How To Build A POS System
While building your own POS solution could save you money, how do you best to go about this task?
Our comprehensive guide will take you through every step of the process and offer expert tips for configuring the ideal POS set up for your business.
Continue reading to learn how to get started!
Things You Should Know Before Building A POS System
What Are POS Systems?
POS system stands for point-of-sale system. It's not just a fancy cash register but a combination of POS hardware components and POS software that businesses can use to process sales, take payments, and issue receipts.
Most modern POS systems also have loads of other features such as employee and inventory management.
They can also be used to generate many different reports to help you keep track of various aspects of your business growth.
If you have an online store, POS systems let you streamline your sales with eCommerce integrations and provide valuable insights into your business.
POS system development has grown over the years from bulky desk-top POS solutions to cloud-based systems and apps allowing their use in a wider variety of settings, not just in the retail business.
Where Are POS Systems Used?
There are many POS systems on the market and POS solutions for a variety of businesses. Here are some of the places where you could find POS systems.
How Do POS Systems Work?
How exactly a point-of-sale system works will depend on the POS solution you have and the type of business.
In basic terms, a customer wants to buy a product and they take it to the cash drawer where your employee enters the details into the cash register or uses a barcode scanner to do this.
Payment is taken, this could be with cash or by card, digital wallet, mobile payments, or store credit.
The receipt printer will print out a receipt for the transaction or a virtual receipt can be emailed if you have that function on your POS system.
The POS system then works its magic. It deducts the product purchased from your inventory and can provide you with sale data and transaction reports.
The POS system can be automated to give you low stock alerts and supply chain issues so you can avoid any human error in managing stock levels and even monitor employees' sales targets.
With modern POS solutions, the options are wide-ranging and can be tailored to your specific business needs.
How To Make A POS System
The best POS solution for your business needs to contain the correct mix of POS hardware components and POS software.
Building your own POS system is an option that could save you money. It does depend on how tech-savvy you are, but it is doable, particularly with technical support from your POS provider.
So now that we have explored the POS system basics, let's take a look at how you can build your own POS system.
Choose The Type Of POS System
There are two basic groups of POS solutions, so firstly you should decide which you need.
On-Site POS systems
On-premise or on-site POS systems are your 'traditional' POS systems comprising desktop computers and often bulky touchscreen monitors usually seen in a large retail store.
All the point-of-sale system data is stored on a local server on the premises so you don't have to worry about an internet connection but it does limit capabilities if you want to access reports or use them remotely.
Cloud-based pos systems
Cloud-based POS systems utilize off-site servers to store data and many POS systems these days are cloud-based.
They include mobile POS systems and they tend to a very affordable, secure, and reliable, as well as being compatible with modern POS software developments and third-party integrations.
These are great for a small business with several locations as they have the option of remote access from any type of device, so you can, for example, carry out data entry, view reports on cash flow or sales data, or set up user accounts, and even customer loyalty programs on your smartphone or tablet at home.
You do need an internet connection. If your internet connection is unreliable, it would be best to consider hybrid POS system software. This will allow you to work off-line if needed.
Choose The Right POS Hardware
POS software is developed to work with particular POS hardware components and a POS provider often offers hardware and software bundles so you get the most out of your POS system.
You should decide which and how many of each type of POS hardware components you'll need.
Commonly used POS hardware includes barcode scanners, receipt printers, POS terminals with a customer-facing displays, Android or iPad tablets, label printers, electric cash drawers, self-service kiosks, and credit card terminals.
Choose The Right POS Software
Once you have your hardware, POS software development comes next. Most POS systems come with a basic package of popular POS software such as a payment processor and customer loyalty program software.
You can create POS software packages to build your own unique point-of-sale system by choosing the particular features you need for your business, including third-party integrations.
It can be easy as downloading an app to your phone, so you don't need to be particularly tech-savvy to build your own POS system and the POS provider can assist with technical support.
Tips For How To Build A POS System
1) Have an easy-to-use interface so your employees can learn how to utilize the system quickly.
2) Use POS software specific to your business type.
3) Make your POS system scalable to prepare for business growth.
4) Make sure you have different levels of access for your employees. Don't give access to potentially sensitive data to everyone!
5) Ensure you have an off-line mode. Customer satisfaction and overall sales can suffer if the internet drops out.
6) Make sure your POS system is secure and reliable.
Building your own POS system is certainly possible, particularly if you are a small business and you have access to technical support from your POS provider.
I hope you have found our guide on how to build a pos system useful and that you feel more confident in having a go at making the perfect POS system for your business.