A point of sale can be defined as the exact place where the payment of a good or service is executed. POS is an abbreviation for point of sale. The primary functions of POS are to facilitate sales transactions and improve customer service. It can also be used as a part of price management and improve the product offering, service level improvement, purchasing, and price protection programs. Generally speaking, they’re more elaborate than the standard registers found in your local grocery store.
What Does a Small Business POS Do?
POS lets you know how much inventory to put back on the shelf or in storage and when certain products need restocking. POS will also help you keep track of what products are selling best so that you can expand your product line or change the items in the store. With a POS system, you can easily accept different modes of payment and keep track of the sales happening in your business. This begs the question; does a POS system actually work over GPRS card machine?
It Starts When a Customer Decided to Buy a Product or Service
If it’s a physical store, there is a chance that the sales associate will be contacted. The associate could decide to check for item availability physically or using a bar scanner. Some POS systems make visual scanning possible using only a phone’s camera. If it’s online, this step can be completed at checkout.
Calculation of the Price
The POS will compute the price of the item with tax included. The next process is updating the inventory on the exact details of the item that is sold. The calculations can take into account if there are discounts or ongoing promotions for particular products or services.
Making the Purchase
For the purchase to be complete, a customer has to use a credit card, cash, loyalty points, tap cards, or gift cards. If it’s a cashless transaction, the customer’s bank will need to approve it in most instances.
What Software and Hardware are Included in A POS?
A POS system can’t function without software but not all businesses will need the hardware element. For an online business, the point of sale will automatically happen on your website. For a physical business such as a restaurant, you’ll need a cash register, scanners, tablets, and credit card, readers.
Common POS Software Features
There are POS systems that will come with common features out-of-the-box. Depending on your business needs, you might have to look for a customizable solution that is adaptable and scalable. Some of the common features you can expect include:
Reporting Features: Most POS systems also come with reporting features that allow you to track sales, inventory, and billing information. These tools can be invaluable for retailers who want to quickly see the sales that are happening in their business as well as the total amount of money they’ve made through sales. With this information being provided on a regular basis, retailers are able to adjust their prices and manage their inventory more efficiently.
In some cases, POS software also allows retailers to track how much money they are making from different areas of their business, like shipping or customer service. This is another way that these systems empower retailers to make more informed business decisions. Additionally, many POS systems allow you to track important information such as split payments, tips, and tax deductions so your reports aren’t thrown off.
Inventory Management Tools: Another important aspect of any POS system is the inventory management tools that come with it. These tools allow you to enter product data (including prices) and track your inventory in a way that is more efficient and convenient than if you were to enter this information manually via barcode readers. This keeps your system organized and reduces the risk of accidentally entering incorrect data, which can be disastrous for your inventory management.
Some POS systems include a “punch list” feature that allows you to track the unsold products in your inventory. Then, the system will automatically input this data into its inventory management tool. This helps to ensure that you identify issues as they pop up rather than waiting for them to become a problem.
System Updates: All POS systems need to be updated periodically to ensure that they are working as intended. Many POS systems connect to a cloud-based service that allows you to update the software, to keep it working at its best and most secure. These updates will typically be free and easy to access, so you shouldn’t have any trouble with this.
While a system may come equipped with the features above, additional features can often be added. Some POS systems also include additional features that are available for purchase if they aren’t included with the basic product.