The Best Free EPOS Software Solutions
The table below details the best free EPOS software bundles available to download or access via the cloud. The systems listed are fully functional in their free versions, although some of them are best suited to sole traders and other very small businesses. Whether a free EPOS software is right for you depends not only on your budget, but also on the functionalities you require from your system.
|Secure login for each employee|
Manage user access rights
|Dashboard and accounting features not included|
|ProffittCenter||Retail||Free support included|
Supports multiple currencies
|Website and user guide not intuitive|
|Specially designed for touchscreen operation|
16 different language packs
|Can have compatibility issues with OS X and Linux|
|Regit Express POS||Retail||Supports a wide range of peripherals||Activation can take up to 4 days|
|Point of Success||Restaurant||Works with touchscreen devices||Older systems are not supported|
Some features not available for 64 bit OS
|Creates CSV files for accounting integration|
Customer loyalty and rewards features
|Volume limitations in the free version of the software|
|Samba POS||Restaurant||Open Source||No accounting integration|
Hiboutik is a free POS software suite that was developed by the IT team of a fashion brand. It was created to meet the demand for an EPOS system which could handle and analyse the sales from both bricks-and-mortar stores and eCommerce ventures.
It was used internally for many years before launching for the public in 2012. It’s many years of service and development before this time means that Hiboutik is quite a sophisticated system. There is a wide range of features included, but multi-pos functionality is a paid extra.
ProffittCenter was developed by Dave Proffitt, an electronics engineer with a retailing background. Due to the hands-on experience of its creator, ProffittCenter is well-suited to small retail businesses and serves their specific needs in an efficient way.
The software is quite basic and installing it requires a certain level of computer knowledge from the merchant. The website and help guides are not structured in a very intuitive way, which might be confusing if you are not computer savvy.
UniCenta POS is an extremely well-designed free POS software bundle, and won a Bossie Award for Best Open Source Application in 2013. UniCenta has custom features for many different industries and is a suitable EPOS system for retail, fashion and hospitality environments.
The program itself offers most features a small business would need from its EPOS software, and the source code is available for download. Support for UniCenta users is available through community forums as well as a tech team which can be reached via email. The company can also set up bespoke systems for larger businesses.
Regit Express POS
The Regit free EPOS software suite was first launched in 1984, so it has a long history. The current version, Regit Express POS Version 3, was released in 2012. The software can complete various basic POS tasks and is a reasonable free software for a small merchant. Although it is free, users must fill in a registration form and wait for the registration code ot be emailed to them, This can take up to 4 days.
Point of Success
Point of Success is a free POS software that focuses specifically on the hospitality sector. It fulfils a variety of functions specific to restaurants and other establishments serving food, such as creating dockets for the kitchen.
Point of Success has great integration and add-on capabilities and other feature such as online ordering, employee scheduling and table management can be added to the software suite as extra paid options.
Imonggo was designed specially for touchscreen devices such as tablets and smartphones. It works on standard computer-and-keyboard setups as well, but the features are especially useful on handhelds. The interface is very intuitive and easy to use, with big buttons and bright graphics. It also features an offline mode for devices without a wireless internet connection.
Samba POS is another free POS suite designed especially for the hospitality industry. It is well designed and completely free to use, with the source code being available to download for anyone who wishes to make modifications to the functionalities. It’s very large negative point is that there is no accounting integration.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Free EPOS Software
While some free EPOS software bundles are quite good, they are mostly suited to small businesses. Even completely full versions will usually be quite basic and not offer the same functionalities as larger, more complex paid bundles.
Free POS Software bundles can be good for new merchants who are trying to understand their business needs and EPOS offerings. Testing free software will enable you to realise which features you use and which you miss (and will be requiring of a future system).
Free EPOS software will obviously save you the cost of having to buy the software, so is a legitimate option for sole traders and other very small companies.
Because the free software bundles are usually quite basic, they are simple and fast to install and don’t require a professional to take care of the installation for you.
Free EPOS systems will often lack functionalities that are vital to even small businesses, such as accounting integration or staff management options.
Open source software can sometimes be unstable and might be less reliable than software purchased from an EPOS supplier.
There is usually no professional support or maintenance for free software packages.
Downloading free EPOS software means that there will be several individual components (hardware and software) to set up and you need to ensure that all of these are functioning correctly and are compatible with each other. If you buy or lease an integrated EPOS system, all components will be compatible and will be set up by the installation engineer.
What Are The Costs In The Long Run?
While free EPOS software offerings can be a good starting point for small businesses, it’s also important to be critical and analyse the associated costs thoroughly. There are several reasons why free EPOS software could work out more expensive in the long run.
Many of them are not actually free. A quick internet search will throw up many listings with free trials, free demos or free support. There are also many bundles which claim to be free but are not really commercially viable in their free versions. They are either too restricted in their features or capabilities, or intentionally restricted in their transactional volume. The point of these offerings is the same as a free trial, which is to make you upgrade to the paid versions later.
Choosing commercial EPOS software might mean an initial investment, but if you have chosen your system according to your business requirements, then it should pay for itself within a short time in increased efficiency and better monitoring capabilities. Choosing the software based on price often means compromising on functionality and this could hurt the bottom line due to lost revenue.
Investing in EPOS software (or a full, integrated system) will usually mean that maintenance and support is included in the package. Free software will usually not offer this and so you will most likely have to pay for training, maintenance and any support you might need.
If you are unsure what EPOS software will be right for you, Expert Market can help you with our free tailored quote service. Answer the questions in our web form and we will provide you with quotes from suppliers carefully selected to match your business needs.