Small Business

Ready to Go Mobile POS? Start With These 5 Key Considerations

EpsonMay 21, 2018

Many retailers and restaurants have transitioned to mobile point-of-sales (mPOS) systems in order to improve the checkout process and overall experience of their customers.

A recent survey found that businesses that switched over to mobile POS had an average of 24 percent higher sales than retailers that stuck with their legacy systems. And, retailers who reported flat or declining growth in 2017 said they achieved a 100 percent sales increase after making the leap to a mobile POS system.

It’s certainly a trend that is becoming more commonplace, and your business may end up converting at some point in the near future. In fact, Juniper Research research predicts that 20% of all retail transactions will be done via mobile POS by 2021. The question is: Are you ready to be an early adopter and make the move now?

Here are 5 key questions to consider before switching over to an mPOS system:

How many screens will you need to run more efficiently?

The main benefit of mobile POS systems is that it can help you to streamline your customer’s checkout experience and reduce wait times. Think about your current setup including how many registers you have, how many employees you have out on the floor for each shift, etc. Is your existing in-store POS system proving to be insufficient? If customers often end up waiting a long time to complete transactions, it can reflect negatively on your business.

Also worth thinking about is the valuable real estate registers can take up in your store. If their placement makes it difficult for shoppers to browse or move around, or if removing them would allow for more inventory display, mPOS could be a smart move.

Once you have a sense of your pain points, you can determine how many mPOS devices would be needed to handle the flow. You can also decide if you want all employees walking around with handheld devices, or if you’d rather designate an area of the store for checkout.

In a restaurant setting, you might consider mPOS systems on every table so that diners can request service (like a drink refill), place orders, or pay for their meal without having to wait for their server to circle back to them. It can also help facilitate splitting the check among groups and offer a variety of payment choices for the customer.

Will an mPOS upgrade fit my budget?

Anytime you add technology enhancements to your business, you should expect it to be a large investment. With mPOS, however, the good news is that it’s generally a less costly undertaking than other technology upgrades you might have made in the past. That’s because mobile POS devices are usually not as expensive as large terminals and other hardware, so the up-front costs are typically more digestible.

After the initial investment, you will likely have a monthly service fee, and cloud-based software update are usually included and done automatically.

This means that maintenance costs will be lower than old systems, and there is likely to be less downtime if there’s a technical glitch since cloud-based software solutions can more easily be restored.

Overall, most businesses find that the cost of mPOS is a good technology investment for the future, and it will pay off even more as the popularity of mobile-based transactions continues to grow.

Will it integrate seamlessly into my business?

When choosing an mPOS system, you want to ensure that it supports all of your business functions beyond just accepting payments. Many are designed with added features of their own or they will integrate with your customer relationship management database, your inventory tracking, as well as collect real-time marketing data.

Also important is that the system is user-friendly and intuitive so that your employees and your customers will have no trouble navigating it.

Finally, to ensure that everything works seamlessly, find out if your mPOS provider offers customer service and technical support. Having access to someone who can help you troubleshoot and offer solutions is important.

What other features will it have?

Having a robust mPOS that talks to your other platforms means that you can leverage customer data to provide personalized experiences and create marketing actions that are triggered by certain behaviors. You should also be able to track employee productivity and sales.

An mPOS system can open up many new possibilities for your business. It can give you deeper insights into your customers, and help you set up a loyalty program, for instance.

Many retailers and restaurants find that using promotions can be an effective for  strategic advantage over competitors, and an mPOS system can facilitate that for you. You can offer your most loyal customers a special reward, or analytics can help identify trends to guide future marketing initiatives.

Is it secure?

Whenever you’re asking customers to trust you with their personal information and financial accounts, it’s imperative that your system is impenetrable. You want to make sure that the POS system you choose has a strong track record when it comes to protecting data, and that it hasn’t had any issues with security breaches.

Before you sign on, ask what security protocols the provider has in place, and educate yourself in case customers ask about how their information is stored and used.

Switching to an mPOS solution for your small business is probably in your future anyway, so why wait? To help you with any questions you still might have, explore Epson’s expert guide to choosing the right Mobile POS for your business.

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