Payment Service Providers

Top Zelle Alternatives for Businesses: Which Is Best for You?

A person paying for a product or service with their smartphone through an alternative to Zelle

Zelle has become a household name in P2P payment transactions, so it’s no wonder that many businesses also turn to Zelle business accounts. But a popular name doesn’t mean it’s always the right fit for your business—what if there’s an alternative to Zelle that makes more sense?

In this guide, we’ll look at some of the best money transfer apps like Zelle available to businesses. Within them, we’ll explore the pros and cons of each Zelle competitor to help you decide which solution will best support your growth.

4 Leading Alternatives to Zelle for Business

A person using their card to pay for something through a Zelle competitor payment platform.

Every business has unique needs. Some may operate in high-risk industries, while others function in lower-risk sectors. Others may be looking for eCommerce solutions solely focused on virtual payment methods. In addition, some businesses predominantly process small-value transactions, while some specialize in high-ticket transactions. In essence, it’s difficult for one app to address all of these needs.

The following four alternatives to Zelle are some of the most popular digital payment platforms available to businesses. While they often overlap in features, each offers benefits that may be more suited to certain business types and sizes than others. Let’s unpack the pros and cons of each.

A lightbulb with a green dollar sign in it.


PayPal is a digital payment system that allows individuals and businesses to securely send and receive money. The service is versatile and facilitates payment methods including mobile app payments, online payments, integrated eCommerce checkout, QR codes, and in-person POS transactions. With PayPal’s business features, you can accept all major credit and debit cards, cryptocurrency, PayPal, and PayPal Credit.

Similar to Zelle, PayPal lets you transfer funds without sharing your credit card or banking information because your email address serves as the account identifier.

In addition, PayPal links to a bank account. When customers pay you, the money will be reflected in your PayPal account. You are then able to transfer it into your bank account or spend directly from your PayPal account. This helps to ensure smooth transactions for your customers with as little hassle as possible.


PayPal business account fees work on a per-transaction basis; however, there are also optional monthly add-ons for certain features, like online payment gateway services. PayPal transaction fees are 1.9% plus 0.10 for QR code payments, online card payments are 2.29% plus 0.49 cents; and buy-now-pay-later (BNPL) and Venmo transactions are 3.49% plus $0.49.


  • Extensive integrations with shopping carts, major eCommerce platforms, POS, marketing, and accounting features
  • No long-term contract commitment or termination fees
  • Sellers can accept all major payment types
  • Free customizable invoicing
  • Seller protection availability
  • Features sales tracking, analytics, and reports
  • Ability to send and receive payments globally in 25 different currencies
  • No daily transfer limits
  • Reputable for safe money transfers
  • Business accounts allow up to eight users


  • Higher transaction fees than many other digital payment platforms
  • High chargeback fees
  • Payments generally take three days to clear
  • PayPal can suspend your account without warning, disrupting your business operations
  • Does not support high-risk businesses

A lightbulb with a blue dollar sign in it.


When you use a Venmo business account, you allow customers to make payments for goods and services using their Venmo app. Venmo does not offer POS capabilities, but it does facilitate QR code payments. In addition, you can accept online payments with PayPal, Shopify, and Braintree integrations.

Your business account links to your personal Venmo account. This allows you to access both accounts with the same login while conveniently switching between them to track business and personal transactions separately. Such measures allow business owners to maintain a clear barrier between their purchases, ensuring a strict separation of expenses.

Unlike Zelle, Venmo business transactions will appear in your Venmo account, which you can then transfer to your linked bank account. For even more convenience, Venmo partners with Synchrony Bank and Bancorp to offer qualified users a Venmo Visa Credit Card or Venmo Mastercard Debit Card. This card allows Venmo users to make in-person purchases at major retailers, as well as online and mobile payments.

Customers who purchase using a QR code will receive a returns barcode with their email receipt. Although the merchant determines any refund policies, Venmo can transfer full or partial refunds to the customer’s original payment method.


Venmo does not charge a setup or monthly fee; rather, it works on a per-transaction fee structure. Transaction fees for goods and services payments are 1.9% plus $0.10. Credit card transactions are charged at 3%, while online transactions are charged at 3.49% plus $0.49.


  • Tipping feature to encourage customers to add a tip
  • Invoicing capabilities with a secure direct payment link
  • Detailed transaction history
  • No subscription fees


  • Only available in the US, for USD transactions
  • Subject to spending and receiving limits
  • Popular target for scammers
  • Transactions can take up to three business days to process
  • Does not support high-risk industries

A lightbulb with an orange dollar sign in it.

Cash App

Cash App’s business account offering (Cash for Business) allows you to accept business payments in conjunction with its P2P platform, making it another suitable Zelle alternative. Customers can pay with debit and credit cards, including Visa, Mastercard, Discover, American Express, and some prepaid cards. Additionally, you can create unique QR codes and a shareable URL, called a $Cashtag, that customers can use to make payments quickly.


Setting up a Cash for Business account is free. With each payment made through the app, you’ll be charged a transaction fee ranging from 2.5% to 2.75%, depending on the payment method. You may also be responsible for chargeback processing costs and investigations into chargeback validity.


  • No transaction limit on receiving payments
  • Variety of payment options for customers
  • No sign-up fees
  • Instant deposit option available for fast access to funds
  • Integration with Square POS for in-person payments


  • Strict receipt rules require you to provide a receipt for any transaction over $15
  • Buyers must be given the option to sign for any purchase over $25
  • No support for high-risk businesses
  • Cash App may raise processing fees or hold payments if they assume high-risk behavior such as a large number of chargebacks

A lightbulb with a green dollar sign in it.


Unlike the above digital payment solutions, Paysley does not work with an app. This means your customers don’t need to download an app to pay you.

After setting up your account, you can easily generate payment requests from any smartphone or web browser. Enter the payment details, and your client will receive a link to a secure, browser-based payment page. After making the payment, clients are automatically sent a receipt—so you can save time on administrative work.

Paysley’s browser-based service offers users numerous payment options, such as contactless payments with POSlink, QR code scan-and-pay, and direct payments via unique URL links.


Paysley offers three pricing plans: $15, $49, and $99 per month. In addition, you’ll pay a small per-transaction fee of $0.20.


  • Integration with most CRM and ERP platforms
  • Customizable templates for payment requests
  • Batch processing
  • Text payment requests
  • Clients can pay with a credit card directly through the browser
  • No app or special hardware required


  • No free account option
  • Mandatory Internet browser usage
  • Customers may be wary of clicking a link in an email or text to make payments

Things to Consider When Researching Zelle Competitors

While there are plenty of apps like Zelle you can choose from, they’re not all suitable for every business. To determine the best payment option for your company, carefully consider the following factors:

Two credit cards.

Payment Methods

Identify which payment methods your customers prefer and which would most benefit your business cash flow. Credit cards are convenient for most consumers; however, if your target market consists largely of students, a Venmo service may appeal more to them. Your payment processing solution should be able to accommodate customers’ preferences and your business operations.

A pile of coins.


Choose a payment service provider that fits within your company’s budget and can accommodate potential growth. Using a low-cost service often means sacrificing some essential features. On the other hand, while pricier options may include all the features you need, costs can add up quickly.

A blue security shield with a green check mark in it.


Security must be a top priority when selecting a mobile payment solution. Look for providers that offer strong encryption, tokenization, and other security measures to protect your customers’ sensitive data. Consider whether the solution is compliant with industry standards and regulations, such as Payment Card Industry Compliance (PCI DSS).

A cloud with a green arrow pointing up and a blue arrow pointing down.

Integration and Customization

Assess whether the mobile payment solution can integrate with your existing business systems, such as point-of-sale (POS) systems, inventory management, and customer relationship management (CRM) software. Also, consider whether the solution can be customized to reflect your branding and provide a consistent experience for your customers.

A customer service representative with a headpiece on.

Customer Support

Check the level of customer support offered by the mobile payment solution provider. Look for robust customer support channels, such as phone, email, or live chat, as well as documentation and resources available to address any issues or concerns that may arise.

A graph showing growth.

Scalability and Growth

Consider whether the mobile payment solution can scale with your business as it grows. It should accommodate increasing transaction volumes, support multiple locations or channels, and offer additional features or services that align with your future expansion plans.

Finding the Right Payment Solution for Your Business

Payment apps like Zelle have become a popular and convenient way for consumers to spend their money. Unfortunately, all P2P apps are designed with a one-size-fits-all approach—even when it comes to their business account counterparts. There may be a few customizable features—but for the most part, you’re stuck with a product designed for someone else. In addition, P2P apps don’t usually allow high-risk businesses to use their services, no matter how compliant your business is.

Rather than settling for a solution that only partly meets your business needs, consider working with a full-service payment provider who can tailor their credit card processing solutions uniquely for you. You’ll be able to offer your customers the most suitable payment methods—while accessing the features you need at an affordable price point.

Two blue credit cards to be used on zelle alternatives.

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