How Your Tablet Can Replace Your Point-of-Sale System
Many of us have seen the old-fashioned cash tills with typewriter-esque buttons and a drawer that gave us that iconic “ka-ching” sound. And while that was the first iteration of the till, many businesses still have systems that resemble a slightly more modern version of that today.
However, it’s important to note that technology has come a long way since then. And over the past few years, many businesses have been ditching their old cash drawers and opting for sleek point-of-sale systems (POS) that incorporate tablets. That’s right, the same kind of tablet you use to stream your favourite shows and shoot off quick emails can be used to help run your business.
So, what are the benefits of using tablet based POS systems? We’ve taken the liberty of rounding up a few of the advantages of making the switch.
Easy cost savings
One of the major reasons more businesses are trading in their bulky registers for tablets is because of the potential savings. Traditional POS computer systems are a major cost of doing business, with some costing upwards of $20,000 to setup and operate. And while it certainly takes money to make money, forking out that kind of cash is prohibitive for many smaller businesses.
However, tablet-based POS software is comparatively more affordable. Depending on the type of business, the number of tills, and your number of monthly transactions, various companies offer tablet-friendly POS software and accessories (such as a plug-in card reader and receipt printer) ranging from $29 a month and up, along with a very small percentage of each transaction. Any issues are often deferred to your POS software provider, negating the need for IT personnel to keep your POS system up and running. All in all, these startup costs usually workout to be significantly less than traditional closed systems and registers.
Conduct business on the move
In addition to serving as a huge financial barrier for small businesses, traditional POS systems are often clunky, heavy and aren’t agile enough to meet the needs of the modern retailer. And here’s another area where a mobile device – in this case a tablet – helps business owners… well, go mobile.
Tablets in general are incredibly user friendly, and most POS systems designed for tablets make everyday business management a little simpler. And the best benefit of a tablet’s mobility may be its ability to help retailers kill the queue. Rather than forcing customers to stand in long lines to buy your products, retailers with handy tablet-based POS systems can look up inventory based on a customer’s query on the spot, take a payment, and email their receipt straight from their tablet – all from anywhere in the store. This is incredibly important since research shows that these long lines chase away customers, especially in brick-and-mortar sales settings.
According to a report from retail analytics firm Nomi Technologies, a third of study participants admitted they had abandoned a checkout line when they had to wait for more than five minutes.
Take inventory from anywhere, and put an end to manual software updates
On top of executing customer transactions, point-of-sale systems also help track inventory in store, as well as any inventory stored elsewhere. With mobile POS systems, proprietors can literally cut the cord and roam as they tick off things on their to-do list. And as an added bonus, system upgrades are usually instantaneous (updates are often automatic or simply require a tap of your finger and a WiFi connection).
The bottom line
We’ve gotten used to the idea of using our smartphones for work and play. And with the aforementioned variety of cutting-edge point-of-sale options, businesses can hawk their wares on the go by simply using their favourite tablet and a few handy accessories.
Have you switched out your point-of-sale system for a tablet-based version? Share your thoughts in the comments below.