18 Restaurant POS Systems Compared: Which Is Best For Your Business?

Danielle Antosz
Last Updated on December 30, 2019
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Today’s restaurant POS (point of sale) systems can do much more than simply process payments and take orders.

Some can streamline services and boost your bottom line. They can support inventory and staff management, take gift cards, track discounts, provide loyalty programs and boost customer satisfaction.

Whether you have a quick-serve or full-service restaurant, whether you want to use iPads or proprietary hardware, there’s a perfect POS for you.

We’ve dug into the top restaurant POS systems and looked for essential features like ease-of-use, iPad compatibility, online ordering, and EMV compliance. Here is what you need to know to choose the right POS for your business.

Which Restaurant POS Do I Need?

Not sure where to start your search? Below we’ve listed some common scenarios and a handful of suggestions to speed up your search.

Scenarios

I need a POS that is versatile, easy to use and iPad-based.

I need a POS that is made for quick-serve restaurants.

I need a POS that can handle both quick-service and full-service.

I need a POS that can help me optimize service and communications.

I need a POS that can give me actionable insights and boost profit margins.

18 Top Restaurant POS Systems

Here you’ll find solutions for quick service or full-service restaurants. Key features include: inventory management, order-taking, tableside ordering, tip suggestions, loyalty programs, and employee management.

Square for Restaurants: Quick to Set Up and Versatile

Square is a customizable, iPad-based POS system with tons of features to keep your restaurant running smoothly. Popular features include multiple menu management, coursing, detailed reporting tools, marketing tools, and tableside payments.

  • Can be used with iPads? Yes
  • Supports online ordering? Yes
  • Pricing: Pay per transaction (around 2.75%)

square pos restaurants

Toast: Full-Featured and Affordable

Toast is an all-in-one restaurant management program for all size restaurants. Popular features include digital ordering, employee management, handheld POS, gift cards, and loyalty programs. Hardware is available.

  • Can be used with iPads? No. they have a proprietary hand-held device
  • Supports online ordering? Yes
  • Pricing: Starts at $79 per month per terminal

toast pos

TouchBistro: iPad-Based Solution

iPad-based Pos system offering features such as tableside ordering, table management, CRM, staff management, menu management, and reports and analytics.

  • Can be used with iPads? Yes
  • Supports online ordering? Yes, with integration
  • Pricing: Starts at $69 per month

touchbistro homepage

Appetize: Quick- or Full-Service, Mobile App for Online Orders

Appetize offers iPad-based POS for quick-service restaurants as well as other options for full-service restaurants.

Popular features include a powerful reporting tool, inventory management, and taking reservations. You can incorporate digital ordering directly into your mobile app.

  • Can be used with iPads? Yes
  • Supports online ordering?  Yes
  • Pricing: Contact for pricing

appetize homepage

ShopKeep: Complete Solution with Integrated Accounting

ShopKeep is designed to help automate your operations. Features include front and back-of-house tools, tableside ordering, staff management, loyalty programs, integrated accounting, and inventory management.

  • Can be used with iPads?  No
  • Supports online ordering?  Yes
  • Pricing: Contact for a quote

shopkeep homepage

Upserve: Designed to Boost ROI

Formerly Breadcrumb, this POS system is designed to help your restaurant grow and improve profit margins. Features include quick menu search, offline mode, tip adjust, training mode, tableside service, and employee management.

  • Can be used with iPads? Yes, and Android tablets too
  • Supports online ordering? Yes, + $59 monthly fee
  • Pricing: $119 to $399 monthly

upserve homepage

LightSpeed Restaurant: iPad-Compatible, Advanced Reporting

Multiple software options, including quick-serve and full-service restaurants. Features vary by plan but can include employee management, online ordering, email marketing, an e-commerce website, gift cards, and advanced reporting.

  • Can be used with iPads? Yes
  • Supports online ordering? Yes, but not for the Basic plan
  • Pricing: Between $69 and $199 per month

lightspeed restaurant pos

Thrive POS: For Delivery Restaurants

Thrive POS is designed for pizzerias and other delivery restaurants. Features include a flexible platform with the ability to accept gift cards, affordable payment processing, delivery management, and enterprise-level reporting.

  • Can be used with iPads? Yes
  • Supports online ordering? Yes
  • Pricing: Not listed, must request a demo

thrive pos homepage

FranPOS: For Quick-Service

FranPOS is a flexible system focused on fast check out for quick-service restaurants. Features of their system include online ordering, automated marketing, loyalty program management, scheduling, a time clock, and intelligent reporting.

  • Can be used with iPads? Yes
  • Supports online ordering? Yes
  • Pricing: Not listed; contact them for more info

franpos homepage

Cake: Supports Quick Service and Full Service

Cake is an affordable, cloud-based POS system for both full-service and quick-service restaurants.

  • Can be used with iPads? The “Order Pad” software can be used with an iPad. But the static terminals require Cake’s proprietary hardware.
  • Supports online ordering? Yes
  • Pricing: Starts at $69 per month

Cake has a dedicated iPad app for taking orders. Their software includes tip suggestions, dynamic reporting, employee management, menu building, accounting integration, and an offline mode. 

Reports can be viewed on any device, including Macs, iPhones, and iPads.

Note: This company also provides a full suite of proprietary hardware.

cake pos homepage

Brigade Society: Designed to Optimize Service

Brigade Society offers an iPad-based POS system designed to optimize your service speed and staff communications.

Features include easy menu set up, custom menu options, inventory control, built-in analytics, and staff management tools. They offer a 30-day money-back guarantee.

  • Can be used with iPads? Yes
  • Supports online ordering? Not listed
  • Pricing: $99/mo

brigadesociety homepage

PointOS: Supports Split Checks, Management Features

PointOS supports quick service and full-service restaurants with features such as email receipts, online ordering, gift cards, split-check and order modification features, inventory re-order, recipe set up, menu management, and dining room layout designer.

  • Can be used with iPads? Unclear; does support tablets
  • Supports online ordering? Yes
  • Pricing: Contact for demo

pointos homepage

RevelSystems: Includes CRM and Loyalty Programs

RevelSystems offers software options for quick-service restaurants, pizza restaurants, and bars.

Features include a loyalty program, online ordering, employee management, CRM, reports, and analytics. Hardware is available for an additional fee.

  • Can be used with iPads? Yes
  • Supports online ordering? Yes
  • Pricing: Starts at $99 per month per terminal

revelsystems homepage

Lavu: Easy-to-Use iPad System

Lavu is an easy-to-use iPad-based POS system. It offers per-item tax exemption, kitchen ticketing, tableside payment, print or email receipts, schedule and inventory management, and access to real-time reports. It supports gift cards.

  • Can be used with iPads? Yes
  • Supports online ordering? Yes, through a separate platform called Lavu to Go
  • Pricing: Starts at $69 per month

lavu homepage

RezkuPOS: Full-Featured POS for iPads

RezkuPOS is a full-service, cloud-based restaurant POS system.

Popular features include a loyalty program, gift card program, waste tracking, in-depth reporting tools, online ordering, a timeclock, cash drawer management, and remote management options.

They do not offer hardware but provide a list of items that work best with their program.

  • Can be used with iPads? Yes
  • Supports online ordering? Yes
  • Pricing: Not listed; enquire for pricing.

rezku pos homepage

HIPPOS: Mutli-Location, Floor Plan Insights

HIPPOS offers a full suite of POS systems for retail, quick-service restaurants, or full-service restaurants. All plans include personalized onboarding, 24/7 support, and remote or on-site installation.

Software features include inventory management, food pairing suggestions and upsells, a menu creator, email receipts, and real-time metrics. Hippos works with most hardware setups, so you may be able to use your current system. If you need hardware, they can help you get it.

  • Can be used with iPads? No, HIPPOS is Microsoft Windows-based and will operate on Microsoft Windows POS terminals as well as Microsoft tablets.
  • Supports online ordering? Yes, for an additional $10 per month
  • Pricing: $29- $39 per month

hippos homepage

OrderSnapp: Quick-Service, Marketing Tools Included

OrderSnapp is a quick-service restaurant POS system designed to grow with your restaurant. Features include online ordering, loyalty programs, gift cards, and a website.

They also offer tools to manage your online presence, including SEO and email marketing tools. Hardware is available for an additional fee, including receipt printers, scanners, and terminals.

  • Can be used with iPads? Yes
  • Supports online ordering? Yes
  • Pricing: $99 per year fee for the app

ordersnapp homepage

KoomiPOS: Supports Quick-Service, Franchises

KoomiPOS is explicitly designed with quick-service and takeaway restaurants in mind.

Popular features include multi-location franchise panel, a branded app for online ordering, and integrated payments. Higher plans include a timeclock, inventory control, and kitchen display.

  • Can be used with iPads? Yes
  • Supports online ordering? Yes, but this is not included in the $69/month plan. You must contact the company for pricing on this feature.
  • Pricing: Starts at $69 a month (singe license – use by one business only)

koomi homepage

What is EMV Compliance?

EMV compliance is a global security standard, set by credit card companies. It is a requirement for card payment terminals. This standard protects users from fraud.

All of the payment solutions listed above are EMV-compliant.

Conclusion

When choosing the right POS system, keep in mind that most prices are for one or two terminals. Payment processors will charge additional fees.

Sometimes features such as online ordering or hardware come with additional fees. Whether you want a light, iPad based software or a full-featured system with hardware included, there is a restaurant POS to meet your needs. Also see our small business owner’s guide to  POS systems for a more general overview or our post on iPad POS systems.

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