Best Thermal Printer For Small Business 2022

Why Thermal?

Because it’s slightly more advanced than USB and less technical than WiFi!

If you’re new to receipt or label or journal printing, then the safest option to opt for would be a thermal printer that’s Bluetooth compatible. Not only it’s super easy to connect to your device but also benefits you with ease of movement, high-quality prints, and smooth performance. 

You may get a few varieties of them designed for different purposes. Thus, make sure to pick one depending on your purpose. Specially if you own a small business, you need the thermal printer that works smooth.

As there are several options to choose from, we thought to narrow them down to a few. So, let’s know the reasons that made each the best thermal printer for small business.

Best Bluetooth Thermal Printer

Comparison Chart For Top 3 Thermal Printer for Small Business

IMAGE PRODUCT Roll paper widthSpeed (mm/s)Purposeprice
Star Micronics TSP143IIIBi80mm250Receipt
Phomemo M0253mmNMLabel, Journal, Image
MUNBYN MUN-IMP00155mm90Receipt

Thermal Printer For Small Business Buying Guide

Resolutions

Your thermal printer’s resolutions should range from 203 to 600 dpi. And pick one depending on what you’re printing.

Having the least resolutions isn’t bad. You can get sharp prints on the receipt or label if the text is over 7 points and if the barcode is big.

Not just that, the images can be well-detailed at 203 dpi if you’re using small plain paper. You can check this printer by Phomemo that delivers premium printouts of pictures.

Anyway, you would just have to level up the resolutions if you’re planning to have-

  • Big images on larger paper
  • Texts smaller than 7 points.
  • Small and intricate barcodes on labels.

Size Of The Roll Paper

The thermal printer for small business should accommodate rolls of bigger diameter. This way, you can have more papers to fit inside. Typically, diameters can vary from 30mm to more than 250mm. The bigger it is, the less frequently the refill will be.

For instance, Star Micronics TSP143IIIBi holds paper roll with diameter of around 83mm which is quite big.

You should also know the width of paper that can fit into the thermal printer. When it comes to receipts, most printers would take 55 to 80mm roll. Meanwhile, many printers can take 40 to 55mm rolls for labels or journals.

Speed

Prioritize speed depending on the rush. In case your store is busy with a long line of customers, then you need a thermal printer that acts quickly.

It can be from 80mm/s to 350mm/s. If you’re using the printer professionally and want a model that prints fast, we would suggest this model by Star Micronics. The unit works at a speed rate of 250mm/s and can give you around 43 receipts per minute.

In case the printer would be used for personal purposes, then speed shouldn’t be a big factor.

Setup And Compatibility

When it comes to thermal printer Bluetooth compatibility with both Android and Apple OS is a must. This way, you can easily pair the printer with your device be it a phone, laptop, tablet, or computer.

Make sure the setup process is easy to understand. You can get the idea from the reviewers who used the model. Some printers need a separate app to work while some don’t.

For instance, you would need the app to work with Star Micronics. And for MUN-IMP001 by MUNBYN, you don’t need that.

Also if it’s for professional purposes, make sure the printer is compatible with the ordering platforms you would want to use. Many are compatible with Ubereats, Grubhub, Postmates, or Doordash but some aren’t.

5 Best Thermal Printer For Small Business Reviews

1. Star Micronics TSP143IIIBi | Best Thermal Label Printer For Small Business

Want a unit that will work while keeping up with yours? Then TSP143IIIBi would be a perfect option for you. It would print at a high speed of 250mm/s which means you get 40 to 42 receipts within a minute.

Being a thermal printer with Bluetooth, it happens to be a very convenient model. You can pair it with any Apple or Android tablet. Even if you control the printer while being 10 meters away, the unit would work without any lag.

A big plus is that it works smoothly with Postmates, Ubereats, Grubhub, and Doordash terminals. So, printing out orders with this unit would be very easy. Just one thing to keep in mind is that the printer will be connected to one device at a time.

The prints tend to be sharp thanks to the 203 dpi resolutions. No matter how small the texts are on the receipt, you can easily read them.

It includes adjustable paper width. Not only can you use receipts as wide as 80mm but also fit the smaller ones. A big plus is its ability to auto-cut. It makes separating the receipts much easier as your customers check out at the cashier station.

You would find the setup process easy. Just download the TSP app on your device after pairing the printer via Bluetooth. 

Note that this thermal printer can be slightly pricier, however for the business purpose, it can be your best choice. So, buy it only if you don’t have a tight budget. In case you’re looking for a reliable but reasonable model, then you can consider this one by MUNBYN.

Pros

  • Outputs the receipt super quickly.
  • Sharp printed texts on the paper.
  • Setup process is easy and so is Bluetooth pairing.
  • Cuts the receipts automatically.
  • Adjustable paper width.

Cons

  • A bit expensive.

2. Phomemo M02 | Best Shipping Label Printer For Small Business

Phomemo M02 would make a perfect pick for both personal and professional purposes. It tends to accept a variety of media files including plain white papers, sticky papers, transparent papers, and labels as long as their width is up to 53mm.

One of the most evident functions is that the printer doesn’t have any length limit. You can print out a very long to-do list if you want.

Not only would it print texts but also images in mono. Although the prints would be black and white, you can have them in blue if special papers are used.

The resolutions stand as high as 203 dpi which would work great with smaller media files. It ensures crisp letters as well as deep images.

You would find the setup process of this Bluetooth shipping label printer pretty simple and quick. It will require you to pair both the devices through Bluetooth and install the app on your tablet. Speaking of the app, it has a user-friendly interface. So, any amateur can use the printer without an expert’s help.

There will be a built-in 1000 mAh battery that may not last long. In that situation, it would be better to keep the charger and the cable with you. The plus side here is that its quick-charging ability makes up for the short battery life.

Call it a Bluetooth thermal label printer or a journal one, none would be wrong.

Pros

  • Allows for a variety of media files.
  • Holds rolls measuring up to 53mm wide.
  • Images and texts appear crisp and well-detailed.
  • Simple setup process.
  • Charges extremely fast.

Cons

  • Battery life is average.

3. MUNBYN MUN-IMP001

This happens to be a very long-lasting thermal printer by MUNBYN. It functions through a 1500mAh Li-ion that manages to last for around 5 days on standby. So, you can use the unit anywhere without any interruption.

The details are highly legible because of the resolutions at 203 dpi. Plus, the entire process would be fairly quick with its 90mm/s speed rate.

Setting it up is as easy as using it. You don’t even need to install any app to make it work. Rather, the printer quickly pairs with your device and be ready to use just like any BT-based device will. In case you struggle, the included instructions are clear enough to help you out.

The MUN-IMP001 is compatible with 55mm wide paper roll and it comes with one. You would actually consider it more perfect for a moderate volume of receipt printing as it accommodates papers up to 48mm in diameter.

It may not be compatible with a bunch of popular apps like Ubereats and Grubhub. So, make sure to check the compatibility before you get it. If you want a printer for that purpose, then you can consider having this unit by Star Micronics.

Pros

  • Battery lasts very long.
  • Delivers premium quality printing.
  • Prints pretty fast.
  • Very simple setup process.
  • Holds papers as wide as 55mm.

Cons

  • Not compatible with many apps.

How Do I Use A Bluetooth Thermal Printer?

Step 1

At first, power on the thermal printer and pair it with your Bluetooth-enabled device by pushing the pair button. It can be your phone, laptop, tablet, or computer.

Step 2

Make sure to activate Bluetooth from your device. It will start searching for available BT devices nearby.

Step 3

If you find your printer on the list, click on it. This will pair the printer with your device.

Step 4

For printing, open the document and select ‘Share’. There will be some options that will show up. Choose ‘Bluetooth’ from the options.

Step 5

After that, you will find a list of paired devices. Select your thermal printer. The unit will receive the document and start printing it. 

N/B-

Some printers may need a proprietary app to install and make connection between the devices. Make sure you check the manual instructions beforehand.

Benefits of Using a Thermal Printer For Small Business

Short-Range Wireless

You won’t have cables interrupting the freedom of movement. With a Bluetooth printer, you can control and command it from anywhere nearby as long as it’s within 10 meters. Not just that, such printers help you get rid of cable clutters as well.

Uninterrupted Operations

thermal printer small business would mainly be connected to your device. So, there’s no chance of busy network that can cause print errors. Just like cable and unlike WiFi, BT printers especially the 3.0 and 4.0 versions would work fast reaching a speed of up to 25mbps. So, they would print efficiently without any interruptions.

Simple Setup

You don’t have to go through a time-consuming and complicated setup process. Such printers would be simple to connect to your device. As we already mentioned, some may require apps that can lengthen the step but it would still be easy enough for any newbie to understand.

Easy-To-Fix Issues

Since a Bluetooth printer is less technical, you can easily locate the problem that you can face with it. Most of the time, you can fix it by restarting both the printer and your device or by removing the connection and pairing it again.

Compact And Portable

Such printers typically have a small footprint which means you can easily keep one anywhere and still have spaces there. Not just that, the units come in less than 5 pounds so they would be light enough to carry.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How Do You Print On A Thermal Printer?

At first, you have to power on the printer, push the pair button and then pair it from your device’s setting.

Make sure the printer is loaded with compatible roll paper.

Now, open the document that you will print out. Click on ‘Share’> ‘Bluetooth’> ‘Name of your BT Thermal Printer’.

2. Can You Add Bluetooth To A Printer?

Yes, you can add Bluetooth to a printer by installing a BT adapter. The step is pretty straightforward.

  • There are two kinds of adapters. One has an open USB port where you plug printer’s USB cable into the adapter. Meanwhile, the ‘Stick’ style plugs directly into the printer’s USB port like a flash drive.  
  • Choose either of them and plug it into the printer.
  • Turn on the printer.
  • Then, enable Bluetooth connection on your device and find the name of your printer. The computer should auto-detect the new hardware and walk you through the process.

However, note that adapters may not work if your printer doesn’t have any external Bluetooth support.

3. What Is A POS Printer?

POS printer is short for ‘Point Of Sale’ printer that is used in the points of sale and produces on-demand receipts for customers. You would basically find 3 types of such printers- thermal, inkjet, and impact. All these printers function differently. However, thermal unit tends to be widely used. And there are two major reasons why they are so popular- one is the speed and two is the efficiency.

Not only that, POS thermal printers produce premium-quality prints with ease. They are easy to maintain and need minimal printing supplies.

4. Do Thermal Printed Labels Fade?

Yes, thermal-printed labels can fade after 6 to 8 months. And there are many reasons why they fade so easily. Some of them include overexposure to sunlight and high temperatures, discoloration, improper storage, chemical contact, and print material damage.

Although you can make the prints last up to 10 years only if you store them properly, they wouldn’t last indefinitely.

5. What Is The Difference Between Direct Thermal And Thermal Transfer?

It’s their printing process that makes one different from the other.

A direct thermal (DT) printer works by using heat-sensitive material that blackens as it passes under the head without the use of ribbon, ink, or toner.

And a thermal transfer (TT) printer uses heated wax-based ribbon or resin-based ink that melts on materials and produces the image.

Some other key differences are-

  • You can use different kinds of materials for TT printer. Meanwhile, only chemically treated paper can work with DT.
  • DT isn’t resistant to Ultra-Violet rays, water, and chemicals but TT is.

6. Can You Write On Thermal Labels?

Yes, you can. Usually, thermal paper isn’t designed to absorb ink because of which you have to wait for the ink to dry. But, gel pens and permanent markers work great when used to write on thermal labels.

Both tend to use quick-drying ink and hence would take around 18 to 30 seconds to dry. And the ink will not smudge as it sets.

The writing will smear on thermal labels when you use ordinary ballpoint pens despite drying out.

7. What Are The Disadvantages Of A Thermal Printer?

There are a few drawbacks to a thermal printer.

Expensive

Pricier than regular printers. Not just that, thermal papers can be more expensive than regular papers.

Color limitations

Some printers have few color options that are less pigmented while some print in mono. It’s not an issue if you print texts and codes. But, you wouldn’t consider it ideal for images.

Fades Easily

Prints on labels fade easily over time. They can fade due to sunlight, UV-rays, contact with hands, and chemicals.

Pricier Head Replacement

Thermal print heads can become costly to replace if damaged. The better replacement can cost around 70 to 100 bucks.

8. Is Thermal Printer An Impact Printer?

No. Thermal printer is a non-impact printer. It uses heat to make the printing happen without the need for impact. Some heat up the paper and produce an effect between pigments and the paper. Meanwhile, some melt wax or ink and apply it to the paper to produce prints.

Impact printer works by striking the paper directly with an ink ribbon just like dot matrix models.

9. How Do I Connect My Laptop To A Thermal Printer?

Different thermal models have different setup instructions. So, we would suggest you check the manual.

However, the basic steps have been provided below-

  • Go to, Start menu> Settings> Devices> Printers & Scanners and select ‘Add a Printer or Scanner’.
  • Then click on The printer that I want isn’t listed.
  • You would find a few options there. Click on the 5th one that says Add a local printer or network printer with manual settings.
  • Hit Next.
  • Choose the port that your printer is connected to.
  • Hit Next again.
  • Choose your printer from the list.
  • This should connect the printer to your laptop. You may have to install the driver if it fails.

10. What Is Thermal Receipt Printer?

Thermal receipt printers come in the form of either direct or transfer.

Direct printers burn images on special paper using heat. Transfer printers use a wax, wax-resin, or pure resin ribbon to melt and print on the paper.

When you connect the printer to the device, the printer receives data from ‘Point of Sales’ app running on the device, and then it proceeds to print. This kind of printer mainly uses nothing but receipt papers that have a smooth surface coated with dye chemicals.

Final Words

Your thermal printer should have either a 3.0 or 4.0 Bluetooth version if you want something high speed. The best part is that despite the speed, such printers don’t lose the quality of printing. Instead, you get premium prints as well as uninterrupted operation.

So, if the model has these advantages, you can surely call it the best thermal printer for small business.