Now is an advantageous time to be running a small business. Small business owners currently have a multitude of new technologies at their disposal, in addition to tax benefits. Now more than ever, business owners can reach their target market as well as make their operations more efficient. For example, point of sale (POS) systems are available to help small businesses process customer orders more efficiently while keeping track of their inventory in real time.
A POS, as its name implies, is a system that records sales transactions at the point a customer makes a purchase. But POS software has significantly evolved and now integrates with back-office and customer relationship management (CRM) systems to update inventory, accounts, and other modules. It is essentially a hub that is crucial to business operations.
In addition to the software, POS systems will have hardware components installed at strategic locations where the people serving customers, or the customers themselves can access them. These components include barcode scanners, monitors (or, in some cases, tablets), and cash drawers.
Integrated POS software, as described above, automatically updates other modules, ensuring all the business records are up to date. The fact that record updates don’t depend on manual input reduces the chances of them being forgotten or done erroneously. It also reduces the workforce needed to keep track of the enterprise’s operations and finances. Having one system in place of several from different vendors reduces the challenges of integration as well as the overall cost of the system.
POS for small restaurants can be particularly beneficial in the following ways:
Business and Operations
With every purchase made, the POS software updates sales records from which essential reports regarding the performance of the system can be extracted. You can be able to tell if you need to adjust your pricing or reduce your costs to maintain profits, for instance.
Ordering and Inventory
Every purchase made is not only recorded as a sale, but as a real-time reduction in inventory. The integrated inventory module keeps track of these numbers until the reorder threshold is reached. Alerts are then issued via email, or in some cases, orders to suppliers are automatically prepared.
A POS system can help decrease the time it takes for customers to receive their desired meal in a restaurant. Digital menus can allow patrons to place their orders directly to the kitchen immediately when they arrive instead of having to wait for a human server. Less need for printed tickets means lower operational costs and one less item to keep track of.
Customers being able to reserve their orders online through the POS software eliminates the need for them to visit the restaurant in advance or call to make reservations. It also means reservations can be made at any time of the day or night.
Your customers, as previously mentioned, can be able to place orders at their convenience without having to request the menu and wait to have their order taken. Guests won’t have to wait again for a waiter to hand them their bill; they can go ahead and settle electronically via debit or credit card.
Keeping track of loyalty points is made more accessible by the POS systems as they are automatically updated with every order paid for according to the customer records in the database.
Controlling the Atmosphere
Ambiance is everything in a restaurant, and thanks to your POS system, your customers can be provided with an atmosphere that meets their expectations, based on feedback from them. In addition to this, your POS can be linked with your security systems to, for instance, provide on-demand footage from CCTV cameras.
Food for Thought
A staggering number of single-store retailers currently operate without a POS, surveys have shown- more than half the establishments in the country. You don’t want to be a part of this statistic. All-in-one POS system implementation may seem daunting and expensive, but it isn’t when you think about it.
You will be saving cash flow since you will be investing in a single system from one vendor instead of different systems from different vendors. You will also be saving yourself the headache of seeking support from various sources whenever you need assistance. And with most of these POS systems being cloud-based nowadays, you stand to spend even less on setup. These are just a few of many benefits such systems can unlock for your enterprise.