In this article I will present three things every retail point of sale system must have to be effective. These are the most basic functions. With a flood of tablet based “Point of Sale Systems” hitting the market now, you must check to be sure the point of sale system you select for your retail small business is the right one.
#1 – Advanced inventory management. Just because you can “add inventory items” to your iPad app doesn’t mean you are going to get effective reporting. You need to know without any doubt what items have sold, what items are left, which items are trending up or down, and even who is buying which items.
Also, make sure you can track multiple product lines. Some point of sale systems only allow you to add items. Others give you the ability to have “Families” and then “Items” within that family. This would work for the very small retail store, but you will normally want to see more detail with 3 or 4 levels of reporting.
#2 – Website Integration. Most successful retail establishments today dominate a local niche. Let’s say you are a hobby store with model trains, planes, cars, etc. There are probably thousands of inventory items you could carry in your store. However, this would be very expensive and only 15% of this inventory is going to be a steady revenue generator.
Put the other 85% of the inventory on your website along with the 15% you have in store, creating significantly more choices for your customers. By integrating this with your point of sale system, you can show customers options on the spot, take payment for the in store and online order, and order for the out of stock items.
#3 – Email Marketing Integration. A good point of sale system for a retail store will integrate seamlessly with your email marketing efforts. You should work to get email addresses for all your clients and assign those clients to the orders they make in your store.
Hire a company like ours to create 5 to 10 automated emails that are sent to your customers with pre-determined criteria. For instance, someone who has spent $500 or more at your business but hasn’t shopped with you for 30 days could get a coupon via email for 10% off their next purchase.
You can use any information in your point of sale system to generate an automated email campaign. Together with your integrated online eCommerce store and advanced inventory management system, this could be a powerful system!
How are you using your point of sale system, inventory management or email marketing to improve your retail business? Share your tips with our readers below.