You recently decided to start a restaurant business. You have found a suitable location. You have bought everything – chairs, tables, utensils – you think you will need to get started.
While that might sound like good news to you, running the business without a good POS system could make your lovely investment a huge money pit. Unfortunately, most POS systems come in different varieties and are made to serve a different set of needs. Finding a good POS can be a mind experience for many people.
In this post we are looking at some of the defining qualities of a good Point of Sale system that can help you through your journey to purchasing a POS for your business:
- Competitive pricing
Small businesses often run into financial constraints. If you are new to the industry, the news is that you have entered at a great time. While most standalone POS systems have high price points, the advent of cloud computing has made things a little bit better for you.
Today, you can easily find a reasonably priced model cut for your specific needs. News is, there are still many on the market today. And finding the best for you – competitively priced with transparent pricing – may not be easy.
- Speed and ease of use
Your POS should be easy to single-handedly install and use. Even when it comes to training your employees, it should not be a month-long affair. A few minutes, even for part-timers it should suffice.
- Why is it important? A poor quality POS can be maddening to your employees.
- Does it have a steep learning curve?
- Is the layout too sophisticated for the average user?
Then chances are your cooks, managers, waiters will be intimidated by the POS. That means you will be treating your customers to a dreadful Breaking Bad experience that would surely hamper profitability.
- Good for keeping inventory
Inventory woes scare every restaurant owner more than a warrior wasp’s sting. Poor inventory could be the easiest deathbed for your business. But if you have devised effective methods of inventory management and reporting, then you are able to tell when and where you make your most money.
Because restaurants are head-to-head with this notably contentious space, a good inventory-capable POS can be your consent in disguise. So you can easily and almost effortlessly keep track of every drink, item (and even every ingredient) sold.
- Excellent reporting features
In the modern business environment, business intelligence is everything. And numbers do not lie. That means as a manager or business owner, you need to have a sophisticated, industry-specific system that gives you numeric insight into what all the departments are doing, items preferences, how time is spent, how many customers have been served, etc.
A good POS should offer real-time reporting and update you with pricing, logging times, inventory, promotional and procurement.
- Above reproach customer/technical support
If you have ever worked in a restaurant environment, you must be familiar with the panic mode that engulfs the employees when the POS system breaks down.
If you can’t get anyone on the line to help, you troubleshoot the problem in less than 24 hours, think twice before taking the plunge.
Consider buying from the vendors who offer (and can guarantee) you a prompt response to your call/emails just when things go awry.
The support team should also be ready to help you with credit card help, training and software upgrades if need be.
Your POS should allow connections to other apps and tools that are equally important for your business. For example, if you want to collect customer emails for follow-ups campaigns, you may want to integrate your POS with.
That means when you are sending emails to your loyal customers, you can skip that point of having to update your email list. There is so much integration you can do. It all boils to your specific needs.
While it is so easy to rent and equip your restaurant, steering it to profitability is not always easy. To succeed, you need to get efficient systems that help them manage their businesses. Unfortunately for starters, getting a good POS can be a daunting task. And it gets worse if you know your specific POS needs and how to choose the best system for your business.