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    5 Replies Latest reply on Jun 19, 2012 1:28 PM by Moderator Ilona

    What do you look for when searching for a Point of Sale system?

    Microsoft POS Wayfarer

      I was wondering what POS systems people have tried and what they liked and hated about them? What do you look for in a POS system?



      Microsoft RMS, System Solutions LLC

        • Re: What do you look for when searching for a Point of Sale system?
          BMPhoto Scout

          I use Square and love it. My small business is on the go and I need something that's easy to use while I'm on the road. You get your money fast and the fees aren't bad.

          • Re: What do you look for when searching for a Point of Sale system?
            LUCKIEST Guide

            Dave, Talk to amspcs (Barry).

            A long time member and very helpful guy.


            Good luck, LUCKIEST

            • Re: What do you look for when searching for a Point of Sale system?
              Uncle Leon Tracker

              Many years ago, when personal comnputers were just past the "novelty" stage; I programed a computer (with printer) to be dedicated,exclusively, as Point of Purchase


              It allowed me to enter the proiduct and add options, and the number ordered, to show on each line.  Then it added all lines, and added tax. 


              Now days, it would be laughable.  But at the time, it saved me precious time in completing the order. This time was very important because the longer the customer had to wait while I did everything by hand, with a small calculator, they had time to reconsider how much money they were spending.  Time to reconsider that could begin a process of thinking that they ddn't really need that one item.  And, maybe also, didn't need THAT one.  And.... and....


              While I'm commenting, - a PoP system in a retail store can be a profound help in inventory control..

              • Re: What do you look for when searching for a Point of Sale system?
                amspcs Ranger

                Interesting question.  I've  been in the POS business for many years, and long ago compiled a "Top Ten List of Mistakes to Avoid When Shopping for a POS System, which has since grown well beyond ten points.  Here are some highlights Ive  seen unfortunate buyers make again and again:  1.)  Understand the difference between a professional point-of-sale system, and a 'toy'.  A real POS system benefits your business in many ways---inventory/fresh sheet management, database marketing capability, reservations, cuts down errors and waste, speeds up service, etc.  A toy is an expensive computer device that basically doesn't do much more than an inexpensive electronic device.    2.)  Consider (and factor in the costs) of who will fix it when (not if) it breaks, and how much will it cost.  How long will it take, and how long will  you be out of business while  you wait?  The same goes for customer service, and if you have questions?   Who provides?   Pay per occurrence?  3.)  What about mandatory PCI and software compliance updates ?  Who will do it?  How much?  If buying a used system, how much  useful shelf life is left  before it MUST be replaces?  Again, all these are 'when' scenarios, no 'if'.   4.)  Is the system 'live'  or 'back of house'?   Do you know the difference?  If you don't someday soon you'll wish you had.  5)   What's included and what costs extra?  Do not assume modules like reservations, gift cards, inventory control etc  are included.  Often they are not, and the third parties  you'll need to go to for these services can be VERY costly.  6.)  What about back-ups in case of disaster or catastrophic failure and data  loss?  Included?  Who?   How much?  7.)  Will the system support  near future technology?  Or will it be obsolete before it's paid for?  8.)  Failure to understand and properly factor in the true cost of POS ownership.  Service contracts, out of warranty repairs etc often far exceed the original cost of the POS system.  In fact, some POS companies derive more than half of their revenue from NON software and hardware sales--that means servcie contracts, repairs, out of warranty replacement, etc.  Make sure yo u're not comparing apples and oranges. ' 9.)  Consider installation and training expenses.  If you get new employeees, who trains them?  A system improperly installed, and employees improperly trained are liabilities, not assets.  10.)  Avoid generic.  A true POS device is customized to YOUR  unique business environment and needs.  Have it  YOUR way , not some programmer's way.  No such thing as one-size-fits-all POS systems.  10.)  Last but not least:   LEASES--avoid 'em if you can.   The definition of a lease in my opinion  is "something that turns a $5000 purchase into a $20,000 purchase).  If you must lease, make sure you understand what a lease is.  A lease is NOT a month-to-month rental.  The point is:  All of the above scenarios and mistakes ae avoidable if one knows where and what to look for.  There is an ideal solution out there for most every business.  There are also many mistakes out there waiting for unsuspecting victims to stumble onto.

                • Re: What do you look for when searching for a Point of Sale system?
                  Moderator Ilona Ranger

                  There is some great information being shared here, does anyone else have something to add?