fbpx

10 Best Free POS Systems for Small Business in 2020

Restaurants

10 Best Free POS Systems for Small Business in 2020

January 03, 2020

small-business-pos

Today, setting up a hospitality business is easier than ever before. All you need is a smartphone, tablet or laptop, internet access and a modest inventory to get started. But while these can get you off the ground, you still need various tools and technology to improve your daily efficiency.

Specifically, a POS system can make your life easier when it comes to managing sales, tracking inventory and collecting customer data. We know that when you first start out, the costs add up quickly.

Luckily, there are plenty of free POS systems available on the market. In this article, you’ll learn about the top 10 platforms most popular with hospitality businesses.

What Are the 10 Best Free POS Systems in 2020?

    1. Loyverse POS
    2. Square
    3. Unicenta
    4. Floreant POS
    5. Vend
    6. Imonggo
    7. Linga
    8. SlickPOS
    9. eHopper POS
    10. Chromis POS

Considering that most of the free POS systems in our list offer similar feature packages, we’ve outlined the specific factors that set them apart from one another. These include software and hardware requirements, user interface and price points for upgrades, to name a few. Be sure to first establish what you need out of a POS system. This will help you evaluate each option listed below.

10 Best Free POS Systems

The follow are the best free POS systems for small business retail, hospitality, restaurants, and other businesses.

loyverse-pos

1. Loyverse POS

Review Rating: 4.8/5 

As one of the best mobile-based POS systems, Loyverse offers more than the usual platform. It was created with the focus of promoting customer loyalty programs to customers. It comes with a companion app which you can use to create offers based on customer data and restaurant promotions. 

In addition to the loyalty feature, the software offers inventory management, individual employee reports, digital receipts and analytics. Loyverse also offers paid versions for a more exhaustive assortment of features.

Pricing:

  • Loyverse offers a free version for IOS and Android
  • Additional costs are required for employee management add-ons 
    1. Per Employee (Suitable for companies with 9 employees or less): $5 per month or $50 per year
    2. Unlimited Employees (Suitable for companies with 10 employees or more): $50 per month or $500 per year
  • The advanced inventory management add-on per store costs $25 monthly or $250 yearly
Loyverse-screenshot
square-pos-logo

2. Square

Review Rating: 4.6/5 

Square is one of the most popular free POS systems used today. It’s easy-to-use interface and simple hardware requirements have made it a favorite for small businesses, especially pop-up shops, food trucks and market vendors. You just need the company’s magstripe reader, plug it into any smartphone with a jack and you are ready for business. Signup is free with a small fee charged per transaction.

Pricing:

  • Contactless Magstripe Reader with headphone jack: $10
    1. 2.65% per credit swipe
  • Square Reader for contactless and chip: $59 
    1. 2.65% per credit chip & PIN, tap or swipe 
    2. 10¢ per Interac chip & PIN or tap
  • Square Stand for contactless and chip (iPad Compatible): $199 or easy payment plans of 3, 6 or 12 months
    1. 2.65% per credit chip & PIN, tap or swipe 
    2. 10¢ per Interac chip & PIN or tap
  • Square Terminal POS: $299 one time or easy payment plans of 3, 6 or 12 months
    1. 2.65% per credit chip & PIN, tap or swipe 
    2. 10¢ per Interac chip & PIN or tap
square-pos-screenshot

3. Unicenta POS

Review Rating: 4.5/5 

Unicenta has given many paid POS systems a run for their money. One of the most popular free POS systems, Unicenta rivals plenty of other software by offering a vast number of features – even some that paid versions lack. Some of these features include inventory tracking, CRM, employee management, analytics and reporting. 

The POS can be added to any system as it supports Linux, PC, Mac and mobile. Another benefit is that Unicenta POS can be hosted locally or via the cloud, which makes it possible to manage stores across various locations.

Pricing:

  • A free and open-source system.
  • The paid option has two plans:
    1. Base: $79
    2. Plus: $178
unicenta-screenshot
floreant-pos-logo

4. Floreant POS

Review Rating: 4.3/5 

Denny’s is not only known for its sensational breakfasts. In the year 2008, they hired a team to upgrade their POS, and that’s how Floreant was created. It offers features that are particularly beneficial within the foodservice industry, such as table and menu management and tip adjustment, to name a couple. It also provides the usual features such as inventory tracking, sales reports, analytics and employee management.

Pricing:

  • The free version is available for all systems (Windows, Linux and Mac), but they welcome donations.
Floreant-POS-screenshot
vend-logo

5. Vend

Review Rating: 4.2/5 

Vend is another excellent POS system that has been designed for small businesses. It supports one register or POS terminal and 10 different products with up to 1,000 customers per month. What makes it a great solution for small businesses is that, in addition to the usual POS system features like inventory, employee and customer management, it offers more advanced tools. These features include digital receipts, sales analyses and integration with platforms like Shopify, Paypal and Xero.

Pricing:

  • Vend offers 30 days risk-free trial 
  • The Lite plan, suitable for small businesses with basic operations, costs $119 per month billed annually or $139 billed monthly
  • The Pro plan is suited for a single big store or multi-store retailers and costs $149 per month billed annually or $169 billed annually
vend-screenshot
imonggo-logo

6. Imonggo

Review Rating: 3.5/5 

Imonggo has built a solid reputation since its launch in 2009. It’s currently being used in over 1,100 cities around the world. It offers the essential features a small business needs such as inventory management, digital receipts and much more. 

Imonggo offers support for up to 1,000 products and 1,000 transactions per month, which can be great if you are just starting your business. 

Pricing:

  • The free version supports all the features and is a good match for a single small store 
  • The paid version costs $30 per month and also accepts credit card payments
Imonggo-screenshot
linga-logo

7. Linga

Review Rating: 1.5/5 

A freemium POS system, Linga is available as an app on the Apple app store, so it’s best compatible with iPads. Linga has been designed with restaurants in mind. In addition to the usual features such as digital receipts and credit card transactions, it also offers services for gift cards, split payments, reporting and even email marketing. What sets Linga apart from other POS systems is that it can process up to 30 currencies and can be translated into 30 languages. And with a four tier pricing system, they offer a solution for businesses of all sizes and operations.

Pricing:

  • The free version supports 25 products and bar code scanning
  • The Basic Plan costs $19.99 per month per register and includes sales & employee dashboards, gift cards, email marketing and happy hours, in addition to the features in the free version 
  • The Pro Plan is $49.99 per month and includes all the features of the basic plan plus inventory management, table/floor layouts, payroll reporting and time clock 
  • The Enterprise Plan is $89.99 per month per register and is best suitable for businesses with stores across various locations. It includes everything in the Pro Plan plus more advanced features such as consolidated reporting, country level management, enterprise loyalty and multi-store inventory.
linga-pos-screenshot
slickpos-logo

8. SlickPOS

Review Rating: N/A

Slick is another modern POS system that helps small business owners maximize their returns. The key feature that makes Slick POS successful is an easy-to-use interface, and compatibility with all major system software such as Windows and Mac. Moreover, it also offers API integrations and is suitable to be used on desktops as well as smartphones and tablets. With features like recipe management, table management, inventory tracking and SMS receipts, Slick has made its mark amongst small businesses and restaurants.

Pricing:

  • The free version offers 500 receipts a month and one year of sales history 
  • The monthly plan costs $19 and has a wide range of features such as unlimited receipts, unlimited sales history, an analytics app for owners, inventory & recipe management, unlimited SMS receipts and customer feedback 
  • The annual plan is priced at $189 with the same features as the monthly plan

 

slickpos-screenshot
ehopper-logo

9. eHopper POS

Review Rating: N/A

eHopper is another popular free POS System. It offers limited features in its free version, including inventory management, tip handling, split payment and CRM. Although these features are sufficient to run a small restaurant, you can easily upgrade to a paid version and unlock additional features once you are satisfied with the performance of the POS system. 

Pricing: 

  • The free version includes all the essentials to run a POS terminal at a small store
  • The Freedom Package is priced at $29.99 per month per register and offers features such as clock-in/clock-out, ingredient management, purchase order receiving, low stock alert and much more. 
  • The OmniChannel Package costs $79.99 per month and, in addition to the features of the Freedom package, it also offers features like a loyalty programs, digital signage etc.

 

ehopper-screenshot
chromispos-logo

10. Chromis POS

Review Rating: N/A

Chromis is an open-source POS system that offers customized receipts and interfaces to customers.  It also supports kitchen screen displays and the customer database, in addition to a CSV-based information import feature. These make the system a good fit for new businesses. The POS system can be used on desktops running Windows XP through 10. 

Pricing:

  • Chromis is a free open source tool available for download from their website

chromis-pos-logo

How to Choose a Free POS System for Your Small Business?

There are many critical decisions that can prove to be instrumental while running a business. Some of these decisions range from choosing the best name and logo to dealing with operations, such as choosing the right POS system. 

A POS system not only plays a crucial role in providing exemplary customer service, but the essential features such as inventory and sales reporting, aides in making informed business decisions to maximize sales. Hence, it is imperative that you are not confounded with the numerous options available when choosing a POS software. 

When deciding upon the best software for your business, keeping in mind the four questions listed below will help you keep the process as swift and stress-free as possible.

1. What are your POS requirements?

The first step in deciding which POS system to buy is figuring out your  business requirements that the POS will help you achieve. Do you need it extensively for credit card payments, or would you need additional features such as inventory management, reports and analysis etc.? 

Once you have your list of requirements, you can eliminate the POS systems that do not meet your specifications. This process of elimination ensures that you pick out the most suitable match because you don’t want to have to change the entire system a few months down the line to accommodate certain features. Consider both short term and long term goals.

2. How much does it cost?

Even though many free POS systems are available, your business may need to upgrade to a paid system to ensure smooth functioning. But as a new business owner, you must decide on a suitable budget for the POS so that you can manage your ROI. Start out by trying a free version until you have your operational processes in place. This will give you a better idea of what features are worthwhile to invest in.

3. How easy is it to use?

A POS system should be easy to use, and on top of that, easy to learn. The restaurant business experiences high turnover, so it’s important for new employees to be able to learn the technology as quickly and efficiently as possible. This is also useful as your business grows and you need to hire additional staff. 

In addition to the daily functions of billing, another feature that needs to be easy to use in your POS is reporting. It’s essential to understand your numbers and data in order to keep your business operating at its peak performance. 

4. Do they provide extensive support?

Your POS system is part of your business’s lifeline. Therefore, if you ever encounter any problems, having excellent and responsive customer support may save the day. Good post-sales service is also beneficial as you integrate the system into other areas of your business or explore the various features offered by the system.

Next Steps 

As you consider the various POS systems available in the market, it can become overwhelming since there are plenty of great options. Ideally, the system you choose should be good for your business for years to come. With so many robust programs available today, you don’t have to sacrifice on quality or features. And you don’t have to break the bank, either. The best POS system is one that will grow and adapt with your business.

Additional POS Resources:

Join the 2ndKitchen restaurant network to serve your food in local breweries & bars

Multiply your delivery orders and start earning more revenue with 2ndKitchen – it’s free to get started!

Join the conversation with thousands of customers and partners talking about the future of food service.

  • no-contact-delivery

    How to Setup Contactless Delivery (+5 Examples)

    As COVID-19 continues to disrupt daily lives, restaurants have been forced to pivot to online orders to maintain a revenue flow. WHAT WE’LL COVER: Chapter 1: What Is Contactless Delivery? Chapter 2: How to Setup Contactless Delivery Chapter 3: 5 Examples of Companies Offering N0-Contact Delivery Many restaurants already had an online ordering system and a process for delivering those […]

Serve Food. Today.

Get Started. It's Free!