Payanywhere vs Square 2023 | Compare Payment Solutions (2023)

Looking to better understand if Square or Payanywhere is the right credit card reader for your business? Both providers are game changers in a market traditionally dominated by banks offering card readers with long, inflexible contracts.

Where these do differ however is in their cheap pricing, lack of any contracts and long term commitments and accepting payment from virtual wallets such as Apple Pay. So, which one is right for your small business? Find out below with our detailed comparison.

  • Square: Cheaper overall than Payanywhere and best for most small businesses or occasional sellers and for those wanting free online and in-store POS systems
  • Payanywhere: Best for small sellers processing under $5,000 per month with an average transaction value lower than $20

Payanywhere vs Square: Summary comparison

The comparison table below provides an overview of these two card readers from pricing to transaction fees and more:

Monthly fees​​$0$0
Hardware costsFrom $0 for the Payanywhere Reader to $949+ for the Payanywhere Smart POS+From $0 for the Square Reader to $1,343 for the Square Commercial Tablet with Stand Kit
Processing fees2.69% to 3.49% + 19 cents per transaction2.6% + 10 cents to 3.5% + 15 cents per transaction
Invoice fees3.49% + 19 cents2.9% + 30 cents, 3.5% + 15 cents if processed using card on file, or 1% for ACH bank transfers
Average payoutFree next-day funding; same-day funding for 1%Free 1–2 day funding; instant funding for 1.5%
Inactivity fee$3.99 per month after 12 months of inactivity$0
POS featuresBasic phone app is free. Using the POS hardware costs $39.95/monthBasic POS is free. Advanced options start from $60/month
Contactless paymentYesYes
Digital wallets acceptedGoogle Pay, Apple Pay, Samsung PayGoogle Pay, Apple Pay, Samsung Pay
IntegrationsFew appsNumerous apps
Customer SupportLive Chat, phone & email supportLive Chat and phone (Mon to Fri 6am to 6pm Pacific Time)

Now we’ll deep dive into the similarities between Payanywhere and Square, before investigating the differences in depth.

Payanywhere and Square similarities

Mobile payment terminals

Both companies offer mobile credit card readers including the:

  • Square Terminal
  • Payanywhere Smart Terminal

These two card terminals make it possible to collect card payments from customers both in store and on the go at a fair or event.

Note: Both Payanywhere and Square offer mobile payment terminals and therefore require a compatible device (mobile or tablet) in order to operate. Square businesses can also connect multiple terminals to a cash drawer at no extra software subscription costs.


Prices are also similar, with both offering a free mobile card reader when you first sign up. There are also processing fee similarities with Payanywhere charging 2.69% to 3.49% + 19 cents per transaction whilst Square charges 2.6% + 10 cents to 3.5% + 15 cents per transaction.

Opening an account

Opening an account with Payanywhere and Square takes place in a similar fashion.

  • The signup process can be completed online in minutes
  • POS card reader gets delivered within a few days
  • Terminals work with most bank accounts

Both Square and Payanywhere’s target audience are smaller businesses, typically including clothing stores, cafes, boutiques, personal services, beauty salons and taxis.

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Payanywhere and Square differences

Mobile app – Square advantage

You can accept payments using a mobile reader and an Apple or Android device with the apps of Square and Payanywhere, both of which are straightforward and simple to use. If you lose your connection, both apps have an offline mode that queues transactions and a virtual terminal option that lets you enter a credit card even if you don’t have a physical card to use.

With either app, you can also add tips, send invoices, accept NFC payments, and create open tickets.

The reliability of the mobile apps appears to be the primary difference. Users of Payanywhere claim that the app is unreliable, frequently crashes, or refuses cards without any known reason. According to customer feedback, Square’s dependability does not appear to be a major issue and is known to be reliable.

Pricing – Square advantage

The processing fees are similar, but if you need more hardware than a simple card reader, Square is by far the cheaper option. Its terminals are well-regarded by users and come with the software free. Payanywhere charges a subscription fee for software on its devices and has a $3.99 per month inactivity fee (after 12 months) if you stop using the app without canceling your subscription.

Payanywhere’s 2.69% flat-rate processing costs less than Square’s offer. However, Payanywhere also moves customers into a three-year merchant account with North American Bancard, which has a completely different pricing structure, if you process more than $100K per year in any 12-month period.

Square charges 2.6% plus $0.10 for all in-person payments, which is slightly more expensive than Payanywhere however Square is slightly cheaper for transactions larger than approximately $111. In addition, Square offers a virtual terminal for 3.5% plus $0.15.

Square doesn’t charge a monthly fee unless you buy a paid software package or add-on, like Square for Restaurants whereas Payanywhere’s pay-as-you-go plan with a basic mobile reader has no monthly fees however, if you make more than $100K in a 12-month period, you’ll be moved to the “Standard” plan, which has other fees like a $12.95 “basic service fee” per month.

POS hardware – Draw

Payanywhere and Square each offer a free mobile reader as well as the option to upgrade to a more advanced mobile reader, smart terminal, or POS system. In terms of the mobile Square reader vs. the Payanywhere reader, the two options are quite similar.

When comparing the two brands, we mainly compared the two best known terminals with both brands offering some different features and services.

For Square, here are their main POS products:

TerminalSquare TerminalSquare Tap and Chip Card ReaderSquare StandSquare Register
Terminal info5.5-inch screen that fits in your handSimple card reader to accept chip cards and contactless at your counter or on the go.For 10.2” iPads, 10.5” iPad Airs & the iPad Pro 10.5”.Complete POS with 2 user-friendly displays & and built-in payments.
Monthly subscriptionFrom $0, $29 or more depending on bespoke requirementsFrom $0, $29 or more depending on bespoke requirementsFrom $0, $29 or more depending on bespoke requirementsFrom $0, $29 or more depending on bespoke requirements
Payment processingFees from 2.6% + $0.10 per transactionFees from 2.6% + $0.10 per transactionFees from 2.6% + $0.10 per transactionFees from 2.6% + $0.10 per transaction

Whilst for Payanywhere, here are their main POS products:

TerminalPayanywhere Smart TerminalPayanywhere Smart KeypadSmart PINPad ProPayanywhere Smart Flex
Terminal info5″ HD touchscreen, receipt printer, and barcode scannerIntuitive Smart Keypad accepts all payment types including EBT and PIN debit. Ideal if you don’t want a touchscreen.Secure: Separate merchant and customer keypad terminals.Hybrid terminal and point of sale with an 8″ HD touchscreen, 4.3″ customer facing display, receipt printer, and barcode scanner.
Monthly subscription$9.95/mo software fee$9.95/mo software fee$19.95/mo software fee$19.95/mo software fee
Payment processing2.6% + 10 cents to 3.5% + 15 cents per transaction2.6% + 10 cents to 3.5% + 15 cents per transaction2.6% + 10 cents to 3.5% + 15 cents per transaction2.6% + 10 cents to 3.5% + 15 cents per transaction

Payanywhere’s free mobile reader connects via Bluetooth and allows merchants to take swiped and EMV (chip card) payments. Square’s free reader is a bit more basic, plugging in via your lightning port or headphone jack, and can be used to accept magstripe payments only.

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Optionally, you can upgrade to a Bluetooth 3-in-1 reader that accepts magstripe, EMV, and NFC (mobile payments) for $49.95 with Payanywhere or $49.00 if you choose Square’s contactless and chip reader.

Both Payanywhere and Square offer sleek, multifunction smart terminals and smart POS systems. Depending on the model, you can choose from features such as a customer-facing display, receipt printer, and barcode scanner, all in one portable package. Payanywhere does offer more all-in-one hardware systems than Square, but Square is compatible with more mobile devices overall.

Also, Payanywhere hardware comes with a monthly fee and an installation fee unless you just use the 2-in-1 or 3-in-1 mobile reader, whereas Square’s hardware carries no monthly fee or installation fee.

Customer Support – Square advantage

Payanywhere offers customer support via phone, email, knowledge base and live chat. Square offers live customer support from 6am to 6pm Mondays through Fridays and email support outside of those hours. Square also has a knowledgebase and really good community forums.

Though they have similar support channels, the quality of Square’s customer support is superior to Payanywhere’s. This is based on numerous user reviews and complaints.

Payanywhere users frequently report generic responses to their tech problems, though the company does seem to respond to all complaints. The superior quality of the online resources for Square vs. Payanywhere is also evident.

Ease of use – Square advantage

Setting up and using Payanywhere and Square are equally easy, but when you get to the reliability of each payment processor, you can break that tie and give the win to Square. Just comparing how intuitive each app is designed, Square pulls ahead.

Features – Square advantage

Both companies offer a variety of mobile POS features, such as invoicing, inventory, and innovative mobile hardware, all with next-day funding and a free plan.

All in all, Square has a more extensive feature set compared to Payanywhere. In particular, Square includes eCommerce features and numerous software integrations.

Square’s features are frequently updated and continually refined, including a free online store on all accounts. Square is also compatible with numerous business software that can be used to expand your Square POS to do just about anything.

Payanywhere vs Square: Overall verdict?

After in-depth study of the two offers, we find that Square and Payanywhere both offer a reliable and inexpensive alternative to traditional POS card readers.

Going head to head on Pricing, Features, Customer Support, Ease of Use, eCommerce features and Customer Reviews, then Square wins this bout.

(Video) The 7 Best Credit Card Readers For Small Business

Square’s simplistic offering with no contract lock-ins, flat-rate fees and intuitive setup make this a winner for any small business.


What are Payanywhere and Square?

Square and Payanywhere are both credit card processing solutions for small businesses and solopreneurs. Merchants may accept payments on their smartphone or tablet via a credit card reader.

What alternatives are there to Payanywhere and Square?

Among the card reader terminals in our comparison, we often recommend Clover or SumUp amongst the alternatives to consider.

Payanywhere vs Square 2023 | Compare Payment Solutions (1)
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Tom Macken

Editorial Manager

Tom is the founder of He reads the offers, deciphers the details including features, pricing, included services and more to find you the best products and services.

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Who is Square's biggest competitor? ›

The Best Square Competitors of 2023
  • Payment Depot: Best for High-Volume Businesses.
  • Stripe: Best for Fast Payments.
  • Helcim: Best for Businesses on a Budget.
  • Elavon: Best for Omnichannel Businesses.
  • Gravity Payments: Best for Customer Support.

What works better than Square? ›

These alternatives might offer a way for restaurants, retail stores and other businesses to cut expenses or move to a system that better meets their needs.
  • PayPal Zettle: Good overall alternative.
  • SumUp: Good for mobile.
  • Shopify: Good for e-commerce.
  • Toast: Good for restaurants.
  • Vend: Good for retail.
Dec 22, 2022

Who charges more Square or PayPal? ›

PayPal: Credit Card Processing Comparison. Square's fee for swipe/chip transactions is 2.6% plus 10 cents per transaction while PayPal starts at 2.29% plus 9 cents and goes up depending on your package. Besides the difference in transaction fees, there are other variations in fees to be aware of.

Does Square hold funds like PayPal? ›

Square doesn't have transfer limits with our standard or custom schedules. We won't hold funds based on the amount, frequency, or type of transaction. If you're having trouble locating a transfer, review these transfer schedule tips.

How do I avoid Square fees? ›

Square sellers using Afterpay get paid the full amount at the time of purchase, minus a processing fee on the total order. Enabling Afterpay with Square is free — there are no monthly fees or startup costs. You only pay when you make a sale.

What industry is Square disrupting? ›

Square Business - Epitome of a Banking Disruptor

Square is the epitome of a banking disruptor.

Is there a better payment processor than Square? ›

PayPal's mobile credit card processing rates (via PayPal Zettle) are lower than Square's per-swipe rate. QR code transactions (over $10) even get a discounted rate. So it's great for small sellers that take cards in person. Plus, being able to accept PayPal and Venmo payments could open you up to more customers.

What are the disadvantages of Square? ›

  • Account can freeze due to irregular activity.
  • Not cost-effective for high-volume transactions.
  • No phone support.
Jan 2, 2023

What is cheaper then Square? ›

SumUp – low cost, simple fees

It costs just $39, making SumUp the cheapest option for all-in-one readers. The transaction rate is 2.75% for magstripe, chip and contactless cards. There's no additional fee for foreign cards, no contract lock-in and no monthly fees.

What percentage does Square take from payments? ›

What are your fees? The Square standard processing fee is 2.6% + 10¢ for contactless payments, swiped or inserted chip cards, and swiped magstripe cards.

Why are my Square fees so high? ›

Square does not charge a monthly or annual fee. Instead, the company makes money through a percentage of every credit card transaction it processes. Square charges 2.6% plus 10 cents for most in-person transactions. However, if the card must be entered manually, it charges 3.5% plus 15 cents per transaction.

What is the maximum transaction on Square? ›

All Square merchants have a per transaction limit of $1.00 minimum and $50,000 maximum. If you'd like to accept individual transactions above $50,000 each, you'll need to split the payment into multiple instalments. Make sure to record the receipt number and the total amount charged for each instalment.

Can Square take money out of my bank account? ›

Square may debit a bank account for one of the following reasons: You process a refund. A cardholder disputes a payment by issuing a chargeback. To charge you for a paid service.

Why is Square holding my money for 90 days? ›

Why is my money being held? While the review is occurring, we hold the funds to ensure that we understand what they are for and how your business is run so we can guarantee a safe trading environment.

Why is Square not depositing my money? ›

This is due to one of the following reasons: You haven't linked a bank account to Square, or your bank account hasn't completely verified. You can link a bank account or check your verification status from your online dashboard.

Does Square report to IRS? ›

For every account that meets the Form 1099-K requirements, including non-profits, the IRS requires Square to report this information.

Do you claim Square fees on taxes? ›

Square fees are just one eligible write-off. Depending on what kind of 1099 work you do, there are lots of other business expenses you might be able to deduct from your gross income during tax season. Here are some common examples: 💳 The cost of your Square reader.

Can you negotiate Square fees? ›

Does Square negotiate rates? Typically, Square won't negotiate rates. But they do offer custom pricing, which equates to negotiating. If you process more than $250,000 per year in card sales and your average ticket price is lower than $15, Square may provide lower rates.

Is Square high risk? ›

Square credit card processing is a valuable service for low risk merchants. A low risk merchant runs a company with consistent and non-regulated online transactions. These companies have few chargebacks and don't operate in risky verticals.

Is Square a threat to banks? ›

The real threat to community institutions comes from big, aggressive, payment companies that have penetrated deeply into banking. Both Square and PayPal are aggressive, deep-pocketed, tech-forward companies that have already penetrated deeply into banking.

Why is Square becoming Block? ›

Square changed its corporate name to Block to better reflect a focus on, not only crypto, but a variety of business lines. In addition to that, Jack Dorsey, the CEO who had been splitting duties with Twitter, is stepping down from his Twitter role to focus full time on Block.

Which payment gateway is most better? ›

Our picks for the best payment gateways
  • Stripe: Best overall payment gateway.
  • Adyen: Best omnichannel option.
  • Helcim: Best interchange-plus pricing for businesses of all sizes.
  • PayPal Payflow: Best for doing everything in one place.
  • Square: Best if you also have a storefront.

Which payment system is best? ›

PayU is one of the top payment gateways in India, which supports 150+ modes of payment including UPI, net banking, debit and credit cards, and static and dynamic QR. The payment gateway allows businesses to accept payments in multiple currencies.

Who is the largest payment processor? ›

JPMorgan Chase

Chase Paymentech, the payment processing arm of the largest bank in the U.S., authorizes and processes payments in more than 130 currencies. And like its peers, it offers analytics, fraud detection, and security solutions.

What problem is square trying to solve? ›

Square initially started as a solution to a growing problem: mobile businesses without mobile payments.

Is square payment the best option? ›

Square is our pick as the best credit card processor for small businesses in 2021. It has good rates, uses the flat-rate pricing model, and doesn't charge any monthly or annual fees for its basic processing service.

What is so special about square? ›

A square has a larger area than all other quadrilaterals with the same perimeter. The diagonals of a square bisect each other at 90 degrees and are perpendicular. Opposite sides of a square are parallel. The internal angles of a square add to 360 degrees.

Does Square hold 30%? ›

This is especially true when one is suddenly imposed. Normally, reserve accounts set aside around 5-10% of a business owner's credit card transactions. This means Square's 30% hold is 3-6 times the industry average.
How Does it Work?
10% Reserve HoldSquare's 30% Rolling Reserve Hold
Reserved: $6,000Reserved: $18,000
1 more row

What major companies use Square? ›

Who uses Square?
Tumblr, Inc.tumblr.comUnited States
CONFIDENTIAL RECORDS, INC.confidentialrecordsinc.comUnited States
Meta Platforms, Incfacebook.comUnited States
Blackfriars Groupblackfriarsgroup.comUnited Kingdom
1 more row

What cards does Square not accept? ›

What's in this article? Square works with any US-issued and most internationally-issued magstripe or chip cards bearing a Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Discover, JCB, or UnionPay logo. Square also supports mobile wallets such as Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Samsung Pay.

Is there anything similar to Square? ›

Here are the top alternatives to Square as POS software:

Toast POS. Lightspeed POS. ShopKeep. Shopify Point of Sale.

Is Square or stripe better? ›

Square offers better POS hardware and solutions, while Stripe is better for online stores. They both integrate with third-party tools. Stripe is better overall for integrating with third-party apps. They both offer a variety of customer support channels.

Who are SQ stock competitors? ›

374 Customers rate Square's Pricing Score a 3.8/5, which ranks it 3rd against its competitors, below Intuit.
  • 1st. Stripe. 3.8 / 5.
  • 2nd. Intuit. 3.8 / 5.
  • 3rd. Square. 3.8 / 5.
  • 4th. PayPal. 3.5 / 5.
  • 5th. Plastiq. 2.9 / 5.
  • 6th. First Data Corporation. 2.2 / 5.

Who is Square's target market? ›

In B2C business, the target customer segment for Square is broad. The financial unicorn decided to target the individuals in developed countries who engage in financial transactions with other individuals and this segment of population is large.

Is Square more expensive? ›

Square does not charge a monthly or annual fee. Instead, the company makes money through a percentage of every credit card transaction it processes. Square charges 2.6% plus 10 cents for most in-person transactions. However, if the card must be entered manually, it charges 3.5% plus 15 cents per transaction.

What are the cons of Square? ›

  • Account can freeze due to irregular activity.
  • Not cost-effective for high-volume transactions.
  • No phone support.
Jan 2, 2023

Why is Square the best? ›

Square is our pick as the best credit card processor for small businesses in 2021. It has good rates, uses the flat-rate pricing model, and doesn't charge any monthly or annual fees for its basic processing service.

Which is better venmo or Square? ›

Venmo charges merchants a per-transaction fee of 1.9% plus 10 cents per transaction, which is lower than many other payment processors, including Square at 2.6% plus 10 cents per in-person transaction and Stripe at 2.7% plus 5 cents per in-person transaction.

Is SQ a buy right now? ›

The financial health and growth prospects of SQ, demonstrate its potential to underperform the market. It currently has a Growth Score of F. Recent price changes and earnings estimate revisions indicate this would be a good stock for momentum investors with a Momentum Score of B.

Is SQ a strong buy? ›

Out of 28 analysts, 15 (53.57%) are recommending SQ as a Strong Buy, 8 (28.57%) are recommending SQ as a Buy, 5 (17.86%) are recommending SQ as a Hold, 0 (0%) are recommending SQ as a Sell, and 0 (0%) are recommending SQ as a Strong Sell. If you're new to stock investing, here's how to buy Block stock.

Who is the largest shareholder of Square? ›

Largest shareholders include Vanguard Group Inc, BlackRock Inc., Morgan Stanley, Fmr Llc, VTSMX - Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund Investor Shares, Sands Capital Management, Llc, Wellington Management Group Llp, Fisher Asset Management, LLC, State Street Corp, and Capital World Investors.

Is Square a high risk merchant? ›

Square credit card processing is a valuable service for low risk merchants. A low risk merchant runs a company with consistent and non-regulated online transactions. These companies have few chargebacks and don't operate in risky verticals.

What company owns Square? ›

Block, Inc.

What company is Square buying? ›

Nov 4 (Reuters) - Square Inc (SQ. N) shareholders have approved the issuance of new shares for the U.S. company's $29 billion purchase of Afterpay Ltd (APT.AX), bringing Australia and the buy now, pay later sector's largest buyout a step closer to fruition.


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