POS Software Buying Guide

Compare POS Software Prices – BUYERS GUIDE 2020

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POS – Point of Sale System Sample Costs

Below are a few examples of prices POS Systems which will give you an idea how much you will pay for your purchase.

  • Simple POS software ranges $177-$900, while more robust POS systems can cost between $1,200 to upwards of $20,000.
  • Microsale POS software costs around $725-$1100. This feature-rich setup manages a wide array of operations, including employee time tracking, reservations, credit card processing, inventory management, menu programming, wireless device support, and much more.
  • You can purchase a refurbished point of sale solution for around $1,000.
  • Swipe rates ranges between 59% to 2.75%
  • Keyed in rates average5%
  • Average cost for 300 transactions $105 (varies by amount of monthly sales)

Types of POS Systems

Before exploring what type of POS system your business needs, first consider what the business needs are. In 2020, almost everyone is using either a debit or credit card. Therefore, adding a credit card processor is a must. There are 5 types of POS Systems:

  1. Mobile POS
  2. Table POS
  3. Terminal POS
  4. Online POS
  5. Self Service Kiosk POS

To keep up with trends in technology, your business also needs to consider contactless or mobile tap-to-pay systems. These systems have their own software and technology to operate efficiently.

We’ve put together a list of popular POS systems but before we get into that, you may first want to know the POS System meaning.

Point of Sale Software

Simply put, POS means that a sale is taking place in real-time. This includes calculating the total sale, accepting payment, and creating an invoice or receipt. Depending on your industry this can take place before services or goods are exchanged, or after.

Now let’s look at some products leading the market.

POS Software Plans

Selecting the right POS system software for your business is only a small piece of the puzzle. Here we will take a look at a few of the top brands on the market. Afterward, we will discuss all that goes into running your credit card payments through a POS system.

Epos Now

Epos Now is a highly-rated POS system that offers POS equipment for as low as $599. They offer world-class service including customizable dashboards and management systems accessible from any device no matter where you are.

Epos Now POS Software

Their services also include restricted access, so you control who can access information or log into the system. Inventory control is always at your fingertips. For enhanced customer relationships, you can also create customer loyalty cards and other types of loyalty programs.

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Lightspeed

Lightspeed promises the power of doing it all from one POS system. Their strong point is their inventory management system that helps businesses maintain and keep control over their inventory.

If you’re looking for types of POS systems for retail, Lightspeed caters to this audience. Whether it’s clothing apparel, home goods, sporting gear, or electronics if you sell merchandise their system is worth looking into.

Lightspeed POS

Their POS systems software ranges from $69 to $229 per month for annual plans. Expect to pay more if you choose to go with a monthly plan. They also offer registers for an additional $29 monthly fee.

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ShopKeep

ShopKeep offers a stress-free setup, modern register software, and the lowest integration processing. What does this mean to you as a business owner?

You’ll spend less time setting up your POS system, customization is easier, and your business can accept all forms of payment at the lowest per-transaction rates.

ShopKeep POS

Their monthly rates range from free to $199. With their premium-based plans, customers get unlimited employee sign-on, QuickBooks Accounting, and 24/7 customer service access.

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Square

Square is probably the most popular POS system on the market. Mainly because it has offered the ability to access hassle-free credit card swipe chips to many entrepreneurs that don’t have brick and mortar businesses.

Square POS

The company offers a wide array of products and services beyond its popular card readers. The different types of POS Systems also include iPad register systems, inventory management, location management, and reporting insights.

Square is free to use. Your only fees are the 2.6% + 10¢ per tap, dip, or swipe you’ll be charged for transactions.

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TechBistro

TechBristro offers POS systems for the restaurant industry. You can expect the following from their menu of software applications.

  • Tableside ordering
  • Menu & inventory management
  • Staff management
  • Analytics and reporting
  • Customer loyalty programs
  • Payment processors that can be used anywhere

TechBistro POS

Pricing ranges from $69 to $249, or you can request a customized quote to fit your business needs.

For a more comprehensive list of POS systems and price comparison options, click here. Continue reading to learn everything you need to know when comparison shopping.

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When Should You Invest in a Point of Sale System?

The time to invest in a quality POS system is now. It is an important component of your business and essential to staying organized and offering your customers the best service.

Your investment will have an immediate return when coupled with other processes geared towards efficiency. Plus, you’ll have new tools at your disposal that will impact how your overall business is run. It will be easier to train new hires responsible for checking out customers in person.

Point of Sale Software Cost

You can easily take your business on the road to participate in trade shows, conventions and community events. Having the capability to go mobile and still operate in your physical location expands your reach to a bigger audience.

For new businesses, exploring POS systems during the planning phase will help you better understand how your operations will run.

Understanding PCI Compliance

PCI DSS is the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard and is required for any business accepting credit cards. There 12 security requirements that apply to networks transmitting credit card data

The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS), also known as PCI compliance, is the set of 12 security requirements mandated by credit card networks. This standard applies to any business that processes credit cards, regardless of its size or location.

PCI Compliance

The 12 requirements specify the rules necessary to ensure the following obligations:

  1. Create a business policy to address how cardholder information obtained via POS systems will be secured
  2. Install a firewall
  3. No vendor-issued passwords or system defaults can be used
  4. Protection protocol for cardholder data stored on the system
  5. Use of secure systems and applications that are maintained on a regular basis
  6. Encryption over public networks
  7. Access protocols to the cardholder’s information
  8. Latest antivirus software must be used
  9. Each individual with access to the POS system must have a unique ID
  10. Cardholder data cannot be accessed offline, printed, or stored in paper form
  11. Install monitoring protocols to track access to cardholder information
  12. Test the security of POS systems to ensure breaches cannot or have not taken place

The requirements were initiated to protect cardholders and hold POS system users accountable. They state that businesses cannot store certain information obtained via credit and debit cards.

The information comes from a credit card security code. They consist of a Card Identification Number (CID), Card Validation Code (CVC2), or Card Verification Value (CVV2) coding.

In addition to being compliant at all times, merchants must also perform a Self Assessment Questionnaire (SAQ) annually.

It is extremely important to stay compliant and adhere to all rules surrounding your POS systems. Failure to do so has consequences. A merchant can be penalized by card networks. In the case of a data breach, you can face significant financial penalties.

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Brick & Mortar POS vs. Online

Today, businesses have many options. You can have a brick & mortar business but also extend services online. Some industries now rely on mobile applications to streamline processes. No matter if you have a physical location or incorporate various platforms, there are POS options to fit your needs.

Online POS Systems for Small Business

Taking payment on your website increases sales, and does away with manual processes like waiting for a customer to mail in a payment. You also have the option of accepting various credit cards, PayPal, or money apps like CashApp.

Online POS systems also provide opportunities to extend the sales funnel to customers that abandon their carts. Or sending coupons and special deals to those who create an online account.

Brick & Mortar POS systems can give you the same capabilities but require more human interaction. If things get busy your employees may not remember to ask certain questions. Encouraging customers to join an email list or sign-up for loyalty awards account can fall by the wayside.

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Cloud-based POS SaaS vs. Legacy POS

The type of POS System a merchant chooses can come down to personal preference and the inability to let go of what is familiar.

SaaS POS System

Software as a Service (SaaS) is a method of obtaining an online service via a subscription rather than buying the product outright. The main benefit of going this route that the software owner is responsible for the main security points and upgrades.

SaaS services are cloud-based, so you don’t have to worry about maintaining a server to house the software or the data it collects.

Cloud-based POS

Legacy POS System

With legacy POS systems the business purchased the software from the manufacturer along with licensing to copy it to a certain number of computers or devices. It is the buyer’s responsibility to maintain the servers where the program and data are housed.

In some cases, these could bring an added expense of hiring an IT person to manage the servers and the information housed on it. Internal servers can also render your entire operations powerless if there was ever an outage.

For this reason, Saas POS types of systems are more feasible. They take the worry out securing data, performing upgrades, and dealing with unexpected downtown. The greatest benefit is, in most cases, PCI compliance matters are dealt with by the software manufacturer.

Cost Associated with a POS System

The costs associated with a POS system depends on the types of POS systems and plans you are looking at. Buying a system outright will cost you more than going with a plan that offers basic easy-to-us devices like popular programs such as Square.

POS For Restaurants

Your operations will play a big role in what your business needs. Types of POS systems for retail or restaurants will require a bigger investment. Whereas, a vendor who only sells merchandise or food at a weekly fair may only need a card reader.

One thing to keep in mind is the actual program you’re signing up for. A subscription service will cost less if you already have your own equipment or buy from them. A service offering equipment as part of the monthly subscription will cost more because you are renting their device.

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Point of Sale – Equipment Needed

Last, let’s talk about the equipment you will need for a POS system. As technology continues to advance what we know as the cash register is getting smaller and smaller. In some instances, it’s a smartphone with a card reader attached.

When you enter a brick and mortar location you may see bulky registers replaced by tablets attached to a display stand. The card reader is on the side of the device and the cash drawer is built-in under the counter.

pos-system

For websites, there is no device needed, unless the merchant also goes out into the community to make sales. Otherwise, everything is built into the software the customer uses from the eCommerce app loaded to the website.

Regardless of which method you use, the common equipment they all require is a reliable and secure internet connection. Although most platforms allow for offline transactions, your transactions cannot complete until the device is connected.

Get Your Business Up to Speed

Whether you’re about to open a business or ready to upgrade your technology, it’s time to start exploring the best types of POS systems for your operations. This comprehensive guide should give you an idea of the direction to go in getting the system you need.

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