If you own a small business, selecting the right point-of-sale (POS) system is crucial for you to achieve success. POS refers to the point where customers make a payment in exchange for the products or services sold by your small business. A POS transaction may occur at a brick-and-mortar store, on a mobile app, or in online checkout.
Here are five expert tips for buying the best point-of-sale solution.
1. Identify your needs.
“The first thing you have to do is think about what functions, features, and services you currently or will use to keep your business up and running. In other words, it is imperative to know how a point-of-sale system works so as to understand the appropriate POS solution for your business.
Evaluate your inventory procedures, checkout process, and customer management. These differ between retail businesses. Coffee shops and bakeries require quick processing and tip management features; amusement parks and museums must have advanced ticketing and membership features; liquor stores and wine shops must have more advanced inventory management.
Even if you already have a point-of-sale system in place, you need to consider these before you upgrade. Think about any issues you might have had in the past so that you can plan on what will make the future better.”
Source: Korona POS
2. Set a budget and don’t buy strictly on price.
“Never buy strictly on price. If a full-blown POS system costs $20K, will you buy it thinking that the more expensive a POS system is, the better it’s going to perform? Or will you buy a cheaper one hoping it doesn’t have any bugs and performs like a pro? Check your funds to see what you can realistically afford.
Most of the available systems are subscription based, with a small monthly fee to use the software that comes with updates and unlimited customer service. The SaaS (Software as a Service) model usually has no upfront fees, making it a more viable option for small business owners.”
3. Select a POS system that lets you choose your payment processor.
“Some POS systems are compatible with nearly all major processors, and others give you a handful of compatible processors to choose from. However, some POS companies also provide processing services and require you to use them. Because credit card processing can be expensive, you want to choose a POS software provider that gives you a choice of payment processor, allowing you to comparison-shop and select one that offers low rates and few fees.
If you already have selected a payment processor or are under contract with one, the first thing you should do is ask the company which POS systems it’s compatible with. Then you can choose a system without having to look for a new processor and pay a fine to get out of your contract early.”
Source: American City Business Journals
4. Know how POS vendor offers support.
“Regular updates and support are the two supporting pillars for good POS software. POS providers’ relationships should not end after the installation. If it’s that way, then you are definitely not in a healthy relationship.
Regular updates keep your business stay in tune with market trends. And reliable support helps in reducing downtime and runs your business successfully round the clock. Self-help resources are a bonus for POS users which reduces the dependencies of POS providers and helps you to solve your queries and issues easily.
Getting a POS without training yields no benefits. Proper training helps you understand the product better and tackle challenges after implementation so you can run your business smoothly.”
5. Conduct market research.
“Researching the market will assist you in making the right decision in terms of choosing a POS system. This can be achieved by referring to crowdsource ideas from groups for small businesses, visiting technology websites and looking at what similar businesses are using. Assessing the ideas brought up in small business communities such as Facebook and LinkedIn will help you crowdsource recommendations for a POS system.
Similarly, browsing through technology websites will enable you to obtain reliable information from software experts. Additionally, communicating with businesses that are similar to yours and getting their recommendations will give you more insight as to which POS system is more suitable for your business.”
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