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Point of sale systems
Point of Sales once was referred to In the form of a cash register. However, POS systems have evolved beyond this perception. They are now in the form of cloud-based or client-based software. Some of this software is available for mobile platforms as well. They perform multiple business functions that make them an invaluable asset to any business.
A POS generally acts as a payment portal, which accepts payments in various forms from the customers, much like a physical cash register. The quality of a POS software can be judges based upon the payment flexibility, hardware requirements, mobility, and back-office functions. Here are some of the best POS software systems available in the market, specifically for small businesses.
It is considered the best POS available for small to medium businesses. It is also available as an application on Android and iOS platforms. It has built-in payment processing and inventory control. It is a comprehensive solution that covers all your payment and sales needs. It includes inventory management platform, credit, and debit card reader, sales tracking and a host of other tools.
The inventory management platform allows you to import all your stocks with CSV spreadsheets. The platform tracks your inventory and sends alerts when the stocks are low.
The CRM features are not very powerful but are functional. The platform allows you to create customer profiles, automatically or manually. You can also create CSV sheets for these profiles and add notes if required.
Other features include employee management, refunds and exchanges, analytics reports regarding the items and other add ons.
The basic version of Square POS is free to use. The software charges a small processing fee for contactless and keyed-in transactions. Users also receive a free magstripe reader from Square. If it is used for card transactions, no fee is charged. Other add-ons such as Employee management and advanced CRM features can be subscribed at standard rates. Therefore, Square is affordable in addition to being functional and is a well-rounded product.
Toast POS is specifically made for restaurants and eateries. It provides a certain degree of organizational management in addition to the point of sales services. It allows you to manage reservations, track delivery orders, allows kiosk payments to avoid queues, and increases general customer satisfaction. It has certain restaurant-specific features like menu and tip management. The application is available only on Android.
The inventory management platform by Toast POS is extraordinary and the best there is. It allows you to track inventory right down to specific ingredients. It also can produce cost estimates of dishes, track orders and the required inventory items on simple platforms, and produce recipe costs, which make this POS stand out.
The menu management tool allows the creation of menu categories and subcategories. It allows customers to order food online. It also allows them to customize their orders. It tracks the orders and does the relevant inventory management.
Toast reporting is tailored for restaurants. In addition to sales and employee tracking, the Toast reporting also allows you to track tips, served orders, tables turned among other things. Toast POS is the complete solution for any restaurant. Other add-ons include a loyalty rewards program for customers.
The Toast core software os around 79USD per register. However, installation costs are steep at 499 USD. The kit includes magstripe readers and other hardware installation. Add-on features cost around 25-50 USD per month. The price is perhaps the only negative aspect of Toast POS.
Vend id a popular iPad based POS software. It is well known for it is in-built loyalty rewards program. It allows for a high degree of customization. It also integrates with certain e-commerce tools, Facebook and Instagram. It can also be used online and on PCs. It manages all activities centrally from a single dashboard.
The inventory tool allows a relatively high level of control. You can use CSV sheets or manual entries. It allows you to categorize stocks by pours or bundles.
The CRM tool by Vend is very effective. It is better than that offered by Square POS. It allows the automatic creation of customer profiles. It also allows you to create customer groups and apply special offers to that specific group. No add-on features are necessary to enable this feature.
The loyalty rewards tool by Vend is exceptionally easy to apply. It tracks customer spending. It is therefore easy to record loyalty points, just by setting the ratio of spending to the points earned. They are updated after every payment made by the customer. It also allows you to create custom gift cards for specific customer groups.
Vend comes in two versions, the Lite and Pro version. The Lite version charges at 99 USD per month and 49USD for each additional register. The Pro version costs 129 USD per month and 49 USD per additional register. The Pro version has more tools and advanced reporting systems. The pricing is steep when compared to other POS systems. However, Vend is an excellent product, in terms of its features and services.
This is another POS designed specifically for the food industry. It is used widely by restaurants, delis, food trucks, and other eateries. It is compatible with iPads, iOS, and Android. It has an active developer community, and so is constantly being updated and improved. It also ensures excellent support and stability of the software.
The inventory management tools are standard, with stock and sales tracking. However, it lacks the ingredient level tracking as available in Toast.
The menu management platform allows a great customer experience. It also makes the employee tasks easier due to its ease of use.
The salient feature of TouchBistro is its flexibility and scalability. The software can be used just as effectively by small cafes, as well as huge restaurant chains. It provides highly flexible subscription plans.
The pricing of TouchBistro is highly flexible and therefore conducive for budding businesses. The subscriptions are based on the licenses you need. The Solo or single license plan casts 69 USD, while the unlimited plan costs 399 USD per month with other plans in between. The software also offers a limited period free trial. It is a great tool for small businesses that are on a budget.
Shopify is a versatile software that handles multiple channels effectively. It can be used by online traders, event merchants as well as the traditional store owners. It is supported by iOS as well as Android platforms. It includes all standard features like inventory management, sales tracking, report generation, etc.
The inventory management is standard. You can add many features for the products. However, it is nothing that is not offered by other software.
The sales channel management feature is a unique tool. The software can handle multiple channels easily. The e-commerce feature is not treated as an add-on and comes with the package. This allows you to manage your brick-and-mortar store along with your online sales using the same tool. The online sales platforms are managed in real-time along with the inventory, which allows for better control and effective product management.
Shopify is easily integrable with many other apps like eBay, QuickBooks, etc. It also has an excellent reporting system, when proper plans are subscribed for.
There is a wide range of plans available. Shopify Lite, Basic Shopify, Shopify, and Advanced Shopify are priced at 9 USD, 29 USD, 79USD and 299 USD respectively. The higher-end versions have more features like reporting services and more number of staff accounts. Shopify pricing plans give you great flexibility. However, the best plans are rather costly.
Lightspeed is built for retailers and other small businesses. It is capable of handling massive inventories and also performs additional functions such as quoting, accounting and ordering. It performs all standard POS functions as well. However, the inventory management tools and report generators are among the best available in the market.
Inventory management tool allows you to import your stacks in bulk. It also allows you to tag them and customize them for better usability. It notifies you when the stocks are low. The best part is that the software also includes vendor catalogs for the items that need to be replenished.
The CRM features are at par with those of Square POS. It allows you to build customer profiles and track sales. It also allows you to build a loyalty rewards program, create customer groups, VIP benefits, and specific email marketing campaigns.
The reporting system provides you with more than 40 dofferent kinds of reports. They include sale trends, employee efficiency, and many others. It gives you deep insights into the business functioning. It brings out obscure, granular data that helps you build your strategies.
The base price of the Lightspeed is 99 USD per month. This is costlier than the standard POS systems. However, it is advisable to get a quote from the salesperson for a better pricing. Ou may receive a discount for multiple registers. It also charges a small processing fee for eacjh payment processed.
ShopKeep is a standard software made for small businesses. It includes all standard features of a POS software. Features like employee management, sales tracking, inventory management, customer profiling, tracking, and reporting are up to the mark. It also allows integration with third-party apps.
The inventory management platform is highly customizable. The features of the products can be added along with colors, materials, etc. This allows for effective inventory control. You can also add bundles and pours to manage for restaurants and eateries.
The employee management feature on Shopify allows employees to operate the software. It also helps in improving staff performance. It allows an unlimited number of employees to log in using generated passwords.
The reporting tool performs all standard functions. It also generates employee-specific reports with respect to productivity and activeness. It also generates a report regarding the sales, highest selling products, etc., which helps in better management decisions.
The ShopKeep software is priced on a quote basis. The standard monthly subscription ranges from 69 to 78 USD, which is the average price in the market. Other add-ons include contactless readers, magstripe readers, and other features. You need to pay to integrate other third-party apps with ShopKeep. Although the base price is standard, the price of add-ons can pile up and prove expensive.
QuickBooks by Intuit is well known for its accounting abilities. The POS from Intuit can be easily integrated with the other accounting software from the same company. It also includes all standard functions such as inventory control sales tracking, loyalty reward programs, etc.
Most of the QuickBooks features are standard. The inventory control, employee management, reporting, customer data, etc. perform well. However, they do not have any extraordinary features that deserve to be mentioned.
The unique feature about the POS is that it can be integrated seamlessly with the Intuit accounting software. This gives a comprehensive solution to small businesses that takes care of accounting along with other POS functions.
The pricing of QuickBooks is rather complicated. The software itself doesn’t feature a subscription. It has to be paid for in lump sum, around 1700 USD. However, payment processing needs to be paid for on a monthly basis or as a pay-per-go plan. However, if you are looking for an integrated solution, you cannot do better than QuickBooks.
The Revel POS was created with the small restaurants, bars, diners and takeouts in mind. Due to its device flexibility, it can speed up front-of-house operations such as taking orders, etc. It also performs standard functions such as reporting, inventory management etc. effectively. The user interface is remarkably simple and easy to operate.
All functions such as inventory control are just as good as any other product, although it lacks the power of the Toast inventory management tool. It is capable of providing complete analysis reports.
The CRM feature of the Revel POS is outstanding. It tracks customers, builds profiles and does all necessary functions and more. The loyalty rewards program is especially good, with automatic credit point systems, gift card generation and a lot more.
Revel is priced by the quote. The addons and the subscriptions have to be paid for on a monthly basis. This is a major downside, as the prices cannot be compared, as they are not declared.
Bindo POS is a standard POS software that performs all the necessary functions. It has a clean and simple user interface. It also provides scanning and card reading hardware for its POS solution. It has all features such as inventory management, reports, etc.
The simple UI of the Bindo POS brings all the back-office functions to one platform. This enhances the user experience. Otherwise, all the functions are nowhere out of the ordinary. It performs all functions satisfactorily.
The pricing models are easy to understand. The basic model starts at around 59 USD per month. This software is an affordable option that small businesses should consider.
Although every small business needs a POS best suited for its needs, Square POS covers most of the needs. However to find the most suited software research about the various features and pricing plans is necessary. The above list of the top POS systems will surely help in reaching a buying decision.