Category Archives: Point Of Sale

Should You Move to a Cloud-Based Point of Sale?

As technologies continue to move to the cloud, point of sale (POS) systems are following that trend and becoming increasingly cloud-based. Cloud-based POS systems can offer many advantages over the more traditional “hardwired” systems.

The greatest advantage with perhaps the largest impact to business owners is cost. POS becomes a low monthly fixed cost system with all services included.

POS systems can now be streamlined networks that connect to mobile systems and software that provide multiple data points about consumers. With this kind of information, businesses can drive highly-customized, automated loyalty programs.

The system can also be accessed online from anywhere and like traditional POS, can be integrated with hardware and peripherals like cash drawers, scanners and printers. By interconnecting every part of the system, you minimize friction throughout the process.

So what are the major advantages to cloud-based POS?

  • Cost: Cloud-based POS systems cost significantly less than their traditional counterparts because configuration costs are lower.
  • Convenience: Owners can access customer data anywhere they can connect to WiFi.
  • Centralized Data: All of your data is stored in one place, and can be accessed virtually.
  • Security: Since everything is stored in the cloud, you don’t have to worry about certain network vulnerabilities that exist with other traditional systems.

In general, using cloud-based POS systems give your business flexibility. By streamlining the hardware and networks used to run your sales, you can remove multiple opportunities for human error, cyberthreats, and system breakdowns. Combine these benefits with the other features of mobile POS, and you have an easy business decision in bringing your POS to the most up-to-date infrastructures in the cloud.

Ready to upgrade your POS? Download our POS Checklist to see if moving your system to the cloud is the right decision for you.

 

 

Driving Customer Loyalty Programs through your POS

Customer loyalty programs are essential to bringing back your most enthusiastic guests, again and again. The days of paper punch cards have passed, so how can you bring your business into the digital marketplace?

Your point-of-sale (POS) system is a great place to start collecting data about your customers. It’s where you can gather the most information about their behavior, like how much they typically spend, and what time of day they usually visit your business.

But, you could take it one step further, by empowering customers to be in control of their own customer loyalty programs. By giving customers the power to see how far they are along towards their next incentive, guests develop a vested interest in patronizing your store more frequently. That’s great for sales, of course, but it’s also great for developing a fanatic customer base.

Many POS systems can allow guests to, for example, scan their own receipts using their phone to earn rewards. The scanned receipts also provide customers a transaction history of their own orders, and allow them to easily re-order their favorite items. With these POS features, guests no longer have to remember to tell your staff that they are loyalty program customers before checking out. Their receipt becomes a scannable way that customers can earn points to work towards their reward.

The app-based loyalty program makes it fun for guests to use, but the data you will gather from this system is invaluable. In addition to phone numbers and email addresses, you can also see stats such as number of visits, average time spent in-store, lifetime rewards, and lifetime spend. This allows you to segment your customers and target them with promos, events, or specials. This is particularly valuable when their phone indicates they are within close proximity of your storefront.

If your current POS system does not enable customer loyalty incentives like we’ve just described, it’s probably time for an upgrade. Look for a POS systems that has built-in loyalty options as well as the option to work with 3rd party apps. In addition to making the customer experience fun and engaging, the data insights you’ll get about your customers make switching to a better POS a no-brainer. Not sure if your POS system is delivering value to you? Download our free POS checklist to see if your POS should be improved.

Take Advantage of our Free Annual System Review

From time to time we hear our customers say “we don’t use half of the features of our point of sale system” and “We are still having problems with the system,” or even “We need more training, we want to start using loyalty and gift cards but we don’t know where to start.”

These questions are the reasons that we offer a free POS system review for our customers and even those businesses that aren’t our customers. So many of our customers tell us they don’t have time for us to review their system, (or maybe they’re afraid there is a hidden fee). I’m here to tell you that it’s super easy, and it’s super free!

YES!
I want a FREE Annual System Review
Courtesy of your friends at Essential

We want you to take advantage of these offers for several reasons:

  1. It’s free! It’s easy! If you are in Maryland, we can come to your place of business; if you are outside of our beltway, we can easily set up a conference call.
  2. We think it’s for restaurant owners and managers to understand the latest point of sale and payment processing technology – these are the systems that run your business and save you money!
  3. Employees turnover – sometimes the employee that helped set-up the system is no longer with your company. This is a good time to review your system and any system requirements or changes you may want.
  4. We will ask questions like, “What are the top 5 projects your management team has decided to pursue in the coming year?” How can we help?
  5. We want to do a better job for you and encourage your feedback – how we can improve our services and communications and how we can help you in the coming year?
  6. Lastly, we will come up with a specific plan of action for the areas that are discussed during the meeting.

Plus, we like visiting with our customers and learning what is working and what is not working for them. We’re your partner, we can come up with solutions to benefit you in all your technology areas, not just point of sale systems