Bookstore POS System
With intelligent functionality and integrated management software, managing your bookstore is easier now than it has ever been. POS systems have improved efficiency and revenue in thousands of bookstores around the country.
However, sorting through the dozens of bookstore POS solutions on the market can be confusing. The last thing you want to do is invest in the wrong one.
That's where we come in!
We've analyzed the top 5 bookstore POS software options and we're here to help you make the right choice for your business.
Bookstore POS Systems
- Best all around
- Strong employee and inventory management features
- $69 per month starting
- Best for credit card processing
- Excellent inventory navigation capabilities
- $0 per month starting
- Best for reporting and analytics
- Top-of-the-line reporting suite
- $99 per month starting
Korona Cloud POS
- Best for growing bookstores
- Ultra-customizable system
- $49 per month starting
Top 5 POS Systems For Bookstore Owners
Lightspeed Retail POS Software is one of the best high-end POS systems today. Because it runs on iPads, yourself and your employees can jump right in and get started without excessive training.
Lightspeed packages start off at $69 per month for a single register.
Upgrading to the Standard package which provides access to built-in accounting and eCommerce integration costs $119 per month.
You'll find tons of great features built into Lightspeed's software, including multi-store inventory management, customer-facing displays, eCommerce integration, work order management, employee management, offline functionality, and customer relationship management.
Dig a bit deeper, and you'll find some helpful integrations for email marketing and loyalty program creation.
While Lightspeed Retail was not created specifically for bookstores, the features found within this POS system work seamlessly for bookstore operation.
For example, the ability to create purchase orders for separate vendors helps streamline the book ordering process. Returning overstocked or damaged books with the "return to vendor" tool can also be worth your while.
The inventory management tools allow you to organize books by description, genre, and more. If you run a bookstore with multiple locations, you can even use the transfer feature to move inventory between different storefronts and get an overview of what's in stock at different locations.
It is certainly one of the most advanced POS system solutions on this list, offering plenty of excellent key features that can help your business thrive. However, if you have a smaller operation, the steeper price point may understandably be too much to bear. We recommend Lightspeed for bookstores that are selling at higher volumes.
Shopify is another noteworthy iPad POS system for bookstores, especially for those that sell high volume online. And even if you haven't ventured into the land of eCommerce yet, Shopify can give you the tools to do so.
The basic Shopify plan starts off at $29 per month. For smaller stores and retailers, this is a pretty reasonable price for what you get. Included in this price is a hosted online store and a POS system.
To truly take advantage of all that Shopify has to offer, we highly recommend upgrading to the $79 per month package. Not only will you receive additional in-depth point-of-sale tools, but you'll also get a lower processing rate of 2.5% instead of the 2.7% rate which comes with the basic plan.
The functionality is robust, and you'll find plenty of excellent features in this point-0f-sale software, including social media sales channels, eCommerce support, gift cards, customer profiles, inventory management software, custom receipts, and customer-facing displays.
You can also integrate unlimited products into an unlimited number of registers, making this one of the best point-of-sale systems for growth. With Shopify, you'll be able to manage very large inventories with ease. You can upload your inventory of books using a CSV and organize them by different tags, including genre, hardback vs. paperback, etc.
The ability to integrate specials and discounts at checkout is ideal for rewarding loyal customers, which can ultimately increase customer retention. These discounts can be applied to single items or to entire orders in dollar amounts or percentages, giving you the flexibility to reward your customers as you choose.
Of course, one of the biggest advantages of Shopify is its eCommerce capabilities which will allow you to take your entire bookstore online. The intuitive Shopify dashboard allows business owners to manage orders, collect customer data, and more.
The one major disadvantage of using Shopify's POS system is that it does not have offline capabilities. If the internet ever goes down during business hours, you won't be able to process credit card transactions.
Overall, if you run a small to mid-sized bookstore and you need a POS system to help generate more online sales, Shopify is a great choice.
The Square for Retail POS system is one of the best all-around solutions for bookstores that need quality reporting, inventory software, and built-in payment processing, all in a single POS system.
The beauty of Square lies in its simple payment structure. You can start with the free plan if you'd like.
Though it has limited features, we do recommend the free plan in order to get a better feel for the point-of-sale software and determine whether or not it is the right choice for your needs.
If you want to upgrade to Square for Retail, however, it costs $60 per month plus an additional $20 per month for each additional register.
Square uses a flat-rate processing fee of 2.5% + $0.10. Visit Square POS system cost for more information.
For this price, you'll get tons of excellent features, including the Square Virtual Terminal, a free online shop, employee management capabilities, Square gift cards, loyalty programs, cash management, and payroll integration.
The inventory interface is trouble-free to navigate, even if you have a large inventory. This is because it was designed like a search engine, and will have a familiar feel for all users. Cataloging inventory is even easier, all thanks to the unique custom descriptors features.
Your inventory data can be shared in real-time to different store locations, a major plus if you run a larger operation. The same thing goes for creating and managing purchase orders.
You can maintain repeat customer information in your customer directory and view their purchase history. This tool is great for rewarding customer loyalty and encouraging repeat business.
Over the past few years, Square has risen in the ranks, becoming one of the most popular POS systems on the market, especially for small business owners. The company has done an excellent job of providing top-notch features at a low cost, all without putting usability on the back burner.
The inventory features are exceptional, and the conveniently included payroll and payment processing software are helpful for businesses just getting their feet wet. Plus, because you can start out using their free version, you can begin selling without taking any risks!
Vend is a subsidiary of Lightspeed and runs on iPad and desktops (Mac or PC). The POS system starts off at $99 per month for a single location and single register. Though it may not seem extremely affordable at first glance, it comes with enough incredible point-of-sale features to make the extra cost worth it.
Some of the best features found in Vend's POS system include customer loyalty programs, employee tracking, eCommerce, customer management, inventory management, store credit, gift cards, multi-location support, and more. You can even complete sales when the internet is down, thanks to the offline features.
You'll find plenty of bookstore-centric features, such as the ability to manage large inventories of books. In seconds, you'll be able to import existing inventory data or add and remove books within your database.
Tracking your inventory across single or multiple bookstores has never been easier.
Another great feature for bookstores is its reporting suite. This collection of reporting tools beats out every other POS system on this list. You can get an overview of your bookstore's most important metrics, including customers who spend the most, the hours in which your store is busiest, and which books are your bestsellers.
In addition, Vend is one of the fastest POS system providers to adapt to the changing point-of-sale market, adding new third-party integrations and keeping online and offline inventories up to date. It's an incredibly vast POS system, and we've truly only scratched the surface with the information here.
One of the main downsides, especially for smaller bookstores, is that the cost is fairly steep. The more additional features you opt for, the higher the monthly fees become. We highly recommend this POS for small to medium bookstores. However, if you're a growing bookstore with plans to expand in the future, know that Vend has excellent scalability.
If you're opening a new bookstore and are looking for a decent system to get you started, Korona Cloud POS is the option we recommend. This affordable POS system comes with a wide range of inventory management tools and feature set, all starting at $49 per month.
If you want to try Korona Cloud POS before taking the dive, take advantage of the company's ultra-generous free trial.
Once you get going with Korona, you'll realize how wonderful the customizable interface is. No matter your business specifications, this system can be set up to work specifically for you.
With continually updated features and add-ons, it's also one of the best POS systems to scale with. A few of the standard features you'll find in the Korona point-of-sale system include bulk import/export tools, gift cards, product searching, money management, permissions, reporting, and coupons.
The hardware peripherals can be helpful if you want an all-in-one in-store system.
We love the multi-store capability, which allows you to track inventory data between multiple store locations. If customers want to put items on hold, for example, this is a helpful capability.
The loyalty integration features will allow you to implement rewards systems for your customers, encouraging them to shop with you more frequently. You can even go so far as to track the preferences of your individual customers, and suggest new products as they come in.
While Korona's bookstore inventory software lacks integration capabilities and the features are more limited than some of the other more robust systems on this list, Korona is still an impressive point-of-sale system for bookstore owners who are just starting out.
The Bottom Line
Now that you've taken a closer look at the best bookstore POS systems available, your specific business needs will be the main factor when choosing a provider to go with.
To forgo spending hours on the phone getting in contact with POS providers, let us help you find the best deal! Our service is completely free and we're here to do the work for you.
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