Venmo is a peer-to-peer payments app that lets customers transfer funds to businesses’ accounts. However, Venmo for business is not a point-of-sale system or payment service provider. It doesn’t sell POS hardware or software, or offer businesses a way to securely accept payments from their online store’s website. Instead, Venmo business accounts are linked to your personal Venmo account, which is free to sign up for and use. You can switch back and forth between the accounts and track business and personal transactions separately. Both accounts can be accessed through the same login. The only costs associated with a Venmo business account are a per-transaction fee and the optional cost of instant transfers.
To register a Venmo business account:
Once you’re in the Venmo app with a personal account, go to your profile then tap “Create a business profile.” This option may be in your profile settings (look for a gear icon) or right above your profile picture.
Add your business name, a profile picture and a background image. You can also add product photos to a gallery.
Tap “Publish” to make your business profile public.
Once set up, businesses can receive payments with their username, integrated Shopify and PayPal checkout, or a unique QR code. Useful features of Venmo for business include:
Tips: Turn on tipping in your account settings to prompt customers to add a tip to their purchase.
Returns: Customers who made a QR code purchase receive a returns barcode with their email receipt. Refund policies are up to the merchant, but Venmo can transfer both full and partial refunds to the customer’s original payment method.
Disputes: Process in-app disputes and chargebacks by a customer’s credit card issuer through Venmo support. Chargebacks can take up to 30 days to dispute and 75 days to resolve.
Checkout integrations: Incorporate a Venmo payment link into PayPal, Shopify and Braintree’s online checkout to give customers more ways to pay.
Venmo business accounts are best for businesses that:
Mostly sell on the go: Venmo business accounts make it easy to accept contactless payments at pop-ups, farmers markets and other temporary events. Customers can easily transfer funds to you from anywhere via their Venmo app.
Accept QR code payments: Sometimes contactless payments are simpler to facilitate than card payments. Plus, they don’t require a card reader. Venmo’s free QR code kit makes it easy to share and display your business account’s code, too.
Use Shopify, PayPal or Braintree: If you already use Shopify, PayPal or Braintree to sell items and accept payments, adding Venmo gives your customers more online payment options.
Payment processing model
Payment processing fees
1.9% plus 10 cents per transaction between Venmo accounts.
2.29% plus 10 cents per contactless “Tap to Pay” payment.
3% fee for customers to pay with a credit card.
1.75% fee for instant transfers (free transfers in one to three days).
Venmo does not sell card readers, but it does offer a QR kit for displaying your business’s QR code. Your first kit is free; otherwise, it costs $14.99.
Available by email, mobile app chat (8 a.m. to 10 p.m. CT daily) and phone (8 a.m. to 8 p.m. CT daily).
Where Venmo business account stands out
There are no monthly fees or setup up costs associated with a Venmo business account. And, the platform 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. The service does charge consumers an additional 3% fee to send money using a credit card, so it’s preferable for most users to use a linked bank account or their Venmo balance.
QR code payment options
Venmo, along with parent company PayPal and other peer-to-peer payment apps, uses QR codes to help customers find and pay merchants touch-free. When customers have an existing account, they can quickly scan a business QR code through the Venmo app.
Venmo generates a unique QR code for each business, and new business users can request a free physical QR kit with five coded stickers, a wallet card with lanyard, and a tabletop display code with a stand.
Venmo sends business users receiving over $600 per year a 1099-K tax form in line with the reporting requirements in the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. All taxable income should be reported to the IRS regardless of the platform or volume, but Venmo makes this process easier by sending business users the proper tax form. Zelle, on the other hand, isn’t required by law to send the form, even though money transferred on the platform can still be taxable.
Where Venmo business account falls short
No free instant transfers
Payments received through Venmo don’t go directly to your bank account; they need to be transferred out of the app. Standard transfers take one to three business days and are free. Instant transfers cost 1.75% of the amount transferred, with a minimum fee of 25 cents and maximum fee of $25. Other payment processors like Zelle transfer instantly with no fees, but don’t accept credit cards like Venmo does.
Only available in the U.S.
Venmo is currently only available for U.S. merchants. The app is only compatible with U.S.-based bank accounts and phone numbers, which are verified through SMS codes. Businesses looking to expand internationally will need a payment processor like Stripe or PayPal, which work in multiple currencies and countries.
Alternatives to Venmo business account
PayPal: Best for accepting international payments
2.29% plus 9 cents for in-person and QR code transactions.
3.49% plus 9 cents for manual-entry card transactions.
2.99% plus 49 cents for invoicing (payment made with card).
3.49% plus 49 cents for invoicing (payment made with PayPal).
PayPal, which owns Venmo, is a large payment services provider with several options for small business use. The platform charges flat-rate transaction fees, and offers a variety of checkout integrations plus features like subscription payments and seller protection.
While Venmo can only be used for domestic transactions, PayPal allows users to send and receive payments in 25 currencies, making it a great option for international transactions.
Cash App: Best for point-of-sale integration
Cost: 2.9% plus 30 cents for card-not-present transactions.
Cash App is a peer-to-peer payment app that integrates with Square, a popular POS system for many small businesses (both services are owned by Block). The platforms can share data, and Square checkout devices can display Cash App QR codes for direct payment.
There are no platform-specific fees, just Square’s standard processing rates. Instant bank transfers are free for business accounts. Cash App does offer chargeback protection and does not add on chargeback fees.
Zelle: Best no-fee option
Cost: No fees.
Zelle doesn’t offer specific features for businesses, but it facilitates free instant transfers and can be used to pay small business enrolled with participating banks. The platform does not send 1099-K tax forms that compile transaction details, but it does allow fee-free payments from any customer in the Zelle network.
Unlike with Venmo, there’s no purchase protection with Zelle, and payments can’t be made with a credit card.