How to Choose the Best POS Software for Your Retail Chain

Top retail chains know the right retail point of sale (POS) system can give them a competitive edge. They understand that a POS system can be much more than a cash register. It can serve as a management hub for inventory, labor, loyalty programs, and CRM — as well as equipping them with tools they need to delight customers with efficient, personalized service. Successful retailers give their businesses the advantage of using the best POS system.

ERP Integration

Your enterprise resource planning (ERP) system is vital to your omnichannel retail strategy. It manages data you need to provide the convenient, consistent experiences your customers demand as they move from channel to channel on their path to purchase. Your POS system must integrate seamlessly with your ERP system to give your retail chain omnichannel capabilities. Smart retailers look for POS systems that are ERP agnostic. With the retail industry evolving with increasing velocity, it’s smart to stay agile and anticipate how to manage change with minimal disruption.

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Extensible

Choosing a POS system that is extensible is another way to solve the problem of agility and response to change. Extensibility means the POS system was designed so software engineers could extend its capabilities without going back to the drawing board. With buzz about virtual shopping assistants powered by artificial intelligence (AI), shopping via image recognition, and automatic payments, smart retail chains are investing in POS systems that are ready for anything.

Open Platform

Some POS systems have open APIs, which allow developers to integrate their hardware and software solutions with the POS system. POS systems with proprietary platforms are much more difficult for software developers to work with, and, as a result, you’ll see the solutions that integrate with them are somewhat limited. Successful retail chains maximize their options.

Scalable

Top retail chains also insist that a POS system is easily scalable. Whether the retailer is opening a new store in a neighboring town or on the other side of the world, the POS system should be able to accommodate growth and provide the retailer with the ability to manage all POS terminals in all locations efficiently and accurately from a single dashboard.

Visibility into Operations

Your POS system should support head office and in-store management. It should provide you with the visibility you need into inventory and sales for replenishment planning and forecasting. Integration with your ERP system can give you the option to manage inventory as a single stock pool for all channels and locations, saving money and minimizing lost sales due to out-of-stock items. It can even enable ship-from-store capabilities.

Top retail chains also leverage their POS systems for labor management tasks like time clock and evaluating employee performance, giving managers’ more time to devote to revenue-producing activities.

Customer Engagement

The first five features on this list of POS systems top retail chains use certainly contribute to great customer experiences and increased customer engagement. But the POS system software itself should be designed to make them easy to achieve. Insist on intuitive user screens that sales associates can learn quickly and use accurately to provide fast, efficient service. Make sure the POS system puts everything a sales associate needs — including customer data, shopping history, and product information — at their fingertips to provide excellent, personalized service that will win shoppers’ loyalty.

Successful retail chains are successful because they equip their businesses with tools that keep them at the top, including state-of-the-art POS software. How well does your POS system contribute to your business’ success?

Great retail doesn’t just happen, you have to make it happen. Download one of our Retailer’s Guides to Success for useful strategies for your vertical.

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Senior Vice President of Sales for Asia Pacific and the Americas, for CitiXsys, Paula Da Silva has more than 10 years’ experience in the retail industry associated with delivering innovative software solutions to mid and large sized retailers. Known for her strong track record of operational excellence and managing a global ecosystem of technology partners, Paula has been instrumental in building the iVend Retail into a global market leader in the retail industry and plays a major role in the Company’s overall performance.

Paula Da Silva