Mobile credit card processing allows merchants to sell products and accept card payments from almost anywhere with a smartphone or tablet. The best mobile credit card processor should be reliable, have affordable transaction fees, come with a free business management app, and function offline.
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How We Evaluated Mobile Credit Card Processing Companies
There are tons of great mobile credit processing options, but there are a few that stand out. The best mobile credit card processor is convenient and flexible with no or low upfront costs and competitive processing rates. It also has to be reliable—you need to be able to depend on it in many different environments, even with an unstable internet connection.
We evaluated mobile credit card processors based on price, ease of use, the POS app, reliability, and multi-channel features.
Mobile Credit Card Processing Companies Compared
Plans start at $49 per month
Plans start at $29 per month
Mobile reader cost
Swipe and chip processing fee
2.6% plus 10 cents
2.4% + 25 cents (free plan) / 1.6% + 25 cents ($20 per month plan)
Interchange + 5–15 cents
2.4% - 2.7%
Keyed-in processing fee
3.5% plus 15 cents
3.5% + 15 cents
3.4% + 25 cents(free plan) / 3.2% + 25 cents ($20 per month plan)
Interchange + 5–15 cents
2.4% - 2.7%
Contactless payment options
Shortest deposit time
Square: Best Overall Mobile Credit Card Processor
Square is the best credit mobile credit card processor for small businesses. The mobile payment processing option has no monthly or startup fees, and the application is easy—there is none. You can get up and running in no time with the free POS app while you wait for the free credit card reader to arrive. The app works offline, is compatible with Android and iOS, and has competitive processing rates. Plus, the POS software includes free business management tools.
Square Mobile Payment Strengths
Square Mobile Payment Weaknesses
Competitive mobile credit card processing rates
Processing fees are high for small transactions (under $25) and businesses processing over $10,000 monthly
Easy chargeback dispute
Customer service can be difficult to reach
Free POS, inventory, and customer management tools
Account instability (funds can be reserved at Square’s discretion)
Instant signup—no application or approval required
Not ideal for high-risk or high-volume businesses
Mobile, in-store, and online sales channels
- Monthly fee: free
- Swipe and chip processing fee: 2.6% + 10 cents
- Keyed-in and stored card processing fee: 3.5% + 15 cents
- Online and invoice processing fee: 2.9% + 30 cents
- Card on File invoice processing fee: 3.5% + 15 cents
- Swipe reader cost: free
- Chip and tap reader: $49
- Square Terminal: $299
Square Mobile Payment Features:
- POS app: You can use the free Square POS mobile app on both Android and iOS devices—even when offline. With the app, you can also record other payment types, split payments, accept gift cards, send invoices, and save cards on file (though these come with a higher processing fee). Add inventory for faster checkout, allow customers to add tips, and print, text, or email receipts.
- Accepted payment types: With Square’s mobile credit card processor, you can accept major credit cards including Visa, Mastercard, Discover, and American Express as well as mobile options like Apple Pay, Android Pay, and Google Wallet. Depending on the reader, you can accept magstripe, chip, and contactless (NFC) credit card payments.
- Payout time: One of the things we love about Square is next-day deposits. While some may take two days if the transaction happens after normal business hours, it’s still a pretty quick payout time. For even faster access to your cash, upgrade to instant transfers with a 1.5% fee.
- Business management tools: Square offers more than mobile credit card processing. It has features to help you run other areas of your business, like inventory management, appointment booking, staff management, invoice management, and email marketing. You can also integrate it with other tools and pull reports that include all of the data.
- Multichannel features: While it’s tough to compete with Shopify when it comes to ecommerce features, Square doesn’t come up too short. You can take online payments and send or manage invoices, as well as set up recurring payments. Square offers its own POS and online store, and it also integrates with several third-party tools for both.
PayPal: Best Mobile Credit Card Processing for Occasional Sales
PayPal used to be an online-only platform, but it has since added in-person payments, including a mobile credit card processor branded as PayPal Here. While Square offers interchange plus pricing, PayPal has a more straightforward and competitive pricing model—it’s just a flat percentage, which typically works out well for lower transaction values.
Both platforms are simple and easy to set up and use. PayPal integrates with a variety of platforms and accepts a range of payment methods. It’s also known for its strong security features.
PayPal Mobile Payment Strengths
PayPal Mobile Payment Weaknesses
Safe and secure
Account stability issues
Easy to set up and use
Limited inventory management features
Affordable for small transaction value
Weekly limit for swiped and keyed-in payments
Instant payout to your PayPal account
May freeze funds at any time; 30-day hold on funds over weekly limit
- Monthly fee: $0
- Swipe and chip processing fee: 2.7%
- Keyed-in and stored card processing fee: 3.5% + 15 cents
- Online and invoice processing fee: 2.7%
- Swipe reader cost: $24.99
- Chip and tap reader: $79
PayPal Mobile Payment Features:
- Payout time: If you use PayPal Here, you’ll receive the funds in your PayPal account immediately. You can keep funds there or transfer them to your bank account for free in one to two business days or instantly for an additional fee. Keep in mind that if you use the free magstripe reader or key in more than $500 in transactions in a seven-day period, your funds are held for 30 days. If you process anything close to that, opt for a chip reader ($24.99) to avoid frozen funds.
- Mobile app features: The PayPal Here app lacks some of the features that Square has, but it has been expanded upon to include additional features like inventory tracking and employee accounts. You can configure discount/sale/tax/tip settings, apply refunds, and send email receipts. PayPal has a simplified product catalog so you can set items and pricing, including item modifiers, variations, and add-ons. You can also send invoices to customers for payment at a later date.
- Accepted payment types: PayPal Here accepts all major credit and debit cards, including swipe, chip, and contactless payments—depending on the mobile reader you use. PayPal Here also accepts PayPal payments, ideal for event and mobile vendors where customers may not have credit cards on them. Like Square, PayPal can process payments offline, so you don’t need an internet connection to process sales.
- Multichannel: PayPal integrates with most major ecommerce platforms, so you can accommodate both in-person and online transactions.
Intuit GoPayment: Best Mobile Credit Card Processing for QuickBooks Users
If you’re already up and running on QuickBooks, Intuit GoPayment is an easy choice for mobile credit card processing, and it makes bookkeeping simple. And like Square and PayPal, it’s free to get started with their mobile credit card processor. Its low processing fees make it ideal for high transaction values.
Intuit GoPayment Strengths
Intuit GoPayment Weaknesses
Seamless QuickBooks integration
Minimal inventory control features
No monthly fee and low processing fees
No customer database or profiles
Take credit card payments without any hardware
Intuit GoPayment Pricing
- Monthly fee: $0
- Swipe and chip processing fee: 2.4% + 25 cents
- Keyed-in and stored card processing fee: 3.4% + 25 cents
- Invoice processing fee: 2.9% + 25 cents
- Swipe reader cost: first one free; $19 each thereafter
- Swipe, chip, and tap reader: $49
Intuit GoPayment Mobile Payment Features:
- Mobile app features: While GoPayment allows you to build a product list, its inventory tracking features are quite limited—especially when compared to Shopify or even Square. You can also manually enter credit card information in the mobile app and take payments without any reader or additional hardware. In the app, you can also configure sales tax and tips and take photos of credit cards for contactless pay.
- Accepted payment types: Like most other mobile credit card processors, you can accept most major credit cards with GoPayment. You can also process ACH transfers, as well as record cash and check payments.
- Payout time: Intuit GoPayment offers next-day payouts, though there may be delays on weekends and holidays.
- Multichannel: Intuit GoPayment offers both online and in-person credit card transactions. Connect it to the ecommerce platform of your choice to start collecting payments online. It also relies on a tight integration with ShopKeep for its POS capabilities.
Payment Depot: Best Mobile Credit Card Processing for Established Businesses
Through Payment Depot, businesses pay a monthly fee to access wholesale mobile credit card processing fees. Unlike the other processors on this list, Payment Depot is a dedicated payment processor. Therefore, its security, reliability, setup, and fees are attractive for merchants of all sizes, especially established. It’s also easy to predict processing fees with its pricing model.
Payment Depot Strengths
Payment Depot Weaknesses
Low transaction fees for all payment types
Not suited for high-risk businesses
Transparent pricing model
Businesses processing less than $10,000 monthly may not be approved
Free payment gateway and virtual terminal
Month-to-month billing with no cancellation fee
90-day money-back guarantee
Payment Depot Pricing
- Monthly fee: $49 per month
- Swipe and chip processing fee: Interchange + 5 cents –15 cents
- Keyed-in and stored card processing fee: Interchange + 5 cents –15 cents
- SwipeSimple swipe and chip reader: $99
- SwipeSimple Terminal: $425
Payment Depot uses a subscription-based model and also works with third-party hardware you can purchase through Payment Depot or another option.
Payment Depot Mobile Payment Features:
- Mobile app features: Payment Depot actually isn’t the mobile credit card processor themselves. Instead, they partner with SwipeSimple for mobile payments, and the app works offline like Square and PayPal. With the SwipeSimple mobile payments app, you can add tips, save payment information, use a product catalog, and process returns. You can also view analytics reports.
- Accepted payment types: You can accept most major credit cards with Payment Depot, as well as contactless and mobile pay.
- Payout time: Payment Depot’s payout times are typically 24 – 48 hours.
Shopify: Best Mobile Credit Card Processing for Online Stores
If you sell online in addition to your brick and mortar store, Shopify is one of the best mobile credit card processors out there. It combines all your sales channels into a single system, and has robust features and options for inventory management, order fulfillment, POS, social commerce, and more. Unlike Square and PayPal, Shopify comes with a considerable monthly fee and can’t process payments while offline.
Competitive rates for businesses that sell over $10,000 per month
Requires monthly fee
Online store builder
Doesn’t work offline
Includes delivery management, email marketing, and many other tools
Pricing below comes with the Shopify Basic plan, which has a $29 monthly fee. Processing rates are slightly lower with Shopify ($79 per month) and Advanced Shopify ($299 per month) plans.
- Monthly fee: $29
- In-person payment processing fee: 2.7%
- Online payment processing fee: 2.9% + 30 cents
- Swipe and chip reader cost: $29
- Chip and tap reader: $49
- Shopify Retail Kit: $229
Shopify Mobile Payment Features:
- Omnichannel: Perhaps the biggest advantage to any Shopify user is the integrated ecommerce and retail sales channels. You can use the ecommerce website builder to launch an entire online store complementary to your in-person presence. This also includes multichannel inventory management, shipping and fulfillment, third-party marketplaces, and more. You can also accept gift cards purchased online or in-person when using the mobile credit card processor.
- Mobile app features: Shopify’s mobile app offers a suite of business management tools and options. However, you can’t process payments while offline.
- Accepted payment types: You can accept most major credit cards with Shopify, as well as gift cards, customer rewards, layaway payments, split payments, and deposits.
- Payout time: Funds hit your bank account in one to three days. Unlike Square and PayPal, Shopify lacks a same-day payout option.
- Business management: Inventory management is Shopify’s strongest business management feature, but it also includes tools for reporting and analytics, employee management, tips, email and SMS marketing, and more. There are also thousands of apps available, ranging from customer loyalty programs to dropshipping.
Whether you’re a brand-new business that is starting out with mobile credit card processing or an established store looking to take your business on the go, you need a solution that is cost-effective, reliable, and easy to use. The best providers also do not have a monthly transaction minimum, fees, or contracts.
Square is a great mobile credit card processing company for small businesses. Their plug-and-play solution makes it super-easy for anyone to accept payments anywhere, even offline. No applications, startup fees, or hardware costs mean it’s a risk-free investment. Plus, the Square app comes with the point-of-sale features you need to manage a business on the go. Visit Square to get started with a free account and mobile card reader.