MOVING TO A POS SYSTEM FOR RETAIL BUSINESSES
Getting a retail store up and running quickly with the best technology
For any retailer, regardless of size or location, a point of sale (POS) system has become “a technology impossible to do without.” The problem with moving to a POS system for retail is the misperception that the process is fast and trouble-free, or that doing so will result in a huge boost in revenue nearly overnight.
In reality, choosing and implementing a retail POS system is like any other aspect of running a retail operation; you need a carefully thought-out plan that considers your unique needs, matching modern POS features to those needs. Don’t expect to find a cookie-cutter solution that works like a charm right out of the box.
The good news is that proper planning and deliberation help you realize the revenue-boosting benefits of a cloud-based POS system. In addition, you can minimize the amount of toil and aggravation, and without a huge time investment. Follow these eight steps to ensure your POS works as expected from day one.
1. Evaluate your business’s point of sale needs and your budget
Identifying the perfect POS solution for your business entails a series of decisions. The first step is knowing how much you can spend on the system.
- For most retailers, free and low-cost point of sale systems offer limited features and hidden expenses, especially in terms of security and support.
- Evaluate your work processes and think about how POS technology can make them more efficient and make workers more productive.
- Match the POS functionality you’ll need with a cloud-based solution that doesn’t require huge upfront hardware and software costs.
2. Determine the POS functions you need
Consider the POS features that will have the greatest impact on your business’s bottom line. This includes 24/7 access, branded online presence and appointment scheduling. The four principle functions of retail POS are sales reporting and analytics, customer relationship management, inventory management and employee management. Cloud-based POS systems meet the needs of retailers in these four areas in addition to offering other benefits:
- Sales and other key data is stored securely and is easy to analyze.
- Support for smartphones, tablets and other mobile devices reduces hardware costs.
- Customers can book appointments and reservations at their convenience via the business’s branded website and mobile app.
- Managers get a single, up-to-date view of current sales, inventory, employee performance and other information for online and in-store operations.
3. Make sure the POS system can grow with your business
Planning a POS purchase requires having one foot in the present and one in the future. For example, a small retail shop may have its current POS needs met with a conventional standalone terminal. The problem is that meeting changing customer expectations may necessitate mobile devices as part of a modern ePOS system.
- ePOS offers the scalability and flexibility to accommodate customer preferences for mobility, speedy checkouts and a personalized shopping experience.
- The systems serve as the control center for all store operations, including inventory management, employee scheduling, accounting and sales tracking.
4. Choose a POS system that integrates all your store’s operations
Retail customers have come to expect the same shopping experience whether they’re browsing on their phone or on the premises. Modern POS systems make it easy for retailers to integrate their operations and support multichannel marketing efforts.
- Retailers gain new insight into what motivates their customers by analyzing their sales histories and online activities. This includes browsing the store’s site before making purchases in person.
- They can determine the effectiveness of specific marketing efforts and promotions, including which products sell better online. By extension, they learn what is causing customers to abandon products left in online shopping carts.
- Keeping close tabs on inventory levels lets retailers streamline their product ordering to ensure sufficient stock quantities without overstocking.
5. Decide which payment options you’ll offer your customers
The retail industry is being transformed by customers’ growing preference for cashless payment options. Modern POS systems make it easy for retailers of all sizes to accept whichever payment types their clients choose. This includes EMV cards, NFC cards for contactless payments and digital wallets such as Apple Pay or Google Pay.
Virtual credit card terminals offer the dual advantages of convenience for customers while also saving money on credit card fees. Mobile POS systems are the perfect complement to virtual credit card processing. This is due to their ability to handle transactions from any location while empowering employees through customer data.
6. Confirm that all required security measures are in place
Your POS must comply with the PCI standard for securing transactions, which is updated regularly to address emerging technologies. That’s why it’s vital to keep your POS updated to avoid responsibility for a breach of your customers’ private data.
While PCI compliance addresses most POS security concerns, protecting sensitive customer data also requires training staff to follow precautions. This includes verifying customer IDs, disposal of paper receipts and preventing others from viewing private data displayed on a screen.
7. Prepare for the switchover to the new system
Once you’ve decided on the characteristics of your new POS system, your store must be ready for the upgrade.
- Confirm that you have a sufficiently fast internet connection.
- Find a suitable location for the POS equipment (easily accessible, clean and dust-free, etc.)
- Schedule training for staff at least one week prior to the go-live date.
- Set up all the hardware and software and make sure employees can sign in and properly configure their user accounts.
8. Make the most of the POS system’s customer relationship capabilities
Retailers owe it to themselves to take advantage of every asset at their disposal. The customer data that today’s POS systems can collect provides store owners with an opportunity to analyze their sales figures. This gives a clearer understanding of customer preferences and industry trends.
Moving to a POS system for retail doesn’t need to be a nightmare
Putting this information to use makes it easy to generate sales reports based on the most relevant and up-to-date information. The changes turning the retail industry on its head make it more important than ever to understand your store’s metrics.
Retailers have a better chance of mastering their upgrade by partnering with a vendor such as talech. This provides advanced POS capabilities at prices that accommodate any retailer’s budget. By evaluating your business’s needs, businesses get the POS functionality they require today with room to grow in the future. Get a glimpse of how talech gets you moving to a pos system for retail by signing up for a free demo.