Mobile POS doesn’t just improve your bottom line; it also gives your retail business a competitive edge.
If you have ever been frustrated by the maintenance and cost of taking payments with a PC workstation, you may have considered updating to a more modern POS system.
According to Matt Bright, Senior Product Specialist at Intuit, there are many benefits to rethinking what your cash register can do for you.
“There are so many different ways a tablet-based POS system can help you cut costs and boost profits. For any retailer who needs to sell items, mobile POS is a must.”
Here are 8 advantages of switching to a cloud-based POS system.
Modern POS systems offer tremendous flexibility to sell both in store and on the sidewalk.
Whether you need to keep lines short with the flexibility to leave the counter or power a pop-up shop, business doesn’t have to be done in just one place anymore. You can truly be mobile and process transactions no matter where your customers are.
“Tablet-based solutions are scalable and offer multi-location and multi-register flexibility. If you’re doing a trade show outside your retail business, an iPad or even an iPhone option as a mobile POS can safely link sale records back to your store,” advises Matt.
You can also add more devices at will during peak hours and checkout customers faster.
Never lose a sale
Stability issues — which can cause your point of sale to run slowly or even crash — means downtime and can result in angry customers or a loss in revenue. With most tablet POS systems, you can still take payments even if the Internet goes down.
“With PC systems, if it goes down, you’re down. If you lose your data, it’s incredibly time consuming to recreate it and sometimes not possible. When down, often things are done manually, credit cards are not authorized until the system comes back up, and not all transactions clear, costing the business money in lost revenue and inventory.”
Benefit from greater efficiency
Picture this: a customer places an order in store for an out-of-stock item. At the warehouse nearest their shipping address, a notification automatically appears and the item will be shipped within 24 hours.
Cloud-based systems offer the ability to create fully customized workflows for your specific business operations. When integrated with a robust inventory management system, POS data reveals inventory needs, how much you should purchase and even how many employees are needed on hand to turn it into finished products and top-line revenue.
“Add QuickBooks Online for accounting and choose from more than 750+ apps. With an open API you can customize and add on apps to further automate and streamline your workflows and business processes,” says Matt.
Reallocate labor costs
In an industry rough on profit margins, cutting costs is key for retail businesses.
Your POS system can also help you make better staffing decisions. Tablet-based systems gather a great deal of detailed information about what’s selling, when and at what margin. It can easily identify trends and even get granular with weather-based predictions on foot traffic so you can better dictate staffing needs.
When it comes to training employees, the process is usually quicker with mobile POS because new technology leverages familiar hardware like iPads.
“Desktop solutions tend to be more complicated to learn and train new employees on,” says Matt. “With modern POS systems, you can give management access to all the data they need from anywhere via the cloud and even manage routine tasks like time tracking and shift scheduling.”
Leverage better customer data
Using a tablet-based POS also gives you more data to work with so you can make better business decisions. You can track customer preferences at the point of sale and analyze trends for different items and dayparts, which will help when creating your promotions, changing prices or creating custom marketing communications based on a customer’s preferences.
“Walk around with your customer, see their purchase history, time since they have last been in store, any store credits, promotions or loyalty/rewards they may have available and other key customer data to help you cater to your customers and make them feel special.”
Gain a competitive edge
Tablet POS is the way of the future for all retail businesses, according to Matt. When it comes to branding, using the latest technology can provide a competitive edge because it subtly puts your technology into the customer’s mind as a futuristic business. It also allows you to manage inventory in real time and take new, more secure forms of payment, like Apple Pay.
“Even HVAC companies offer on-site repairs but need a truck with lots of inventory to make a sale on the spot for residential or generate a net 30 accounts receivable with commercial. Think of businesses that send out trucks to grocery stores for various deliveries. They need to scan what they drop off for each location and take that out of stock from their truck inventory.”
If you think having an on-site server keeps your data more secure, think again.
“Desktop or on-prem solutions are only as good as your firewall and antivirus softwares. They constantly need to be updated and maintained, and could inadvertently go down or be left off. Back ups are manual and can be missed or corrupted and not work when you need it most. It does not solve for off site back up. For your common business owner this is a tremendous expense,” says Matt.
“Cloud, on the other hand, is typically at least 128 if not 256-bit encrypted and often has multi-factor authentication. It’s also always up to date and encrypted.”
Modern tech also presents the opportunity to increase more than just data security.
“Linking to security footage for a convenience store, for instance, is a large value add,” says Matt.
Save on maintenance and new hardware
Tablet POS solutions offer numerous hardware options and if something like an iPad breaks, it’s easy and cheap to replace in comparison to a PC. Simply buy a new device and sync your backup data to get back up and running quickly.
“PCs under the counter get kicked, overheat after running for long retail hours and it wears out your equipment much faster. So keeping your PCs running and your POS updated adds extra expense.”
A tablet setup also takes up less real estate in your store, allowing for more counter space and less wires thanks to bluetooth connections for peripherals like barcode scanners.
Improve retail operations through innovation, and Cin7 can help
An organized, easy-to-use POS system is crucial for successful small businesses. Cin7 Core helps product sellers upgrade operations and boost sales with an affordable app-based POS that’s user-friendly. The platform offers mobility, loyalty programs, and more. It all works together to ensure your store operates efficiently and, most importantly, profitably.