These days, a point-of-sale system (also known as a POS system) is far more than just a simple cash register like it used to be. Today, POS systems need to be used for everything from recording sales data to checking out your customers to bringing all information together about your inventory and so on.
In many ways, a POS system needs to serve as the central hub of your business, and is an invaluable system to help make your business run as effectively as possible. It’s not rare these days for POS system to be run on tablets, which are far easier to use and also less expensive than traditional cash registers.
That’s also not to mention that most POS systems these days can store their data in the cloud, which permits you to access back office tools either on your phone or laptop back home when you are away from your business location.
In short, it’s incredibly important to choose a POS system that will be the right fit for your business, and that’s what we’re going to talk about today.
Here are the top factors to consider when choosing point-of-sale systems for your business:
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No Contractor Lease
It would be wise to go with a POS system that lacks contractor leases. This is because if in the event the POS system does not meet the needs of your business, you won’t be stuck with using it for several more years to come. While you should be able to get out of a contractor lease early, you’ll also likely need to pay either several hundred or thousands of dollars in order to do so.
If possible, go with a POS system that you can use and pay for on a month-to-month basis. If you have the funds, you can also try to just buy the system outright.
Third Party Support
When looking for POS software, you’ll want to find software that preferably has strong third party support. Third party support when it comes to hardware and processor capability will allow you to have far more options when shopping for deals on your system.
You may even be able to keep working with your processor while using the older POS equipment that you already purchased. This is an important consideration, because there are many point-of-sale companies that will not give you a choice, and you can only use their proprietary hardware and credit card processing services.
Cloud Based Capabilities
You’re also going to want POS systems with cloud based capabilities. There are many advantages to going with a cloud based system. The initial upfront costs will be much lower, because you’ll only have to pay a small monthly fee versus a software license.
Cloud based systems also allow you to access them anywhere and at anytime, which means that you can access your reporting tools and back office management features literally whenever you feel like it.
Abundance of Features
Finally, you’re also going to want a POS system with lots of features. To decide which exact features you want or need in your POS system, you are going to need to take into consideration how much functionality you are going to need.
For example, do you want self-checkout features? What about a digital menu? What about an email marketing feature? Don’t think that you need to settle for the minimum.
Examples of features that POS systems come with today include, but are not limited to:
- online ordering
- check splitting
- tipping features
- delivery apps
- table layout
- front house communications
- loyalty and rewards programs
- paying at the table services
- advanced inventory tracking services
- eCommerce integration
- gift card features
- customizable SKU’s
- shipping features
- online reservations
- advanced scheduling
If you think your business would benefit from having a POS system with those features, there’s nothing to stop you from getting a system with them.
Choosing a Point-of-Sale System For Your Business
Choosing a point-of-sale system really shouldn’t be nearly as dramatic as we may be making it sound.
That being said, POS systems have really evolved dramatically since the days when the cash register was the only system we really could use, so it’s important to be aware of what your top options are and more importantly the top factors that you would be most wise to take into consideration.