takepayments Review for Small Businesses in 2022

takepayments is a provider of payment terminals and EPOS solutions that has great customer service, short contracts and powerful hardware. Find out if it's right for your business here.

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takepayments is a UK-based provider of a variety of payment services, including payment terminals, EPOS systems, online payment gateways and a hybrid product called takepaymentsplus.

It boasts excellent customer service, some of the shortest contracts around, and a range of powerful and user-friendly hardware.

However, contract terms can be complicated due to its third-party partnerships for merchant accounts and its EPOS products are relatively basic compared to some rivals. Plus, automatically renewing rolling contracts have led to some negative feedback.

Overall though, takepayments is a great fit for UK SMEs looking for bespoke payment and POS solutions.

Read on to learn more about exactly what takepayments offers and how it shapes up.

Or, if you’re looking for some expert assistance finding the right POS system for your business, our free EPOS comparison tool can help. Just answer a few questions and receive bespoke, no-obligation quotes from some of the UK’s leading POS companies.

takepayments overview

takepayments A stellar payment solutions provider for UK SMEs that prides itself on its customer service.
  • Pricing Bespoke quotes available on request
  • Excellent customer srvice
  • 12-month rolling contract
  • Powerful and user-friendly hardware
Summary takepayments is a longstanding UK-based payment solutions provider that offers payment terminals, EPOS systems, online payment gateways and an innovative new product called takepaymentsplus. With rolling 12-month contracts, takepayments is perfect for small businesses that don't want to tie themselves down for multiple years, but its reliance on third parties for merchant accounts can lead to complicated contracts and unclear pricing. Where takepayments really shines is its commitment to customer service - customers get a dedicated account manager and a 4.8 rating on Trustpilot from over 22,000 reviews is testament to just how serious takepayments is when it comes to taking care of its customers. Plus, whether you want a portable, mobile or fixed card machine or a more comprehensive EPOS system, you'll benefit from powerful and user-friendly hardware that makes it easy to accomplish your business goals.
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Based in Stockport, takepayments (formerly Payzone) has been offering payment solutions to UK SMEs for over 30 years.

This offering includes card machines, EPOS systems, online payment gateways and an innovative hybrid product called takepaymentsplus.

What really sets takepayments apart from its rivals is short 12-month rolling contracts and a focus on excellent customer service that’s reflected in a seriously impressive 4.8 Trustpilot rating from over 23,000 reviews.


takepayments card readers

Takepayments offers three main card readers that will suit different types of businesses.
All three are made by Ingenico, a leading French manufacturer of payment terminals that has decades of experience in this space. Its machines are very common in the UK so if you frequently make card payments, the chances are very high that you’ve used an Ingenico machine.

Countertop

Takepayments countertop card machine

As the name suggests, takepayments’ countertop card machine is designed for taking payments at a till or counter. The compact design means the machine doesn’t take up much space and it plugs directly into your phone line or broadband connection.

It’s easy to set up, handles contactless and mobile payments, is PCI compliant and includes a thermal printer for rapid receipts.

However, this machine won’t be suitable for businesses that need a wireless card machine; they’ll need either the portable or mobile models.

Portable

Takepayments portable card machine

The key point about the portable card machine is that it works via a wireless bluetooth connection to a plugged in base station. So, as long as you stay within 50m of the base, you can take payments where your customers are, making it perfect for cafes, restaurants, coffee shops and bars.

And, provided you stay within the range, it works outside too, so you can take payments in your beer garden or pavement tables. The unit itself is small and lightweight, easy to set up, takes contactless and mobile payments, and has a long-lasting battery that should easily last a day’s use.

The portable card machine is a great solution for businesses that need to take payments in multiple locations within their business premises. The wireless connection frees you from being stuck behind a till, and the 50m range is very generous.

But, if you want to take payments (almost) anywhere, then you’ll want the mobile card machine.

Mobile

The key point about the portable card machine is that it works via a wireless bluetooth connection to a plugged in base station. So, as long as you stay within 50m of the base, you can take payments where your customers are, making it perfect for cafes, restaurants, coffee shops and bars. And, provided you stay within the range, it works outside too, so you can take payments in your beer garden or pavement tables. The unit itself is small and lightweight, easy to set up, takes contactless and mobile payments, and has a long-lasting battery that should easily last a day’s use. The portable card machine is a great solution for businesses that need to take payments in multiple locations within their business premises. The wireless connection frees you from being stuck behind a till, and the 50m range is very generous. But, if you want to take payments (almost) anywhere, then you’ll want the mobile card machine.

Like your mobile phone, takepayments’ mobile card machine works via a GPRS SIM card, so you can use 4G to take payments anywhere with a decent phone signal. This makes it ideal for roaming businesses that travel to their customers like taxi drivers, window cleaners, plumbers, electricians, and mobile hairdressers.

It’s light enough that you can easily slip it into your bag, but sturdy enough to stand up to the knocks, bumps and scrapes of life on the road. Set up is easy so you can start taking payments as soon as it arrives, it connects to three different mobile networks to maximise coverage, and the battery should last a day’s use between overnight charges (if you forget, the included micro USB cable lets you charge in the car). And it handles contactless and mobile payments, plus there’s an inbuilt thermal printer for fast receipt printing.

As the name suggests, the mobile card machine is the perfect fit for truly mobile businesses. However, due to the included data charges, this is the most expensive option of the three.

Want to see how takepayments matches up to its POS rivals? Check out our rundown of the best POS systems for UK small businesses.


Pros
  • Excellent customer service
  • Rolling 12-month contracts give plenty of flexibility
  • Range of card machines to suit different types of businesses
  • Decades of experience
Cons
  • Reliance on third-party merchant accounts means complicated contracts and unclear pricing
  • Contracts renew automatically and this can catch out busy business owners
  • EPOS products are relatively basic compared to rivals

As you can see, there’s plenty to recommend takepayments. Its first-class customer service is built on decades of experience, it offers card machines suited to different types of businesses, and the short 12-month rolling contracts give small businesses lots of flexibility.

The main drawback is rooted in takepayments’ business model. In order to facilitate payments, takepayments partners with third-party merchant account providers (mainly Barclaycard) and, because it’s these providers that play a key role in setting transaction fees etc, this leads to complicated contracts and unclear pricing. Moreover, automatically renewing contracts can catch out small business owners that aren’t on the ball, and takepayments’ EPOS products are relatively basic compared to some of its rivals.


How much does takepayments cost?

0 out of 0
Contract length
Setup fee
Card machine rental
Merchant account fees
Transaction rates
Monthly minimum charge
PCI compliance fee
Payouts
Refunds
Chargebacks
Early termination fee

Rolling 12-month contract

None

From £10 per month (excl. VAT) per terminal

No monthly/annual merchant account fees

Flat fee plus 0.3% – 2.5% (depending on card used)

£10

Takepayments fee: £35 per year (optional)

Barclaycard fee: £15 per month (mandatory)

Next day with Barclaycard: Free

Elavon: 30p each

30p each

£9 each

Have to buy out remaining contract

Like every other payment provider, the actual fees you pay for takepayments will depend on your transaction value and sales volume.

Basically, the more sales you make, the lower the fee you pay on each transaction and, the higher the average value of each transaction, again the lower the fee.

You’ll also pay higher fees on business debit or credit card transactions than personal domestic debit and credit cards.

As you can see from our rundown of the best merchant service providers and credit card processing companies, takepayments’ fees are roughly equivalent to most of its rivals.

This is especially true for businesses with reasonable transaction volume and value, while businesses with low numbers in these categories might be better off using an all-in-one fixed fee solution from small business specialists SumUp or Square.

As you can tell, it can be tricky to compare POS providers given the number of fees involved and the variable rates offered. To save yourself time and stress, check out our handy free EPOS comparison tool. Just take a minute to answer a few questions and you’ll get no-obligation POS quotes tailored to the needs of your business.


takepayments review: Is it right for you?

Here, we take a closer look at takepayments, focusing on ease of use, tools and features, value for money, and which businesses it’s best suited to.

Ease of use

This is an area where takepayments generally does well – its card machines are easy to set up and use, and the personal visits during the sales process mean there’s plenty of time to ask questions and clarify things.

However, the fact that takepayments relies on third parties like Barclaycard for merchant account services does mean that their contracts are complicated and automatic renewals can catch out unwary business owners.

Tools and features

If you just want to take payments, then, erm, takepayments works well. Its card machines are made by leading manufacturer Ingenico and the three models offered clearly suit different types of businesses. They are reliable and functional, and clearly do their job very well.

This won’t be enough for some businesses though, and when it comes to advanced EPOS features, takepayments falls short. While it does offer some EPOS solutions, these are pretty basic compared to the specialised hospitality and retail offerings from Lightspeed and EPOS Now respectively.

Value for money

As mentioned earlier, takepayments offers reasonable value for money. For businesses with moderate sales volumes and transaction values, the range of transaction fees is roughly comparable to its rivals and, while the close working relationship between takepayments and Barclaycard does mean complicated contracts, it also means that your payments will most likely be handled by a household name that offers next-day processing.

The lack of setup or monthly/annual merchant account fees is another plus for takepayments.

Which businesses is takepayments best suited to?

takepayments is best suited to small businesses that have reasonable transaction volumes/values and want a provider with modest fees and great customer service. It’s not the best fit for very small businesses as these would often face relatively high transaction fees, and larger businesses may want more advanced features from a specialist EPOS provider.

In terms of the card machines offered, as Payzone and now takepayments, the company has built up a solid base of convenience stores using its countertop machines to process payments. The portable machine is a good fit for hospitality businesses with roaming wait staff, and the mobile machine is perfect for any business that travels to its customers.


takepayments customer reviews and testimonials

takepayments has an extremely positive profile on customer reviews site Trustpilot, with an excellent average rating of 4.8 from over 23,000 reviews.

Overall, 94% of the reviews give the company five stars and Paul’s writeup is typical of the glowing tone.

Takepayments trustpilot review

The negative reviews (3% are one star) are mainly complaining about contract issues or having trouble getting through to customer service (these are far outweighed by the thousands of reviews praising individual members of the customer service team).


takepayments EPOS

While takepayments primarily focuses on card machines, it does also offer EPOS systems under its recently launched tPOS brand. There are two options, a tablet-sized system called tPOS counter and a distinctive dual-screen system called tPOS complete.

Fundamentally, both systems offer similar features – with both letting businesses process payments, track sales, manage inventory, offer discounts and all the standard features you’d expect from a modern EPOS system.

For an extra £10 a month, the hospitality upgrade adds customer management tools, reservations/appointments, modifiers for menu items, text reminders, time keeping and commission tracking.

The key differences are the monthly cost and hardware offered.

tPOS counter

Takepayments tPOS counter
The tPOS counter system combines a tablet style touchscreen on the counter with a compact card machine that has access to the same EPOS features.

It costs £45 a month for retail businesses and £55 a month for hospitality businesses, plus VAT, transaction fees and other charges.

tPOS complete

Takepayments tPOS complete

The tPOS complete system features a striking dual touchscreen device, with one screen used by the employee and one used by the customer to enter details etc. Again, a compact card machine is included.

This costs £55 a month for retail businesses and £65 a month for hospitality businesses, plus VAT, transaction fees and other charges.

Both the tPOS systems have a £250 upfront setup fee. This covers getting everything set up and a dedicated account manager for the first three months of using tPOS.

To learn more about how an advanced EPOS system could help your retail business, take a look at our guide to the best retail POS systems.


Introducing: takepaymentsplus

takepaymentsplus takepaymentsplus is a great fit for growing retail SMEs that want to take control of their sales with a simple, streamlined and mobile POS system.
  • Pricing £25 per month
  • Realtime reporting
  • Easy inventory management
  • Dedicated account manager
Summary Billed as "the card machine that does more", takepaymentsplus is a mobile POS system that combines a 4G SIM-enabled card reader with bespoke software to allow SMEs to not just take payments but really take control of their sales. With takepaymentsplus, you'll get real time insight into what and isn't selling, and be able to track sales by time of day, employee and category. The easy software also means you can add new category/product buttons in seconds and makes inventory management a doddle. You can also expect exemplary customer service, with a dedicated account manager and the sort of genuinely helpful assistance that gets you a 4.8 rating on Trustpilot from over 22,000 reviews. And you get all this for a flat fee of £25 per month.
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Features

  • Track sales by time of day, employee and category
  • Add new category/product buttons in seconds
  • Easily manage inventory levels
  • Produce detailed sales reports that can be quickly integrated with your accounting software

Benefits

takepaymentsplus allows small businesses to get greater insight into their sales, and plan marketing campaigns and promotional activity more effectively. The inventory management tools also help to ensure that you stay on top of your stock levels and don’t run out of your top sellers or have big stockpiles that you can’t sell.

Who it’s best for

takepaymentsplus is a great solution for small businesses that want to start planning more effectively and using sales data to inform their business decisions, but don’t need a full-blown EPOS system.

Pricing

takepaymentsplus costs £25 a month, plus VAT, transaction fees and other charges.


Our methodology: How did we evaluate takepayments for small businesses?

Using our 20 years of small business expertise and our knowledge of the UK card machines/payment processing sector, we evaluated takepayments on the following criteria:

  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer service
  • Hardware offered
  • Fees and contract structure

takepayments final verdict

takepayments is a great provider for UK SMEs with reasonable transaction volume/value that want a straightforward way to take payments. The rolling 12-month contracts give plenty of flexibility and the company’s commitment to first-class customer service shines through in their user reviews and personal visits to client businesses.

Fees are reasonable for most businesses, with only very small businesses perhaps being better advised to look elsewhere. Like many providers, takepayments doesn’t offer merchant accounts itself but partners with leading banks for these, so this is something you need to be aware of when looking through the payment contract.

Overall though, this Stockport-based business is a real UK success story. It’s already helped countless small businesses across the country and is an excellent option for your payment needs.

Like the sound of takepayments but wondering what your other options are? Our super handy, free EPOS comparison tool can help. Just take a minute to answer a few quick questions and you’ll get bespoke quotes from some of the UK’s top EPOS companies, saving you hours of research and letting you get on with what you do best – running your business.

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takepayments FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions
  • What do takepayments do?
    takepayments offer a variety of card machines, EPOS systems and online payment gateway services to UK SMEs.
  • How much does takepayments charge?
    takepayments’ transaction fees vary depending on your business’ average transaction volume and value. Card machine rental charges start at around £10 per month.
  • Is takepayments secure?
    Yes, takepayments is secure, and conforms to PCI standards. In order to process payments, it partners with leading banks like Barclaycard, and these partner banks have state-of-the-art security measures to keep your money safe.

Alec is Startups’ resident expert on politics and finance. He’s provided live updates on the budget, written guides on investing and property development, and demystified topics like corporation tax, accounting software, and invoice discounting. Before joining, he worked in the media for over a decade, conducting media analysis at Kantar Media and YouGov, and writing a wide variety of freelance pieces.

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