Most varieties of EPOS Software share common features and properties which make them suitable for many types of business. But each software package normally allows customisation and addition of extra modules and plug-ins which further customise the software for specific business models.
EPOS software suppliers know this so they should ask you a variety of questions to establish the type of software that's ideal for your business. But don't wait for these questions. Determine as soon as you can what makes your business different from others, and what you'll need from the software to maintain this uniqueness.
The EPOS Software Basics
Most EPOS software copes with all the conventional customer transactions you'd expect to make each day and has a variety of features for making these transactions quicker and easier to track. It will:
- record sold items and prices
- keep a tally of VAT
- note any void or return transactions
- show the relevant dates
- display the methods of payment
- record discounts
- produce basic accounting and stock reports
- show the sales made by each staff member
In addition, EPOS restaurant software will:
- note special orders
- record the food and drink orders taken by individual staff
- show the time a customer placed an order and the time the customer settled the bill
EPOS Software for Retail or Hospitality Chains
If you run a chain of shops, restaurants, hotels or pubs, your EPOS software can create a consolidated database of daily information from each site. This enables you to tell how well the overall business is faring. You can also compare the sales and profit figures of various locations.
Loyalty, Discount, Bonus and Gift Cards
Many chains, department stores and supermarkets have loyalty cards that reward regular customers with vouchers, discounts and bonuses. Many businesses also subscribe to gift card schemes that enable people to give presents in the form of magnetic strip cards. Recipients can redeem the cards to their given value in the appropriate shop or restaurant.
Your EPOS system can account for all of these and maintain the necessary records.
Questions to ask your potential point of sale systems supplier
- Will the EPOS system interface with my existing chip and PIN banking system?
- Can loyalty card users check their point and discount balances online?
- Can you supply samples of the reports the EPOS system produces?
- Can I change prices in advance? And will the EPOS system automatically put these prices into effect on the given day?
- How do I make changes to prices, products and employee details? Do you have a simple guide?
- How secure is the EPOS system?
- How well does the EPOS software complement my accounting software?
- Can I export files from the EPOS software to the accounting software?