If you want to manage the sales from your business and store accurate records, you need a point of sale (POS) system. There are several factors you should know about processing payments. Having a POS is essential for both experienced business people and those starting a venture for the first time. Other than allowing customers to pay for goods or services, a POS system provides you with records and analytics that are beneficial for making informed decisions. A great POS system performs accounting, reports sales, and helps you to manage inventory, employees, and customers.
Although POS system benefits are known, selecting the most appropriate one may still be a challenge because there are several alternatives to choose from. The points below should guide your choice of the next POS system:
Consider the Cost
A POS system may require low maintenance or operating expenses but the initial cost could be very high. It is advisable to consider all the associated costs when making a choice. Comparing the costs with your budget will help you to decide the best action between renting and purchasing the system. Another area you should consider is the fees the POS system has for various debit and credit cards. Ensure that you check a variety of POS systems available to you to compare costs and functionalities. A great choice should be one that allows you to switch third-party processing companies, for increased flexibility.
Check Compatibility With Your Hardware
You must remember the features of your current hardware when selecting a POS system for your business. Purchasing an incompatible POS will only add to your expenses, as you will have to buy new hardware that matches. A POS system generally works with barcode scanners, credit card readers, and cash drawers, among others. If you purchase a POS system for android devices, for instance, you should have a credit card reader for android to ensure compatibility. This should apply to all the devices you plan to use.
Look for Your Desired Features
POS systems are applicable in diverse business settings. You may get one for a retail store or a salon, gym, and other types of businesses. Each business has its own unique requirements for a POS system, and you must identify the features that will work effectively for your business type. Creating a checklist is the best practice in this regard. The checklist should include the features you want right now and those that are beneficial for your future business requirements, to ensure what you purchase accommodates your intended business growth.
Some crucial features to list are the ability of POS systems to work with EMV chip debit and credit cards, acceptance of contactless cards and mobile payment alternatives, access to a secure cash drawer, and products’ barcode scanning ability. You may also check the system’s ability to track business inventory, produce sales reports, link to your bookkeeping software, and print or send digital receipts. Capabilities such as management of customer loyalty programs and timesheets of employees are vital as well.
Remember Your Preference for Cloud-Based POS System
A number of POS systems have software and hardware. POS software can make you an efficient business executive by recording, keeping, and analyzing your business information in the shortest time possible. The features and functionalities you prefer to have are determined by the complexity of your chosen POS system. A notable trend in POS system purchases is how businesses are opting for cloud-based POS systems.
The conventional POS software limits servers’ accessibility to a given location but cloud-based software keeps all the company’s data in a digital space, where only internet connection is required to access them anywhere anytime. You should have no security concerns at all when using cloud software because the data is usually encrypted and the provider of the system server takes full responsibility. Such providers are known to make huge security investments to ensure that all the data, from their many users, are stored safely.
Go for Simplicity
You should consider the daily running of the POS system to determine its effectiveness. Some systems may be difficult to set up but very easy to use afterwards, while others may require experts’ intervention to run on a daily basis. The cost of hiring a qualified consultant or expenses of training employees to use the system should be considered. No business owner wants a system that will require operators to continually refer to the manual either.
You should consider buying a system that is easy to use. Staff will be more comfortable operating a system that they do not struggle to understand, and this will contribute to employee satisfaction. Busy business settings also require a system that is easy to run as employees in such environments tend to work under pressure. Simplicity and usability are very important features that you should check to make work easier for employees and improve the experience of your customers.
Know About Customer Support Availability
POS system issues are likely to interfere with the flow of your business, and it is up to you to fix it. Ensure that your POS system seller will be available in the long run to provide the support that you need to make your business successful. While buying the software you should inquire about customer support services the providers offer to customers. Do not buy from a provider that tells you the POS system is quite straightforward, easy to install and use. Go for one that assures you that despite the simplicity and usability of their POS system, they will be available if you need help with anything.
You need your POS system to run 24 hours a day, each day of the week, hence a great seller should offer more help and guidance through tutorial videos and a considerable range of user guides. This will also cut training costs for your company and avoid disruptions that may happen when you remove employees from their daily roles to help you train their colleagues. Even new employees will understand how to operate your POS system by simply watching the tutorial videos and reading guides from your provider.
Every business owner wants to see good progress in their venture, and it is why many invest in POS systems. It is, however, worth noting that a POS system is difficult to select, implement, and operate. Other than identifying the useful factors that make a POS system appropriate for your business, you should find a supportive provider who will sell the software to you and still be available whenever you need assistance.