What is an ePOS System?
An ePOS system or Electronic Point of Sale system, in its most basic function, takes over the tasks of a cash register - counting, registering transactions, printing receipts.
However, it can be also part of a bigger system within the business - integrating back office, recording sales, managing relationships with customers, ordering and much more. Nowadays, more and more stores prefer retail ePOS systems to optimise their day-to-day operations.
Depending on the business, ePOS systems use a combination of hardware, software and peripherals - barcode scanners, customer displays, printers, touch screens, weighing scales, etc. an ePOS machine will use a variety of hardware, software and peripheral solutions.
When it comes to operating systems, there is variety to choose from. Surprisingly, MS-DOS is still in use, but you can also find POS systems running on Unix, Linux and Windows as well as cloud solutions working on mobile devices. These solutions are known as mPOS systems (mobile Point of Sale).
If you are looking for an ePOS system that will best match your business needs and will improve your business' performance, you have reached the right place. Market Inspector is here to help you in your decision making process. Simply fill in the contact form, stating your preferences, and we will connect you with our qualified suppliers. They will provide you with free, no-obligation quotes.
In the lines below you can get informed about the advantages of POS systems and some further considerations to take into account when choose the right system for your business.
Different Types of ePOS Systems
What are the different types of POS systems? The very first were POS systems, which took over the basic functionality of cash registers. Later, ePOS systems, together with POS software, emerged and replaced mechanical POS system.
With the advancement of technology, software based POS systems emerged, which offered more functions than their predecessors. As mentioned above, wireless or cloud based POS Systems are becoming more common, bringing even more functions and convenience to businesses and its customers.
With an ePOS system it is easier to track and categorise your inventory, therefore making it easier to keep track of what is missing, what needs to be ordered, and what items are redundant. PointOne ePOS system is one such solution that provides many benefits to various businesses.
An ePOS system will make checkouts faster, make processing of transactions easier and make payments will cards more convenient - thereby improving the whole point of sale. This will lead to higher customer satisfaction.
You will gain access to sales data – reports, therefore making it easier to analyse pricing strategies, sales trends, profits and costs - creating business opportunities that support long term growth.
The possibility to see purchasing history, sales trends and customer preferences will give the ability to businesses to improve their CRM (customer relationship management) abilities. Customer satisfaction will be also improved by faster checkouts as mentioned above.
These advantages lead to improved overall efficiency. Faster checkouts, inventory tracking, better reports lead to cutting time spent on these tasks, more satisfied customers, higher sales and lower costs.
The Best ePOS Systems
Searching for a new software or a whole ePOS system can be overwhelming. There are a variety of potential software, hardware, and accessories to choose from. Mobile point of sale technologies (mPOS) are entering this field, which makes the choice even more complex.
What is the best ePOS system? Is there one that suits all the different businesses and their needs or is it wiser to invest in specialised solutions? What are the things to consider when looking for an ePOS system for sale and which mistakes is it better to avoid?
Our providers of the best ePOS system in the UK are here to listen to your enquiries with a free service. You just need to fill in the form and you will receive up to 4 non-binding quotes tailored to your company.
What to Consider Before Buying an ePOS System?
There are few aspects to consider before buying a new ePOS system:
History of ePOS Systems
The history goes back to the first cash register created back in 19th century in a saloon. Because of corrupted employees, James Ritty, the owner of the business, decided to create a machine that would make a noise whenever an employee is reaching for cash and that way notifying management.
This cash register was called Ritty’s Incorruptible Cashier and was patented. However, Ritty later sold his rights and company National Manufacturing Company came to existence. Company was again sold and renamed to National Cash Register Company.
One issue was taken care of at this time and that was record of transactions or as we now know it as receipts. These registers were now able to print receipts.
In 1970s Electronic Cash Registers, ECRs, were introduced and POS systems were provided by IBM.
There was basic inventory function and the possibility to print this report. However, ECRs had problems with functionality and were therefore slow to be implemented in businesses.
With the advancement in technology and computers, POS software start to emerge and POS systems got better with the technology. There was effort to standardise POS systems, however this effort did not yield any success.
POS systems continue to evolve and new trends such as mobile POS systems and POS systems using cloud computing are emerging and further changing how businesses operate.
Benefits of ePOS Systems
Electronic POS systems are much more advanced than basic cash registers and they will make your business life easier as they offer many features and options. You might not realize how much time and money you waste by keeping your old cash register until you incorporate an electronic POS.
Using an ePOS system in your company will make your daily tasks easier and will make your business more profitable. Here are the main advantages of ePOS systems.
Want to know more about ePOS systems and all their benefits? Just fill out the contact form. Our suppliers are here to listen to your enquiries. Furthermore, they will provide free non-binding quotes customised to your business.
ePOS systems advantage - easy to use!
When buying an ePOS system, you don’t need to be worried about spending a long and painful time adapting to your new device. In fact, one of the main advantages of having an ePOS system is its intuitivity. Most of the software products are really simple and you will certainly get used to your new hardware and interface really fast.
Some of the ePOS are installed on a touchscreen, which makes it even more intuitive. Your employees won’t need a complex training and even those not comfortable with technology will be quickly familiarized with it. As a consequence, the checkout process will be faster and the waiting line for your customers will be reduced.
Managing your employees is easier with an ePOS system as it provides you with features specially designed for this purpose. You will be able to monitor performances by checking who did what and when.
This will give you the advantage of seeing which of your employees is doing well and who is doing not so good. You can use this feature in order to create a slightly competitive spirit in your company and have a reward system to push your employees to work as good as they can.
Besides giving helpful information about your employees, another advantage of having an ePOS system is that it provides you with advanced reports. All the transactions and data are instantly saved and you will have an interesting and useful overall picture of your business.
You will also be able to see which month, week, day or even exact time when you have been performing best. Additionally, the best and worst performing products will be identifiable, which can help you to adapt and improve your product range and offers in the long run
As explained above, an ePOS system can collect a lot of information. Therefore, one important advantage of having an ePOS system is the fact that you will gather much and valuable information about your customers. As soon as a customer pays by card, the system will save the amount he/she spent, the products he/she bought and even the frequency with which he/she is visiting you.
Having this information available can allow you to tailor your marketing promotions for each of your customers. You might want to give a small extra benefit to really good customers or you might also want to send a reminder to a customer that you haven’t seen for long. The ePOS system will allow you to develop personalised and valuable relations with your customers.
Adapt your Range of Products
The two points mentioned above will allow you to adapt your product range and offers depending on your business needs. In fact, having data about your business’ performance and about your customers will give you a competitive advantage. It will help you understand which products are worth keep ordering for your store and which are not.
Some of the items you sell might not be profitable and you might not be able to detect this with a simple cash register. You can find this information useful in order to adapt your marketing campaigns. For example, knowing that a product is not selling might be a good reason to put in on sale.
Optimal Stock Management
Another advantage of having an ePOS system is that it helps you manage your stock efficiently. The software will enable you to quickly identify which are the products available in your storehouse and which are out of stock.
Some of the programs even have the feature to automatically purchase the items that are running out of stock. Therefore, apart from reducing the headache when managing your stock, an ePOS will save you money by not letting any old items forgotten in the back of your storehouse.
Accurate Financial Data
An advanced ePOS system has a lot of features that automatically do some of the daily tasks of the businesses. One of the advantages of having an ePOS system is that you can have financial data automatically updated as often as you want.
Your employees will not have to spend time counting the money by the end of the day. Besides saving time to your employees, the software will ensure you have accurate data and therefore will reduce the margin for human errors.
Many ePOS software can also be used on mobile devices with a browser. Mobile POS systems allow you to receive payments from anywhere in your store or even from outside the actual store. This is really convenient to reduce the customer's’ waiting time.
Restaurant epos system is used a lot as it allows waitresses to process payments at the customer tables and so the service is improved. Having a mobile POS system is not as expensive as buying a new ePOS hardware.
One of the advantages of having an ePOS is that it increases the security in your store. One of the best features to be protected from theft is to have different logins for each employee, which will allow you to track their activities.
You can even set up restrictions on specific functions for each employee. For example, you can restrict the access to certain reports to your waitresses. This will ensure that your data is kept confidential and will not be deleted or changed by mistake.
Another solution to discourage your employees from stealing cash is to have different cash drawers for each of them.
An ePOS system will not only save you time by receiving payments faster but also by making the execution process for many other tasks quicker. All the above mentioned features will lead to time optimization on most of your daily tasks, compared with the time spent on the same tasks when having a simple cash register.
Don’t underestimate the importance of this advantage as it will allow you to concentrate on your customers and their experience. Devoting more time to customers will improve the service and happy customers will probably choose you again.
You might be surprised by this last advantage, but it is a fact that ePOS systems for small businesses are not necessarily expensive.
You do not always need to buy a new hardware as most of the times the software can be installed on your existing hardware (your current computer or iPad).
Concerning the software, different options are available on the market depending on your type of business and your industry. Software prices go from free to upfront or monthly payments.
If you have a small store with a small number of daily transactions, you could have your iPad ePOS system installed with a free or very cheap software.
If you are ready to upgrade to an ePOS system and enjoy all of these advantages, you need to do some research and find different options and suppliers available on the market. You should find the equipment that fits your needs the best.
If you feel lost at this point, or would simply like to get quotes, you can fill out the quote request form at the top of this page. You will receive up to four quotes with epos system prices from our qualified suppliers, with no strings attached.
How To Choose the Right ePOS System
Knowing the benefits of ePOS systems, how to choose the right one for your business? What are the things to be considered before purchasing?
The first thing to consider is what kind of business are you in and then look for a solution that matches your needs. Some solutions may be usable for any kind of business, others may be more specialised - offering functions for specific actions.
There are software solutions that can be used in grocery stores, restaurants, bars, spas, jewellery stores, salons, resale store, etc. For example, ePOS system for restaurants, takeaways and bars call for Integer ePOS systems, which specialise in these business sectors.
The second thing to consider is the price. Mobile POS systems and cloud systems might be cheaper and usually work on a monthly or annual payment.
However traditional ePOS systems tend to cost more but include a supplementary service agreement as well as complementing software, which might be more suitable for larger businesses.
Hardware should be also considered. Are you able to choose which hardware you want to use or is it given before the purchase? Some companies offer basic hardware for cheaper prices and better hardware for more expensive orders. Do you need a barcode scanner? Weighing scale? Touch screen? Those are things to consider.
Another aspect of ePOS solutions that is important to think about is after sales service.
- Does the company offer training for your staff?
- Do they offer on-site technicians?
- Is their service available 24/7?
- Do you need to pay for this kind of service or it is offered for free?
EPOS Solutions for Your Business
Mobile POS systems will offer more choice, as software - apps, can be downloaded, purchased and operated independently from the device. There is more freedom in choosing the app and the device. The choice of hardware or device in this case, is up to the business owner – can range from personal computers through tablets to smartphones.
Today there is a wide variety of ePOS software and hardware. It is a good idea to look for feedback for given ePOS solution. It is also possible to try the chosen ePOS solution demo and see if it the right one for you.
If you are curious and interested in getting quotes for the product of your choice, you can fill in the contact form at the top of the page and we will get in touch with you as soon as possible. We will connect you with our qualified suppliers, who will provide you with free, no-obligation quotes on the requested product. We hope to make your research process easier and convenient!
What Are Open Source ePOS Systems?
While looking for a new ePOS system you might have stumbled upon open source ePOS systems. Open source ePOS solutions have gained popularity in recent years and while they might seem like a good idea, however, before investing in one, you should know what open source software means.
Open source software is usually created collaboratively and publicly. Distribution is usually free with source code included. Source code can be modified and redistributed, with the possibility for anyone to modify it, if it is in their capabilities.
This solution sounds like a good idea for smaller businesses since most of them are for free, but there are also other advantages that open source ePOS systems bring. There are also some disadvantages that should be considered before acquiring an ePOS system.
If you want to know more about open source ePOS systems in the UK, do not hesitate to fill out the form, get in touch with our suppliers and list your company needs. You will receive 4 free non-binding quotes customised to your business.
To see what solution might be the best for you, here is a comparison of open source ePOS systems and ePOS systems:
Extra Devices for ePOS Solutions
When selecting your ePOS solution you might also want to include extra devices in order to have more features. Here is a small list of the extra equipment that you can add to your ePOS solution.
- Credit Card Machine
Nowadays, a credit card machine is compulsory, as you don’t want to lose customers because you can’t take their payment. The most common way to process a card is with a chip and PIN transaction. Notice that not all the systems accept all the different cards. For example, a customer paying with an American Express will generally lead to extra fees.
The cost of a credit card machine differs from one company to the other. Some of them will ask for a monthly fee, some will require a payment for each transaction, and others will ask for both. You have to know approximately how many monthly transactions you expect in order to calculate which solution is the most suitable for you.
- Barcode Scanner
If you have many items in store with many daily transactions, this device will save you a lot of time. Vendors won’t have to type prices manually, as the barcode reader will quickly show all the product’s information on the POS system.
- Receipt Printer
You will need a specific receipt printer according to the size and layout you want your receipts to be. Printing resolution, speed and paper cut option are features that you need to take into consideration.
Which ePOS Solutions Do You Need?
Prices vary considerably for the different ePOS solutions. Before buying a specific model, you must know if you need advanced features or a basic cash register.
Do you sell many items every day? Do you want an efficient loyalty program? If yes then you need to invest in a more advanced cash register.
If you think it takes too long to research or if you feel lost and want to know more about the different ePOS solutions, just fill out the quote request form at the top of this page. You will be contacted with professional and reliable suppliers, and will receive up to four quotes with no strings attached.
Read more: ePOS Hardware
What are ePOS Terminals?
EPOS terminals are a necessary equipment for ePOS systems. They come in different types and sizes according to their utilization purpose and character of the business they are implemented in.
The ePOS terminals are devices consisting of touchscreen and are usually wireless. They offer different set ups to meet the demands of different industries such as retail, hospitality or restaurants.
Benefits of Implementing ePOS Terminal
- Faster payment process
- Smaller fees compared to credit card fees
- Possible integration of loyalty programmes
- Tracking of inventory, customers behaviour and trends
- Personalised shopping experience
- Improvement of CRM
Are you interested in incorporating an ePOS terminal for your business? Simply fill in the contact form on the right side if this page and we will connect you with our qualified suppliers. They will provide you with up to 4, customized and free quotes, no strings attached.
Prices of ePOS Terminals
The costs of ePOS terminals vary according on the type purchase and character of the device.
Renting ePOS terminal can start at £25, depending on the provider. If you want to invest in buying the ePOS hardware, you should prepare at least £300.
Buying or Renting?
It is possible to either buy or rent an ePOS terminal. While renting, the business owner pays a monthly charge + VAT.
Renting an ePOS terminal is the most common form of ownership in the UK, since it includes customer support in the case of problems and malfunctions. Some, if not most suppliers, offer the possibility of keeping hardware and software up-to-date.
Another option is to buy an ePOS terminal. While upfront costs might be higher, in the long term this option can be cost effective, as long as the system is reliable and is well maintained.
However, keeping the hardware up to date can be costly as every update will result in an extra investment.
Whether or not support is provided depends on the chosen ePOS company. Some suppliers offer support for a certain period of time after a purchase, but it is a good idea to be informed about the possibilities before completing a purchase.
Read more: ePOS Rental
How Can an ePOS Terminal Help You?
ePOS terminal doesn’t have to serve only as electronic payment device, but also:
- Reads debit or credit cards. A card is inserted into the interface device (magnetic swipe reader, or chip reader) and a PIN is entered on the PIN entry device.
- Communicates with customer’s bank and checks if there are sufficient funds. This is done in cooperation with the ePOS system.
- Transfers the desired amount of money.
- Records the transaction and prints receipts for customer and a copy for the business.