Cheap POS Software Isn't The Answer!
- By Jeff Haefner
Let's start off by saying that cheap POS software is a bad idea. That doesn't mean there aren't a few decent packages that are reasonably priced, but chances are, if you buy on price alone, you'll end up frustrated and dissatisfied.
And more importantly, you'll probably end up losing money -- instead of saving money!!
Trust me. As a retail technology consultant, I've seen hundreds of different POS software packages. I've evaluated cheap POS software packages, expensive POS software, and everything in between.
I've worked with literally thousands of retailers in their search for POS software. I've seen their mistakes. And I've seen their successes!
The good news is that you don't have to go broke to acquire a POS system. I'll talk more about that later.
But for now, I just want you to avoid the mistakes that I've seen hundreds of other retailers make. And cheap should not be your most important criteria when choosing POS software!
Ask yourself why you are searching for cheap POS software. Are you looking for a system for the least amount of money possible? Or, are you really looking for a system that is feature rich but can still give you an excellent return on your POS investment?
What you really should be looking for is POS software that offers great value for amount of money spent and more importantly POS software that will give you a VERY high return on investment (ROI)...
That's exactly what we're going to show you! How to find POS software that will give you the highest ROI.
Before we getting into why you should look for a good POS system that will offer a great ROI, let's start with a definition of POS software in its simplest form.
A POS system is used at the cash register to sell goods to your customers. All sales and transactions are made through your computer. You tell the computer what you are selling, the selling price, and the quantity sold. It calculates the total, including tax and advises how much change is due. It records every sale and tracks everything.
With the computer's memory for each item, it can automate all kinds of tasks. You can easily create sale reports and even determine which items in your business are the most popular.
What you don't typically get from cheap POS software is a very robust system. Good POS systems will help you track inventory, automate your ordering process and even help you communicate with your customers with its customer relationship management capabilities.
In addition, cheap POS software can often give you far more trouble in the long run. If the company selling the cheap POS software doesn't have a good record for bug fixes, updates and customer support, you could end up with a system that is outdated and useless within a few months.
A better strategy is to abandon your search for cheap POS software and instead, concentrate on finding a system that will meet your business requirements and provide a satisfactory return on your investment.
You may be thinking that your POS software is a sunk cost and will not provide any return on investment. Well, think again. With the ability to automate many of your processes, you can save time and money in the long run. In comparison with cheap POS software, a very good Pos system will allow you to manage your business more effectively, and you can expect your revenues to increase!
Perhaps hearing the suggestions from someone that was in your shoes will help. I receive comments like this over and over -- but I coincidentally received this email as I was writing this article.
It was sent to me out of the blue and I just had to include it. The very beginning and end of the email is the most interesting part. Here's the un-edited email:
Haven't heard from you in a while.
I've been using my point of sale system for 6+ months now and IT IS AMAZING! It's required a lot of time on my part to input all the information, but, now that the hard part is done, it is the most valuable tool I have in the store. It's streamed lined my ordering and has allowed me to be more exact about when I need to order things. I've really fine tuned my minimum's and the low level alert report saves me a ton of time rather than walking around the store to see what I need.
The sales information available is unbelievable. Using the average monthly sales on items I've been able to determine approximately how much of an item I need to purchase to get me through the rest of the year which allows me to purchase at the deepest level thus making my profit margin much bigger. The zero sales report has allowed me to know what my "DOGS" are and either discounting them to sell. I can't begin to tell you how much time and money this POS system has saved me. It's GREAT, and I don't know how I limped along without it before. I can assure you that no matter what it takes, I will never be without a POS system in the future.
Also, when I was looking to buy a system, I did a LOT of homework to determine which system I wanted to work with my store and settled for a slightly less expensive system for the sake of saving money. Even though I love the things I can do with the system I have, I can only imagine what a more expensive system would have offered me. If I had to do it over again (which more than likely I will in the future), I would not be pinching pennies. I now know how valuable of a tool the POS system is and it's more than worth the investment I put into it.
Sorry to ramble on,
Gioiosa's Liquor Store
Plattsburgh, NY 12901"
So, if you still really want a cheap POS software program, then by all means do the research and find the best one you possibly can. However, if you are ready to approach your purchase as an investment in your business, then the key is to do the research to determine which program is the best fit for your business.
A great resource to help you make this important decision is The Point of Sale Software Buyer's Guide. This guide is chockfull of useful information that will take you step by step through the analysis of various systems to finally choosing a system that will give you a great return on investment and help you manage your business more efficiently and effectively.
We discourage you from searching out cheap POS software because your POS system is the lifeblood of your retail business.
For more information about the Point of Sale Software Buyers Guide, visit www.possoftwareguide.com.
To Your Success!
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