You are looking to open your retail store ? You picked up the right location. Now whats the next step ? Pick The Right Retail POS System for your business. Having a POS system is very vital in running a successful business today. The POS system helps the business streamline the sales process.
When it comes to a POS system, there are capabilities that are vital for retail POS software. As a retailer you need to consider the following features in a POS system; reporting and analytics, sales management, employee management, loyalty programs, marketing integrations and inventory management.
Large Selection of Retail POS Systems
With so many retail POS systems, how do you pick the best one? You will need to compare transaction fees with the overall operational costs. However, you should consider a product’s additional retail management features.
How can you be sure that you have the right POS system you are looking for? You will need to ensure that you get the right functionality, the right security standards, a POS that’s able to meet your business needs and is easy to utilize.
This is possible as you can be able to check all this with the free trial version; that most POS systems offer.
Are you looking to have an online system as your primary POS system? If this is so, you ought to ensure that you have access to a reliable connection. Having a physical software restricts you as it’s available in specific terminal.
This means that you have technical difficulty while getting data; as opposed to when you are using cloud solution.
Getting the right point of Sale (POS) is very essential, as it’s capable of improving your retail strategy, making your life easier and saves you a lot of time and money. It’s also important as not all POS software program suits every industry.
You’ll be able have access to your back office anywhere and anytime; being able to digitally keep track of your inventory instead of using a clipboard.
In this review we are going to look at some of the best POS systems that you can get in the competitive market. Systems that have the features required and comes at a cost that is worthwhile.
Best Retail POS Systems
|Best Feature||Free Trial|
|Lightspeed POS||$99||Easy integration & advanced CRM||14 days|
|Shopkeep POS||$69||Real time reports & automated inventory||14 days|
|Vend POS||$59||Unlimited stores||30 days|
|Shopify POS||$29||Payment processing integration||14 days|
|Square POS||$60||Built in payment processing||30 days|
|Revel POS||$79||Advanced data reporting,||No free trial|
|Clover POS||$60||Custom orders||14 days|
|Erply POS||$69||Can centralize their customers||14 days|
|SalesVu POS||$75||Side ordering & Online payments||14 days|
|Epos Now POS||$39||Support any standard receipt printer||30 days|
Our First Choice: Lightspeed Point of Service System- best POS for complex inventories
The Lightspeed POS system was primarily design for retail use. This POS is exceptionally ideal for single shop or multi-store businesses. This system offers a lot of features to its users such as; invoicing, quoting and ordering tools, inventory management, job and timesheet capabilities and robust reporting capabilities.
With Lightspeed POS system, users are able to easily shift from sales to management. The Lightspeed POS is capable of running on a desktop or an iPad. The scanners, iPad stands, cash drawers and receipt printers are the unit’s hardware packages. The POS is capable of serving businesses of all sizes.
With the Lightspeed’s inventory management alternatives, managers are able to group items by type, adding granular details such as size, color and style. Ordering or importing items from catalogs that are pre-loaded. For $99 per month you can be able to get yourself a Lightspeed retail POS for your business. The unit comes with easy boarding features, one register with five employee accounts, 24/7 support and basic analytics.
Our Second Choice: Shopkeep Point of Service System- the best POS for mobile app users.
Shopkeep POS has been in the market since 2008 and it’s considered among the best POS Systems available for retail. It’s exceptionally easy to use, it also provides excellent inventory management features, which composes of the ability to maintain track of quantities on products and matrix.
This POs system also comes with features that allow you to make your own barcodes, be able to use different tax rates, CSV file import, multi-store capability and create thousands of SKUs. The retail POS system favors an in-house payment processor. The Shopkeep payment is full EMV integrated and can be utilized with other credit card processors.
The Shopkeep POS software has the essential features required by a retail POS. The features are wrapped up in a clean cut interface, which is able to work exceptionally well with mobiles. This allows managers to be posted on the daily reports when out of the office; employees are able to utilize the iPad app in order to track inventory and sales.
The software has customer service tools which has gift integrations and customer loyalty. Its technical support is excellent, they are 24/7 available either through email, chat or across phone. This POS is capable of serving any size of a business; it goes for $69 per month.
Our Third Choice: Vend Point of Service System- best retail POS for third party integrations.
The vend POS system is widely used by iPad POS systems in the market; in order to enhance sales, inventory and customer management activities. The POs system is not only reasonably priced, but it’s also flexible allowing you to personalize it to suit your preferences. Vend has data entry options that is through the keyboard and mouse or a touchscreen; you can also customize the POS screen to get easy access to your most used features or items.
With the Vend’s third party integration, users are able to add and locate other features other than what vend have to offer. Its integration covers its payment processing which is supported by PayPal, Shopify and Square as vend does not do it itself. With the integration of third party, its versatility on interface is capable of operating easily on ipads, Macs and PCs; thus making it a flexible POS service.
This POS is capable of offering; customer profiles, split payments, contactless payment, ecommerce integration, gift cards, sales and inventory. Thus enables a store to sell effortlessly across digital, mobile and physical channels. You can be able to access 24/7 support, the POS is also capable of serving any size of a business.
Out Fourth Choice: Shopify Point of Service System- best ecommerce integrations.
The Shopify POS system is offered on iPhones and iPads through the Shopify e-commerce suite. You can be able to utilize this application in managing your physical and online stores. For the merchants, Shopify POS offers a system that has; proprietary card reader, APG cash drawers, Star Micronics receipt printer and a Socket Mobile barcode scanner.
Shopify is an ecommerce company, which is capable of offering retail POS system that has excellent ecommerce integrations. This gives POS users their own branded online store with alternative sales channels such as social media. This makes it possible to purchase products online and picking it up at a store.
Shopify is able to integrate its in-house service processor for the merchant that is Shopify payments. In the event that you opt for a different processor, you can go for a large selection from Shopify. Purchasing a Shopify’s Card Reader, enables you to accept payments from EMV and NFC.
This POS has other features to offer for instance; analytics, discount codes, mobile app, employee management, sales and inventory. It has a 24/7 support, which can be done through the phone, live chat or emails and its capable of serving any size of business. When it comes to Shopify, it’s one of the best options that a business can adapt in selling items online and directly to its customers in real life.
Our Fifth Choice: Square Point of Service System- User Friendly
Are you looking for a universal POS system that is capable of handling all your business needs? The Square POS is what you need. This POS is not only user-friendly, it’s free and allows your business to accept and to process payments; through the use of an in-store and an on-the-go that is for Android and iOS gadgets.
The Square POS is known due to its free iPad POS software, which is capable of managing sales and inventory, emails receipts and able to track customer’s purchases. For larger operations, the Square POS offers a retail specific system which includes the hardware. It goes for $60 per month, a 2.5% +10₵ as charge for every single sale.
It has a free 30 days trial, which is enough time for you to decide whether or not it’s the best POS system for you. With its intuitive analytic and reporting functions it allows its users to get useful feedback and insights, which gives an enhanced efficiency in operations and better decision making.
A Square card and a Square Stand are the included hardware. The retail system offers 24/7 technical support for email and 12/7 for phone support. Not to forget it’s capable of supporting any size of a business.
The POS system guarantees you regular software updates which helps in improving your business. Square’s services, prices and features are among the hardest to beat when it comes to POS systems; the Square POS system is an all-round option.
Our Sixth Choice: Revel Point of Service System- Best Customer Relationships.
When it comes to the Revel POS, it offers a strong relationship between the management tools and the customer. It allows the business to be able to track returning customers and their favorite items at that. This POS comes with all the essential features for instance; analytics, employee management, sales and inventory.
Their main function as a POS provider is to be able to streamline functions in form of hybrid iOS, in the process blending with security and cloud-based functionality. The Revel’s design is made in a way to be able to make implantation on mobile POS that is cost effective and modern.
You will find the Revel running on iPad offering versatile and multi-location features ; that have specific retail packages that are offered to mid-sized level of enterprises. Revel does not make contract, they deliver a month to month fee.
You can run this POS system through cloud or on a local server. With the hybrid system you can be able to access dual benefits, the iPad being mobile and the safety of the cloud. This not only makes it ideal for security, but it’s reliable when the internet is unavailable due to mishaps or power outages.
The Revel POS has a start price of $79 per month, but it also offers custom quotes. They have a 24/7 support and are capable of serving any size of a business.
Our Seventh Choice: Clover Point of Service System- Advance online ordering.
The Clover POS main goal is to offer an easy to utilize Point of Sale solution. The POS has basic functions with additional apps that are from the marketplace. The additional feature enables you to enter customer data, schedule employees, create customs reports and tracking of inventory and revenue
The Clover’s retail POS provide online integrations for the businesses that require support for in-person delivery or online orders. The POS has customizable customers’ profiles and security features. Its hardware features includes; a mini version of the station, contactless payment hub and a countertop POS station.
The system has a different payment option that is it’s able to process checks, debit charges, credit payment and collecting cash. In the event that you will be required to accept a secure EMV payment, for instance, Android pay and Apple pay you will need to purchase a Clover Mobile device or a Clover Mini.
When it comes to adding orders, you will need to type the product’s name or search for it the menu. The employees are able to customize an order if it’s needed, in case the employee does not have access the manager can be able to authorize the transaction.
The Clover POS system offers 24/7 support and able to serve any size of a business. In the event that you require integrating your online presence with a physical store, then the Clover POS system is what you need. You won’t have your hands held as much as in Shopify POS.
Our Eighth Choice: Erply Point of Service System- Best POS for Small Franchises.
The Erply sells off 3 of retail focused POS system, that is an enterprise retail POS, a POS for retail franchise and a basic retail program. The POS for retail franchise allows the franchise owner to have security permission, thus determining how much a manager can access. A franchise owner is able to decide how they can centralize their customers, inventory or sensitive information.
It’s a Cloud Hybrid System, this means it’s able to work online and while you’re offline. It’s also important to note, its primary function is dependent on connectivity with its servers availing the offline mode as a failsafe.
The POS is also extremely easy to use, when you have signed and logged in for the first time. You’d be presented with a dashboard, which gives you a quick look on your daily figures and be able to customize any information that you wish.
When it comes to the Erply POS it’s designed for specifically a retail operation; that is from POS to backend ERP features.
The Erply has other features such as; employee management tools, sales and inventory and barcode scanning. It’s capable of offering 24/7 support and service to any size of a business. Its inventory plan starts at $69 per month but for small businesses there is a start plan of $39 per month.
Our Ninth Choice: SalesVu Point of Service System- Light Version
When it comes to SalesVu POS it offers different suite of apps, which are capable of handling different POS concerns. For instance; gift cards, invoicing, transactions, and employee, inventory and loyalty programs.
The SalesVu’s strength lies in its broad flexibility. The POS is more than just a mobile cash register as it helps you to monitor; inventory, design custom discounts and promotions, maintaining an active customer database, create detail reports and managing employees. You can be able to perform these services anywhere as long as you have Wi-Fi connection.
With its cloud-based software it eliminates the need for an onsite server, not to forget bulky POS hardware. This is because they have expensive fee support, businesses are also able to set up faster and have control on every aspect of the business.
The app is free although the users are required to pay a monthly fee of $75; this is to allow them to gain access to the dashboard. The dashboard makes it easy to access the apps through the central interface. The SalesVu offers 24/7 support through live chats and an online help center which has video tutorials.
For a business that has a few needs, they can be able to utilize 2 or 3 of the free SalesVu apps for running their business. As the business eventually grows, they can then move to the paid plan. The POS is able to serve any size of a business.
Our Tenth Choice: Epos Now Point of Service System- Easy To Learn.
Epos Now is a U.K based POS, a quick learning and simple interface are its selling point. Retailer are able to utilize their current equipment; because, the POS is capable of supporting any standard receipt printer or barcode scanner. The employees are able to quickly pick up the software, not to forget its discount feature.
This POS is a subscription based service, which merchants are to pay a monthly fee rate in order to utilize and receive product updates. The system does not have technical support in its monthly subscription, merchants therefore incur an additional charge that is $39 or $54 for the personalized support.
With its cloud-based, you will have all your information stored in an Epos Now server. This allows you to be able to access your back-office anytime and anywhere.
The Epos Now POS promotion can be set in a way to be able to run on certain times during the day, certain locations or days of the week. The POs offers 24/7 support through the phone although this is dependent on the plan. Its starting service plan has an email support only. The Epos Now POS is also able to serve any size of a business.
Employees utilizing the software’s intuitive interface are able to be fully operational for just 15 minutes. This makes this system an ideal option for businesses that cannot be able to afford long training sessions. It has a start plan of $39 per month and an additional register of $24 per month; which is a cost effective way of making your business prosper.
Factors To Consider When Getting A POS System
As you weigh the options that POS system has to offer, it’s essential that you consider the terms, features and the cost for every single part the system has to offer. Check the hardware, software and the payment processing. The following is a list of factors that you should have in mind.
POS SaaS verses Licenses
Most of the POS vendors use cloud- based software as a service (SaaS) plan; that you can be able to subscribe. This is one of the most affordable options that you can find in the market. The plan used has regular updates and customer support. With the regular updates, it allows you to have an up-to-date version of the software.
In the event that you opt to go for a software license, you will pay a larger amount for the license as an upfront fee. You will also need to pay for customer support, an annual update fee and a monthly fee for maintenance.
POS Software Features
There are a lot of differences between service plans that each system offers; and the features that are between systems. You will need to check the front and end of your software, which is utilized to accept payment, make orders and the back office features that are being used for system management.
You will require cloud-based POS systems, which are necessary as they allow you to get access to the software through a browser of any device. Thus allowing you to perform any back-office work anywhere you are. Look for features such as; inventory, employee and customer management.
Unlocked verses Proprietary POS Hardware
Going for a system that utilizes an unlocked POS hardware will save you money. This is because, in the event that you choose to switch systems, you can be able to use the unlocked equipment. In case you go for a system that uses a proprietary hardware, you will need to purchase new equipment when you switch your systems.
Avoid Leasing Equipment
When it comes to POS systems, it’s essential that you plan to purchase your own equipment. In case you do not have enough finance, then it’s recommended that you start with the very basic setup, then continue adding up the equipment as you are able to afford. This will help you to avoid frustrations and save money.
There are cases where you have some vendors offering free POS hardware with a sign contract. They can also provide renting or leasing of POS equipment instead of you having to purchase one; hence, allowing you to pay less as the upfront price. These options are exceptionally tempting, but they will cost you more through the life of the lease or contract; than what you could have spent in buying the POS equipment.
If you have opted to either lease or accept free equipment, they have a term of 3 to 5 years that is non-cancelable. This means even if you end up closing down or selling your business and returning the equipment, you will still continue to pay for the equipment until the lease or contract expires.
You can have a lease or contract having an automatic renewal clause, with a short time frame of 30 days for you to cancel. The cancellation is done on writing before the contract or lease renews itself for another 3 to 5 years.
Are you looking to integrate your POS system? It’s important that you know if you will have an extra integration cost, a one-time or recurring fee. You can integrate it with services or software such as; CMS platforms, appointment management apps, customer loyalty programs and accounting software.
Payment Processing Cost
When it comes to the best POS system, it gives you the choice of credit card processing companies that you can be able to work with. You will then be able to pay the processer that you choose fees such as per transaction fee and a percentage from each sale. You will also incur a monthly gateway fee, monthly fee and an annual PCI compliance fee.
There are POS companies which have an in-house payment processing services, which requires you to utilize their POS system. You can also use a different processor but you will need to pay additional percentage for every sale made and monthly fee. Whichever processor you want to use, it should accept NFC payments and EMV chip cards.
Set up & Installation Cost
There are vendors who require you to pay a fee for the installation of your POS system to get it up and running. The fee ranges all the way to thousands of dollars, the amount of fee payable is dependent on the capacity of work to be done be its onsite or remote.
If you end up going for a tablet POS system which is in most cases an optional service. Its installation service can include; migrating data, setting up of your product menu or catalog and configuring hardware. Most companies offer training services, you can find it as a separate service or as an installation package.
POS Software Plans
The month to month software subscription is considered as the best option if you’re starting to use the system. This is because, in case you feel that the system is not the right fit for your business, you can be able to cancel the subscription easily.
You will find some companies costing more for a monthly plan, offering discounts in case you pay in advance for a whole year. Before taking the discount, be sure to have used the software long enough. Thus being confident that you can use the software for at least a year, this makes sure that you aren’t locked in a system that you don’t like.
Additional Retail POS Elements
A Point of Sale (POS) is a system that is able to help a store in making its sales to its customers.
The POS system logs numbers, the quantity of sales, tracks your inventory and informing you of when you will require restocking.
The system serves as the backbone of your store’s daily activities. This is because it’s able to track useful data, launch new marketing campaigns and schedule employees.
Although one of the functions of a POS system is accepting cards, its main purpose is to help a store reduce its costs and increasing its sales.
A POS system combines software, which in most cases is the cloud-based and hardware.
You will be able to get access to a POS system with a monthly subscription.
When it comes to a POS system, it’s a very vital part that business owners need to have for the success of their business.
The best POS system should be able to run temporarily while your offline, have an intuitive interface; that its users are able to understand without the need of a huge learning curve; and has a useful support team.
The POS system that you need influences the hardware options that you will require.
For instance, if you have an entire franchise or a large operation, you require routers, receipt printers, multiple dedicated monitors and stand-alone card readers. For the larger operations, routers are especially important as they ensure that you have a secure and stable internet connection.
Getting the right POS system for your business is very essential. With the right system, it should be able to pay itself and be able to drive your business to another level. The size of your business and inventory affects a lot; for instance, your inventory size affects the POS features that you require, the tier of service that you’d be planning to take.
The location and number of employees also impacts the amount that you’ll be charged. This is because most of the POS vendors have monthly charges for each register. The above review has some of the best Point of Service system that you can get in the market. Go through the review to check which one will work best for you.
Before getting a Point of Service system, there are some factors that you need to consider. For instance, avoiding leasing equipment, the set up and installation cost, software features and payment processing cost just to mention a few. This is especially important considering the concept that is behind leasing and renting equipment. With the above information you can be sure to get the best Point of Service system in the market.