What is Point Of Sale (POS) System?

Point Of Sale (POS) system refers essentially to the spot where customer purchases are processed and sales transactions are eventually completed. Usual in-store POS checkouts add up the product costs, check on any applicable taxes, receive various payment forms, and finally, produce the sales transaction receipt.

Any product store or service establishment can’t do without a Point Of Sale if it plans to function efficiently on a daily basis and to grow its operations in the long run. From independent stand-alone shops to high-end mall stores, POS systems can be found in groceries, boutiques, salons, restaurants & cafes, hotels, and more.

Your present-day Point Of Sale also functions far more than the traditional cash register. It’s able to gather real-time related transactions data from the same platform, thus transforming itself into a business management hub. Unlike a cash register which mainly serves payment collection processing, the modern POS system can perform other functions such as inventory monitoring, employee management, sales recording, customer management, and marketing promotions. More so, mobile and cloud POS products provide enhanced or omnichannel customer experience through convenient checkouts from any device and from different locations.

Point of Sale Components

The Point Of Sale system is composed of the POS software, POS hardware, and payment processing for it to operate efficiently and effectively. Point Of Sale requirements vary greatly among businesses depending on company size, industry type, and other factors.

POS software serves as your Point Of Sale’s virtual brain needed for the POS system to function. The POS software provides the language that links together the various POS hardware parts. It dwells in the POS system’s main processing hub unlike the POS hardware. The POS software is also critical for workflow automations, customization of features, and third-party apps integrations.

Meanwhile, POS hardware refers to the separate, physical parts that the POS software holds all together. Common POS hardware machines include receipt printers, card terminals, touchscreen monitors, and of course, cash register. For small businesses, a POS system that is tablet-based may suffice. For bigger stores, more complex POS machine parts may be added like pole displays and POS scales.

Lastly, your POS system won’t be complete without payment processing. A POS system that allows access to different credit card processors could work best. This permits comparison of fees, rates, and other payment terms so you can select the best third-party processor deal.

Types of Point Of Sale Systems

Point Of Sale systems fall into three classifications. These include the On-Premise POS, Cloud POS, and the Hybrid POS. Similarly, the POS system that’s right for you depends on your size of business, nature of operations, plus a host of other factors.

The on-premise POS system, also called as server-based POS, has the POS software installed in your on-site server. This gives you complete control as you get to be in charge of the installation, maintenance, security, plus backing up the system.

Cloud POS involves easy operations, which are usually done with a mobile gadget or tablet. Cloud POS has everything stored online or in the cloud, thus taking out all the POS software works required by an on-premise POS. However, you need to ensure stable internet connectivity to avoid disruptions in operations.

Hybrid POS combines on-premise and cloud Point Of Sale systems. It relies on a local server and has cloud data back-up at the same time. When the internet goes down, business operations can still continue.

Point Of Sale: Why Does It Matter?

Does Point Of Sale really matter? Today’s POS system is able to gather from a single platform all real-time data on business functions for every sales transaction processed and completed. This functionality makes your POS system a valuable business management tool at the same time.

If you’re a POS system first-time buyer, you may deem your current cash register as sufficient instead for your payment processing and collection needs. That could be true. But you’re definitely bound for the same zone in the future if you’re unable to make yourself competitive with the key POS benefits below.

  • Efficient inventory management. With a built-in stock monitoring, you’re able to keep track more easily of the available and soon-to-be depleted items. This makes way for faster purchase orders and proactive order taking, hence avoiding customer turnoffs.
  • Optimized employee management. Real-time reporting allows you to check on your employees work schedule and productivity. It also helps you identify the peak and slack business hours or timings, thus permitting a more effective work scheduling.
  • Enhanced marketing efforts. Point Of Sale systems offer third party software integrations with CRM or email functionalities. With these, you can collect customers’ email information for more personalized email communications and loyalty programs.
  • Increased sales and profitability. Your POS system eases your transactions flow with the available payment methods your customers prefer and elimination of human miscalculations. Insights on best-selling and slow moving items can also prompt the development of timely sales promotions.
  • Smart business decisions. Relevant data and meaningful business information are made available in real-time and from any location so you can decide more smartly on urgent matters you need to act on.

Finding POS Systems for Australian Businesses

Finding the best POS system for your business can be a sketchy process. So first, you have to assess what industry you’re in and the specific transaction needs your business requires. Some Point Of Sale systems are built for specific industries so getting over this point will cut your purchasing shorter. Other factors to be considered include pricing rates and schemes, costs of POS system components, available payment processing, and the features that come with it.

Familiarizing yourself with the essential POS system features below can lead you to determine faster the credible POS vendors. Making additional POS purchases later for your specific requirements will help you arrive at your best POS system in quicker time.

  • Inventory ManagementPOS systems differ in their inventory management features, with some offering the basic product catalog, and others being more advanced such as having ingredient or component tracking and purchase ordering. You need to think over which features can suffice to ensure optimal stock levels for your business.
  • Employee ManagementPoint Of Sale systems’ capabilities in terms of managing your staff include setting access controls to system information and features, time clocks, and tracking of sales and tips.
  • Customer Relations Management. Customer management of POS systems can provide you with basic information like email address and contact details which are useful for email marketing purposes. Other advanced CRM features can assist you with personalized customer service through insights on preferences & tastes, buying histories, & birthdays.
Restaurant POS System

Photo by Quickorder on Unsplash

  • Loyalty Program Features. Encourage repeat purchases through built-in loyalty programs like customer rewards and discount promos. Build your loyalty projects around customer data on shopping frequency and usual products or services bought.
  • Reporting Capability. Choose between basic reporting features with readily-made templates and minimal customizations and the more advanced reporting capabilities such as numerous filter options for data analysis. Most importantly, real-time data access from anywhere and any device is best.
  • Software Integrations & Add-ons. The provision for third-party software integration, such as with accounting and email marketing functions, grants the flexibility to adapt your POS system according to your future needs as your business grows. Getting stuck with a rigid POS system that doesn’t permit growth is the worst scenario to be in.
  • Customer Support. Having round-the-clock customer support from your POS vendor is critical. Being able to access customer assistance regardless of working hours and platform such as chat, text, phone, or email is ideal.
  • Offline Management. Ensuring your continuous operations even when the internet is down is also necessary for gaining happy customers. Check your POS system if it has a functionality feature even during downtime.

Getting The Right POS System

There’s an abundance of Point Of Sale products and vendors in the market. Making the wrong choice in your POS system investment can be costly in terms of time and resources. If you’re confused about the POS systems in Australia, let Compare POS Quotes assist you. Or Contact Us now to start your search for the right POS system!