Choosing the Best POS System

Are you ready to upgrade your point of sale process, but having trouble choosing the best POS system for your business? Narrow it down with these 7 tips.

A POS, or point of sale, system is a powerful business tool that helps business owners save time, money, and manpower by automating and streamlining tedious business processes. Depending on the business model, a POS solution may include hardware, software, and payment processing components. 

Some main benefits of a robust POS system include payment processing, sales tracking, and inventory management. But they are also typically equipped with other essential capabilities, such as employee management, customer information management, and reports generation.

With so much to consider, choosing the right POS system can be tricky. But in this blog, we’ve got you covered with the top seven factors to consider when selecting the best point of sale system for your business.

A cashier manning a POS system

Choosing the Best POS System: 7 Factors to Consider

1. Payment Processing

While payment processing is one of the basic functions expected from every point of sale system, not all POS systems are made equal. Determine what your customers need to complete their transactions easily and efficiently. This will impact the software and hardware that the POS solution must come with, and may differ depending on your business model and your customer demographic.

For example, a restaurant may want a mobile POS system that enables customers to pay at their table, while a retail brand may require a tabletop POS system that accepts various payment methods – cash, credit or debit cards, mobile wallets, checks, and even gift cards.

If you have an existing loyalty program or you’re planning to implement one in the future, choose a POS system equipped to apply points or discounts at every transaction.

A customer paying using a mobile wallet on their phone

2. Integrations

If you’ve been in business for a while but you’re just choosing a POS solution now, then you probably already have a process in place that requires improvement. Instead of overhauling your existing system, opt for a POS system with diverse integration capabilities.

Getting a POS solution that seamlessly integrates with other business software you already use helps cut the learning curve, enables you to maximize the functionality of both programs, and ensures you continue to get the functionality that you’re used to.

For example, selecting a point of sale system that links to your existing email marketing platform makes it easier to send personalized newsletters depending on the type of customer — like special voucher codes for customers who haven’t been back for a while or members-only promos for those part of your loyalty program

If you run multiple brick-and-mortar locations or an offline-online hybrid model, then look for a POS solution capable of multichannel integration so that you can track your sales across various touchpoints. 

3. Reporting and Analytics

The magic of an intelligent POS system is that by tracking each transaction and updating your inventory in real-time, it can tell you a lot about your business and your customers. 

Sales reports can help you identify which products are selling well versus those that aren’t, which can enable you to make better purchasing decisions when it’s time to restock. Inventory reports will reveal which items are due for re-ordering so that you’re never out of stock, especially when it comes to in-demand products. 

Some point of sale solutions also function as employee management systems where staff members can clock in and out for shifts, and schedule their workdays and days off. This can help you pinpoint top-performing team members, accurately calculate wages, and efficiently arrange shift rosters.

Several multicolored charts printed on paper

4. Ease of Use

When researching what to look for when choosing a POS system, it’s tempting to pick a system that comes with fancy bells and whistles. However, make sure you also factor in the system’s usability. There’s no point in investing in dozens of features if the platform is too difficult to set up, learn, and use. It may even be detrimental to your business if your employees lose time navigating a complex interface and end up making your customers wait longer than they normally would.

For brick-and-mortar businesses, buy a POS solution with an intuitive user interface that’s easy to navigate, even by staff members who are not tech-savvy, so that you can ring up transactions quickly and accurately. For online businesses, ensure that the check-out process is simple and understandable for customers, as you might lose the sale if they get frustrated in the middle of paying. 

5. Security

A lot of sensitive and confidential information goes through a point of sale system – ranging from sales, inventory, and employee data, to customers’ personal information and transaction history. So, when looking for the best POS system, select a model with top-of-the-line security and compliance protocols. 

An eCommerce business will need a point of sale solution that protects data from hacking and other cyber risks. On the other hand, a brick-and-mortar business will require a POS system with both software and hardware components, so both must come with security measures against physical and online data privacy threats.

6. Customer Support

A POS system is a long-term investment, so partner with a provider that will be there for you in the long run. Check customer reviews and testimonials to get a sense of the company’s customer service. You want a supplier that will do the following:

  • Help you choose the best POS system for your business.
  • Ensure your POS system is set up correctly and according to your needs.
  • Train your personnel on how to navigate the POS system.
  • Answer questions beyond the initial setup and training sessions.
  • Provide maintenance and repair support.
Male and female customer service representatives at work

7. Cost

The price of a POS system can vary depending on your business needs, particularly the type and amount of features you want, how many POS systems you need (if you are a multi-location business), the average volume of transactions, size of inventory, and whether you require both hardware and software.

Ensure that your POS solution provider is transparent about line-by-line costs. Understand exactly what it is you’re paying for, what’s driving your cost up, and what your options are if you’re working within a specific budget. A high-quality POS system doesn’t have to cost you an arm and leg, but it’s best to level your expectations.

A POS system is a long-term investment, so weigh the upfront cost against how much you’ll cumulatively save in terms of money, time, and manpower in the long run.

True POS is the one-stop hub for all your point of sale solutions. If you need help choosing the best POS system for your business, contact us for a free quote.

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