Local commerce is essential to the operation of every local economy. In this increasingly digital world, how a business chooses its point-of-sale (POS) solution is not an easy decision to make. There are many different options and business owners can easily become confused when trying to choose one. At SOCA, we are determined to reduce the obstacles in the way of your small business.
Elavon, one of our main benefit providers, has provided a comprehensive guide to help business owners choose the best POS systems for them. This article will go over six ideas to take into consideration when choosing your next POS solution.
Six Considerations for Choosing a Cloud-Based Point-of-Sale Solution
To keep up with today’s tech-savvy consumers, businesses are searching for ways to create a seamless, consistent shopping experience from beginning to end. Insert cloud-based point-of-sale (POS) solutions. As one of the leading trends in the payments industry, cloud-based POS adoption is expected to increase by 50% by the end of 20211. And with today’s ever-evolving technology and consumer demands, it’s easy to see why.
Today’s POS systems do more than just accept payments. These solutions serve as the hub for all aspects of a business’s operations, including invoicing, inventory, accounting, and reporting. With so many cloud-based POS solutions on the market, choosing the right one for your business can be challenging.
Here are the top six considerations to look for in a cloud-based solution that can help streamline your operations and grow your business:
- Features and Functionality
When looking for a cloud-based POS solution, it’s important to look for features and functionality that meet your specific needs. While every business’s needs are different, it should have features that enable you to meet changing customer expectations and new business challenges. A few key features to keep in mind include 24/7 access to your data, reporting and deep analytics that help you understand your business, third-party integrations like QuickBooks®, and lastly, the ability to accept all payment types (Credit, Debit and contactless).
Unlike legacy POS solutions where you pay costly fees for additional hardware to accept payments, a cloud-based POS solution requires a monthly subscription fee for access to the software. It’s important to look at the different plans offered by POS vendors and ensure the plan includes the features and functionality your business needs and be sure to check if there are any hidden fees involved.
- Simplicity and Scalability
As technology improves across the industry, your cloud-based POS system should offer automatic updates that push new features, app bug fixes, and errors, resulting in minimal downtime. Over time, your cloud-based POS will become more robust with little to no additional cost, improving your bottom line.
Protecting cardholder data is top of the mind for every business. Today’s cloud-based POS solutions automatically back up and sync all transactional data, minimizing the risk of fraud and reducing the chance of a data breach event. A few key card validation and security features to look for include EMV, Tokenization, and end-to-end encryption.
There’s no doubt that the pandemic accelerated the shift towards digital payments, forcing businesses to adopt new payment acceptance methods. To adhere to social distancing guidelines, businesses and their customers shifted to onsite and digital contactless payment solutions to minimize in-person interactions. Not only do onsite and touch-free solutions speed up the checkout process, but they also provide an exceptional user experience, which is essential for acquiring new customers and retaining existing ones.
- Customer Service
While selecting the right POS solution for your business is critical, the customer support your payments partner provides is equally important. Customer service is key to your success and ensuring little to no disruption to your business operations. Your payments partner should be easily accessible and offer 24/7, in-house support via email, phone, live chat, as well as an interactive customer portal.
Whether you’re looking for a POS solution for the first time or migrating from legacy to cloud-based, make a list of the features and functionalities you need and have a list of questions ready when talking to providers.
Along with a high-quality POS solution, the best thing a business can do to protect itself is to join up with a chamber alliance, like SOCA. At SOCA we provide the best benefits to small businesses all over Ohio. Take the next step in your business’s development, join SOCA today!
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