Easily stating, POS systems are a group of software and hardware set up to structuring business operations at the point of purchase (POP). They are swiftly displacing cash registers because they can perform more than take payments.
What is POS Software?
Point of sale software is a cash register, but much smarter. It’s the central point of your checkout, permitting you to enhance sales, process returns, and matching your daily revenue – akin to the cash register. But, POS software does more than that. When we talk about the POS system, the software is the leading force behind allowing you with the right performance and features to run your business.
These days, the POS system has cloud-based solutions that function on mobile equipment like Android tablets and iPad cash registers. You also have various POS systems that are pretty good plug-and-play right out of the box or download.
POS Software for My Business: What to Look For?
Here are some simple characteristics you would like to look for when opting POS software solutions.
Inventory Management: Consumers would just as soon purchase an item online if they cannot find it in your store, It is important that you have real-time inventory monitoring and inventory control. Too little inventory can put in missed revenue. Too much inventory can derive suppressed cash flow.
Employee Management: You can make employee profiles to save their contact information and their history to access the POS system.
Reporting and Analytics: Reports and analytics can render insights and facilitate you monitor Key Performance Indicators (KPI) regarding your business, permitting you to make smarter, data related decisions. It can assist you better grasp the three major factors of your business: inventory management, sales performance, and employee performance.
Customer Management and Loyalty Programs: Connecting with your consumers either through email marketing or loyalty programs is heavy ammo to get your consumer to bring back into your shop. Actually, 58 percent of consumers are comfortable with retailers utilizing their purchase track record to customize a future shopping experience.
Integrations: Many POS systems matches with third-party software for accounting software for bookkeeping, email marketing solutions and e-commerce platforms for selling online.
Payment Processing: POS software must be capable to handle all of your payment kinds or tenders, not just a few of them. You will also desire to ensure you are able to receive both EMV (chip and pin) and magnetic stripe credit card transactions. Another factor to keep in kind with integrated processing is the fees you will pay per transaction. For most enterprises, we suggest flat rate processing rather opt for interchange-plus rates.
Mobility: Regardless of any type of business you are doing, it is always a good idea to look at mobile when it comes to your point of sale system. In fact, in 2018 mobile POS (mPOS) is estimated to bypass standard POS terminals.
POS Hardware: Some of the hardware arrangements that are possible to be compatible with your POS software are iPad or Android tablets and enclosures, touchscreen or tracking to function as the POS terminal and display, barcode scanners, receipt printers, cash drawers, scale for weighted items, label printers and credit card terminal.
Types of POS Systems: What Are My Options?
There are many distinct kinds of POS systems out there; the point is finding the right one for your business.
Retail POS Systems
Retail businesses have an ideal set of needs and requirements that differ from the needs of restaurants and vice versa. While in a few cases you may be able to use a retail POS system in quick-service restaurants (QSR), it would not suffice in a full-service restaurant or bar.
Some ideal retail POS requirements are:
- Label printing for items not having UPC codes
- Employee commissions
- Product matrix and item variants to facilitate various products sizes, colors, etc.
- Scales for weighted products
- E-commerce integration to establish an online store
How many fine-dining restaurants do you understand that scan a UPC code on your filet mignon before they serve it to you? In short, none. But, here are a few features they do require:
- Remote ticket printing to send orders from the restaurant POS to a kitchen printer or bar printer
- A custom table map to smoothly start checks and look what tables are occupied
- A way to maintain various checks open simultaneously
- A way to segregate open checks, merge or shift them
- A receipt printer for obtaining a physical check to the customer
- The capability to assign order types such as dine-in or takeout
- Online ordering so customers can order from their smartphone or computer
Salon POS Systems
Like the other two industries we discussed, salons have their own specific needs such as:
Online Booking – While walk-ins are invited at most salons, the majority of consumers make appointments to ensure they receive the service they want at a time that is suitable for them.
Calendar Management – Going simultaneously with appointment setting, salons also require a way to manage their employees’ calendars, so they get who is booked and when.
Memberships – Some spas levy membership fees for premium or specialty services, and they require a way to monitor all that. A way to securely save customer credit card data, a process repeated transactions on a daily basis and have a card expiration report so they can aggressively reach out to those consumers whose card is set to expire.
POS System Technology
We will take a look at the characteristics of each to help you to determine which is right for your restaurant, retail shop, salon, or other business.
1. On-Premise POS Systems
With this kind of setup, your POS software is established on a server that’s physically established within your business. Typically your cashiers and waitstaff will utilize or communicate with the system via a POS terminal.
While these kinds of systems are utilized by thousands of businesses, there are numerous issues with them:
- Costly– these systems can cost tens of thousands of dollars for a multi-terminal establish.
- Restricted Access – You require to be in your place of business to access the system to make an alteration, view reports, or maintain the backend.
- Lack of Support – Most on-premise systems do not bring included customer facilitation. If you run into an issue, you will require to purchase a separate package of support hours or pay on a per hour basis.
2. Cloud-Based POS Systems
With a cloud-based point of sale, rather than being established on a server that you manage, a cloud POS system is established in remote data centers that are managed by the POS vendor. Here are some additional advantages that a cloud POS will bring to your business:
- Accessible Anywhere – Since the software is hosted in the cloud, you could log in from any internet-connected device.
- Affordability – Almost all cloud POS systems levy a monthly subscription fee. Rather than paying thousands of dollars up front, you can mostly get initiated for less than $100 a month.
- Regular Updates – One of the advantages of paying month to month is that you get access to daily updates new specifics at no additional charge.
- Ease of Use – Cloud software is modern software, depicting it is much easier to utilize than an on-premise solution that has not been updated in a decade.
- Better Support –Cloud POS tend to provide more extensive support than their on-premise counterparts. 24/7/365 is the new normal and you should avert any vendor that does not offer it.
3. Mobile POS Systems (mPOS)
As a subcomponent of cloud POS systems, mPOS also process in the cloud and have all the advantages of modern software. What terms this classification of systems is the hardware that they perform upon, especially mobile devices. For our own benefits, that is an iPad, an Android tablet, and in some cases, a smartphone.
Besides the advantages found in standard cloud POS software, there are some that are unique to mPOS systems:
- Greater Mobility – Whether you need to do a restricted-run popup shop or simply do away from the counter and onto the sales floor, a mPOS can facilitate you make it happen.
- Highly Reliable Hardware –They just perform, and they generally do so for years beyond than economical hardware. When you use a mPOS that perform on an iPad, you put in hardware today that will remain for the next 5-7 years.
4. Self-Service Kiosk
This kind of POS is typically formulated for specific use cases. For instance, if you doing a business of a movie theatre, you might have a self-service POS so that consumers can buy tickets on their selves. The advantages of utilizing one of these systems are in relation to cost and efficiency. A self-service kiosk POS can minimize the number of cashiers you require to hire, saving you money. At the same moment, adding several kiosks will enhance the number of consumers you can serve at the same moment, minimizing waiting times and enhancing efficiency.
How Much Do POS Systems Cost and Where Can I Buy One?
Cloud-based software, the Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) business model, and the development of consumer tablet equipment like iPads have made the perfect quake in the point of sale industry. It has permitted software companies to develop steady POS solutions for small business managers and dynamically reduced cost as an obstruction to entry to a point of what it once was.
These days, if you are a small retail shop, you can incur less than $1,000 to get initiated with an excellent POS system like iPayToTal, which includes both hardware and software. That is a big difference in price, and one cash-stricken business owners can bring on board with.
Not only have a point of sale remedy reduce the price, but they are also much smoother to get your hands on. A lot of POS companies render a self-service model where you can make with an app, establish your store, and order hardware not having to talk to someone. And that’s wonderful if you’re a self-service kind of guy or girl.
When we talk about choosing a POS system, just make assured you opt a software provider that is available for you 24/7/365 by either phone call, chat or email.
Why Should I Invest in a POS System?
Small business promoters should invest in the point of sale software because it is just smart business. It is long hours, generally meaning weekends and holidays away from your family since those are your busiest days of the week or year. The major advantages of a POS system are that it can perform just like that. In fact, enterprises that are purchasing POS software for the first time report that enhancing efficiency is a top agenda.
The Bottom Line
After going through this article, you must have a solid grasping of what is a POS system. But, more significantly, you should understand the features and functionality you need from a point of sale to run your business efficiently, where to purchase one and how much they cost.
If you are looking for a Retail Merchant Account, you are in the right place, as IPAYTOTAL provides the best solutions for Low and High Risk businesses. We guaranty quick real-time credit card processing, top-notch services and at reasonable rates. Give us a call at +44 800 776 5988 or get in touch with us through our website.