Mobile phone credit card processing has only been widely available for a few years, but it has become increasingly popular over that span thanks to the low setup costs and no-commitment agreements offered by most providers. In fact, many businesses are beginning to rely solely on free mobile processing apps for iPhone and Android as their primary means of accepting credit cards. This can be a very cost-effective way to take card payments for certain business types, like trade show vendors, individual contractors, or single-register locations. However, large businesses and high-volume businesses will be best served by using a mobile payment app as a backup processing option.
The following list features the top mobile credit card processing apps for iPhone and Android. We have selected these providers for this list due to their consistently strong pricing, customer support, and customer reviews. All of the apps on this list are available for both iPhone and Android users. Some options will be better suited for small one-register locations, while others are useful additions to full-service traditional merchant accounts. Many of these providers also offer integration with third-party services like QuickBooks or online marketplaces. Be sure to visit each provider’s website to get a full list of current features and pricing.
Based in Calgary, Alberta, Helcim has been providing traditional credit card processing, mobile payment solutions, virtual terminals, and online payment gateways since 2009. The company is rare among merchant services providers in that it fully discloses its pricing on its website for anyone to view. Helcim uses interchange-plus pricing, which adds a flat markup of .18% on all card-present transactions (while a rate of .36% is applied to virtual terminal and online transactions). Helcim offers additional mobile payment processing functionality through its Commerce Mobile application that is available for both Android and Apple devices.
Helcim also does not charge monthly minimum fees, statement fees, application fees, or PCI compliance fees, and it rents terminals out for a monthly rate rather than tying merchants into long-term equipment leases. The company offers month-to-month contracts and does not charge early termination fees. Helcim offers 24/7 support for merchants and has numerous positive testimonials across the internet, including in the comment section of our “A+” review. Helcim also maintains an “A+” rating with the BBB.
For more information, see the Helcim Website.
Signing up for the company’s payment processing service and payment gateway service is simple: users simply visit Square’s website to fill out a short form and await approval, which typically happens instantly. The credit card readers plug into the headphone jack, charging port, or connects via Bluetooth to a contactless card reader thereby turning almost any Apple or Android device into mobile credit card machine.
Square offers credit card processing that only has one fee: a per-transaction processing fee. The company does not charge any other fees that are typical of credit card processing, such as activation fees, monthly fees, gateway fees, PCI Compliance fees, downgrade fees, and early termination fees. Square has no additional monthly fees whatsoever as well as no monthly minimum processing fees or requirements.
For more information, visit the Square website.
Host Merchant Services is a Newark, Delaware-based merchant account provider that offers a free mobile processing app called “HMSPay” along with a free mobile reader for eligible businesses. Host is more than just a mobile payment processor, however, as it also provides point-of-sale solutions, online marketing tools, an online payment gateway and virtual terminal, gift and loyalty programs, and merchant cash advances. Host Merchant Services specializes in e-commerce businesses but is able to serve mobile merchants just as well.
Host Merchant Services has received only positive feedback on public forums, with most reviewers singling out the company’s customer service for praise. Like Payline, Host offers interchange-plus pricing with no early termination fees to all of its merchants, meaning that users will enjoy the most transparent pricing model available and can cancel service without penalty. The BBB gives Host an “A+” rating, and CPO also gives the company an “A+.”
Based in Woodland Hills, California, PaymentCloud is a merchant account provider that specializes in serving mobile businesses of nearly any type. This includes “high-risk” industries such as CBD and Kratom businesses. The company’s products and services include point-of-sale solutions, mobile phone swipers, an online payment gateway and virtual terminal, EMV-compatible terminals, and merchant cash advances. PaymentCloud provides a dedicated account rep to all new merchants for the life of the account.
The company has not received any negative complaints on consumer forums, and it customizes its pricing according to each merchant’s business type and processing history. The BBB does not maintain a profile for PaymentCloud at this time, but CPO gives the company an “A.”
National Processing offers several small business processing options and offers mobile payments through Clover and SwipeSimple. The company offers two pricing options: one an interchange-plus program or a “zero-fee” program, both of which offer competitively priced rates.
National Processing has a clean reputation with just one complaint filed in the last three years, which is not concerning in nature. Our independent review finds National Processing to be a solid option for most dentists and dental practices.
Shopify is primarily known as an e-commerce platform for online merchants, though the company also recently launched a point-of-sale software solution for iPad and iPhone. The Shopify POS app can accept cards via a headphone jack card swiper or a $129 EMV reader and includes features like inventory syncing with a webstore, emailed receipts, automatic tax calculations, basic email marketing, and in-store refunds. The service can also be paired with a Shopify online store, which comes with numerous customization options. Shopify POS is a great fit for iPhone and Android users who would like to accept payments on-site using their phones as well as through a webstore. Service-industry merchants should note, however, that Shopify’s POS app does not currently support tipping.
Shopify offers month-to-month pricing plans with variable pricing and product tiers. The company is headquartered in Ottawa, Ontario, and has been in operation since 2005. The company provides phone, email, and live chat support to all of its merchant tiers and enjoys very few online complaints despite its massive user base. The BBB gives Shopify an “A+” rating at this time, while CardPaymentOptions.com awards the company an “A.”
For more information, see the Shopify website.
Located in Chesapeake, Virginia, CDG Commerce is another ideal option for mobile payments. CDG has been privately owned since 1998 and offers a proprietary payment gateway (as well as a discount on Authorize.Net’s payment gateway), a virtual terminal, QuickBooks integration, mobile phone processing, sales reporting, security breach protection, and vulnerability scanning. CDG Commerce is ideal for merchants that require a simple, low-cost, integrated method for accepting online and in-person payments.
CDG Commerce only charges a low, fixed fee per transaction and offers competitive contractual terms, including no annual fees, monthly minimums, or termination fees. CDG also offers next-day funding to most business types. CDG has earned an “A+” rating in our review as well as an “A+” rating with the BBB.