How to get the most out of your POS
31 Jul 2016
At some point in the not too distant future, we will become a cashless society. And as customers swap cash for cards, Apple Pay and other payment methods, businesses have a greater need to be forward thinking about their own point of sale.
Because today’s customer has high expectations - and if you don’t meet them, you’ll lose sales. We spoke to Andy Forsyth at iZettle, as well as a few successful start-ups, to find out how your POS can help your business grow.
Evaluate your business daily to spot growth opportunities sooner
As an SME you’ll know by now that it’s crucial to stay on top of your incomings and outgoings daily, looking at reports and monitoring and reviewing your progress. The best POS makes this task seamless and maybe even something to look forward to (for the more admin-inclined, at least).
“Simple and easy-to-understand reports give you a snapshot of your business’ performance each day” says Andy. “This is crucial in a pop-up environment with shorter sales windows and the need to adapt to customer behaviour quickly. Filter based on staff or location, and print or email a copy at the end of the day for your records.”
JP Then, the founder of Crosstown Doughnuts, says what he liked about his own POS was that it was free from set-up costs and also had growth in mind from the get-go: “As well as meeting our immediate needs, we saw that it would scale with us and meet our future requirements, so it really was a no brainer.”
Follow and analyse your sales, helping you plan better
A POS gives you instant access to product sales, helping you spot your busiest days and notice trends sooner, which means you can make smarter choices about promotions, improve your budgeting and manage your inventory better.
“With easy-to-read sales reports, you can see what’s working and what isn’t and adjust stock and promote products accordingly - without being overwhelmed by data,” says Andy.
JP agrees, offering that the iZettle in-app sales analysis was a great tool to accompany his own pop-up venture. “It meant we could identify which products, days and specific times worked best for us,” he says, “so that we could focus our marketing and sales strategies.”
Capture feedback and contact details, creating great relationships
Maybe you’re bored of hearing about the importance of capturing the feedback and contact details of your customers, but it really is essential to any healthy business, small or large. “A successful business is one your customers love and keep returning to,” offers Andrew. “So stay in touch and create some great relationships.”
Patrick Dudley Williams, the co-founder of Knots and Socks, has found paperless receipts a great tool for this. “Why not offer email receipts? You'll then be able to remarket to those customers again in the future online, allowing you to make your pop-up continue to pay, long after it’s closed,” he says. “Make sure they are aware they will be marketed to, but as they have already bought something they will generally be receptive.”
Take instant card payments, and never miss a sale again
POS systems have revolutionised small businesses and contributed to the very sudden demise of cash transactions. As their use increases alongside other instant payment solutions like Apple Pay, they’re giving businesses another way to make their customers’ lives easier - and helping you never miss a sale because they don’t have the right change.
POS makes transactions fun (yes, really)
Today’s customers are always favourable to anything that makes their lives easier, including a seamless transaction aided by a smart bit of tech.
“Using a POS gives you the freedom to create a fun way to pay,” say Andrew. “Not being tied to a cash desk means payments can happen more naturally, wherever you are in the store.”
Jamie Laing, the founder of confectionary store Candy Kittens, says because his own business is forward thinking, it’s essential that every detail - down to his payment solutions - aligns with that. As Laing explains: “We’re forward thinking, and we pay great attention to detail - making everything from sweets to the payments process exciting.”