What is POS?
POS is a point-of-sale system used to record the products or services a customer intends to purchase, add up the cost of an item, calculate tax, accept payment, and generate a receipt. It is different from traditional register cases and has advanced features that make it easier for you to manage sales data, inventory, customers, and employees.
The POS systems have three parts; software, hardware, and Credit Card Processor.
What is POS Software?
POS software is the brain of the point-of-sale system. To run this system you need software that you can install on tablets using mobile apps, as well as cloud-based software that you access using a device with a web browser. This software is cagey for retail or hospitality businesses. Some vendors offer a solution for both retail and hospitality.
Types of POS system:
In today’s world, you can get a POS system for whatever you are selling or wherever you are selling it from, there is a sophisticated point on sale system for you. The types of POS systems vary from retailer to retailer. Following are the basic types of POS systems.
- Counter-Based POS system
- Mobile POS system
- Online POS- Ecommerce
- Omni-channel POS
Why select a POS?
A point of sale system is the magic wind, which offers your business more features and capabilities beyond the register. Moreover, this system is deliberate to make it easier for you to manage employees, customers, and inventory as well as other important aspects of your operation.
It also allows you to accept payments, complete sales, connect onsite and online sales. Therefore, it also makes it easier for staff to communicate. However, it is vital to invest in the right POS system.
Traditional POS system involves a cash register, scanner, and scale. It has evolved and the equipment is positioned for a moving economy. The modern point on sale allows a variety of features and capabilities beyond a simple cash register including facilitating daily operations increases communications, and driving sales.
The purpose is to streamline business and allows brands to focus on what is more important i.e. expansion. The entire sale process and inventory management are defined by POS. Keeping in view the importance of POS, we have listed the top 10 best software’s considering the efficiency like pricing hardware, integration, customer support, and system capabilities.
Let’s have a look at the 10 best POS systems for 2021.
|POS System||Monthly Cost||Hardware Cost||Credit Card Processing||Payroll Capabilities|
Stand + iPad
2.75 Percent for on-site payments
|2. TouchBistro||Starting from $99/month||Starting from $49/month||Integrated payment processing||
|3. Lightspeed||Starting from $99/month||Register at $699||Choose the one you prefer||3rd party add-on|
|4. SHOPKEEP||$599 for software upgrades||Starting from $720||Yes||None|
|5. OPOSNATION||Starting from $59/month||$0||Yes||None|
|6. Toast||Starting from $79/month||Hardware bundle
Starts at $899
|3rd Party Integration|
|7. Thrive||Starting from $179||$0||Yes||None|
|8. Vend.||Starting at $59/month||About $1200||Yes||None|
|9. Shopify||Starting from $9/month||May use your own hardware||Yes||Yes|
|10. booker||Starting from $85/month||$0||Third-Party Integration||None
Let’s have a look at the specs of the first three best POS systems available in market
1. Square POS:
Square POS is on top among the top 10 POS of 2021. It is best if you are looking for a modern and feature-rich solution that will help you to grow your business. It has remarkable ease of use with large easy-to-use navigation and color-coded screens. Whereas, it is easy to navigate with minimal or no training at all.
The Square POS is packed with superior qualities according to your business.
If you have a Restaurant than it has:
- automatic tip reminder
- customers can order online
- The online system will send the tickets directly to the kitchen for preparation. This will save a considerable amount of time for your employees.
- Square is a credit processor that allows you to use alternative card processors including the compatibility of Android Pay and Apple Pay.
The right selection of POS will allow you to accept more options like a tap, dab, and swipe payments. The basic level Square platform is free of cost. This free platform comes with a free Square reader that plugs into the headphone jack of any mobile device. The hardware and software are free but the processing fee is slightly higher than other platforms. If you purchase the Square hardware the fees are lower.
- No cost and no subscription needed.
- In-person payments = 75% (swipe, chip or tap)
- Keyed-in Payments: 5% + 15 cents
- Online-payments: 9% + 30 cents
- Magstripe card reader: 1st is free, additional $10 each.
- Chip Card Reader: $35
- Contactless & chip card reader: $49
- Stand for contactless and chip: $199
- Square Terminal: $399 or $37 per month for 24 months+ 2.5 % processing fee+ 10 cents
2. Touch Bistro: (Best POS system for Restaurants)
TouchBistro is the best POS system for bars and restaurants. TouchBistro allows you to avoid long queues for hours waiting to be served. Hence, solely runs on the mobile iPad. These iPads are then synchronized through a local network. Following are the features that make this system exceptional.
· Setup fee:
$200 fee covers installation assistance and training which applies to both software-only and bundle plans.
· Self-ordering kiosk:
The Self-ordering kiosk allows the customer to place their orders and pay with their credit cards or debit card using the same device.
· Customer-facing display:
The price of this service varies according to your plan. The customer-facing checkout services show your customer the menu items, modifiers, and prices of the ordered items as you entered into the POS to verify that they are correct.
· Kitchen display system:
This system works with the kitchen displays specifically with the printers to help the staff kitchen manage orders and cooking times so they can run the kitchen more effectively.
· Digital Menu Board:
Digital menu board connects your system to large external screens where it displays your menu and pricing.
· Configuration support fees:
In case of extra help setting up, upgrading, and troubleshooting your hardware, the cost will be extra.
Touch Bistro Stand out features:
This app is specifically designed for restaurants and the company claim to have 200 features. The features like table and bar management, modify and customize orders, automatic discounts for events, bill splitting, and catering and delivery support make Touch Bistro standout.
Though TouchBistro is our best pick among the top 10 POS systems of 2021, for a restaurant POS system, there are a couple of issues to consider as you evaluate the system. It relies on an Apple-based infrastructure. In addition to an iPad, you will also need an AmpliFi HD Mesh Router to get the system up and running. In case you want to use more than an iPad, you will also need a Mac computer such as a Mac mini, iMac, or iMac Pro to use as a server.
TouchBistro is not for you if you are looking for an Android or windows-friendly POS system. It is not a cloud-based POS system. Moreover, you need a router and a server as it is a hybrid solution and has cloud-based reporting but runs on a local network.
Touch Bistro does not offer built-in purchase ordering or vendor management tools. If you are thinking to buy Touch Bistro know that you have to find another solution to accomplish these tasks or have to do them manually using inventory sports.
Lightspeed (Best Mobile POS system for iPad):
Lightspeed is the best mobile POS system for iPad (for small businesses). It is fully mobile. The retail and restaurant versions of its software are highly efficient. It has a strong collection of features. It has competitive pricing, the option of month-to-month terms, a choice of integrated payment processors, and compatibility with third-party hardware.
Starting at $69 per month this version of POS provides five plans basic, starter, standard, advanced, and Pro.
Lightspeed standout features:
Lightspeed has a customer-facing display feature for retailers that let them see their purchases and can also verify them. You only need a tablet with internet access.
Customers can see their name, the list of items they are purchasing, how much they cost, and the total amount due. You also have an option to set a custom background image. They can also e-mail themselves the receipt.
For restaurants, it offers self-order menu features that allow customers to place their orders.
Lightspeed does not post pricing for its hardware on its website, but it works with third-party hardware. In some cases, you can continue with the hardware you are already using, or you can select from the list of compatible models to make sure you get a good deal. You can buy it directly from lightspeed or a third-party vendor.
Which is the cheapest POS system?
Following are the cheapest POS systems:
- Vend is the easiest POS solution uses by retailers of all sizes to manage sales, customers, inventory, and rewards.
- Square is popular because the app is easy and free.
- Quick Books
Is there a free POS system available?
After going through the best 10 POS systems, let’s study if there are free POS systems available. The answer to the question is yes, but there are strings attached. Basic POS software is included as part of your processing service if you work with a credit card processing company like Square or PayPal. The catch is that you must use this company as a processor.
There are also POS providers that offer free hardware, but they require you to sign a three to five years’ contract as they expect to recoup the costs of the system from your processing fees. These contracts renew within a 30-day window at the end of your term.
The company may charge you fees on your free equipment like a monthly insurance fee or equipment maintenance fee, and when you close your account, you may also find that the equipment was actually just free-to-use and when you close your account and be required to return it. In most cases, you have to pay a software fee for POS.
The companies that provide POS make money in different ways. The buyer experience of POS is paramount in 2020, and merchants will continue looking for POS systems that will cater to the customers efficiently in 2021well.
This was some information regarding the top 10 POS systems of 2021. We hope it was quite useful for you.