How does EFTPOS work?

EFTPOS stands for Electronic Funds Transfer at Point of Sale, and it’s the electronic payment system that lets a customer make a purchase using a credit or debit card or mobile wallet on their phone or a wearable device. EFTPOS works with a payment device (EFTPOS machine) and it helps move funds from a customer to the merchant's selected business bank account.

In Australia, there are three account options a customer can choose when paying through EFTPOS, namely: Cheque (CHQ), Savings (SAV) and Credit (CR).

What is an EFTPOS machine?

An EFTPOS machine is the device provided by a bank or financial institution to give a merchant access to the eftpos payment system. A business can use either a standalone EFTPOS machine or one that integrates with their Point of Sale (POS).

The advantages of EFTPOS machines

Convenient and efficient payments

EFTPOS machines provide businesses with an efficient and secure way to accept customer payments without the need to carry cash on premises, and have the money settled to their nominated business bank account. Depending on the terminal provider and bank account chose to settle in, takings usually occur on the same or next business day. Every transaction through an EFTPOS machine is logged which gives a business a clear view of takings, making it easier to plan and budget.

If you settle to a NAB business bank account before 9:30pm AEST, you'll have same-day settlement and access to your funds seven days a week.

Take a wide variety of payment type

EFTPOS machines allow businesses to accept a wide variety of payment types including VISA, Mastercard, eftpos, Apple Pay, Google Pay, Samsung Pay, American Express and many more.

Receive payments on the go

Many EFTPOS machines can also be used for accepting payments in person on-the-go, depending on the device's capability. Learn more about our EFTPOS machines. We also have an app-based payment service called NAB Easy Tap  that does not require any additional hardware. You can use your Android device to help you manage fast, secure and simple payments anywhere.

Things to consider before choosing an EFTPOS machine

When choosing an EFTPOS machine for your business, consider:

  • your business size and your customer payment preferences;
  • how you want to take payments – in person, online, on-the-go or a mixture;
  • if you want it to integrate with a POS system;
  • the fees and charges for transactions, machine rental, POS integration and any set-up;
  • the ease of use and simplicity of training staff;
  • the battery life of the device; and/or
  • the time it takes to settle funds into your account.

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Any advice on this page has been prepared without considering your objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting and starting a business, you should consider whether it is appropriate for your circumstances.