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FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

  • How can a retail POS system help me run my business more efficiently?

    A good retail POS system increases your efficiency by eliminating unnecessary work. Instead of using separate systems for your retail, mail order, ecommerce, and wholesale divisions, choose one retail software package that can manage your entire business. Choose a retail POS system that increases your speed of service with faster ticket entry, on-the-fly data entry, and data-driven lookups.
  • Should I buy the point of sale hardware or the retail software first?

    The single biggest mistake retailers make when choosing a new retail POS system is buying the point of sale hardware before the retail software. The retail software you choose to run your retail business may not be compatible with your new point of sale hardware. Not all scanners, weight scales, or card readers will work with all retail software packages. Buying both the point of sale hardware and the retail software from the same vendor can reduce or eliminate compatibility issues and can often reduce your overall technology costs.
  • How will a retail POS system help me make more money?

    A retail POS system can help you increase your profits in many ways. Quicker, more reliable checkouts mean less manpower is needed. Sales reports allow you to maximize you inventory levels and control costs. Built-in loyalty programs encourage higher ticket averages and repeat business from your customers. Integrated ecommerce services generate additional revenue from Internet sales.
  • How much does a retail POS system cost?

    Like buying a car, it just depends on what you want. What features do you need? How fast do you want it to go? Should you purchase an extended warranty? The more features you want, the more your retail POS system will cost. A single-user software license can cost between $1,200 and $2,500. Do you need new POS terminals? Add $3,000 to $4,000 per workstation. What about new scanners, cash drawers, and printers? Add another $900 for each workstation.
  • There are so many different retail POS systems out there. How will I know how to choose the right one?

    First and foremost, take the time to understand the specific needs of your store. Establish your total technology budget. If necessary, break it down into the things you need this year and things that can wait until next year. Find reputable technology companies with years of expertise in the retail industry. Ask for references and call them. Many customers are happy to talk about their business challenges.
  • Is there a major convention for retail software providers? I want a live demo of a point of sale system.

    There are thousands of retail industry trade shows across the country every year. There are trade shows for general retail as well as for specific retail industries. Find retail trade shows in your area that plan to have at least one technology vendor demonstrating retail software and/or point of sale hardware. Additionally, most technology vendors will be happy to give you a free demo of their retail point of sale system at your request.
  • What type of database should I choose?

    Any retail software package with inventory management and reporting features will have some underlying database. This database is where all of your items, customers, and sales history are stored. The underlying databases differ among various software manufacturers. The key to choosing the right database lies in its format. You want to choose a broadly-understood data format that offers compatibility with third-party software applications. With the right data format, you can view your data just about any way you want to. For example, a retail software based on Microsoft SQL may offer compatibility with Crystal Reports® or Microsoft® Excel. Compatibility with third-party applications gives you unlimited reporting and analysis options.