Which Point of Sale (POS) Software Should I Choose?

Which POS software program should I choose? Well, that is the $10,000 question, or $2,000, or $1000, or below depending on what you ultimately decide on. There are hundreds (if not thousands) of POS software programs to pick from. In fact, there are so many choices, it can be mind boggling. If you find yourself in that situation now, hopefully this article will help you keep your sanity in tact.

If you own a retail store consider these important questions:

Do you want remote access into your POS software?
Do you want to offer gift/loyalty cards?
Do you want the freedom to choose your own credit card processing company?
Do you want to gather customer information for email or snail mail advertising?
Do you want to offer a layaway program?
Will you need to combine different SKU items to offer a kit under one SKU for resale?
Will you need a wireless barcode (batch) scanner for inventory and upload scanned data to your POS?
Will you want to offer integrated digital signage with your POS system?
Do you plan to open more than one store?
Will you need to print barcode labels?
What type of reporting features do you want the POS software to generate for you?
Will you want to take items on consignment?
Do you need integration with a third party accounting program?
Will you need to sell items by weight? If so, you will need scale integration.
Will you need after hours and weekend phone software tech support?

If you own a restaurant consider these important questions:

Do you want remote access into your POS software?
Do you want to offer gift/loyalty cards?
Do you want the freedom to choose your own credit card processing company?
Do you want to gather customer information for email or snail mail advertising?
Will you need a wireless barcode (batch) scanner for inventory and upload scanned data to your POS?
Will you want to offer integrated digital signage with your POS system?
Do you plan to open more than one restaurant?
Will you need the ability to print product labels? i.e. label on pizza box
Do you need integration with a third party accounting program?
Will you need to sell items by weight? If so, you will need scale integration.
What type of reporting features do you want the POS software to generate for you?
Will you offer modifiers for menu items? i.e. extra cheese, extra mayo, etc
Will you need servers (waiters & waitresses)? If so, then you will need the following:
*Ability for split ticket payments
*Ability for table assignments
*Ability for tip calculation/charge
Will you want to integrate a guest paging system for full service restaurant?
Will you want to take phone orders and offer home delivery?
Will you need after hours and weekend phone software tech support?

The above list of questions to consider are not all inclusive, but, in my opinion, are some of the most important in order to get the software features you need for your business. Of course, the more feature rich a POS software program is… the more it will cost. But you will NEED a POS software program that has the ability to run your business the way you want it. Your POS program should not hinder or frustrate you daily business operations in anyway. If that happens to someone, then chances are he/she made the wrong choice. Once you have narrowed down software vendors you like, then look at the support services they offer. Does the POS program you are interested in have tech support available? If so, what type of tech support? Also, checkout how much they charge for tech support? The ability to get good after sales tech support can be just as important as the POS software itself. There are few things more frustrating then your POS software giving you an error message saying it can’t print to the receipt printer while you have customers in line, so you frantically pick up the phone, call your software vendor and no one answers; now that is a worst case scenario, but it is something to consider when making a final choice for your POS software. Know for sure your chosen POS vendor will be there to support you when needed.

Definitely do your homework and ask the POS software vendors as many questions as you need to in order to make an informed decision. List all all the software features you think you will need on paper, and also list all of the questions you can think of to ask a software vendor. Ask other business owners in your industry what POS software they use and get their advice. If you follow this process, you should be able to make a confident, informed decision and go with a POS software vendor that will be a business partner with you for many years to come.

I am a Point of Sale (POS) professional, and I have been serving the POS industry for 10 years. I have made my extensive industry knowledge and good reputation its own brand within the point of sale industry over the years and have loved every day of it! To know more about me and get current with more POS news and articles, please visit http://www.pointofsalecorner.com.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Shaun_F_Kiely/1353522