How the POS System has Changed Over the Years

Feb 23, 2019


A point of sale (POS) system is perhaps one of the most important tools that a retailer can invest on, especially now that technology has transformed the cash register into a multi-function machine. Where before, it can only perform the most basic of transactions, now it can provide you with almost everything you need to manage your retail business.

Here’s a quick overview of just a few of the various features of modern POS systems that can help you transform your business for the digital age.

Promo Management

All businesses can benefit from the occasional promotion, but none more so than retail. A promo not only entices your customers to buy more, it also gives them more incentive to become more loyal to your business. You can even craft promos specifically as a reward for their continued and consistent patronage.

With the help of modern POS systems, you should be able to create and manage these promos with ease. Whether they’re applied to separate branches or throughout your whole enterprise, a reliable POS system should be able to help you launch these promos from any location; you can even create exclusive promotions targeted to specific audiences or applicable only to specific products.

Real-Time Inventory Visibility and Management

There are many things that can cause your business’s inventory to fluctuate, like high demand, production lead times, product types (e.g., perishable versus nonperishable goods), and the need to transport stocks from one place to another. With the help of modern POS systems, you should be able to set-up and receive notifications whenever you need to replenish your stocks. You should also be able to manually check the status of your inventory in real-time, so that you can review and fill in the gaps that such auto-update features may have missed.

Price Management

While you may have a standard price for each of your items for regular shoppers and one-time customers, there are also situations when different prices can and will be applied to some items. Some of these scenarios include percentage discounts and other kinds of sales promotions, rewards and loyalty programs, and discounted prices for bulk orders. A good POS system should be able to track these price variations, ensuring that the appropriate prices are applied automatically when the items are billed. A POS system worth its salt should also have the capability to centrally manage pricing, so that you don’t have to visit each store to assign certain prices and price schedules.

Dashboarding and Reporting

As a retailer, data is your friend. And your chosen POS system should be able to view, collect, and organize the huge volume of data that passes through the system each day, at any time. Apart from all information related to sales transactions, you should also be able to see, at the very least, the most and least popular items, period-specific sales reports and inventory status, inventory quantities, X and Z reports, and customer activity. If you have multiple branches, you should also be able to check and retrieve these reports from other locations, whether through another POS system or a synced device.

Having access to raw data and auto-generated reports will help you get to know your customers better, and thus be able to make informed decisions that will cater to their wants and needs. Remember: if your customers feel satisfied, they are more likely to stay loyal to your brand.

Integration

Your chosen POS system should be able to smoothly integrate into both internal and external systems that your organization is currently using. Basically, your POS system should be “syncable” to other systems. Some of the tools and applications that should be ideally integrated with your POS system are your current enterprise resource planning software, payroll management system, CRM and HRMS tools, email accounts, and eCommerce platforms. Integration makes your job easier, allowing you to skip a few (or several) steps in the process of managing the various facets of your retail business.

POS systems can already be classified as an old technology, especially with how fast these advancements continue to evolve nowadays. However, this doesn’t mean that POS systems haven’t adapted with the changing times. In fact, it’s one of the elements of a retail business that has stayed relevant throughout the years, despite the many changes that the industry in general has undergone.

One of the most critical aspects of business is keeping your customers engaged and satisfied. Sure it’s important to get new customers on-board, but keeping your existing customers happy and invested  will foster loyalty and brand growth.

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Considering that the first electronic cash register debuted in the early 1970s, it’s safe to say that POS systems are are more “mature” technologies. However, this doesn’t mean that a POS system has become irrelevant in the world of modern retail. In fact, the way it has evolved has allowed retail businesses to  solve efficiency issues and reduce administrative work.

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A point of sale (POS) system is perhaps one of the most important tools that a retailer can invest on, especially now that technology has transformed the cash register into a multi-function machine. Where before, it can only perform the most basic of transactions, now it can provide you with almost everything you need to manage your retail business.

Read More