Running your small business or shop is a process that requires many different tools and processes. In addition to an excellent idea and a dedication to your niche, you will also need a platform through which you can manage transactions.
A point of sale system, or “POS,” is essentially an environment where you can handle much of the financial and administrative work of running your business. Inside your POS you make sure there is enough inventory for your customers. You can also use your POS software to track sales trends and manage transactions.
Having an effective payment processing system is critical to ensuring that you can continue to be successful as a business manager.
How a POS system works
A POS system is a tool that allows your business to accept payments from consumers and track sales. While it sounds relatively simple, there are several ways to customize your POS depending on the POS providers you choose and your business plan.
A point of sale system in a small business environment used to refer exclusively to the cash register in a store. However, modern POS systems are not quite the same. These tools are fully digital, which means customers can checkout your business from virtually anywhere, with a POS app and an internet-connected POS device or terminal.
Here are the basics of how a POS system works:
- A customer decides to buy your service or product. If you have a physical score, you will likely use a barcode scanner to check the price of the item, then process your customer to the “checkout” point.
- Your POS will calculate the price of the items combined with any taxes, then update the information in your inventory management system. This ensures you know how many items you have left to sell.
- Your customer gives you their credit or debit card (loyalty points and gift cards are sometimes required as well). Depending on the nature of the payment, the customer’s bank must then arrange the transaction.
- The sale is finalized and the sale is officially processed. You can use a receipt printer to deliver a receipt or send it to your customers digitally, via email or SMS.
The hardware and software of a POS
The hardware and software you use in your point of sale system will depend on your individual needs. Some companies use a lot of hardware with their online technology, while others prefer to stick primarily to software. While every POS system requires software, not everything requires hardware.
If you have an online store, all of your transactions will take place digitally, so point-of-sale hardware wouldn’t be needed, unless you run the occasional pop-up shop. If you have a physical location, like a cafe or bar, you will need at least a register and a credit card system. Sometimes, you can process orders with a tablet or phone instead.
Here are some of the common hardware components you may find connected to your POS:
- Cash Register : Ledgers can help with processing and calculating customer transactions.
- Portable device: Tablets and smartphones can be a good alternative to using a standalone monitor, because you can take them with you to tables and individual customers.
- Card Reader : Card readers allow your customers to securely pay for their products with a credit card. Sometimes you can get card readers that accept contactless payments.
- Cash Register : Even if you accept credit and debit card payments, it’s a good idea to have a cash drawer to store any cash you might need.
- Receipt Printer : Paper receipts show your customers exactly what they bought, how much they paid, and so on.
- Barcode Scanners : Barcode scanners read the details of an item so that you can announce the sale. These scanners are also useful for checking the price of an item or how many you have in stock.
The software solution for your point of sale system usually revolves around components that enable payment processing. Whenever a customer or customer buys something from you, your POS system can handle the transaction POS systems can handle secure online payments, credit cards using magstripe technology, chip cards, card not present transactions, and sometimes even contactless payments. There are even cash payment processing systems.
Other features of a POS software solution can include:
- Inventory Management : Inventory management software helps you keep track of the products you need to ship and sell. Some software may also connect to your sales data to let you know when you are running out of stock.
- POS Reports – These reports give you an overview of how much you are making and selling. Clear reports help you make better business decisions.
- Employee Management Tools : Team Management Tools help you monitor when your employees are available and their performance. You can even use the software to support employees during check-in or check-out.
- Customer Relationship Management : The CRM tool in your sales system will help you keep track of information about what your customers are buying and when they are buying from you. This technology can help you customize your customer engagement strategy and customer service.
- Receipts : Designed to simplify refund processing, receipts provide a trace linked to the purchased item. The receipts you provide will also help your business look professional.
- Tip Management : If you run a service company where tips are encouraged, you can access the tipping tools in your POS to allow customers to add a digital tip during checkout.
What are the benefits of using a POS system?
A point-of-sale system, or point-of-sale software, ensures that the customer can pay for the services and products he gets from his store. Whenever a customer buys something from your store, it’s part of a POS transaction.
POS is a key part of your business, where everything like sales, customer management, and inventory tools come together. There are many benefits to having a POS for your business, including:
- Better Efficiency: When your cashiers have the right tools for payment processing and you have the right software to manage your inventory, things work a lot more smoothly.
- Simplicity: A point of sale system like Square or other market leaders makes it easier to keep track of all your financial information in one place. In some cases, you can even manage payments from an iOS or Android smartphone
- Offline Selling: POS solutions can be supplied with POS hardware such as a credit card reader or terminal. This means that you can make offline and online sales.
- Expanded Payment Options: Point of sale benefits can also include things like the ability to accept a wide range of payments, such as contactless payments from a mobile device or EMV chip cards. This makes your retail business more versatile.
- Better information: Most point-of-sale solutions provide valuable sales reports and sales insights. Sometimes you can integrate with elements like QuickBooks or ShopKeep to view more details about customer information within your software.
- Improved Accuracy: In addition to tracking customer data, your retail POS system can also make it easier to track expenses and incoming money. This is invaluable when it comes to managing taxes.
- Inventory Management: Unlike accounting software and cash registers, your point of sale system has tools that show you exactly how much inventory you have at any given time. This means that you will never run out of sales opportunities.
- Employee Management: Many point of sale systems ensure that you can keep track of things like employee schedules and the number of sales your team members make. This helps achieve better results for your business.
Aside from all the interesting features of Point of Sale systems mentioned above, it is worth noting that many software packages also include various add-ons that you can use to build on your back office technology. For example, you can use Google Analytics to track how customers move through your website or access detailed receipt tools.
More detailed receipts may mean that you can design customer loyalty programs that allow you to provide benefits and points to your customers when they purchase extra products from you.
What to look for in a point of sale system
Point of sale systems come in many different shapes and sizes. There are tools that can work with or without an internet connection. You can find POS solutions that simplify the process of taking on mobile payment options and solutions with purchase order software.
There is no one-size-fits-all strategy to get the best POS system. Instead, you’ll need to consider which factors matter most to you. Are you looking for a mobile POS system that you can take with you to festivals and pop-up shops? Or do your business needs revolve around more traditional POS systems, such as the ability to track your inventory and track sales?
Here are just a few of the features to look for when finding the ultimate point of sale system.
- Comprehensive Inventory Management: Modern POS systems should always include a lot of inventory tracking technology. You need features that show you how much of a certain item you have at any given time so that you avoid buying too much from your suppliers. You should also look for tools to help you identify which products are the most popular.
- Sales Tracking and Reporting: Sales tracking and reporting tools are other essential software options for your point of sale system. You need to be able to see which type of customers spend the most with your business so that you can tailor your sales and marketing strategies. It’s also important to keep track of things like purchases, returns, customer preferences, supplier information, and so much more.
- Payment Processor Tools: Most point of sale systems will come with solutions to manage purchase orders, in-person payments, mobile payments, and more. You will need to think about the type of transactions you handle each day to make sure your point of sale system is properly in tune with your business needs. Don’t forget things like Apple Pay and Google Pay if you intend to look into contactless transactions.
- Business Automation: Some point of sale systems have software options that go beyond the ability to track inventory and help boutiques process payments. A modern POS can automate inventory and purchase reports or automatically send receipts to a customer’s email address. Various automation features can greatly simplify the execution of business operations with as little stress as possible. You can also find point of sale systems that generate accounting and expense reports and send them to your accountant for you.
- Programs: Many point of sale systems make it easy to strengthen customer relationships through things like in-store advertising and reward programs. The ability to keep track of your most loyal customers means you can offer exclusive discounts and benefits to the people who spend the most money with your organization. This can also lead to things like referral programs and brand advocacy at a later stage.
- Ease of use: While it’s always a good idea to make sure you have many different features available in your point of sale systems, you also need to make sure you can use the technology. Find out how easy it is to accept swiped and digital payments, and how comfortable you might be in managing your backend and any inventory item. The more confident you feel about the software, the better your business decisions will be.
- Customer Management: In addition to allowing you to accept payments in advance or set up cards for customers, your POS should also be equipped with features that help you manage and support your customers in other ways. If there is no built-in CRM technology to link transactions to specific customers and track the customer journey, make sure you can find at least one integration option.
- Employee Management: A point-of-sale system is more than just accepting card payments. Your store or restaurant’s POS system should also help you keep track of employees. You need a solution that allows you to add new team members to your monitoring system, share schedules with employees, and even the functionality to see who your best employees might be.
- Integrations: Today’s major point of sale systems need to work well with the existing software and technology you’re already using. Being able to align your software with your accounting tools and CRM technology means you can access more valuable data and context for your sales.
Point of sale refers to the time when a cardholder and merchant complete a transaction. This is present both in online purchases and in transactions made in the traditional brick and mortar .
The point of sale (or POS) in the retail industries uses a combination of software and hardware . This can include a manual or electronic cash register, scanners, scales, touch screen terminals, and a wide variety of other bits and bobs.
An example of a point of sale in a traditional brick and mortar store is the scale used to weigh goods in a traditional grocery or candy store.
Marketers emphasize the POS for their products or services because consumers often make purchasing decisions at the POS. Physical stores have traditionally placed their POS in store exits to increase impulse purchases by customers leaving the store.
While, department stores usually place a POS in different locations across their stores . They found that this provides an opportunity to focus on customers looking for specific product types and to influence their purchasing decisions early in the sales process.
Early POS systems were nothing more than written receipts, but retailers now prefer electronics POS solutions . These simplify the sales process as well as allow the merchant to collect valuable sales data.
A basic POS system could be nothing more than a cash register and the software needed to collect sales data . These can be expanded and enhanced by using additional hardware, such as barcode scanners, card readers or other software modules.
Depending on the software, merchants can track not only their sales but also inventory levels, gross revenues, profit margins, sales patterns, and a whole host of other data points.
This data can then be analyzed to increase profitability and identify areas of weakness within the sales or inventory process. Sophisticated software can even automate ordering and restocking, as well as help business owners tailor their marketing campaigns to be based on consumer behavior.
The best point of sale solutions for resellers
If you are looking for just the best POS solutions or an ecommerce platform that also offers a POS system, then never fear as we have a few suggestions:
Square POS is one of the most popular and highly regarded point of sale systems on the market. The company has earned an excellent reputation over the years, due to its ease of use and its ability to successfully function as an online and offline solution for payment processing.
Originally, Square was just a basic mobile payment system for businesses that needed to take their business with them to the real world. However, today, Square can offer solutions for every type of business, including a free website builder.
Square makes it easy to grow your business at the pace that suits you best. The POS comes with everything you need to integrate with accounting software, accept online and offline payments, and even build your website so your brand can grow and evolve.
The solution is ideal for anyone who wants a quick way to sell online and offline, while keeping track of their entire sales background
Come ottengo Going with Square?
Signing up with Square couldn’t be easier.
All you need to do is choose the package you want Square, complete with any dedicated hardware you might want with your service.
If you’re just accepting online payments, you don’t need to buy any hardware.
The benefits of using Square
Square POS is one of the most user-friendly tools for selling products online and offline. The company integrates with a wide range of leading tools, which means you have a more engaging environment for managing all of your information.
If you are a small business owner, you can create a website with the free Square extension service, which means you can start selling online much faster.
Plus, the Square POS is free, with only the transaction fees to think about. However, you may have to manage things like premium add-ons on your own.
There are tons of ways to improve relationships with your Square customers, including various payment options to suit your target audience, loyalty programs, and gift cards.
You can also store information about your customers if needed which means they will be able to check out much faster the next time they decide to buy from you.
How much does Square POS cost?
The Square Base The package is free, with state-of-the-art customer support, dispute resolution, real-time analytics, and more. You pay a 1.75% card transaction fee for contactless, mobile, and chip-and-pin payments.
If you are accepting online payments, you have to pay 2.5%, which is the same for companies with virtual terminals and keyed transactions.
The Square tool experience gets more expensive depending on what you want to add to your business. For example, if you decide you need a card reader or a Square terminal file, then you can add the hardware for an additional fee.
Square also has unique packages for retail and restaurant businesses, as well as businesses that need to book appointments. These have more specialized features, but are also priced higher.
Who should use Square POS?
Square may have processing fees to consider, but it’s still a great choice for any business that needs to accept online and offline payments. Get everything you need to keep your business running smoothly, including add-ons for employee management and inventory control.
If you want a Point of Sale solution that allows you to start and market a digital store, then Shopify might be the perfect choice for you. With Shopify POS, you can sell from virtually anywhere!
How does it work?
You must have a Shopify store and function to add your own POS channel . Therefore, it’s a natural choice for those who already have a digital store with Shopify.
All you need to do is plug in and play the hardware you need to use Shopify POS (read our Shopify POS review ). All in all, it boasts an incredibly simple design, just set and forget, and pick and choose the features that work best for you and your business.
The benefits of Shopify POS
Protecting customer information is of paramount importance today. You just have to look at the hustle and bustle caused by the GDPR, to understand what a big deal is! With Shopify, thanks to built-in technology, you can ensure that your customers’ sensitive information is always safe.
Plus, you’ll be happy to hear that Shopify has the tools you need to sync and track your inventory. It doesn’t matter if you sell in person, online, or both, you can keep up with your sales across numerous physical locations and online channels (digital marketplaces, social media, your own online store, etc.)
Not to mention, the Shopify POS checkout system is pretty advanced . By this we mean, they accept all major credit and debit cards as well as gift cards. This helps ensure that the checkout process offers a smooth, stress-free experience for your customers.
However, one of the best things about Shopify POS is that they give business owners everything they need to sell in numerous physical locations and from various digital channels (your online store, a digital marketplace, your social media platforms, etc. ) This means you can reach your target demographic wherever they prefer to shop!
Last but certainly not least, Shopify POS gives users access to 24/7 support – so no matter what time of day or night it is, if you need help, your questions will quickly be answered.
Who Should Use Shopify POS?
It doesn’t matter if you’re looking to occasionally sell goods in person (pop-ups, trade shows, traditional markets, etc.) or if you need a more robust system for a permanent retail store, Shopify POS provides a solution!
How Much Will Shopify POS Set Me Back?
Shopify offers a few pricing packages to choose from, so hopefully one of them fits your budget!
The basic Shopify Plan
The basic Shopify plan is best for small businesses and new digital businesses, especially those who have no experience with selling in person.
This is the cheapest of all the packages and costs just $ 29 per month. With this package, you are entitled to support up to two staff members.
You should note: You ‘ll need a card reader and the Shopify POS app, to start selling in person.
The Shopify Content tool
Now, this payment plan is best for business owners who want to open a physical retail store with a permanent cash drawer and receipt printer. Unsurprisingly, this is a little more expensive than the basic Shopify plan.
However, it’s still reasonably priced at $ 79 per month and entitles you to support up to five of your team members.
You can also get a better insight into your business. The sales, customer and marketing reports offered in this update are fabulous. After all, knowledge is power!
The advanced Shopify Content
This is the best option for those looking to expand their businesses, for example if you want to open and run two or more physical stores. You’ll have support for up to 15 staff members and get access to a myriad of sales tools, including more advanced reporting.
While this is the most expensive option ($ 299 per month), you can enjoy Shopif’s best transaction rates.
Over 20,000 retailers around the world have enjoyed the benefits Vend has to offer.
In short, Vend provides an all-in-one system that allows users to manage their POS in numerous retail stores. The beauty of this software is that you can access it anywhere and anytime via the cloud, which means you can even sell to your customers without using the internet!
Entrepreneurs selling in the following niches have reaped the rewards Vend has to offer:
- Fashion and clothing stores
- Household items and gifts
- Jewelery shops
- Health and beauty
- Toys and hobby shops
- Sports and outdoor shops
- Shoe shops
So basically, if you’re not running a restaurant or bar, you’re good to go!
The benefits of using the sale
If you’re anything like us, you’ll be happy to know that Vend is incredibly easy to use, even the most advanced tools. This means you can access a handy technology to support your business, without having to boast a lot of technical skills!
You can choose from several integrated payments . Unlike other POS systems, you’re not stuck using a specific payment provider . This way you are free to use whoever is offering the best rate. Alternatively, you can connect Vend’s POS directly to your bank.
Regarding transactions, Vend offers your customers the option of placing their favorite items on layaway or paying for their goods via a split payment or credit accumulated on their customer account. With ease, you can consult a consumer’s balance sheet through Vend’s central customer database.
If you opt for Vend’s Pro or Enterprise payment plans, you can use brandable gift cards. These are great for gaining new customers and increasing revenue, especially during the holiday season. Did you know that customers are likely to spend more than their gift card value ?!
So, this is something you should capitalize on!
Plus, there are tons of apps to choose from; these are fabulous for creating a more personalized platform to meet the needs of your businesses. Here are just some of the integrations offered:
This is especially useful if you are already using one of the tools above to automate your business!
For many business owners, expert customer support is essential. With Vend you can enjoy award-winning support, all day long! Vend’s has won the Customer Service award at the Stevie Awards four times! So, needless to say, they are more than equipped to handle any question or question that may arise. With a team of 200 people located in numerous time zones, there is always someone on hand to help!
In addition to all of the above, you can search for products and customers with great ease, saving you a lot of time and effort! Just type keywords in the search bar or use the barcode scanner. Alternatively, use their name or phone number to find customers.
Vend The reporting features are also quite impressive. This type of data works wonders for business owners to make better decisions when it comes to managing inventory and developing marketing campaigns.
Not to mention that if you have programming skills, you can build your own custom extensions on Vend’s API . This way you can create a POS solution that complements and meets your exact needs.
Last but not least, you can add notes to your customers’ receipts. This is a simple but incredibly effective way to increase the perceived value of your brand. Whether you’re providing care instructions, offering a special discount, or highlighting another targeted offer, customers love it when you go out of your way!
You can also personalize your receipts with both your brand logo and website address. This works wonders for increasing traffic to your online store. Additionally, depending on your business model, you can choose to email or print customer receipts.
How does the sale work?
All you need is a Mac, PC, or iPad to go cheap. The program is super easy to use, so you’ll be able to train your staff in no time.
You can even create your own buttons using Vend ‘s Quick Keys tool. This allows you to save popular products which then appear in the format of a button. It goes without saying that this greatly speeds up the checkout process and offers a smoother shopping experience.
In addition to all of the above, you can pair Vend Display with the Sales Ledger iPad app so customers can see everything happening at checkout. If transparency is an important part of your branding, this feature is absolutely necessary. Plus, using the same tools, you can also memorize customer details as you serve them at the cashier. This is one of the easiest ways for a brick and mortar store to build their email list!
Manage your staff
With a long Vend you can create user accounts for each of your employees, here you can register the level of access you have granted them on the system. This way you can enjoy the peace of mind that comes from knowing that any sensitive information from you or your customers is kept safe, protected and seen only by those who really need to access the information.
You can also monitor the performance of your employees, which also serves to reinforce accountability and thus the overall standard of customer service.
Who Should Use Vend?
If you want to grow and scale your business, Vend is a fabulous choice. The software helps entrepreneurs develop their brand quickly and cost-effectively. You can get your bottom line up in no time, whether it’s adding new staff, installing a cash register, experimenting with different sales channels, or opening a new brick and mortar store. You can sync everything in just a few clicks.
How much will revenge sell?
Just like Shopify, there are many packages to choose from. All of the following bundles benefit from the following features:
- Secure cloud backup
- Integrated payments
- Automatic updates
- Unlimited products
- Unlimited users
The Lite plan
If you’re just a small retailer (for example, you’re running a physical outlet, a cash register, and generating no more than $ 20,000 a month), then your trades are likely easier.
If it sounds like you, you might benefit from Vend Lite plan. This costs users $ 99 per month (if they opt for annual billing), or they can choose to pay a monthly fee of $ 119 per month.
You will also have the following benefits:
- A real-time inventory management system
- 24/7 telephone and online assistance
- Reporting functionality
- Access to the Xero Accounting Extension
The Pro package
This is best if you have an established physical store or if you are a multi-store retailer. You will be charged $ 129 per month if you choose to pay annually, alternatively, you will be charged $ 159 for monthly billing.
With this package, you will be able to enjoy all the benefits of the Lite Plan. However, there are no limits to the amount of revenue you can generate.
You can also access advanced reporting and analytics tools, all sales plug-ins and e-commerce channels, use of promotions and gift cards, and API access.
The business plan
This is the most comprehensive package of all of Vend’s pricing packages, so it’s best suited to large retailers and multi-store franchises. However, you will need to contact Vend directly to get a quote. This is a bespoke package that works wonders for business owners who have six or more outlets that use more than one cash register.
In addition to everything offered in the pro package, you will also be assigned a dedicated account manager.
If you are looking for a POS system, you can do it from the comfort of your iPad, then Bindo could be the perfect solution for you. Just like Vend, this is a cloud-based system that allows you to manage your business and make payments efficiently from your customers.
You can take advantage of over 300 features to help you manage your store – they offer everything from billing tools to watches.
Plus, you’ll be able to look into a wide variety of hardware options after signing up. They have everything from barcode scanners to checkouts to choose from (and all in a range of colors).
This is great for enhancing your brand’s visual strength. Alternatively, if you already have your own hardware, there’s a good chance Bindo supports it. However, it’s best to be cautious and contact them directly to see if your equipment integrates with their system.
How am I doing with Bindo?
You can get started and run just three simple steps:
- Sign up for your free trial
- Set up your shop on the Bindo board
- Download the Bindo app on your iPad
It really is that simple!
The advantages of using Bindo
One of the best things about Bindo is their inventory management system. This instantly fills your library with all the information you need to monitor and track your actions. This way you can keep track of where the goods are – this is the kind of information you need to place orders on time!
With Bindo you can upload and edit your entire inventory in minutes! You can assign product matrices, add taxes, transfer and reserve shares in all places where you are operating.
Bindo also has tools to help you manage your shifts. Their money management features allow you to take a look at all your transactions after each shift and forecast your earnings by the end of the day.
There are also many resources for managing customer relationships. You can quickly create customer profiles at checkout by capturing and storing their names, orders and other personal information. This data is great for personalizing your marketing campaigns.
You will also have the option to provide customers with shops and gift cards. Did you know that over 70% of gift card users usually spend more money than the original card value? In fact, on average an extra $ 20 ?! This is why you should take full advantage of this feature; you can even customize them with your company logo!
Other advantages of Bindo
Bindo allows entrepreneurs to offer a fantastic loyalty program ; this works wonders for attracting new customers and building relationships with current customers. They offer a multi-tiered loyalty feature that allows business owners to track how much their customers spend and offer rewards in the way they seem eligible.
69% number of shoppers say they choose stores based on what they can earn in loyalty rewards.
You can structure your loyalty program in one of the following ways:
- The number of orders,
- The number of visits,
- The number of products purchased by a customer,
- The total spent,
This gives you the flexibility you need to customize a rewards scheme to suit your business needs.
Easy credit card management
Bindo can accept up to 99% of credit card processors, so there’s a good chance your customers can use a payment method that suits them. Consumers want a smooth shopping experience, and the ability to pay for their products is definitely in this bracket!
Plus, you can securely process these transactions knowing that Bindo is PCI compliant. All sensitive information is kept completely safe.
Ready to find the ultimate point of sale system?
A POS solution might seem a little complicated at first, but it’s actually a standard component every business leader needs to run a successful store. You’ll need the right POS system to accept payments from your customers, and it’s vital that you find something that’s agile, easy to use, and affordable. Think of things as if you can:
- It accepts different types of payments, including card not present and contactless payments
- Integrate your POS with existing software and technology (this saves money)
- Adjust your features to your budget and new requirements as your business grows
- Avoid signing up for a contract if you want to experiment with different suppliers
- Predict costs each month with a useful buying structure.
- Access fantastic employee and customer management software on the backend
- Use proprietary hardware supplied by the same company
There is no one-size-fits-all strategy to choose the ultimate POS. The best thing you can do is get out there and start doing your research as quickly as possible. The faster you start experimenting with different tools and software, the easier it will be to make the right purchase decision.