The Best Restaurant POS Systems in Australia

best pos for restaurants

With Australia's inflation rate easing, the timing for you to start or scale up your eatery is ideal – and to do that, a restaurant POS system is an absolute must.

Restaurant POS systems help you take payments, manage your floorplan, and integrate delivery services – and TouchBistro is the best in the market according to our independent research. It got the top spot due to its intuitive hardware and incredibly detailed reporting.

Which are the best restaurant POS systems?

These are the providers we recommend based on our research. Use our cost comparison tool to find the best value service for your business

  1. TouchBistro: Best overall
  2. Lightspeed: Best for help and support
  3. Clover: Best for small restaurants
  4. Square: Best value
  5. Epos Now: Best for range of hardware

That said, restaurant POS systems aren't one-size-fits-all solutions and you must choose one tailored to your needs. The quickest one to do that is using our free comparison tool, through which we'll match you up with trusted providers, who'll then contact you with no-obligation quotes.

However, if you'd like know more about the findings of our research, just head to our ranking below, in which we cover TouchBistro as well as other four strong contenders in the restaurant POS systems field.

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0 out of 0

TouchBistro

Lightspeed

Clover

Square

Best for

Overall

Best for

QuickBooks integration

Best for

Small restaurants

Best for

Best value software

Best for

Range of hardware

Starting price

USD $69/month

Starting price

AUD $100/month

Starting price

USD $44.95/month

Starting price

AUD $0/month

Starting price

USD $39/month

1. TouchBistro: Best overall

Pricing: Software price plans range from AUD $69 per month to AUD $399 per month

TouchBistro
4
Quick overview

TouchBistro scores a 4/5 overall in our research. Created specifically for restaurants, TouchBistro offers restaurant-specific features. This includes bill splitting, tableside ordering, and menu management. TouchBistro scores a 5/5 in both the business and stock management areas as it offers over 50 detailed reports, the ability to track staff performance, and several stock management tools.

 

Strengths

Industry-tailored features

Unlimited users

Great offline features

Weaknesses

Reporting features could be stronger

2. Lightspeed: Best for help and support

Pricing: Software price plans range from AUD $60 per month to AUD $180 per month

lightspeed logo
Lightspeed
4.3
Quick overview

While TouchBistro has been designed solely for restaurants, Lightspeed offers more versatile systems. It does, however, offer Lighstpeed Restaurant, a restaurant-specific POS system. Overall our research scores it a 4.3/5, a tad higher than TouchBistro, mainly because Lightspeed offers more loyalty and CRM tools as well as more inventory capabilities. For smaller businesses, these might not be relevant but if it's important for your establishment, Lightspeed might be better fit than TouchBistro.

TouchBistro has a solid 5/5 for help and support, with email live chat. and phone support. Out of all of the providers in our research Lightspeed is located in the most amount of regions across the world, helpful for any international expansion plans.

 

Strengths

Sophisticated POS system

Integrates with a huge range of tools

Weaknesses

The best analytics tools come at an extra cost

Reliable internet connection required

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3. Clover: Best for small restaurants

Pricing: Software price plans range from USD $44.95 per month to USD $94.85 per month

Clover
4
Quick overview

Scoring a 4/5 overall in our research, and rated as being best for small restaurants because it offers restaurant-specific features and tools but it has some limitations such as limited inventory capability. The Clover Mini costs USD $799 and can be used to take tableside orders and payments, providing an efficient and flexible service for your customers. It also comes with a built-in barcode scanner that can be used for stock management.

Another reason it's a good choice for startups or small business is its free plan. This plan is hardware-free and can be accessed on a phone, tablet, or computer via the Clover dashboard and mobile app. Also, there is a monthly charge of $14.95 for the POS software, so it's not completely free. If you're looking for a $0 option, Square is a better fit as its POS software is free and its hardware is fairly affordable with a card reader priced at £16. If your business is small but you still want restaurant-focused features, Clover is a good fit but if you just want the bare bones of a POS system and no fees, Square might be a better fit.

 

Strengths

Excellent value software

Easy to use

Great customer support options

Weaknesses

Hardware is relatively expensive, costing $799 as a one-off fee

Reliable internet connection required

▶ Read more: Best retail POS systems

4. Square: Best value

Pricing: Software price plans range from AUD $0 per month to AUD $129 per month

Square
Quick overview

Square has the highest score in our research with a 4.8/5, which makes it one of the best POS systems we came across in our research. While Square's POS software is free and it scores well in several areas such as business development and usability, it doesn't have the same comprehensiveness as TouchBistro or Lightspeed. It is, however, a great option for those with a limited budget as its software is free and its hardware is affordable. Plus, at $65, its reader — one of the best EFTPOS machines we've analysed in our research — offers great value for money.

 

Strengths

Free software available

Smart, discreet hardware

Pretty much ‘plug in and go’

Weaknesses

Higher payment processing fees than other suppliers

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5. Epos Now: Best for range of hardware

Pricing:

Core hardware/software starts from $1,145

$39 (standard) or $54 (premium)/month

epos now logo
Epos Now
3.8
Quick overview

Scoring a 3.8/5 overall, Epos Now is our lowest scoring POS system on this list but it offers a wide range of hardware. Its hardware is pricier than providers such as Square but its fairly comprehensive and a good fit for businesses who are used to using POS hardware as opposed to iPad-based systems which are becoming increasingly popular.

With a score of 1.7/5 for price, Epos Now has the lowest score for pricing in our research because of its high fees. You'll need a complete package when starting out with Epos Now, which is around a one-off $1,699 for the hardware and $49 per month for the software. These prices are higher than providers such as Square which has free POS software and hardware that starts from $29. It is worth noting that while the standard price is $1,699, Epos Now rarely sells at this price and typically offer a discounted rate of $678.

Epos Now scores highly in the customer service department with a 4/5. You can contact customer service via phone, email, live chat, or reach out to the Epos Now community online.

 

Restaurant-specific features

Great customer service

Weaknesses

Pricier compared to some other providers

Verdict

Our top POS system for restaurants in Australia is TouchBistro. But if you're a small establishment and after a cheaper system, Square is a better option.

Our expert research focused on key areas to identify the best restaurant POS systems. These areas include: price, help and support, and business development. Our years of expertise in this industry combined with independent research team means we can confidently recommend the best POS systems for your business.

We make this really easy for you – simply provide us with a few details about your restaurant business, and we’ll match you with suppliers that best meet your requirements. They’ll then be in touch with prices and more information for you to compare.

FAQs

What is the most popular POS system for restaurants?
TouchBistro is the most popular because it’s quite simply the best restaurant POS systems out there. Designed by ex-restauraters, it’s a restaurant-specific POS system that comes with a range of impressive features such as an unlimited choice of payment processors, 24/7 support, detailed reports, and much more.
How does a POS system work in a restaurant?
Restaurant POS systems are designed to help you boost profits and increase productivity, enabling you to carry out money-making tasks with ease. The very best systems can generate sales reports, track staff hours, send marketing emails, and automate purchasing orders. You can also connect mobile devices such tablets and smartphones to the main interface and accept table side orders, or orders on-the-go outside.
How much does a restaurant POS system cost?
POS systems can cost anywhere from $0 (Square) to $399 per month.
Written by:
Dan’s a Senior Writer at Expert Market, specialising in digital marketing, web design, and photocopiers, amongst other topics.
Reviewed by:
Ruairi uses his 3+ years of research experience to uncover insights which can help Expert Market provide the best business solutions for their users. He has done this by meeting with business owners to find out what is important to them and what challenges they face on a daily basis. Ruairi specialises in tools that can be used to grow your business and has done research for a wide range of categories on Expert Market, such as EPOS, Website Builders, and Merchant Accounts.