Retail competition is brutal. You need all the best retail POS tools at your disposal in order to streamline your business and keep your customers coming back. Make the checkout and payment experience just as satisfying as the shopping experience with these simple steps.

1. Make Sure You Have the Right Software

The right software can mean the difference between a payment processing nightmare and the smooth transactions you’ve always dreamed of. You’ve probably been here before: You’re in a hurry so you zoom through the store picking up your essentials as fast as you can, then you get to the checkout line and everything stops.

You wonder what in the world is taking so long, and then when it’s finally your turn everything comes clear. The clerk is struggling.

Correcting entries with every scan, waiting for the system to catch up, manually entering discount codes and coupons. You finally swipe your card after she enters the total into the scanner, and you both drum your fingers waiting for the transaction to process so you can be on your way.

Don’t let this happen to you or your staff. Make sure you find a POS system that is intuitive and easy to learn and use. Many retail POS systems come with a free trial so you can test them out and confirm they are right for your business. Here are some features you want to look for:

  • Simple to Use

You want a system that makes it easy to enter and edit your inventory, create discounts and promotional pricing, and add variable taxes automatically. You also want a system that integrates with your card reader so that you do not have to enter totals yourself. This saves time and eliminates the possibility of human error.

  • Manages Inventory

As a merchant, your time is constantly being divided between all the tasks required to keep your business running smoothly, but there are a few things you could do to make things easier. Get an ePOS system that automatically takes items out of inventory as they are purchased and reorders stock for you when numbers reach a predetermined point. This way, you can focus on other aspects of growing your business and keeping your staff and customers smiling.

  • Automated Accounting

Business managers spend one to three days every month performing bookkeeping tasks. As much as you likely appreciate having a good understanding of your fiscal flow, you probably did not get into the retail business to spend all your free time learning accounting. Modern ePOS systems will help you keep all your money straight by automating entries and reconciliations, helping you manage payroll, and allowing you access to all your information from almost any device wherever you are.

  • Employee Management

You want to set your employees up for success, and having the tools they need to complete their tasks in a straightforward manner is one of the most important elements. Integrated ePOS systems allow you to keep your employee management tools in one place so monitoring performance, communicating, scheduling, and assigning tasks are all simplified for you and your staff.

  • Customer Relationship Management

Personalising the shopping experience for your customers has never been easier than it is with modern ePOS systems. When you integrate them with your customer relationship management software, you can use the sales and transaction data to create targeted marketing that makes your customers feel heard and understood.

  • Comprehensive Reporting

In addition to all the powerful business management tools your retail ePOS system can provide by integrating with your software, it should be able to pull everything together to create a clear picture of your business data.

Look for an ePOS system that features the reporting tools you need in order to make informed decisions about all of your business needs, from when to stock more purple widgets, to which hours need the most staffing during the holiday season.

2. Choose the Right Processor

Each processor will have its own list of features to offer, and you need to do your research in order to choose the one that is right for you. When looking at different companies, keep the following in mind:

  • Payment Methods Offered

Most processors allow you to accept the most popular forms of payment, but you may want to consider what your customers prefer most. Make sure your processor allows you to be flexible in which forms of payment you can accept, as debit cards, credit cards, and NFC and contactless payments are on the rise in popularity.

  • Security

EMV certification is the latest standard in security measures for payments that do not involve cash. EMV compliance is a requirement, and liability for a security breach falls on the entity that was least compliant. Make sure your processor provides you with EMV certified equipment so you can protect yourself and your customers.

  • Associated Costs

Your processor will take their fees directly from the transactions made, and it is important to understand the costs associated with your processor. Some charge a flat monthly fee and then a smaller percentage per transaction, others charge a flat fee per transaction in addition to the percentage. The number of transactions you do and your monthly business volume will play a major role in which processing fees are right for you, so make sure you know what to expect before you sign up with a processor that does not make sense for your business.

3. Train Employees

As long as you have done your due diligence in choosing the right retail ePOS system for your business, training your employees should be the fun part. Make sure they understand the ins and outs of the system and then work with them to make the most of the integration with your customer relationship management software to boost your sales and keep your customers coming back for more.