The Best Credit Card Processing Companies Of 2021
With transparent pricing and volume-based discounts, Helcim helps you scale your business.
CRM and inventory management tools included
Many options to get support
Online approval makes it easy to sign up
Only one plan to choose from
Only one type of hardware
Helcim has been in business since 2006, expanding from a payment processor to a financial technology company offering various business solutions. With no monthly fees and a fee schedule that rewards you for higher volumes, Helcim is a great choice with plenty of options for small business owners, which is why its our best overall winner.
The company is a Level 1 PCI-DSS compliant service provider that uses top-notch security practices typical with financial technology companies.
Business owners use Helcim to accept payments like:
- Pin debit cards
It takes about five minutes to sign up for a Helcim account, and you dont need any hardware to get started. Simply download the payments app to start accepting payments. For in-store transactions, order the Helcim Card Reader for $109, which connects with smartphones, desktops, or tablets.
While Helcim integrates with QuickBooks and WooCommerce, the real benefits come from its extra services. You can turn any device into a workhorse using cloud programs from Helcim, including:
- Point of sale system
- Customer management
- Inventory management
- Payments app
Sumup Plus Reader: Best Value
Accepts: Magstripe, chip and contactless payment methods.Price: $19.Fees: 2.75% and up depending on method.
The reader processes all three payment types.
There is no monthly fee.
Fees are transparent and easy to understand.
It has a screen to display transaction details.
SumUp has less robust POS software features.
Why we like it: SumUps Plus reader can process more than 500 transactions on a single power charge. It has a screen to display transaction details, so you wont have to share your personal device with the customer. SumUp charges a competitive rate of 2.75% for in-person transactions and there are no monthly fees or contracts. Its POS software also offers nifty features like customizable smart invoicing to make business easier.
Image courtesy of Payanywhere.
Payment Depot Android Reader Costs
|Contact Payment Depot sales for price||Contact Payment Depot sales for price|
|Connects via Bluetooth and accepts payments via magstripe , EMV , and NFC contactless payments . It can also be used with a Windows computer using Authorize.Nets vPOS solution.||Connects via Bluetooth and accepts payments via magstripe , EMV , and NFC contactless payments .|
Payment Depot also has standalone payment terminals, cash drawers, and receipt printers.
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Best Credit Card Readers For Android Compared
Square works with phones running Google Android 4.0 and higher. Its a terrific card reader for the Android phone, but also includes a POS system and other options that can work not only for the casual user but the complete retail store, service business, or restaurant. The mobile app itself is among the most popular and highest-ranking among our list of providers for this roundup.
With 4.65 out of 5 stars, Square ranked as our No.1 credit card reader for Android. The price is excellent, as it does not charge monthly fees and has no minimums, making it good for the casual user. Even more, it has an excellent chargeback policy and a full-featured POS program suitable for full-time businesses as well. You can send invoices, handle offline transactions, and more. Users rate it highly for ease of use and features.
In addition to being our recommended credit card reader for Android, Square is also our top overall choice for mobile credit card processing.
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How Does A Card Swipe Machine Work
It is common for some credit card terminals to operate in conjunction with a POS system. These systems could range from a cash register to wireless mobile applications that attach to either a phone or tablet. Charge.com offers merchants numerous options to meet the specific requirements for what your business needs.
You can find a list of credit card payment terminals here!
Best Buy Customers Often Prefer The Following Products When Searching For Card Readers For Small Business
There are a lot of ways to process credit cards these days, from mobile devices to point-of-sale systems. But if your business is still using a traditional desktop computer, you might be missing out on some of the best credit card processing features. Here are some of the best card readers for your business that we can recommend.
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Shopify Android Reader Costs
|Connects via Bluetooth and accepts magstripe and EMV payments.||Connects via Bluetooth. Accepts EMV , or NFC payments .|
*Shopifys Chip & Swipe and Tap & Chip card readers are currently sold out and will be out of stock until 2022. Contact Shopify for alternative Android-compatible hardware.
Shopify also has full payment terminal kits, cash drawers, and receipt printers.
Best Air Miles Credit Card
If youâre an avid Air Miles collector, you can rack up significantly more rewards with the BMO Air Miles World Elite in your wallet and get some premium travel perks to boot. The card offers a lucrative 0.083 Miles per dollar, triple the miles when shopping at Air Miles partner stores , and over a dozen types of insurance.
The Air Miles World Elite also includes a sign-up bonus for new cardholders that includes a first year annual fee waiver and up to 3,000 bonus miles: 1,000 Miles after making your first purchase on the card and another potential 2,000 Miles if you hit a minimum spend of $3,000 within your first three months of activating your account.
Why we like it:
When shopping at Air Miles Partners , you can rack up triple the Miles by paying with this credit card and showing your Air Miles Collector Card at the same time. The Air Miles World Elite also offers arguably the best insurance of any other Air Miles credit card period, with up to $2 million in out of province medical insurance along with personal effects coverage . Last but not least, the sign-up bonus is enough to let you book up to two short-haul flights within North America.
Cardholders get a 15% discount on flights booked using Miles within North America.
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How We Evaluated Credit Card Readers For Android
Most people think of iPads when they think of mobile POS systems, but many payment processors offer great options for Android as well. Some also have their own merchant accounts. We chose reputable payment processors that also have apps that rank highly in the Googles Play store. Then we looked at pricing, features, and how quickly you could get your payments to determine the best options.
How Do Merchant Providers Work
Merchant providers are the go-between service that connects everything behind the scenes. Providers connect to the credit card network, thousands of issuing banks, and your banking services. To ensure the utmost security, most credit card processors are PCI-compliant and use advanced encryption methods.
To select the right credit card processing services, its essential to review your current or projected credit card payment volume and where customers pay . Then compare companies by looking at how much youll pay for processing while assessing customer support and extra services.
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Our Portable Credit Card Swipe Machine
Not only will the USBSwiper.com solution work on both Windows and MAC systems, but doing so will save you potentially thousands of dollars in expensive long term leasing and/or purchasing arrangements for your credit card terminal.
If you are a growing business or have multiple locations, you can save a tremendous amount of time and money because our system will work on an infinite number of USBSwiper.com credit card processing terminals which will all link to one single merchant account!
Our solution and the Credit Card Machine that you will use for taking and processing credit cards will be the equipment you already own your laptop or desktop computer. Also, because our credit card terminal system is PC based, you are afforded the utmost in flexibility to upload your inventory and other important transaction details into our unique software interface something a regular credit card machine cannot do!
The more you examine the benefits of our credit card terminal system, the more you will be convinced that USBSwiper is the BEST credit card processing terminal for your business.
Are There Alternative Credit Card Readers Worth Considering
The following products didn’t make our best credit card readers for small business list but are worth mentioning:
- Dharma: Dharma isn’t technically a card reader, but offers merchant services. You can purchase an independent terminal from Verifone or Ingenico through Dharma or use your Clover terminal or third-party reader if the fees are adding up. Dharma has low card processing rates of 0.15% plus 7 cents per transaction. It’s best for small businesses with higher-dollar sales. However, Dharma has a more stringent application process and pricier card readers.
- Payanywhere: Although the basic credit card readers are free , expect to pay at least $9.95 per month for service. You could opt for Pay As You Go to skip the fees, but you’ll be charged $3.99 per month after 12 months of inactivity. A 2.69% transaction fee is applied to all card sales. However, keyed-in transactions are higher at 3.49% plus 19 cents each.
- QuickBooks mobile card reader: Integration with Quickbooks may be a big selling point, but the five best credit card readers for small business edged the company out for hardware and fees. Quickbooks only offers one card reader. Processing costs $12.50 per month and fees start at 2.4% plus $0.25 per transaction plus an additional 1% fee if you key in a card purchase.
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Clover Go Comes With Merchant Account
Payments & Essentials : 2.6% + 10¢ per card reader paymentRegister: $39.95/mo, 2.3% + 10¢ per card reader payment
All keyed cards: 3.5% + 10¢
- Clover swipe, chip & tap reader: $99
Clover offers a full range of point of sale products that can be adapted to most checkouts, spanning from an iPhone credit card reader to full-fledged hardware and POS software. All the Clover products come with a merchant account for stable mobile credit card processing.
The fees have been simplified a little in recent years. Before, you had to get a contract through partner banks like Bank of America. Now, you can subscribe on the Clover website for no monthly cost for payments only, $9.95 a month for basic inventory features or the markedly higher $39.95 per month for advanced inventory management .
Essentials and Payments have a higher transaction rate at 2.6% + 10¢. The Register subscription has more POS features and the lower card rate 2.3% + 10¢ for EMV, swipe and NFC payments. The card reader costs $99 regardless of the plan. All plans charge 3.5% + 10¢ for key-in card payments.
Clover Go accepts tap, swipe and chip and keyed-in transactions from customers not present.
You can also get an offer with a monthly subscription from Payline, where rates are based on the specific payment card accepted. Payline requires a monthly minimum charge of $25 in card processing fees, so this option is better suited for those with a consistent sales volume.
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Shopify: Best For Pop
Pop-up shops are a trendy way to run a business. They allow online small-business owners to try out a new revenue stream: in-person sales. If youre one of the tens of thousands of online retailers selling art, clothes, or jewelryfor examplesetting up a booth or kiosk could boost your brand and your profits.
Shopifys platform has long provided retailers a place to sell their wares online, but did you know it also offers an in-person sales solution?
With Shopifys robust mobile app, online store, and mobile card readers, you can start selling products and processing payments wherever your customers are.
The Shopify POS service starts at $29 per month for the Basic plan, which provides shipping label support, retail reports, and a free swipe card reader for up to two users. In-person transactions on the Basic plan cost you 2.7%, while online rates start at 2.9% + 30¢ per transaction.
These costs put Shopify in the more expensive column compared to some of the other brands we reviewed. But for occasional in-person sales, its a good investment.
Plus, Shopify offers lower fees when you upgrade your plans. For example, the $79 per month plan has in-person fees of just 2.5%. If you plan to expand your physical retail presence and set up a more permanent store, this plan is super affordable.
The bottom line is if youre thinking of testing out a physical presence for your burgeoning online store, Shopify is an excellent choice.
Best Credit Card Readers For Small Business
Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This may influence which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own. Here is a list ofour partnersandhere’s how we make money.
A credit card reader is essential to many small businesses, and choosing the right card reader can help your company operate more smoothly. The best choice depends on your budget, features needed and whether you’re accepting payments at a counter or on the go. Below is a list of the best credit card readers for small businesses.
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Best Budget: Futura Credit Card Reader
If you want to try out accepting credit cards for your business without incurring a big upfront cost, the Futura credit card reader is a great choice. This compact three-track magnetic stripe card reader works with laptops or desktop computers and can be used not only for credit card processing, but for point of sale access control, ID verification or even employee clock-in and out. Bi-directional swipe reading makes checking out easier for your customers. Even though this card reader is very affordable, each machine is rated for over 1,000,000 card swipes, so you wont have to worry about replacing it for a long time. Better still, the Futura credit card reader comes with a 12-month warranty to give you peace of mind before you purchase.
In Summary: The Best Credit Card Readers For Iphone & Ipad
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Square Reader For Contactless And Chip Cards: Best For Pos Features
Accepts: Chip and contactless payment methods.Price: $49.Fees: 2.6% plus 10 cents and up depending on method.
You don’t have to pay a monthly fee.
Square’s POS software is well-developed.
You can’t swipe cards.
It doesn’t have a screen to display transaction details.
Why we like it: Squares free POS software is among the most feature-rich out there it can give you the full range of business management capabilities, including customized digital receipts, invoicing, customer profiles for repeat buyers, inventory management and more. The company has standard processing fees across the board, and theres no monthly fee.
What Is The Best Credit Card Machine For My Business
If you’re shopping for the best credit card machines for your business, it can be difficult to know where to start, especially if you don’t know what you need. The good news is that it doesn’t take much to get up to speed as long as you have the right partner helping you out.
For the uninitiated, credit card machines or terminals are tools that enable you to take and process payments. A typical payment is broken up into three main parts, consisting of authorization, submission and settlement. While the authorization deals with whether the payment should be processed, submission dictates when it will be processed and settlement defines when the funds are released.
Generally, this all happens behind the scenes while a customer swipes their card, though the actual completion of a transaction may take up to a few days depending on your account and the type of purchase, as well as what kind of credit card machine you have.
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