Revamp your Retail Business from the Bottom Up with the Help of a POS Management System
If you’re like most retailers, then you probably spend a good amount of time and resources on finding ways to generate more sales for your business. And, this is a good thing as more sales mean more revenue and the higher your revenues, the more opportunity you have for growth. But, while generating sales for your business is important, you won’t be able to do that successfully unless you have a plan for the actual process that generates those sales.
Yes, it’s crucial to attract new customers to purchase your products and keep those loyal customers coming back to you again and again but if you neglect the systems and processes that physically allow sales to happen; you won’t be raking in the cash!
This is where the right retail management system, or POS management system, comes into play. Now, you may ask ‘What exactly is a retail management system’? A retail management system (RMS) is a set of computing applications that businesses use to operate their retailing operations. Typically, RMS includes applications for Point of Sales (POS), Purchasing & Receiving, Reporting, Inventory Management, Sales Order Management, and Customer Relationship Management (CRM).
Now, here’s the interesting bit. Today, you don’t need to invest in a full-scale Relationship Management System instead you can get the same features, and maybe even more, with a Point of Sale (POS) system with RMS capabilities. In theretail POS system, all retail operations occur in the same technology footprint, allowing you to run your business end-to-end with one system.
With the POS management system, information is readily available, providing retailers visibility into how the different functions of their business are currently doing. And that’s not all, with a cloud-based POS system, you can access critical data in real-time from any device, including smartphones and tablets.
Some Key Reasons Your Need Retail POS System for Your Business
In the past few years, the retail Point of Sales (POS) environment has changed drastically. Retail businesses no longer need to invest large sums in hardware systems. Instead, the new wave of cloud-based retail POS systems provides owners easy access to systems that are crucial for their customers and bottom lines.
Today, your POS system should not be limited to your point of sale activities instead it should be part of a larger solution that helps you run and grow your business end-to-end. If you dwell into why you need a POS management system for your business, then you will find a plethora of reasons. However, the following are the most important reasons you need invest in a retail POS system for your business.
This is one of the most obvious reasons you need a point-of-sale retail management system. The right retail POS management system will automatically reconcile your inventory after each transaction. Compared to restaurant businesses, who generally turn their inventory over faster, retail businesses tend to carry more high-value inventory. Retail businesses need to track stock counts and stop selling products when inventory runs out.
A retail POS system provides the ability to manage inventory with features such as item counts and automated or smart alerts that inform when you’re running low on a product line, which ensures that you never miss a sale. Whether the purchase is made in-store online, with the POS management system you can track each transaction and adjust your inventory numbers accordingly.
In addition to the above, the POS system can provide you with reports having detailed information about what sells best at different times during the day, or over the course of a ‘season’. Put simply, with a retail POS system, you can save hours on inventory management.
When someone makes a purchase with you, the POS management system can collect valuable information such as names, addresses, contact numbers, as well as past purchases and the full order history of the customer. You can collect this information both online and at checkout counters in-store.
By housing all the data pertaining to shoppers, a retail POS system can help you construct useful reports which you can use to more a better and more personalized service to customers. For example, you can offer product recommendations based on the order history of an individual customer, or create promotions based on the collective shopping habits of all your customers.
Customers no longer need to wait in a queue to check out with a salesperson behind a counter. Running a cloud-based POS management system from a tablet or smartphone such as mobile POS or iPad POS, you can record sales from anywhere in the store.
Closing the distance between your customers and customer care employees is something the former would appreciate as this will allow them to have a direct and comfortable conversation with your staff. Additionally, this can improve your in-store security as your shop employees will have more chance to roam round the store and do on-the-spot upselling.
All the previous product orders of a customer are listed on their order history. With a POS management system, you can track specific items purchased by your customers and how much each item cost, along with the information about the customer and the timing of the purchases. Not only that, with a robust retail POS system, you can pull reports and peruse customer order history. To get a different perspective and uncover any trends, you can search this data by product, consumer or date.
With the order history data, you no longer need to do guesswork for your promotions and marketing campaigns. Instead, based on the order histories, you can offer a high level of personalized customer service by:
- Making product recommendations
- Targeting your ads and promotions
- Creating personalized marketing messages
A unique sign is required by most retail POS systems for employees to process a sale. This way, with a POS management system, you can manage multiple retail staff accounts. Not only can you track the number of sales each employee makes, you can also know what products they’re selling successfully. Put simply, with the unique employee accounts enabled by the retail POS system, you can track the productivity of your employees.
With this knowledge, you can provide additional training, support, or opportunities for professional or skills development to staff members who aren’t making as many sales as you’d like. Additionally, it is easier to track and reward your best performers.
As the name suggests, the primary purpose of a point of sale (POS) is to make sales. Therefore, it is natural for any POS system to track all the purchases that flow through your retail store. This may seem like a basic function, but you can derive all sorts of valuable POS data from it. How can you leverage this data? Read through the sales reports generated by POS and keep an eye out for trends. Moreover, sort through the data based on day, days of the week, months of the year, and seasonally. Also, look to answer the following questions:
Can you spot any trends?
Where are the peaks and valleys in your sales numbers?
What is contributing to these trends?
By considering these questions and then answering them, you can find several ways to optimize your business hours to make the most of peak hours and days, and staff your store appropriately for the most productive sales days.
What to Look for in a Retail POS Management System
With the reasons to invest in a retail POS system for your business clear, you may want to think about the most important features you need in the system. While a POS system with RMS capabilities can have a whole host of features, they are certain ‘key’ features that ensure a seamless POS system that can revolutionize any retail business. These ‘essential’ features including the following:
1. The Ability to Handle Multiple Locations
As your retail business grows, you would want to have a POS system that can handle inventory tracking and sales from multiple locations. Just like an omnichannel experience, the ability to handle multiple locations at once can be the difference between getting lost in excess data and seamlessly monitoring sales trends.
2. Inventory Management
Inventory management is both a reason to invest in retail POS and an essential feature that every ‘good’ POS management system has. With a Cloud-based POS system, you can track inventory in real-time. Moreover, you can track your supply levels quickly and more efficiently by integrating business orders with online and in-store purchases.
3. User Accounts and Permissions
There is a good chance that you have multiple people working your registers. In that case, you need a system that allows you to create a user for each of them so that you can track the sales made by each employee. Ultimately, this feature will allow you to set sales goals for each of your employees. Make sure that your POS system allows you to password protect each user and gives you the option of having a user log-in for each new sale they make.
4. Built-in Bookkeeping
This is just as important a feature as inventory management. With built-in bookkeeping in your POS management system, you can maintain efficiency while minimizing the potential for mistakes. The feature allows you to track finances in real-time, which in turn allows you to know the state of your business at all times. Many retailers have admitted that they were wasting time and were even unaware of their business finances before switching to a POS system with bookkeeping capabilities.
5. Mobile Registers
In today’s digital era, your retail business cannot afford to not have mobile registers. Typically, this would mean a cloud POS system with mobile POS capabilities that allows you to run your software on mobile devices such as an iPad. Mobile registers are great in the sense that allows you to prevent queues and ring someone anywhere in the store. You can also create pop-up shops by taking these mobile registers on the road, and with the holiday season coming up, this is a great news. Even if you don’t plan to take your registers onto the road, tablets are useful in the sense that they are more cost-effective and less bulky than traditional desktop registers.
To keep each of your products neatly tagged and trackable, you must have a POS system that can print barcodes. With this ability, you will know exactly where an item is in your system.
7. Simple User-Interface
The time spent training your staff to use technology could be better spent getting them on the shop floor and interacting with your customers. For this reason, you must ensure that your retail POS system has a simple user-interface. The user-interface should be designed for speed and ease of use and must have a short checkout flow that makes it quick and painless to train the staff.
8. Real-Time Sales Tracking
With a POS system enabled for real-time tracking, you can access your back-office server remotely and know everything that’s going on. This covers real-time reports of overall sales, sales attributed to each employee, profit after markup, and other information related to sales. Also, with some POS systems, you can customize these reports to know exactly what you need, no matter where you are.
To maximize sales and profits in the modern retail landscape, you need both an in-store and online presence. This means that you need to have a POS system that can support sales on multiple platforms. With the ability to function on multiple platforms, you have a greater chance of making your retail business thrive.
Once you ensure the above features in your retail POS system, there is little that can stop you from revamping your business from the bottom up using the POS management system.