This article will give you an overview of the pros and cons of using an EPOS system in your business, rather than just a traditional cash till.
Advantages of EPOS
There are several advantages to using an EPOS system in your business. If you are just starting out as a business owner or vendor, it can be hard to understand why you should invest into more expensive hardware rather than opting for the cheaper version, such as a simple cash till. An EPOS system is an integrated system that can organise, control and analyse various parts of your business, from cash transactions to backend reporting, staff monitoring and inventory control.
The additional features an EPOS system offers over a cash till are interesting enough, however, it is predominantly the integration of all features in a single system that makes life so much easier for the merchant. With a sophisticated EPOS system it is possible to get reports about best-selling items, best-performing staff, peak sales times and best-performing sales channels, allowing you to optimise your business flow easily.
The 5 Business Benefits of EPOS
1. Financial Accuracy
One advantage of EPOS systems is the increased financial accuracy when charging customers. Traditionally, businesses rely on their staff’s competence to correctly calculate sales transactions, which can lead to mistakes and omissions. This can result in customers being overcharged, reducing the likelihood of them returning, or undercharged, resulting in a loss of profit. EPOS systems greatly reduce the possibility of such staff errors, ensuring that a business's pricing and charging structure remains consistent.
Electronic point of sale systems allow businesses to accurately monitor and record staff activity. Being able to pinpoint which staff members were responsible for specific transactions can prove extremely useful for employers. For example, employers can identify employees with the strongest sales figures, encouraging a spirit of competition within the business. In contrast, those with particularly poor sales figures, or those displaying unusual sales activity, such as unusually high levels of voided transactions, can be easily identified.
3. Speed & Efficiency
EPOS systems greatly improve the speed and efficiency of transactions, which will appeal to customers and help your employees focus on serving more people. This can improve your customers' overall experience and encourage repeat custom in the future.
4. Stock Management
Modern EPOS systems can also be used to manage stock. Businesses have the ability to quickly review their current levels of stock, and easily identify areas in which a greater level of stock is required. The advantage of an automated EPOS system is that it can save a noticeable amount of time compared to traditional, manual stocktaking operations.
A final advantage of EPOS systems is their ability to produce a variety of business performance reports. Such reports can range from a basic analysis of daily or annual profit margins, to an identification of the top selling products or services in a company's range. Such information can provide a business with a useful picture of their overall performance, and can help influence marketing campaigns. For example you can apply discounts to less popular sales items at certain times in the year.
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Making The Most Of Your EPOS System
An EPOS system can bring huge advantages to your business, and there are steps you can take to ensure you maximise these benefits. Doing some research beforehand to understand exactly what you are looking for will help you find what you need more easily and ensure that you are not paying for unnecessary features.
The Right EPOS System
While almost any EPOS system is an advantage over no EPOS system, you can maximise the benefits of investing in an EPOS system by making sure you buy the right system for your business. What kind of system you need depends on many factors including the industry you serve and the size of your operation.
The Cost Of An EPOS System
Understanding the costs associated with an EPOS system will help you choose the right product and pricing structure for your needs.
Cheap Epos Systems
Buying the cheapest EPOS system you can find can often turn out to be a false economy, because the advantages your EPOS system can bring you will be compromised if you are missing vital features. But if you are sure of all features you need from your EPOS system, the you can safely invest in the cheapest possible system that meets all your requirements.
Find Free EPOS Software
The advantage of modern EPOS systems is that many components are compatible with each other and you can create a system that is just right for you. If the bundle you have chosen doesn't come with a software package, or you prefer to mix and match hardware to suit your specific needs, then it is possible to find free EPOS software to complement your system.
Understand How EPOS Works
Understanding fully how EPOS systems work will help you make the most of the benefits an EPOS system can offer. You will be able to pick the system that complements your business the most and make the best use of its features.
Disadvantages of EPOS
Overall cost is likely to be at the forefront of a business owner's mind when considering an EPOS system. Standard EPOS packages, including digital touchscreen, cash register and other peripherals, often cost around £2000 or higher in the UK.
As a result, EPOS systems can be quite an expensive purchase, particularly for small businesses, or businesses requiring a large number of systems. When more advanced EPOS capabilities or additional systems are required, prices can increase noticeably. However, there are several options to lower the cost of investing in an EPOS system, specifically renting or leasing a system or identifying the core business needs and then choosing the most basic and therefore cheapest system that fulfills all requirements.
An additional issue associated with the use of EPOS systems is the regular maintenance requirement. Although some suppliers offer free maintenance for a period of time to incentivise purchase, the effect of regular maintenance can often prove to be time consuming and disruptive to operations.
EPOS systems may also require regular software and/or hardware updates in order to maintain optimum performance, and owing to the constantly developing nature of IT based systems, these updates can prove to be an ongoing expense. However, if renting or leasing an EPOS system, upgrades and maintenance are often included in the price.
If you are interested in hearing about EPOS prices for your business, then fill out the form at the top of this page and a select group of excellent suppliers will get in touch with you. The questions in our web form are designed to help us gauge your business needs and select the suppliers which can offer you the best service. Our tailored quote service is completely free of charge. Let us help you find the right EPOS system for your business!