If you are using software or a point of sale system to accept credit card payments, you are probably familiar with third party fees. These fees, often referred to as SaaS fees (Software as a Service) are billed to your business by the software provider.

But do the software companies have the right to bill your customers directly? Toast seems to think so and that is exactly what they started doing.

What Happened:

In June of 2023, Toast, a popular point of sale system for restaurants, added a 99-cent customer paid fee to online orders of $10 or more placed through the company’s ordering channel.

This move by Toast is not being received well by customers or business owners. “Competitors are more likely to … position themselves away from Toast in that regard,” said Dorothy Creamer, a research manager following hospitality and travel digital transformation strategies at market intelligence firm IDC, during a July 6 interview.

Toast investors’ demand for profitability at the company has likely driven implementation of the fee, Creamer said. In the first quarter, Toast’s loss widened to $81 million, compared to $23 million in the same quarter the year prior, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

It is understandable that investors want to see a return. However, when it comes at the expense of alienating clients, trying to squeeze more profit has the reverse effect.

How It Ended:

On July 19, 2023 Toast announced that it would roll back the decision to add the .99 cent fee.

In a message to customers on its web site, the online ordering platform’s CEO Chris Comparato said, “After extensive discussions with many of you, we have made the decision to remove the $0.99 order processing fee from the new version of our digital ordering suite by the end of this week.

Toast got the message loud and clear. But the bottom line is they are not profitable as a company and need to increase revenue from somewhere. This will likely mean an increase to business owners using the services.

There are pros and cons when using software providers or point of sale systems to process your credit card payments.


  • The software is designed for use in your industry.
  • Software fees may be discounted if bundled with processing fees.
  • Reporting and inventory specific to your products & services.


  • No control over SaaS fee increases.
  • Difficult to switch to another processor since services are linked.
  • Lack of local support.

If you are considering a specific point of sale or software solution for your business here are some questions to ask:

  • If I want to cancel service is there a fee or penalty?
  • Will I be able to export my customer data easily and without tech support?
  • Who provides the actual payment processing (the processor linked to the software)
  • Can I choose my own payment processor?
  • Do you have the right to charge my clients a fee?

If you need help let us know and we would be happy to assist. Our processing services integrate with many popular software providers and POS systems.