Sometimes, it’s the simplest of changes in how we do business that have the most impact on how well the company performs. When you rearranged the table layout in your cafe to give it a cozy, more open feel, you probably noticed that your patrons hung around longer—and ordered a second (or third) cappuccino. Maybe adjusting the menu helped to increase your bar’s profits or hiring an esthetician widened your salon’s range of clients.
Transitioning to a point of sale system, however, can seem complicated, even painful—at least at first while everyone is trying to learn and adjust. But, if it will benefit your business in the end, making the switch is worth it. Right? That’s the question we’re answering here. With the POS system explained in a little detail, you should be able to decide if making this particular change will be right and easy for your business.
Benefits and Drawbacks of a POS System Explained
Different from the patchwork of manual systems that all companies used at one time—and that some continue to use today—point of sale systems act as a kind of one-stop-shop for business operations. For the restaurants, smoke shops, and furniture stores that use them, the benefits of ditching the clunky mix of cash registers, file cabinets, and time clocks outweigh the drawbacks. But, it’s not just the hardware that makes life at the office easier. It’s the software, too. That said, the disadvantages can be real—and hard to ignore.
So, let’s jump right into what makes using a point of sale system good for business as well as the common pain points you may want to consider:
How a Point of Sale System is Good for Your Business
There are four main features offered by modern point of sale systems that can help smooth over multiple aspects of your business. They are:
- Broad Customer Management. You can capture the name, birthday, and contact information of each client with a point of sale system. Then, you can link transactions, track purchase histories, and manage (or create) loyalty programs. With permission, you can also use the information for marketing to help reduce customer churn.
- Full-Scale Employee Management. Creating and sharing staff schedules, tracking hours, and calculating individual sales and returns can all be done with POS software. Timesheets and taxes can be automated and exported for payroll, too. Permissions can be set easily. Employees can even use the system to clock in and out.
- Real-Time Inventory Management. POS software lets you create and scan barcodes, perform stock takes, and automate reordering. You can also set pricing rules according to color, size, and bundled items. Shipments can be tracked, even for different store locations. Purchase orders can be created, modified, and processed as well.
- In-Depth Analytics and Reporting. A point of sale system can give you immediate insight into how products, employees, and even your hours of operation are doing. You can generate a cost-benefit analysis to determine where to make changes, see your profitability at any time, and download or share your data.
Together, these features don’t just reduce unnecessary busywork—and the accompanying paperwork—that tend to bog businesses down. They explain why POS systems are growing in popularity: they help companies refocus on the quality of their product or service.
Common Pain Points That Are Hard to Ignore
Unfortunately, implementing new hardware and software for your food truck or hair salon does come at a cost. Depending on how tech-savvy you are—or how busy your business is—you may not have the patience or time to spend. For example, consider that:
- You will have to add all of your existing data into the system. This initial upload of information is the biggest pain point for new POS users. All products or services, prices and discounts, and employee data has to be entered. This is tedious and leaves room for human error.
- The staff will have to be trained. Unless the POS system has a short learning curve and is intuitive to use, getting staff up to speed will be slow. There’s always resistance to new software, especially from less tech-minded employees. Plus, no one likes cumbersome programs that waste everyone’s time.
- Features may be more—or less—than you need. Inflexible POS features can force you to change aspects of your operation to fit the software. It should be the other way around. Limited integrations and a system that won’t scale will hold you back, too. That’s bad for business and its growth.
Your Business Benefits More With a Full-Service POS Provider
Fortunately, the potential disadvantages of implementing a point of sale system are easily overcome when you team up with a full-service provider. Everything from training you and your staff to migrating (or inputting) data into the software can—and should—be a joint effort. That may mean that getting started with your POS system is explained with customer service on the line or that you follow screen prompts to get set up, knowing you can call for help if a mistake is made.
In fact, one of the key differentiators between POS vendors is the level of service they offer. The other is whether or not the system has an open API so you can add on, expand, or change existing features on your own. What it comes down to is this: you don’t have to experience any pain in the effort to streamline your business operations; you just have to choose the right provider.
At talech, we work to remove the pain points that keep many new customers from ever trying a point of sale system. As a result, our clients are able to make a smooth and easy transition into streamlining their business operations. To have our POS system explained in more detail, and to experience it yourself, sign up for a free demo today!