware with payment processing in one all-in-one point of sale system. Clover has several hardware options–including Clover Station, Clover Mini, and Clover Flex–and can be used in many different industries. Clover also has a few ways that customers can pay with QR code.

Restaurants using Clover Dining can allow customers to scan a QR payment code on their receipt to pay on their iPhone using Apple Pay. Clover also integrates with PayPal and Venmo. To accept a PayPal or Venmo payment on a Clover POS device, the merchant simply displays a QR code on their screen, which customers can scan to pay using their PayPal or Venmo app.

Clover Features

  • Multiple types of QR codes accepted (Apple Pay, Venmo, & PayPal)
  • Apple Pay QR code printed on restaurant receipts
  • Digital scan-to-pay QR codes displayed on POS screen (for Venmo & PayPal payments)
  • Industry-specific POS plans tailored to different industries
  • POS system available for purchase through multiple vendors & MSPs

Contract Requirements/Warnings

Clover plans purchased through Clover.com are pay-as-you-go with a month-to-month contract. However, different Clover vendors have different terms, which means a poorly rated Clover vendor/payment processor might stick you with a long-term service agreement.

Get Started With Clover POS

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5. Lightspeed Restaurant: Best iPad Restaurant POS

Lightspeed Restaurant POS


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Pros

  • Restaurant-specific POS
  • QR code payments for online orders & dine-in
  • Also works for hotel restaurants/room service
  • Numerous integrations

Cons

  • Can get expensive with add-ons

Lightspeed Pricing

Lightspeed Restaurant pricing starts at $39/month. However, Order Anywhere, Lightspeed’s paid add-on that includes QR code ordering and payments, carries an additional monthly charge. The fee for Order Anywhere is not listed on Lightspeed’s website so you’ll have to reach out to the company for a quote.

Where Lightspeed Restaurant Really Shines

Lightspeed Restaurant is an iPad restaurant POS with numerous features, options, and integrations. Built for speed and simplicity, Lightspeed is easy to use and train your restaurant employees on. Lightspeed is an all-in-one system like Toast and includes built-in payment processing like Toast (though Lightsped gives you the option to use an outside processor if desired). Lightspeed’s QR code payment system also works similarly to Toast’s, letting customers pay using QR codes online or at your restaurant for dine-in or takeout.

To accept QR code orders and payments at your restaurant, you can print out QR codes as table signs or add them as an image to your website. In your back office, you can configure your QR codes to direct to either your pickup/delivery website, or to your dine-in location, depending on whether you want to use QR codes for online or dine-in orders. Hotel restaurants offering room service can also use Lightspeed Restaurant with QR code ordering.

Lightspeed Restaurant Features

  • No need for customers to download QR code payment app
  • Dine-in & online ordering options for QR code payments
  • No long-term commitment
  • Hotel PMS integrations
  • Integrates with many other restaurant industry apps
  • In-house delivery, loyalty, KDS, gift cards, & other add-ons

Contract Requirements/Warnings

Lightspeed Restaurant offers month-to-month pricing with no long-term contract.

Get Started With Lightspeed Restaurant POS

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6. Venmo: Best For Getting Started With QR Code Payments

Venmo


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Pros

  • Accept Venmo payments in-person
  • QR code processing at only 1.9% + $0.10
  • Integrates with PayPal Zettle and Clover POS
  • Can be used to accept QR code payments without a POS

Cons

  • Customer needs to have Venmo app
  • Limited POS integration options

Venmo Pricing

Venmo does not charge businesses any monthly fee to use its services.

On QR code payments, Venmo charges businesses a flat fee of 1.9% + $0.10.

Where Venmo Really Shines

Venmo makes mobile payments easy for small businesses and their customers. There are several ways businesses can accept payments using PayPal-owned Venmo, including QR code payments. Venmo QR payments come with no monthly fees and affordable processing fees. You can use Venmo QR codes with an integrated POS, or separately from your POS system.

To accept a QR code payment at your business, your customer can scan your business’s printed or digital QR code with their Venmo app. Alternatively, you can scan the customer’s QR code in their Venmo app. Fortunately, most people have Venmo installed on their phone already–especially if your customer base includes a lot of millennials and Gen Z.

Although Venmo QR code payments may not integrate with your POS, Venmo can be a good way to get started with QR code payments at your business. Venmo can also be useful for new businesses that don’t have a full POS system yet, and you can get shoutouts in customers’ Venmo feeds every time they shop via QR code (if their account is set to public). Learn more by reading our article using Venmo for businesses.

Venmo Features

  • Use with or without a POS
  • No monthly fee
  • Multiple ways to accept QR code payments
  • Free marketing in customers’ Venmo feeds
  • Uses an app most customers have already

Contract Requirements/Warnings

Venmo has no contract for businesses; you can stop using Venmo at any time.

Get Started With Venmo

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7. PayPal Zettle: Best For Accepting PayPal In-Person

PayPal Zettle


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Pros

  • Accept in-person PayPal and Venmo payments
  • Reasonable fee for QR code payments
  • No monthly fee
  • Integrates with your PayPal Business Account

Cons

  • Basic mobile POS not ideal for larger businesses
  • Customer needs PayPal or Venmo to make QR payment

PayPal Zettle Pricing

PayPal Zettle is a free point of sale app with no monthly fee.

On QR code transactions $10.01 and above, PayPal Zettle merchants are billed 1.9% + $0.10, while QR code transactions $10.00 and under are 2.4% + $0.05.

Where PayPal Zettle Really Shines

PayPal’s mobile POS app, PayPal Zettle, can be used to accept in-person PayPal and Venmo QR code payments at your business. The app also features automatic syncing with your PayPal Business account, making Zettle an ideal mobile POS for PayPal sellers who also sell in person. It’s also free to use, with no monthly software fee. You can use Zettle as a mobile POS for on-the-go credit card processing and QR code payments, or as part of a countertop POS solution.  

To have your customer pay with a QR code, simply enter the amount due on your PayPal Zettle app and select “QR code.” Your customer then opens the Venmo or PayPal app on their phone, scans the code, and payment is processed. Your customer can also scan your business’s printed signage with your QR code. The customer will need to have their own PayPal and Venmo accounts (and apps) in order to scan for mobile payment.

PayPal Zettle Features

  • Mobile POS for smartphones & countertop POS for iPad
  • Can be used for restaurants or retail
  • Syncs with your PayPal business account
  • Printed and in-app PayPal QR codes
  • First Bluetooth card reader is only $29 & includes screen, PIN pad
  • Complimentary signage to let your customers know you accept PayPal in-person
  • Integrates with QuickBooks, SalesVu, BigCommerce, WooCommerce, & several other POS systems

Contract Requirements/Warnings

PayPal Zettle is month-to-month with no contract.

Get Started With PayPal Zettle

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Why You Should Offer Customers A “Pay With QR Code” Option

QR codes have been around since 1994 but didn’t really take off as a way to accept payments until the COVID-19 pandemic. During COVID, QR codes became known as a “socially distanced” payment form that allowed merchants to accept mobile payments at a safe distance. But even as COVID-related restrictions fade, QR codes remain a popular payment option.

In fact, in the first quarter of 2022—long after social distancing fell out of practice in most business settings–QR code scans were up 433% compared to 2021.

Advantages Of QR Code Payments

As follows are some major advantages to accepting QR code payments at your business:

  • Reduces Staffing Needs: Since customers complete QR code transactions entirely themselves, on their own phones, this reduces staffing needs in both retail and restaurant settings. Restaurants can especially stand to benefit from QR codes, since QR codes can be used both to order and pay for food, greatly reducing the burden on servers.
  • Saves Time: Particularly when combined with QR code ordering such as in a restaurant or quick-serve setting, QR code payments can save a lot of time. The customer doesn’t have to wait in line to order and pay, or wait at the table for the server to come and take their order or bring the check after the meal. Not only is the customer’s time saved, but the business benefits from a quicker turnover.
  • Can Be Used In A Variety Of Settings: Versatile QR codes can be printed or scanned from a screen, making them suitable for a variety of business settings and models. They can be used to make payments online or in person, at your POS or from another area of your business such as the sales floor or a restaurant table. QR codes can also be used in unique settings such as stadium concessions or ghost kitchens.
  • May Increase Customer Spend: When customers can order and pay on their own, they are likely to spend more. For example, according to Toast, average check size is approximately 9% higher for customers using QR code payments vs. standard dine-in.
  • Increases Engagement: QR code payment links can request customer information such as their name and email address, which can be used for CRM. QR code payment systems integrate easily with your email marketing and loyalty program, turning one-time customers into loyal fans.
  • Easy Price Updates: QR codes direct the scanner to an online payment page that the business owner can modify at their discretion. This makes it easy for restaurants and other businesses to update their pricing as needed, particularly during this time of rising costs.

Disadvantages Of QR Code Payments

There are also some downsides to making QR code payments standard at your business.

  • Usually Charged At Card-Not-Present Rate: Since QR code payments are technically online payments, they are charged at a higher rate than the standard in-person processing rate. QR code payments may be charged at the processor’s online rate, card-not-present rate, or its own separate rate.
  • Not As Easy For Older Customers: QR code payments may be easy for younger consumers who are used to using their smartphones for everything, but older customers may struggle to figure it out. And of course, not everyone even has a smartphone.
  • Not Universal: Different QR code payment systems use different apps and methods. Your customer may not have the right app installed to make a QR code payment. For example, your business may accept Venmo QR code payments but your customer doesn’t have a Venmo account. Or, your QR code payment system may connect with Apple Pay but your customer uses an Android or doesn’t have Apple Pay configured on their iPhone.

Is “Scan To Pay” Better Than “Tap To Pay”?

QR code payments, or “scan-to-pay,” are different from “tap-to-pay,” or NFC payments. Tapped payments (NFC) use “Near Field Communication” in which a mobile device or contactless credit card must be held closely—within about an inch—to an NFC-enabled payment reader. These two payment forms do have certain things in common, though, as they are both technically contactless, and both can use mobile wallets such as Apple Pay.

Tap to pay is quicker and easier to use than scan to pay. A payment from an Apple Watch or contactless credit card is nearly instantaneous. But scan to pay has the advantage of allowing customers to make a payment on their own, from anywhere. There’s no POS hardware required, nor is any staff needed to take the payment.

It’s important to note that businesses can offer both QR codes and NFC payment acceptance—you don’t have to use one or the other. And most modern credit card terminals are already equipped with NFC acceptance.

8 Questions To Ask Before Adding A “Pay With QR Code” Option

The answers to these questions can help you determine if QR code payments are right for your business, and how you might go about implementing this tech. Answer the questions and then read the explainer afterwards.

  1. Do you want to switch POS systems or would you rather integrate QR code payments into your current POS?
  2. Does your POS offer in-house QR code payments? If not, does it integrate with any QR payment apps?
  3. How much does your current POS charge for QR code payments (if this service is offered)?
  4. Do you want to/have to stay with your current merchant account provider?
  5. How would you incorporate QR codes into your current business model or ordering system?
  6. Do you have a lot of Millennial and Gen Z customers?
  7. Do you operate a restaurant? If so, what kind of restaurant?
  8. Do you already use other digital tools such as email marketing or an electronic loyalty program?

And here’s why we ask those questions:

It’s good to have a plan in place as to how you will use QR code payments at your business before pulling the trigger. Firstly, you’ll need to make sure you can afford to implement QR code payments and can easily incorporate them into your current payment system. Depending on your circumstances, you may want to switch to a whole new POS altogether.

If you want to stick with your current merchant account/payment processor, either because you are happy with them or you’re in a long term contract with them, then overhauling your POS system probably isn’t an option. However, you could still add a standalone QR code payment option such as Venmo.

Generally, merchants that already use a cloud POS and other electronic business management tools will have an easier time implementing QR code payments, as will businesses that have a younger customer base who are already familiar with this payment option. Restaurants can especially benefit from QR code payments, but maybe not so much for formal fine-dining restaurants where a QR code menu would seem out of place.

Which QR Code Payment App Is Right For Me?

QR code payment technology bridges mobile payments and online payments to offer a unique way for customers to pay on their own devices. Now that you know more about QR code payment technology and implementation, hopefully, you have a better sense of whether a QR code payment system is right for you, and which kind of system you need.

No matter the type of business you have, it’s good to offer customers at least some alternative payment options. To learn more about accepting alternative payments at your business, read our explainer article on alternative payment forms small businesses should know about

FAQs: QR Code Payments

How do QR codes work for payments?

Upon scanning a QR code with their phone’s camera, the customer is directed to a particular URL. If a QR code is used for payments, the website or app that the QR code is linked to will allow the customer to enter their payment details—such as a credit card number—so they can pay for a transaction online using their phone.

If the QR code directs to an app such as Venmo that the customer has already saved their payment information, they will simply need to confirm the purchase in the app.

How is a QR Code different from NFC Tags?

A QR (quick response) code is a type of barcode that you can scan with a smartphone camera to quickly navigate to a linked URL. A QR code can direct to an online payment website or app, but simply scanning the code will not initiate or authorize a transaction.

NFC (near-field communication) tags are microchips that use radio waves to communicate information, including payment information. Using a technology called credit card tokenization, NFC-enabled devices can be used to complete quick, close-range transactions after two connected devices approve a sale.

What are the benefits of QR payments?

QR payments can be socially distanced, allowing customers to pay for a transaction online using their own device.

Because QR payments can be conducted from any location and at the customer’s convenience, offering this payment option prevents customers from having to wait in line to pay or wait for a server to collect their payment.

Is QR code payment secure?

In some ways, a QR code payment is more secure than a transaction in which a credit card is physically exchanged since a QR payment offers no opportunity for an employee or nearby thief to steal the customer’s credit card number.

All online payments, including QR payments, do carry the potential for online credit card theft; however, this risk can be greatly reduced by using a secure, PCI-compliant payment website or app.

In Summary: 7 Best Scan To Pay & QR Code Payment Apps

  1. Square POS:
    • 2.9% + $0.30 QR code processing
    • $0+/month
    • Suitable for any business type
  2. PaymentCloud:
    • QR code processing fees not listed
    • Monthly pricing not listed
    • Suitable for high risk businesses
  3. Toast POS:
    • 3.5% + $0.15 for QR code processing
    • $0+/month
    • Suitable for restaurants
  4. Clover POS:
    • 3.5% + $0.10 Apple Pay QR code payments
    • $14.95+/month
    • Suitable for restaurants, retailers, service businesses
  5. Lightspeed Restaurant POS:
    • 2.6% + $0.30 for QR code processing
    • $39+/month
    • Suitable for restaurants
  6. Venmo:
    • 1.9% + $0.10 for QR code processing
    • $0/month
    • Suitable for most small businesses
  7. PayPal Zettle:
    • 1.9-2.4% + $0.05-$0.10 for QR code processing
    • $0/month
    • Suitable for small retail & small restaurant businesses
Shannon Vissers

Shannon Vissers

Expert Analyst & Reviewer at Merchant Maverick
The former editor-in-chief of SteelOrbis, Shannon has been researching and writing about small business software and financing since 2015. Her shopping and retail expertise has been cited in numerous publications, including Reader's Digest, MSN, Yahoo Finance, and GOBankingRates . She has also published articles for LIVESTRONG.COM, eHow, Life'd, and other websites. Shannon attended San Diego State University, graduating in 2005 with a BA in English.
Shannon Vissers
View Shannon Vissers's professional experience on LinkedIn.

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Merchant Maverick’s ratings are editorial in nature, and are not aggregated from user reviews. Each staff reviewer at Merchant Maverick is a subject matter expert with experience researching, testing, and evaluating small business software and services. The rating of this company or service is based on the author’s expert opinion and analysis of the product, and assessed and seconded by another subject matter expert on staff before publication. Merchant Maverick’s ratings are not influenced by affiliate partnerships.

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