If you own a retail store, you have likely come across the term “Point of Sale System.” Wikipedia describes it as: “A retail point of sale system typically includes a cash register (which in recent times comprises a computer, monitor, cash drawer, receipt printer, customer display and a barcode scanner) and the majority of retail POS systems also include a debit/credit card reader.”
According to Entrepreneur.com’s small business encyclopedia, “POS software records each sale when it happens, so your inventory records are always up-to-date. Better still, you get much more information about the sale than you could gather with a manual system. By running reports based on this information, you can make better decisions about ordering and merchandising.” A POS system can help you collect and analyze data, keep a log of your sales history and keep pricing accurate.
Whether you’re just opening your new store or you’ve already been in business for a while and you’re looking for an upgrade, the POS system you choose plays a big part in the success or failure of your business. You’ll want to narrow down your options based on your specific business. So how do you even begin to choose one?
The best way to start is by deciding what features mean the most to your business. Evaluate the type of capabilities you need today vs. tomorrow, what your competitors might have that you don’t, and vice-versa.
You’ll want a system that:
- Allows you to keep track of inventory and pricing
- Keeps inventory and sales up-to-date
Of course, pricing matters too. Ranges differ between software and hardware systems, integrations, support and credit card processing.
To sort your needs from wants and get a full breakdown of POS decision-making criteria within each of these categories, check out the “POS Needs Assessment Worksheet” from POS Highway. This will help you better analyze exactly what features you will benefit from in a retail software package, as well as help you narrow down your options.