Top 7 Square Alternatives

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Designed by none other than Twitter cofounder Jack Dorsey, Square is an innovative mobile payment system that allows your business to accept credit card payments via an iPad, iPhone, or Android device. Coupled with the free Square Reader, a small plastic credit card reader that plugs into the audio jack of a supported smartphone or tablet, the Square Register app turns a mobile device into a point of sale. It’s very cool, yes, but it’s also kind of a big deal. Because of the way Square has changed how millions of people pay for things – and get paid for things – I’d argue that it’s revolutionary.

Without a doubt, Square is the biggest player in mobile payment processing. Since its 2009 founding, the company’s groundbreaking concept and elegant design have attracted more than 3 million users and $10 billion in annual payments. In other words, they’re kind of a big deal.

Some of the things you probably love about Square include its fast and free setup and its easy-to-use interface. In addition to acting as a point of sale, Square facilitates payment processing. Square has no monthly usage fees, charging only a flat 2.75% fee for magstripe card transactions, chip card transactions, and NFC payments.

Despite its immense popularity, Square is not without its downsides – in fact, Square’s flaws are no small matter. Troublingly, Square offers very little in the way of customer service, and many business owners have complained about Square withholding funds and shutting down accounts without sufficient cause. Not cool, Square. Not cool.

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While Square was one of the only mobile payment games in town five years ago, this is, fortunately, no longer the case. If you want to offer customers mobile payment options using a service with a more merchant-friendly reputation, you can test out several robust Square alternatives that fit this profile. Heck, even if you’re happy with Square, you might consider offering an additional mobile payment choice to give customers more options. As follows is my breakdown of the top Square alternatives.

1. Merchant Account

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While you might think that going through a $0 monthly fee service is your only option when you are a small business on a budget, this is often not the case. Opening a regular merchant account can end up costing about the same amount of money, or even less, with quite a few added benefits.

First and foremost, the reason you are looking for an alternative to Square is probably that you have either (1) had a bad experience with Square yourself, or (2) have read reviews from other business owners who say that Square held their funds or suddenly terminated the account with no warning. Or (3) maybe you’ve had a bad experience with a merchant account provider AND had a bad experience with Square and are now looking for other options.

The truth is that if you want the cheapest and most stable credit card processing account option with the best customer support, you want a traditional merchant account, NOT a $0 monthly fee merchant account alternative. What makes it possible to remove the monthly fee from a service like Square is that these payment processing companies cut corners in the application process as well as in account management. This is fine for some businesses, and we like Square for what it is, but others will inevitably run into issues. In card payment processing, you do, to some extent, get what you pay for.

But that doesn’t mean you have to pay more overall. The lower processing rates provided by a merchant account could easily save you the extra cost of the monthly fee.

All of our top-rated merchant account providers have:

  • No early termination fees
  • No setup/application fees

Monthly fees are as low as $10, and all of them have a mobile credit card processing app for payments on the go. For most small business owners, the small fee is worth the peace of mind. Check out our comparison chart to see your options.

2. Intuit GoPayment

Intuit GoPayment

Intuit is best known for its benchmark accounting software QuickBooks, but the Intuit GoPayment (see our review) mobile payment processor is nothing to shake a stick at either. In addition to providing you with the benefits of a bona fide merchant account, GoPayment is an excellent mobile POS system for businesses that use and love QuickBooks, as it offers seamless QuickBooks integration.

On top of QB features, Intuit gives you advanced functions like invoicing, camera scanning to capture card information (albeit, at a higher processing charge), recurring billing options, and the ability to process cards from a web browser via a virtual terminal.

How is Intuit GoPayment better than Square?

Unlike Square, Intuit GoPayment gives you your own dedicated merchant account, which brings with it the benefits we’ve always discussed. GoPayment’s pay-as-you-go processing rate of 2.4% + $0.25 per swipe is also cheaper for merchants, except in the case of very small transactions (and for a $19.95 monthly charge, you can get a much lower rate of 1.6% + $0.25). Finally, Intuit GoPayment has more advanced features than Square, including full-fledged QuickBooks integration. Live chat support is also a plus.

3. SumUp

While SumUp originally made a name for itself abroad, it brought services to the US recently and has been making a splash. SumUp’s payment scheme isn’t anything new, but it’s a good model that works: a single standard pay-as-you-go rate of 2.65% for card-present transactions in the US. That’s actually lower than Square (2.75%) or PayPal Here (2.7%), and down from SumUp’s previous rate of 2.75%.

Standout Features

  • Item Library: Load items into the app, then add photos, prices, and descriptions. You can create groupings called “shelves” for like products to make everything easier to sort through.
  • Item Variants: Specify different prices for different sizes, colors, etc. In SumUp, the variants appear in a popup screen after you choose the base item, rather than as separate entries.
  • Tipping: You’ll have to contact SumUp to enable this feature at the moment, but it is available.
  • Receipt Printer Connectivity: You can also connect a receipt printer and use it with the app.
  • Analytics: SumUp’s analytics are pretty basic right now, but you can analyze sales data by date ranges, types of transactions, and average sales amounts for starters.
  • Multiple Tax Rates: When you set up an item, you have the option to associate it with a tax rate. You can also apply multiple tax rates. However, you can’t delete a tax rate that is associated with a product. You’ll have to delete the item first, then redo it all. This is not my favorite system, but at least you can modify tax settings from within the app, which is important for mobile. Clover Go, by comparison, only let you modify tax settings from the web browser.

4. Vend POS


Though it is web-based, Vend (see our review) is a powerful, full-fledged POS system, such that you can use it to replace a traditional Windows-based POS system at your brick-and-mortar store. Vend is also a viable alternative to Square if you currently use the Square Stand iPad setup. In addition to running on an iPad, you can also use Vend from a web browser, which means you can process payments from any web-connected device, wherever you are.

Processing fees with Vend depend on the payment processor you use; for example, if you use Vend with PayPal, you’ll get a rate of 2.7%. Vantiv is another payment processing option. Vend comes with a monthly service charge unless you choose its limited free plan, but the numerous advanced POS options that come with Vend make its $59/month fee well worth it for many businesses – these features include advanced inventory management, 24/7 email support, offline mode, eCommerce functionality, loyalty program features, customer management, and many more.

Why use Vend over Square?

For very low-volume businesses that process all sales from a smartphone, Square might be the better option. However, iPad-based Vend is a viable Square alternative for growing businesses that want to upgrade from a casual “mobile POS” like Square. At the same time, Vend is a more affordable middle-of-the-road option compared to an even more advanced iPad POS like Revel Systems or Lightspeed Retail.

5. Clover Go


Clover Go (see our review) is the mobile version of the super-popular Clover suite of POS products. Clover Go is easy to use, chip card compatible, and uses an actual merchant account. And even though it’s a mobile POS, you still get access to Clover’s back office reporting and features like customizable tax, email/SMS receipts, and features from inventory management software. You can also use Clover Go as a supplemental “on-the-go” payment option in addition to your primary Clover Station.

While the other Clover POS systems (Clover Station and Clover Mini) require you to purchase proprietary hardware, Clover Go lets you use an iPhone or Android phone, just like Square. The cost of Clover Go’s EMV-compliant headphone jack card reader varies somewhat depending on the reseller, but you should be able to get it for less than $100.

What makes Clover Go better than Square?

The main benefit of Clover Go compared to Square is that you get a real merchant account with Clover Go, rather than the aggregate account you get with Square. This equates to better account stability and reduced risk of account freezes, withheld funds, and other such headaches. The only caveat is that your merchant account provider must use First Data as its backend processor. Businesses with higher sales volumes will also be able to save money with Clover Go.

6. iZettle


iZettle (see our review) is a chip card-based mobile payment service that currently serves merchants in Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, the UK, Germany, Spain, Mexico, and Brazil. Notably absent from this list is the US. However, with chip card usage on the rise, iZettle’s expansion into the US could be imminent. (If right now you’re thinking, “What the heck is a chip card?” check out our article Do You Really Need an EMV Chip Card Terminal?)

To process mobile payments, iZettle offers two separate mobile credit card readers, including one that works with chip and PIN cards, and another for chip and signature cards. In the UK market, card readers range from £20 to £59 – about $32 to $93 for us Yanks.

The main draw of iZettle is its low ultra-low processing fees, which start at just 1.00% for high-volume merchants. While the lowest volume merchants will pay 2.75% per transaction, once you hit £2,000 in card payments in a month, your fee starts to drop, going as low as 1.00% if you accept more than £40,000/month in payments.

Some features of iZettle’s mobile point-of-sale (POS) app include:

  • Inventory library
  • Cash drawer/receipt printer connectivity (receipts can also be sent by email)
  • Cash/card acceptance
  • Online reporting tools
  • Multiple staff accounts

On the customer service side, iZettle offers email support and phone support during weekday business hours. As with all of the Square competitors on this list, iZettle has fewer complaints about its customer support than does Square.

What makes iZettle better than Square?

Compared to Square, iZettle offers both superior pricing and reliability. It does not provide you with as many features, but you cannot beat iZettle’s pricing if you are a higher-volume merchant. While this Square alternative isn’t yet offered in the US, it’s a solid choice for merchants in the markets it serves and may soon be a strong domestic competitor for Square as well.

7. PPH


Everybody knows PayPal, but have you heard of PayPal Here? PayPal Here is PayPal’s popular mobile processing service with a model similar to Square’s. It requires a PayPal Business or Premier account, but the upgrade from a personal PayPal account is free, as is the app and card reader.

In addition to accepting swiped or keyed-in credit card payments, PPH’s reader can use image capture (i.e., your smartphone’s camera) to deposit checks, and the service also accepts PayPal payments, as you might expect. It works with most Apple devices and some Android and Windows devices.

PPH comes with all the standard features (mobile card processing, mobile POS, free mobile app, free audio jack swiper), and the service also offers the advantage of immediate access to funds via your PayPal account.

Why is PayPal Here better than Square?

PPH offers more features and an overall superior user experience when compared to Square, or compared to most any standalone mobile processing service. PPH also has lower fees (2.7% per card swipe, with no monthly fee) compared to Square.

Like most other mobile payment solutions, PPH also comes with much better customer support than Square. PPH uses PayPal’s main support system, which includes many options, ranging from phone support to a Twitter account that fields service and support questions Monday through Friday, 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM Central Time. (You can tweet your questions to @AskPayPal.)

*Spark Pay (Discontinued)


Spark Pay, the mobile processing arm of Capital One, has received very little press since its 2013 re-launch and rebranding (Spark Pay was formerly SAIL, owned by VeriFone). Nevertheless, it is a solid, straightforward mobile payment service that could potentially save you a lot of money.

Like Square, Spark Pay offers mobile debit and credit card processing via a free magstripe card reader that plugs into your phone’s headphone jack (subsequent readers will cost you $13/reader). By adding a $250 wired payment terminal, you can also accept NFC payments and EMV chip cards.

When it comes to features, Spark Pay’s are not as robust as Square’s. However, some useful functions you’ll get with Spark Pay’s mobile app include online reporting/analytics, inventory reporting, cash drawer connectivity, and customizable electronic receipts, among others.

Spark Pay offers merchants two different fee schemes, including the Go Plan (pay-as-you-go) and the Pro Plan (monthly fee). I would recommend the Pro Plan if you are a higher-volume merchant (processing about $2,000+ per month). The benefits of the higher-volume plan are that you pay less per each transaction – 1.99% + $0.05 per swipe for the paid plan vs. 2.65% + $0.05 for the free plan. You can use this handy calculator to determine which plan would be best for your business.

What makes Spark Pay better than Square?

Spark Pay’s Pro Plan can potentially save higher-volume merchants a lot of money over Square, given that your average sale is at least $7 or so. Even if you choose Spark Pay’s free “Go” plan (no monthly fee), the 2.65% + $0.05 per-transaction fee is still lower than Square’s for transactions $50 and larger.

Users of Spark Pay also receive solid customer support, provided over the phone during business hours. Combined with prompt email support (one-day turnaround or less) and responsive Twitter support, Spark Pay has a far better overall support experience than Square, which is crucial given the higher amount of SNAFUs that occur with mobile payments compared to traditional processing.


As a small business, it’s always good to have options when it comes to mobile payment acceptance. The variety of different mobile payment and mobile POS providers means that you don’t have to stay with Square if it’s not meeting your needs sufficiently. The best part is that you don’t have to stick with just one mobile payments processor: none of the companies discussed in this article have contracts or early termination fees, so you can test them out without any risk, or even use several of them simultaneously to see which one you like best. We recommend that you check out both our merchant account comparison chart and our mobile credit card processing comparison chart as you continue your search. You might also want to take a look at our shortlist of best credit card readers for small businesses.

So what’s your favorite Square alternative? Let us know in the comments!

Shannon Vissers

Shannon Vissers

Shannon is a freelance writer and editor based in San Diego, CA. Shannon has a three-year-old daughter named Izzy. Shannon likes to unwind by watching trashy reality television and reading literary fiction during the commercial breaks.
Shannon Vissers

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Responses are not provided or commissioned by the vendor or bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the vendor or bank advertiser. It is not the vendor or bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

    Henry GrosJean

    I was terminated my Square and no reason was given. Their decision was final!!!
    I am a consultant. I pick up a flat fee on each consultation. The fee is pretty much the same each and every time. I’m trying Intuit, but was never informed of the $20 per month charge in addition to the percentages. What would be a viable alternative or choice for this kind of transaction? Thank you in advance.

      Shannon Vissers

      If you don’t want to pay a monthly fee and want a service similar to Square, you might check out PayPal’s mobile payments service, PayPal Here. As with Square, there’s no monthly fee and you can use any smartphone or tablet. Their processing fees are better than Square’s also — 2.7% per transaction vs. Square’s 2.75%. However, depending on your industry risk profile and average transaction amount/volume, you may be better off getting an actual merchant account for improved account stability. Third-party payments services like Square, PayPal and others use an aggregated merchant account model, which can lead to sudden account terminations like you experienced.


        thanks for a great review. i am looking for an alternative to square and your review makes it easy to “digest” the differences and similarities to make an informed choice versus eeny, meeny…


          Looking for a POS app for a small computer business ran from home, I enter most of my customers cards manually with square, but I’m unhappy with them, any recommendations? Thanks in advance..

            Jessica Dinsmore

            Hi Edward,

            I would need a bit more info to make a recommendation specific to your home business needs, so I’d suggest giving our filtering tool a try and see what you think of the recommendations. I suspect the recommendation will be Square, but if I understand why you are unhappy with it (as well as sales volume and average ticket amount, etc) I may be able to make an alternative recommendation. I hope that helps!


              Spark Pay recently announced they were shutting down, leaving many small-to-medium sized businesses scrambling to find a good alternative before January 18, 2018. Any chance of an updated list? (Not that its likely to help Spark Pay users, since we’ve only got a couple weeks, max, to find and be set up with a new processor, but it’s still always nice to know what’s out there…)

                Shannon Vissers

                Hi there! We are aware of the situation with Spark Pay will update the list soon, since this is a hot topic. In the meantime, you might want to check out SumUp and Payline Mobile in addition to the other vendors mentioned on this list — or even Square, since they are very easy and quick to get set up with and you have no obligation to stick with them long-term.


                  Kudos for the well-written and helpful review of these services! I appreciate the knowledge shared in both the article and comments.

                    Robert Olson

                    I have received several payments since finding out I could receive payment through Facebook messenger. Do you have any advice or information on their service. I use Square and I do not use their reader. I use their service of creating an item and emailing an invoice. I am looking for another such service… any advice?


                    Robert Olson

                      Jessica Dinsmore

                      Hi Robert,

                      Unfortunately, we have not reviewed Facebook Messenger, so we can’t confidently give an assessment one way or the other. I’d suggest sticking with Square or checking out the alternatives mentioned in this post. Best of luck!

                        Christin Madden

                        I love FB messenger to collect funds. The only problem is it requires the customer to use debit cards only (unless they recently changed). Credit cards are not an option on FB. I am also using the cash app and venmo. Both services are free, but you may need to make notes if you have multiple products or have specifics to attach to the order. Also, it requires the customer to use the app as well. You can send requests to email, phone (text), or by a code name given when they sign up. I am beyond leary of PayPal since my customer’s information was compromised and I now get phishing emails and harassing phone calls since I signed up with them. I have literally blocked 150 phone numbers from “mortgage companies” and from “HP”.


                          I am a hairdresser and have been using square for the past 3years with an iPhone 6. I recently purchased then pixel 2xl and the square app no longer works. The purchases won’t go through to completion. What would you recommend as an alternative?

                            Jessica Dinsmore

                            Hi Jessica,

                            Sounds like you’re not the only one experiencing these issues. I’d recommend waiting it out and seeing if Square comes up with a compatibility update. They are usually pretty quick with the fixes. In the meantime why don’t you see if Paypal is compatible with your new phone.

                              Kat Robinson

                              A long shot here…I’ve reviewed most of these guys to see if any can support my business. None so far so I’m throwing it out there to see if you know of anything that might work. My business (property management) is in the USA, I pay US taxes as a non-resident (so I have an ITIN number), I conduct my business in AUSTRALIA (because I came back to have my baby – I’m Australian). So, I need to find a POS system that allows transactions to be processed on a device in Australia (using a US account or not) but in USD and deposited in a US bank. Square is geo-locked, Paypal won’t allow cross country, it’s like no small business does this. Bigger business obviously does but I’m looking for somewhere I can manually enter payment info, charges range from $100-$1500. So frustrating!!! Any ideas/tips/advice greatly appreciated!

                                Jessica Dinsmore

                                Hi Kat,
                                Unfortunately, we aren’t aware of a POS that can handle this. If you happen to find one, please let us know as it will help our other readers as well.


                                  Id love to know too. Same situation pretty much


                                    I have a solo law practice and have charges sized between $250.00 to $1500.00 and average total monthly charges between $0.00 to $2500.00 per month. The transactions all go into my trust account with a local bank. I need to key in maybe 50% of the time. I cannot take the chance of having trust funds tied up. What would you suggest for me and why?

                                      Tom DeSimone

                                      Hi Curtis,

                                      It’s important to note that there are never any guarantees with card payments as far as getting the funds right away without a hitch. While there are things you can look for in the selection process to minimize the chance of issues, unforeseen problems can arise with any processing company.

                                      With that said, the primary thing you need to look for is a merchant account rather than a “payment service provider” (PSP). While PSPs (like Square) will get you the account more quickly and with simpler billing, they rely on just a tiny bit of personal info to set up the service. This can create and exacerbate problems with account stability, leading to funding holds and terminations. A merchant account, on the other hand, is set up with a more careful and thorough underwriting process. This means fewer surprises on both sides of the account.

                                      The downside for you is that you are a low dollar volume merchant and so you might end up paying a little more for a merchant account compared with the no monthly fee account you’d get with a company like Square. You’ll have to pay about $10 per month as a service fee on the account, for instance. The rates will be lower, however, which will help to offset that monthly cost.

                                      I’d recommend you check out Helcim. They do not charge monthly minimums (so you won’t be penalized for months when you don’t process) and they have good mobile processing rates (assuming you do not want to purchase a countertop terminal). The extra expense is worth the peace of mind for businesses where access to funds is important and the transaction size is relatively large.

                                      Hope this helps.

                                        Dennis Fees

                                        I cant believe you put such thieves as Inner Fence on this list. Inner Fence uses Stripe as a processor which has over 400 complaints with BBB. Most of these complaints center on being able to process payments, but never being able to get the funds transferred into your account. In these cases, a merchant signed up for Inner Fence, paid them $39 to process and was set up with a Stripe account. After processing multiple transactions and being told that the first transfer would take 7 days, they waited for the funds, after 7 days they logged into their accounts and the transfer date had moved a few days, then it moved again. Finally they contacted Stripe and Stripe asked them for all sorts of information citing the Know Your Customer requirements. After providing as much information as possible Stripe informed them that they were too risky. Stripe then said they were going to refund the money to the cardholders, though sometimes that did not happen, and left the merchant high and dry.
                                        So if you feel like giving away your products and services for free, sign up with Inner Fence/Stripe. If not avoid them.

                                          Shannon Vissers

                                          Hey Dennis, thanks for your feedback. Yes, Inner Fence uses Stripe — an aggregating service — to process payments for all accounts now (though this wasn’t the case when we first put together this article in 2014; I’ll update the post to reflect this change). This means users no longer get their own merchant account. All aggregating services — PayPal, Square, Stripe, and others — have a bunch of account complaints like the type you’ve described. These services are also very risk-averse because very little underwriting is done to approve purchases. If you have a higher-risk business or process large transactions or a high-volume of transactions, you really need to get your own merchant account and not use a third-party payment processor/aggregator.

                                          Note that we do mention Stripe’s BBB complaints in our Stripe review, though Stripe actually still has an A+ rating because they have resolved all 400 of those complaints.


                                            hi. so I guess I have a question for you (from an IPhone user who refuses to upgrade aswell), were opening a photo booth business where there will be a few transactions a week that would be in the range of 500-800 and here and there charges of about 30-100. now, my question for you is: what do you think would be the best option? tttthhhhhaaaaannnnkkkkkssss

                                              Shannon Vissers

                                              Hi Denisse! Based on the size and frequency of your transactions, I’d price out both Intuit GoPayment and Spark Pay — you’ll get better rates with either of those iPhone-friendly processors compared to Square. I think GoPayment will probably be the best deal for you — $20/month, and 1.6% + $0.25 for each swiped transaction. GoPayment also lets you record cash and check payments to Quickbooks. Hope it helps!


                                                Hello, I have a one event a year…right now, could be more in the future. The average sale will be $20-$15 per. I will be taking credit cards, but also cash. I’d like to set up a website to pre sell some (2 products only). I read about the no customer service and account holds from square, thisbhas me concerned. I’m selling water and water bottles. Total revenue is projected to be between $25k and $100k. I’d like to have a system that is like a cash register showing cash payment and cc payments and track inventory. Looks like square has higher processing…but they also look to have an easy website integration for a quick site I plan on making.

                                                Do you have a suggested system?

                                                Thank you!

                                                  Jessica Dinsmore

                                                  Hi Henry,

                                                  I definitely understand your concern about Square account holds and freezes. We’ve actually written an article that may help address some concerns. Personally, I think Square would be a great option for you.


                                                    I have a medical practice with monthly charges ranging between $10K-$21K. We were going to change our from our current merchant account to Square but im worried about the comments of horrible service and withholding of funds.
                                                    What was driving me crazy with our current system were constant the announced fluctuations in transaction fees regardless of which company we used and every year or two we’d have to shop around again.
                                                    What are your suggestions?
                                                    Thank you

                                                      Amad Ebrahimi

                                                      Hi Rashmi,

                                                      I understand your concern about Square, but unless you’re in a very high-risk industry, you should be able to process with worrying about holds or freezes. Here is an article that will help you get a better understanding of the topic:



                                                        As a company, we want to buy a payment system for an event. We won’t use this product regularly, so we want something efficient but not to expensive. Any suggestions?


                                                          Shannon Vissers

                                                          Hi Emma, I would recommend Square, because it’s pretty much the only POS that doesn’t have a monthly service charge, so you can just use it for the event and not incur any ongoing charges. I would encourage you to use the green “visit site” button within our Square review if you would like to support our work.:)

                                                            sarah ali

                                                            Unfortunately Clover Go does not work with tablets well. The app does not allow for a change in the orientation. It is permanently stuck on one orientation so it will not adjust when most tablets are placed horizontally, so you either have to break your neck to enter information sideways or literally pull out the tablet from your stand. This is foolish for those who have already purchased or built a custom stand (as I had) you literally have to pull your tablet out of the stand enter the information and hand your device over. If you are desiring a professional looking POS system this will not work. Its made for cell phones.

                                                              thao haas

                                                              So I did use square since the very beginning in 2009. Never had an issue….then my first chargeback and bam…nothing but issues since. There is no customer service at square so if you ever need them forget it. Oh yeah and if you get a rep they do not know anything other than what their software says. I talked to several who couldn’t even add up the numbers right but since the software says it is they said it was. Months later they fixed it. MONTHS!!!! They will withhold all your money for weeks even months while they try to figure out the problem!!!! So if customer service is important don’t use square cause that one time you will need them they will not be there.

                                                                Tom Duke

                                                                I used square in the past and have tried to logon again to get everything moving. Apparently my passwordis not eligible any more and I have tried 4 times to reset it, it has sent 4 password resets none of which worked, I don’t know where to go from here, would like to use the service once again but there are no contacts and so far, no responses to anything I have tried to send… If you can help, please do so. Thanks

                                                                  Jessica Dinsmore

                                                                  Hi Tom, Here is a link to Square’s Support page. Best of luck to you!


                                                                    I have a small business but transactions are 7-12k but not a high volume of transactions. Which one would you recommend

                                                                      Chloe Bahal


                                                                      Thank you for your inquiry, I am happy to help you with this. We have a great filtering tool that you can try here. I hope this helps and if you have further questions please let me know.


                                                                        What a pos i can take a payment and get paid the same day not square or paypal

                                                                          Jessica Dinsmore

                                                                          Hi Tyrone,
                                                                          Unfortunately Square and Paypal may be your best bet for instant deposits. You can find funding time frames for other mobile payment systems here .


                                                                            I need to be able to place a CC hold on a specific amount while people are renting our jet skis ( this is to ensure their safe return!). Do any of these allow me to place a 500.00 hold on a CC or debit card without charge? Also, how long does it take for the funds to be released? Thanks

                                                                              Jessica Dinsmore

                                                                              Thank you Laurie,

                                                                              This is a question that we’ve received on a few occasions, and to be honest, we don’t have the data to give you a proper answer. We are, however, planning on researching this topic more extensively and will put out a blog post shortly.

                                                                                Mike Davis

                                                                                I was using Square for my small Vapor store, and they de-activated my account because of something I sell. I’m looking for a viable alternative that will handle everything Square did, such as: Payroll, taxes, inventory, etc.
                                                                                Please help, I have been unable to accept cards for 2 days now. Also, on a side note, I contacted Pay Pal, and they won’t accept “Vapor” stores. Just in case anyone needs to know.
                                                                                Thank you

                                                                                  Shannon Vissers

                                                                                  Hi Mike, because of the nature of your business, you will probably need to get your own high-risk merchant account rather than a Square/PayPal alternative (third-party payments processors like these are not really vape-friendly). Here are some high-risk merchant account providers we recommend.

                                                                                    Ruben Gonzalez

                                                                                    Great Information. I am looking for a site that helps me collect money for Boy Scout events (e.g. camping trips). Its a non-profit. What is the best site? I am thinking about Square. Thank you in advance.

                                                                                      Chloe Bahal

                                                                                      Hi Ruben,

                                                                                      Square would actually be a great option for this. Don’t forget to ask them about their non-profit rates. I hope this helps and if you have further questions please let me know.

                                                                                        Angelina Burnett


                                                                                        Thank you for the reviews of these systems. I am currently trying to find the right system for the homeowner association. This homeowner association is a private island and a variety of income. They are looking for ways to collect fees from their ferry fees, gas services, marina fees, assessments and other misc fees that are collected through the office. The obvious most important issue is the cost to the association. They just started using Square to see how it would work. I am looking at using Intuit GoPayment, as they currently have Quickbooks. Would you recommend this for an association?

                                                                                        Thank you,

                                                                                          Jessica Dinsmore

                                                                                          Angelina, our preference would be Square as we personally like the system better than GoPayment. If Square+QB integration is a concern, please note that Square and QB integrate very nicely as documented here: My suggestion would be to stick with Square.

                                                                                            stephan hoglund

                                                                                            Wow good info! Square is weird. I loved it at first and still find it pretty good but then took a square capital loan out 5 grand, paid it off real quick and then contemplated taking another out the next winter as my income is seasonal but I canceled the loan a day later as I misread some of their info and actually had a huge spike in my sales so canceled it. a month later I went to take one out again and my available credit had dropped in half and I swear their charge had doubled, and now this year I have no credit available from them and they have no square capital customer service to inquire as to why!? My sales with square last year was just under 60 grand. I thought their loans were very innovative and cool but now i find it very weird that they have cut me off completely even tho I still do business with them? Any input on that?


                                                                                              Thanks for this great info. I run a solo law practice and typically charge around $800 – $1,000 at a time per transaction. I’ve been accepting checks only until I figure out which system is best for me. Would one POS system be best for me over the others?

                                                                                                Chloe Bahal

                                                                                                Hi Norin,

                                                                                                Thank you for your inquiry. Based on the information provided, I would recommend Square. I would encourage you to use the green “visit site” button within the review if you would like to support our work. I hope this helps and if you have further questions please let me know.


                                                                                                  Thanks for this review! I have been having a difficult time deciding on a POS system. I run a mobile recreation company that takes payment of around $400 for each event. I am looking to be able to take credit cards. Do you have any suggestions?


                                                                                                    Chloe Bahal

                                                                                                    Hi Amber,

                                                                                                    Thank you for your inquiry, I am happy to help you with this. Based on the information provided, I would recommend Square. I would encourage you to use the green “visit site” button within the review if you would like to support our work. I hope this helps and if you have further questions please let me know.

                                                                                                      Bill Werkheiser

                                                                                                      I have a few rental properties, both residential and commercial. I have a church that has been paying me with a credit card for years with no problem. It is the only transaction I do every month but it is keyed which hurts. The amount is $1,200.00. What would be the best service for this single transaction each month.

                                                                                                        Chloe Bahal

                                                                                                        Hi Bill,

                                                                                                        Thank you for your inquiry, I am happy to help you with this. Based on the information provided, I would recommend Square. I hope this helps and if you have further questions please let me know.


                                                                                                          Can you recommend a POS and Online store for a small specialty pharmacy? Currently we have 1. a traditional website for our online store with 2. a Volusion shopping cart, 3. our in-store POS is QuickBooks, and 4. we also use Square so we can accept credit cards. We want to streamline and keep our costs down so would like to put our online store, shopping cart, and POS in one program if possible, or, at least condense it to save on hosting costs. We were debating between Square and/or Vend but not sure now after I read these Square comments. Any ideas?

                                                                                                            Chloe Bahal

                                                                                                            Hi Deb,

                                                                                                            I am sending you an email right now so please keep an eye out for it.


                                                                                                              Thanks for a great article! I am a general contractor who is looking to accept credit cards for jobs. Usually my jobs range from $10,000 – $30,000. I usually deal in checks, but more and more clients are asking to use credit cards for rewards purposes. These payments would be very rare (maybe 5-10 a year). What would be the best option for my business?

                                                                                                                Chloe Bahal

                                                                                                                Hi Richard,

                                                                                                                Thank you for your inquiry, I am happy to help you with this. Based on the information provided, I would recommend CDGcommerce and Helcim. You might also want to check out Square. I hope this helps and if you have further questions please let me know.


                                                                                                                  SQUARE suddenly deactivated my account on a Friday evening before a major selling show that begins in 12 hours!
                                                                                                                  I need a web store, for satirical & political items, and a POS that accepts cards – and I need it fast!

                                                                                                                    Linda Leathart

                                                                                                                    I was excited about your information on Spark Pay but it is not quite correct. There is a monthly fee AND you pay for individual transactions so you are paying for the extra customer service which I don’t mind but it is not cheaper than Square. Unless I am mistaken?

                                                                                                                      Shannon George

                                                                                                                      Hi Linda, Spark Pay has a “Pro” plan that comes with a lower transaction fee (you pay $19/month for a transaction fee of 1.99% + $0.05), and they also have a free “Go” plan (no monthly fee) with a transaction fee of 2.65% + $0.05. With either plan, it will depend on your average transaction size; for a business that does a lot of smaller transactions (like a coffee cart, for example), you’re right, Square’s fee (2.75%) will be cheaper than Spark Pay’s (with either the Go or Pro plan). But if your average transaction size is more like $10+, you could potentially save a lot of money using Spark Pay’s Pro plan instead of Square, especially if you do more than a couple thousand dollars worth of sales per month. Hope that makes sense! Here’s some more info on Spark Pay’s pricing:


                                                                                                                        I came to this article after Square suddenly started holding payments, even though I had immediate deposit authorized (at a higher fee). I’d had no issues with immediate deposits, regardless of size, to suddenly find out this last weekend that they had decided I didn’t have enough collective deposits to do immediate processing. This was never a requirement before. I read the full legal agreement, the deposit FAQs and tutorials THREE times. There is nothing that says there’s a hold unless it’s a certain amount.

                                                                                                                        I sent an email stating all that. I got an overly friendly reply 2 days later that simply restated what I saw on the app for the deposit ledger—immediate deposit function suspended due to low amount of pending deposits.

                                                                                                                        I emailed back today. Restated again, AND pointed out that federal banking laws require the funds be transferred into my account within 24 hours of the payment clearing on their end. I also pointed out my uncle is a fraud agent with the IRS.

                                                                                                                        I expect another BS answer, or none at all.

                                                                                                                        I appreciate this article very much! For my purposes, I think I’ll go with Paypal even though it’s difficult to transfer funds to my bank (it takes 3 weeks to show up) but they now have a Paypal debit card with Visa logo and that would make it much easier.

                                                                                                                          Tony Foti

                                                                                                                          I just started using square and I am ver shocked that they are withholding all my money for the month. Diana did you ever get your money back?? What should I expect?? Will they give me my money or not?? I need that money to operate my business! And to find out they have no customer service number to talk to some one is so disheartening !! What the heck!!


                                                                                                                            Its nice to have all the comparables in one area. The only thing is it doesn’t take long to see that this article was written by someone that has some grief against square which I do too. I have been a loyal client for 4 years and suddenly they froze my funds because i had a processed a larger transaction today. Ofcourse there is no one to talk to. The reviews on flint are terrible. Spark pay is accused of freezing peoples money with out an explanation which would be just as annoying inspite of the fact that you can talk to a live person, then there’s the one that is not even available in the US. so outside of the ones that really dont do actual card charging for old fashioned people pay pal is what is left. I am too tired to find out the problems with paypal. anyone that has already done the research on the pros and cons of paypal?


                                                                                                                              Square has very poor customer support.


                                                                                                                                I tried to apply for Square and for some reason was denied, so when I emailed customer support all I was given was a sorry and wished me luck with my business!!! I certainly do not want to do business with any company that simply doesn’t try harder to give customer support. Thank you for this run down. I am starting my own freelance business and wasn’t sure about all the other businesses mentioned.

                                                                                                                                  Scott Lee Webb

                                                                                                                                  I’ve used Square for 3 years, it’s standard business to not do weekend deposits so these account holds do not sound legit. Weekday sales deposit the day after and all Friday Saturday Sunday sales are deposited on Monday. They have implemented an extra fee for those who don’t manage their money and are so broke that they need weekend deposits for an additional fee. Ive used others and PayPal has always been crooked holding money, their staff is foreign and coukd spit on you, Amazon closed there’s which was flawed from implementation from the i.t. design. So reliability and financial security of your funds, and client security protection is everything. Square delivers efficiently and by far has the most beautiful pos register face.


                                                                                                                                    Can you can recommend a merchant for a travel business?

                                                                                                                                      Tom DeSimone

                                                                                                                                      Hi Joe,

                                                                                                                                      Check out Payline. Travel businesses often are categorized as high-risk, and Payline works with that type of account.

                                                                                                                                        Juan Luna

                                                                                                                                        Do you think they’ll work with all high risk business or if they will at least be able to process invoice for local purchases ?


                                                                                                                                          square has bad customer service, it’s virtually impossible to get hold of their representative on phone. Also, the hold the money for long time, before depositing into your account.

                                                                                                                                            Shannon George

                                                                                                                                            Yes, that seems to be one of the major complaints about Square. I think they are working on their customer service and account hold issues, but they are definitely not the most merchant-friendly mobile payment processor.


                                                                                                                                              We need a system which allows us to swipe in the field – but have the transactions set up in batches.

                                                                                                                                              For example:
                                                                                                                                              Invoice for $200
                                                                                                                                              Payment for $200
                                                                                                                                              Bank Deposit for $200
                                                                                                                                              Bank Fee from processer of $5.50 (Square rate).

                                                                                                                                              That way, you have the benefit of the payment being the same amount — so the client invoice shows as fully paid. And the bank deposit matching the invoice amount – good for reconciliation. And the daily bank fees can be aggregated into one lump sum.

                                                                                                                                              Do you know of any options?


                                                                                                                                                Angel Flores

                                                                                                                                                I believe square is still the standard but I do hate how long it takes to deposit fund during the weekends.

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