or retail businesses, choosing the right point of sale (POS) software can make all the difference between running profitable and efficient operations and sorting through a frustrating mess that results in a complete waste of resources. Often, the misconception that all POS systems are the same keeps businesses from choosing the right ones. For instance, a car dealer’s requirements will differ from that of a gift shop and the two entities will need POS systems with varying functionalities and features. Thus, organizations must narrow their search according to some features that promise to make operations smoother and more profitable. Here are 10 must-have features the modern retailer must look for in a POS solution.
The ideal retail POS software must simplify the entire checkout process for both the cashier and the customer. In other words, completing a transaction should not involve much effort on the sales team’s part. The solution should ideally feature a user interface that allows the cashier to quickly enter information without wasting time. Retailers can also bring IoT-enabled wireless POS systems to customers for quicker assistance and checkouts. Such systems can remotely assess inventory, pricing, discounts etc., making smooth and quick transactions possible.
Collecting and analyzing business data is crucial to the success of any organization. POS systems must have reporting and analytics functionalities since relying on concrete data enables retailers to make more informed decisions. Data analytics also helps retailers keep track of inventory, sales, and revenue. With real-time sales reporting, POS systems offer alerts when stock levels are running low. Because accurate numbers give you a clear picture of sales, a POS system should generate user-friendly reports surrounding sales, expenses, profits, inventory etc., ultimately creating user-friendly. All authorized personnel must be able to access weekly, monthly, annual information in a smooth manner.
Quick keys are POS system shortcuts that allow the cashier to easily access a commonly sold product with the click of a button. Needless to say, the rest of the catalog should be easily accessible too. It is extremely important to select a POS system that helps you quickly look up or search for products when ringing up sales.
Your POS software should be able to simplify the time-consuming task of inventory management, tracking every purchase and constantly monitoring inventory levels. Retailers must be able to monitor all inventory information from individual purchases. IoT-enabled POS systems simplify this by enabling real-time tracking to provide retailers with a real-time view of goods in stock, generating data for analytics to predict inventory requirements. With IoT sensors and POS, retailers can then stock products based on purchase trends and demand, ensuring availability in stores.
In today's tech-savvy retail landscape, it is important to go beyond traditional payment methods such as debit cards, credit cards, and cash. A POS system that accepts mobile payments and other payment methods would help you maximize sales. The system should also be able to split payments across gift cards, cash, other cards etc.
A POS system that allows the customers to view the transaction happening on a secondary screen facilitates a high level of transparency, reliability, and accountability into transactions. This even allows customers to quickly point out order mistakes (if any) before it is finally placed.
Because retailers often have multiple cashiers at the register, the POS system must allow for the creation of different user profiles so tracking individual sales and monitoring sales goals becomes possible. The system should also password protect each user to ensure security. The duration of remaining logged in is equally important. At big retailers, employees may need to be logged in during their entire shift at the register while small stores may need cashiers logging in with each new sale as they are expected to move out upon the completion of a sale.
Today, customers prefer stores that have shopper-friendly policies. To support an effective return policy, the POS system must help you create smooth returns, refunds and store credits. Here too, IoT can change the game by boosting customer loyalty with targeted marketing, loyalty programs and gift cards - data generated by POS systems can be effectively leveraged for customer analytics.
Security is perhaps one of the most important features to look for in a POS solution. Small businesses with a wealth of transaction data and poor security measures are susceptible to attack by cyber thieves. Your POS software should offer advanced security features to protect customer data through encryption and EMV technology. This is also important to safeguard your business against legal issues.
POS software must allow for sharing customer data across departments to optimize performance. For instance, the cashier should be able to identify a customer by scanning their loyalty card or app and transfer this information to the marketing department, thus giving them an insight into which offers are most popular with customers. By capturing customer data through the POS, retailers can track sales patterns and optimize marketing campaigns.
The ideal POS system should form a crucial and well-functioning component of your retail management system. It must reduce time, efforts, and resources involved in a transaction while offering the right insights to boost your store’s performance and productivity. In the future, we’ll see IoT-enabled POS systems offering the most value to retailers, help the business grow while ridding it of inefficiencies.