If you want to get a Point-of-Sale system, you will need to have an account with a bank to grant you one.
You have crafted your small business plan and secured the necessary equipment to get the business off the ground. But your company cannot start soaring until you figure out how to handle transactions with your customers. Luckily, today’s Point-of-Sale systems are much more than the iPad equivalent of a cash register. Whether you are opening a café, retail shop, or gourmet food truck, there is a POS system that will fit the needs of your start-up, according to www.business.org.
What is a PoS system?
A PoS system allows customers to pay for goods and services. It is used to process sales transactions, record and track inventory, manage employees, and keep your business in fighting shape.
A PoS system can help you streamline processes and collect data that provides valuable insight so you can make informed business decisions. Getting a complete PoS system typically includes a combination of hardware components, software applications, installation, and employee training. Since you stand to gain so much from a PoS system, it is important to understand which system and features will work best for you.
The value of a PoS system
A PoS system can benefit your small business in a number of ways. For instance, it saves time by streamlining operations.
It increases productivity and reduces costs.
It provides detailed sales reporting and data analytics.
It reduces human error and increases accuracy.
It naximises return on investment.
It improves the overall customer experience.
Hardware components of a PoS system
The basic must-have hardware components of a PoS system are a server, a computer terminal and keyboard at the checkout location, a cash drawer, a credit and debit card swiper, a pin pad, and a printer for customer receipts. Depending on your business needs, other devices may include a barcode scanner for quick, automated data input; a customer-facing display; and a scale for weighing products.
With the advancement in mobile and wireless technology, you may also want to invest in more efficient devices, such as touchscreen monitors, tablets and smartphones.
What is an electronic PoS system?
Similar to a traditional PoS arrangement, an electronic PoS system is used by small business owners to accept payments from customers.
An EPoS system is a combination of hardware and software that processes sales transactions and manages inventory in real time. Hardware includes a central computer terminal and peripheral devices, such as barcode scanners, receipt printers, and chip and pin devices that connect to it wirelessly or via cables.
And with the right PoS system, you can customise the software to your industry and business needs.
EPoS systems stand out through their automatic inventory updates. If you don’t have time to manually update your inventory, drop the basic PoS system for an EPoS system.
Here are some other ways EPoS software can save you time:
Minimises human error
Automatically applies discounts and promotional pricing to ensure consistent product pricing
Eliminates manual price checks
Tracks employee performance and activities to determine top performers
Simplifies time management by automatically recording employee schedules and work hours
Automatically syncs business reports and data in real time
Adjusts stock levels when items are sold
The downside of an EPoS system is the cost, and the software requires regular maintenance and updates. If you are not prepared to invest in a full-featured system right away, renting an EPoS system or taking on a flexible payment plan may be a better option.
What is a cloud-based PoS system?
A cloud-based PoS system is a web-based, software-as-a-service solution that stores your data in the cloud instead of on a computer. Unlike a traditional server-based PoS system, you can access data, process payments, and get automatic updates via the Internet.
But that is not all. There are other helpful benefits of migrating to a cloud-based PoS system.
For instance, your data is accessible anywhere, anytime via the Internet.
Inventory tracking and sales reporting in real time eliminate guesswork.
Advanced analytics helps you make informed business decisions.
The lack of software upgrades, maintenance, and licensing fees will save you money.
Automatic upgrades and data backup help your business avoid costly downtime.
As mentioned above, cloud-based PoS systems enable you to take your business anywhere. Plus, you can continue to take payments from your customers even if your Internet connection is interrupted—your system will track sales and sync your data as soon as you are back online. That makes a cloud-based platform ideal for small business owners who travel to trade shows, art and craft fairs, and farmers and produce markets to sell products.
If you are not comfortable with migrating to the cloud, a traditional on-premises software solution may be a better choice for your new business. With this method, you can purchase software licences and install the apps yourself on your computer system.
On the flip side, you are also responsible for maintaining the software and installing upgrades.
Whatever software solution you choose for your start-up, make sure it is customizable to fit your needs. You can start with basic PoS features, such as recording sales transactions and inventory tracking, and as your business grows, you can add capabilities such as employee management and custom analytics and reporting.
What are some PoS system software features?
Customer relationship management is a point-of-sale system feature that enables you to track patrons’ buying behaviour, create customer profiles, and identify your most valuable customers.
With this software, you can create loyalty and reward programmes, personalise communication with your customers, and use other marketing tools to make a lasting impression on the folks buying your product or service.
As a business owner, you are already working to develop long-term relationships with your customers. But did you know that for nearly two-thirds of small business owners, over half of their annual revenue comes from repeat customers?
CRM can help you engage with your customers and keep them coming back.
Inventory management is an automated tool that enables small business owners to gather data in real time, track best-selling items, and replenish stock quickly.
Through barcode identification technology, you can receive, track, and sell items in real time. That means you can avoid the headache of recording sales and monitoring inventory levels on your own.