Tuesday, April 11 2023
For a lot of people, being self-employed is their ultimate dream. They'd love to throw off the shackles of the office and travel around serving people who share their passion for whatever it is that they're selling. Of course, it helps if what you are selling is part of a booming business, and the food industry is certainly growing. While other markets contracted during recent recessions, both the restaurant and the food truck business have seen a rise in sales, as people have become more and more interested in convenience. This is a great time to be in the business of food trucks!
So, chances are, if you've just started a food truck business, the sales have been rolling in more or less steadily. Hungry customers are flocking around your mobile restaurant, eager to sample your dishes in the middle of whichever random parking lot you're serving today. You hand them the food, and they hand you cold, hard wads of cash in return...except when they don't.
“Oh, I'm sorry,” says one of your customers, her tone apologetic, if a bit nasally. “Do you take cards?”
That is the question, isn't it? Well, do you? Nowadays, cashless is the way, and if you're only relying on the old locked metal cash box with a couple of rolls of coins thrown in, you're probably missing out on a lot of potential sales. Yes, you can just get an old school stand-alone credit card machine and try to keep track of a million sheets of receipt paper (“Merchant's Copy!”) like they did back in the days when people need to swipe their little magnetic strips—but things are a lot different now, and in the complicated society that we live in, you're going to want a point of sale system to keep track of sales—both cash and electronic—and to give you some idea of what kind of inventory you used up. The more volume you expect to sell, the more urgent it is to have a POS.
Now, maybe all of the dirty specifics are what have you procrastinating and leaving that old school “cash only” sign outside your window. Maybe you're just confused. Maybe you don't know which POS to choose for your business. Luckily for you, we're about to clarify things a little; let's take a look at the best POS systems, what they can do, and whether they might work for your business:
This is the most bare-bones, simple solution if you're looking for the function of a POS without having to learn a complicated interface or pay a huge monthly fee. In fact, Square does not charge a monthly fee at all, and instead takes a small percentage of your revenue. It requires minimal hardware as well, and all you need is a small peripheral that you attach to your smart phone, and from there you can use the Square app to take people's credit card payments. This simplicity and low upfront cost is probably why Square is so popular with people who sell food out of trucks or carts. It requires hardly any capital at all to get started.
Though it is an excellent payment processor that is very inexpensive for those who are just starting, keep in mind that it is extremely basic on the POS side of things. It will calculate tax and other factors, keep track of sales, and offer a few nice stats to look at here and there, it is not as extensive as other systems. If you want something more complex and feature-rich, you may want to look elsewhere.
If you're looking for something that offers better analytics and that can be used to track your inventory as well, you might want to look into Revel. Built specifically with the restaurant business in mind, it won't cost you too much to set it up for a single terminal, and it has a lot of features that other POS systems don't have. For example, it integrates with social media and can be set up to notify your followers of where you are so that they can come find you. In addition, it's a very flexible kind of software that doesn't require any sort of proprietary equipment to use; most kinds of cash registers will do just fine. It may not be the cheapest POS system around, but it is a very high quality choice with a lot of extras.
If you're looking for value, ShopKeep has it. It's not as cheap as Square, but for the amount of functionality it offers as a fully-functioning POS, you can't really find anything on the market that will beat it. It has everything: The ability to modify tax rates depending on where you are, the ability to print and edit receipts, the ability to create gift cards, among many other features. You can also use it to track your inventory, as you can with Revel, and much of your information is stored on the company's own servers, so you don't need to be tied to a specific machine to view your stats. They're a bit more picky about hardware than Revel, but luckily it can easily integrate with iOS, so that may not actually end up being a problem for you.
Another nice feature of ShopKeep is that it doesn't require you to be constantly connected to the Internet, which is great during those times when you're either far away from WiFi or when your 4G Internet cuts out. Once you are connected again, it simply syncs as you would expect.
Now that you have a basic understanding of three of the most popular POS systems for food trucks, hopefully you can move forward and make an informed decision about what sort of set up is right for you. Sometimes it's best to start small and work your way into a more complex system, but of course this depends on what your goals are as well. Good luck!
Tuesday, April 11 2023
When you're selling guns, there are a lot of variables that you have to keep in mind when setting up your business. There's a potential for more bureaucracy and legal concerns when you're opening up shop, and so it becomes that much more important that you keep your records as organized as possible. In addition, just like any other kind of retail store, you're going to want to give your customers the best experience possible, by making it easy for them to buy using a variety of methods. You're also going to want to give them an easy-to-use interface when it's time to sign the payment screen and go through the usual motions of a purchase. You're going to want a quality POS that can help you run your transactions smoothly, that can keep your records for you, and that can help you get a good idea of your sales trends through some kind of integrated analytics.
On another level, you also have to worry about your bottom line. Way too often, point of sale systems can be prohibitively expensive, whether because they run using expensive proprietary software or because the hardware that they use is specialized and high-cost. Thankfully, lately there has been an emerging generation of good quality, yet efficient POS systems that work well for just about any business and don't cost an arm and a leg to get started. Some of them even provide a slew of extras that you may not have expected. Let's take a look:
With a software package that is specifically geared towards owners of gun and archery shops, AimSi handles a few different functions besides serving as a basic POS. It will keep track of your inventory, help keep records for ATF compliance, and keep schedules for firearm-related classes that your shop may provide. In addition, it offers ecommerce solutions as well, so that you can have an online store along with a brick-and-mortar setup.
This is a fairly simple option with easy software to learn and plenty of support, but it does have an upfront cost of hundreds of dollars. In the grand scheme of things, that's really not that much, but if you're not ready to pay that kind if money, or you simply want a better deal, then there are certainly other options. The draw here is that there are so many gun shop-specific features to this POS, but you might find that these aren't completely essential for you, especially if you're small and just starting out.
Like the name implies, this is an overall solution for most of your gun store needs. It is much more than a POS, and in fact you could say that its POS features are actually a small part of this software package. Mostly, this software takes on the critical tasks of a gun store; for example, it will help you with the creation of a Bound Book for ATF compliance, and it will also help you create the paperwork that you need if you find that any of your inventory has been stolen. It will enable you to track your inventory as well as help you comply with the law in various ways; this is invaluable when you're a small operation in particular because it can get easy to be overwhelmed by all the bureaucratic requirements.
Now, the POS portion of this software solution is based on QuickBooks. It integrates more or less seamlessly with the other Gun StoreMaster software, and any inventory that you add on the Gun StoreMaster end will automatically apply to the QuickBook's POS inventory list. It's a fairly inexpensive solution and is meant to keep things simple for your business.
Revel is one of the newer POS players, and it's one of those modern POS systems that seeks to be minimalistic and give the customers a completely integrated system, using inexpensive and familiar software, all for a low monthly fee. Though Revel doesn't have software that's specific to a gun store and its unique requirements, it's one of those very basic solutions that is narrow in its functions. This isn't necessarily a bad thing; in fact, it can be a very good thing because it can save you a lot of time on training and potential technical problems.
Revel offers the usual things you would expect from a POS: It will take the customer's money, and it will keep track of sales as well as inventory. If you need to get an idea of your business trends, there are also reports that you can view of sales data, among other things. All of this software runs easily on hardware that you may be quite accustomed to already, like the iPad, and it is very much an example of the modern trend of POS systems. You can choose different specialized software packages to customize your interface and functions to an extent, but—as mentioned before—there is no customization specifically made to accommodate a gun store, so you may find yourself just using a basic retail model.
Regardless, Revel is not a bad choice thanks to its security, which is something critical when you're dealing with a gun store. The support is top-notch as well, and you will always have someone to turn to if things go South on the technical end. You might want to give this POS company a try, especially if you're a smaller business that needs a more simple solution.
Starting any sort of business can be overwhelming, but it's especially difficult when you're dealing with a business like a gun shop, where not only do you have to worry about keeping the customer happy, but you have to worry about complying with a myriad of ever-changing laws. Whether you are only selling firearms, or you are also providing classes on their use, or rentals for your shooting range, you will need a quality POS, so remember to do your research well; the list above is not a bad place to start.
Tuesday, April 11 2023
There's nothing that makes a woman feel more beautiful than having her nails done at a salon. If you're in the business of providing manicures and pedicures for eager customers, then congratulations, because nail salons are often very profitable endeavors. Perhaps you are working as a nail technician for someone else and you are looking into starting your own shop, or maybe you already run your own business and are wanting to get organized. Regardless, if you are running a nail salon, an invaluable tool for getting things done efficiently is having a POS system that matches you well.
You may feel inclined to do things primitively with just an old cash register and a credit card, since your business is mostly service-based and may not include the amount of inventory that you might find in, say, a grocery store. However, every business is the same in that staying organized and having a way to get a bird's eye view of your effectiveness is invaluable. A proper POS will allow you to keep all your records digitally, analyze data such as sales and inventory, and of course take your customer's money in an integrated and hassle-free way.
Lots of people assume that POS systems with these kinds of capabilities have to be complicated or expensive, but they really don't. Let's take a look at a few options that you might try for your nail salon, to help you get a better perspective of the costs and functionality of a few popular systems:
You may have heard of square before, and indeed it is a great, if simplistic POS-esque solution. They provide a way to take your customer's money and also provide great analytics, and they have no monthly fee, which makes the popular with many small startups who don't have any money to invest in either higher-end hardware or in a monthly service fee.
Though you may associate them with businesses like food trucks, Square has some salon-specific and beauty shop-specific solutions that might work well for your niche. However, there are a few downsides: Since they take a percentage of every transaction as their fee, this may not be ideal if you have higher sales volume; it may make more sense to find a POS with a simple monthly fee. Also, Square tends to rely on hardware that you already have such as your tablet or phone, so if you want a simple, all-in-one solution, then Square is probably not it.
This salon- and spa-centric POS system offers all kinds of features that you may find useful for your nail business. In a lot of ways, it is more than just a POS: It allows you to track your customers' purchases and keep a dossier on their personal history with your salon, provides analytics, and handles online booking and confirmation. If you want to start a newsletter for email marketing purposes—which is an invaluable technique for keeping long-term customers and sending them promotions—it can also help you with that. You can buy different kinds of hardware packages from them for your point of sale system as well, and while they are not expensive, they do require an upfront cost. If you're looking for something that doesn't require this upfront investment, you might want to go with another company.
Currently, there is no salon-specific software from this company (though it is in the works and the company is growing), but Harbortouch certainly makes up for it in affordability. For very little or no upfront cost, you can have all the hardware and software you need to get a great quality POS set up in your shop, and the monthly fees associated with the service are rather low. A few of its major benefits include customizability, a wealth of analytics, and the fact that all of your reporting is not only available locally on your machine, but is also stored on the cloud, so that you can review your stats remotely and you never have to worry about losing your information should your hardware fail.
There are two main POS systems from this company to choose from, and they are the Harbortouch Echo and the Harbortouch Elite. The Echo is a great choice if you are just starting out and don't have too many employees; it's also the more immediately affordable of the two. Even though it's available for a surprisingly inexpensive monthly fee, they certainly did not skimp on features: It has an intuitive touch screen design whose home screen elements can be customized to your taste. Its interface is very easy to learn and training is included with the package. It includes great reporting and organizational tools, and you can access all of these remotely.
The Elite is a bit of a different animal, even though it includes all of the features of the Echo and more. With the Elite, you can further customize your software to make it even more specific to your business, and the hardware is extremely powerful. If you want a POS with a fast processor, and plenty of storage capacity, as well as the ability to control your own user interface experience down to the little details, this is a good choice. It's not even that expensive, so it's definitely worth considering if your business has grown past its initial stages.
As you can see, there is lots of choice in the world of POS systems for nail salons, and these certainly aren't your only options. In a lot of ways, it's not about trying to find the system that is “best,” but trying to find the one that works well with your situation. Whether you want to go with something incredibly simple like Square or you want to get a POS with the capacity to handle just about everything like the Harbortouch Elite, it's a good idea to look into getting some kind of system to handle your sales. Even just the convenience and cost-savings of having digital records stored from the beginning can save you a lot of headaches during tax season.
Monday, April 10 2023
Running a liquor store can be complicated, with all the licensing requirements and other red tape that you frequently have to deal with. You know what doesn't have to be complicated, though? Your POS system. There's no reason to make life more annoying when nowadays there are POS solutions that can track your sales, track your inventory, and handle all of your cashless transactions for very small monthly fees and often no upfront costs for the hardware. Many of these systems also mirror your data on the cloud, so that you can access all of your records remotely without a hitch. Imagine being able to print receipts anywhere or examine your sales numbers while you're sitting on the beach somewhere and your business is trucking along without you.
Now, you may be thinking to yourself: “There are so many choices. Which POS is best for my liquor store?” If you're just starting out or even just looking to reorganize, you can't really go wrong with the PayAnywhere Smart POS+. This is a POS with many features that work well for liquor stores, and in fact this company offers software that specifically caters to a variety of niche businesses, including wine and spirits. Let's take a look at some of the major benefits:
Tracking and Analytics
You need to keep track of what's going on in your business, or else you will never see the sort of margins that you are looking for. Selling spirits can be a very competitive business, so you always want to be checking up on what sells best in order to increase your ROI. The PayAnywhere Smart POS+ allows you to remotely access all of your information, so even if you have to go away for awhile, you can keep on top of the numbers. Another problem that you may face while running a liquor store is keeping track of all of the inventory. There are many different brands and varieties that you will have to keep an eye on, and this is hard to do manually. By letting a POS handle this, you will be able to know ahead of time when you are running out of key inventory so that you don't have to miss out on valuable sales. In addition, this allows you to keep an eye on what is flying off the shelves more quickly, so you can concentrate on your best sellers more.
Every business has different needs, and liquor stores will vary by local tastes and regulation. You need to be able to customize the interface of your POS to suit your needs, and this is one of the places where the PayAnywhere Smart POS+ really shines. You can switch things around very easily and intuitively so that you or your employees can always find what you are looking for. For example, if you want to save time, you can choose to display your best-selling products prominently on the interface. The PayAntyhere Smart POS+ will cater to your specific needs, and they have many different software packages to offer that will make your POS's interface suit your business better. You can choose their custom liquor store software and this will make things a lot easier for you.
The PayAnywhere PAX E700 Smart POS+ really delivers when it comes to hardware, since the processor used in this system is blazing fast. Don't make your customers wait more than they have to; get a POS that will work its magic not only quickly, but reliably. You don't want slow-downs and break-downs to throw a wrench into your business and frustrate the people who are keeping it alive. In addition, the all-in-one POS system is a real winner when it comes to storage capacity. Though all of your data is backed up on the cloud, you can expect to be able to hold tons of records locally, so you will always have access to the information that you need, even if your Internet decides to cut out.
NAB is known for their 24/7 support, and they are a very attentive company to work with. You don't have to worry about being left with a mess should anything go wrong—and things will occasionally go wrong whenever you are running a business. They guarantee their products as well, and will replace them if they ever break; it's nice to not have to come out of pocket for a hardware failure or a similar issue.
As you can see, the PayAnywhere Smart POS+ is a top-of-the-line machine. It is NAB's best POS and can be customized to suit a number of different business styles, while still having extremely powerful hardware that will help you ring up your orders as fast as your employees can take them.
Now, maybe you're not ready for the “big leagues” yet, and are looking for something a little less fancy for your small business. This is totally understandable, and it's why NAB offers the PayAnywhere Smart POS+, a POS system that is perfect for those who need something bare-bones, but still powerful. Best of all, the analytics are still there, the support is still there, and you can customize the interface of your POS as well. It's also available for a very small monthly fee, so you don't have to worry about upfront costs cutting into your early profits, and you can reinvest all of those savings right back into your business. You can always upgrade to the Custom POS System later if you find that you've outgrown the PayAnywhere Smart POS+.
There are a lot of things to consider when getting a POS for your liquor store, but the PayAnywhere Smart POS+ is a great choice, if for no other reason than its liquor-store specific software package. It doesn't hurt that the hardware is top-notch and that the support is constant, too. When you're looking for a POS, you want something that's not going to add needless complication, but which will instead simplify your business and make it easier to keep track of your affairs. Regardless of what stage your business is in, NAB has a POS solution that will probably fit your needs.
Monday, April 10 2023
For retail businesses, particularly restaurants, cafes, and diners, the benefits of having a point of sale system available create a number of benefits that will boost your bottom line. The point of sale systems for Android devices in particular is certainly worth considering for your business needs.
What is an Android POS System?
The system itself is representative of most POS products in that it consists of having the software, hardware, and payment processing services all rolled up into one device. However, this particular system for Android devices does offer advantages for many businesses who want to incorporate a more efficient sales process.
Hardware Requirements: The good news here is that you can choose from a number of different brands and models that all use the Android operating system. This means that you can start with a single smartphone or tablet and work your way up to a multiple user, multiple location system that is perfect for large retail businesses and restaurants. You can take advantage of recommended accessories such as card readers, payment terminals, barcode scanners, menu displays and more that can come from the same company or from third party sources that offer compatible products. There are even POS companies that offer entire systems that you can use which have advantages as well as disadvantages, but may be well suited for your particular needs.
Software: The heart of the system, the POS software creates the invoices, inventory, sales reports, and manages all of the customer data so you can see all the important aspects of selling. It is important to remember that most POS software still requires a processor for credit or debit card payments. From which products, services, or menu items are the most popular overall, when they sell the most, and what they are purchased with, you can better understand how your business is making a profit and what you can do to increase your earnings.
Processing Credit Cards: It seems that practically everyone enjoys the convenience of using a credit or debit card to make payments. The point of sales system for Android does require a card reader either directly attached or from a separate terminal that is connected in order to work. It should be noted that you will need an EMV chip card reader to protect your business or restaurant from being hit with charges that are fraudulent as well as being liable. The good news is that most, if not all new card readers that are being sold have the EMV chip already installed.
It should be noted that as part of the POS system, you will be paying rates that are dependent on the credit card chosen. Some such as PayPal for example offer a flat rate which may be a little higher than some competitors, but is generally simple to use, predictable, and has very high rates of approval which means less fuss for your business. Other processors may offer lower rates, but have hidden fees or charges that push up the costs. You will want to read all about the different rates and understand how they apply to your particular situation.
Advantages of Android POS System
For many businesses and in particular restaurants, the point of sale system for Android offers considerable benefits for your efforts
Versatility: The POS system does more than simply process sales as it supports the important aspects of how your business operates on a daily basis. For restaurants, a POS system that is down can make it very difficult to properly serve guests and build profits. The POS needs to be simple, easy to use, and highly reliable which is why Android systems offer a distinct advantage over iOS or Apple systems. Because Android systems are found on mobile devices from many different manufacturers, you can choose the one that emphasizes reliability to make breakdowns few and far between.
In addition, you can fine an Android mobile device that is customizable to your specific needs. Instead of having to use Apple-only products such as the iPad or iPhone, you can instead choose from a number of different manufacturers and select the device that is best suited for you want you want it to do. In essence, a restaurant that emphasizes fast service may only want a couple of POS credit card terminals with the wait staff has handheld tablets. This is easy to do with Android devices, but more difficult with iOS or Apple devices.
Cheaper Hardware: It’s no secret that Android devices are by and large considerably less expensive than Apple devices. You should also be aware of so-called self-contained POS systems that use older, out of date hardware through exclusive devices. You can choose which Android device you want to use which means that you can take advantage of sales or special discounts that are available.
This also makes replacement costs considerably less expensive as well since Android devices are on average costs less than iPad or Apple hardware. So, if the device is lost, stolen, or damaged beyond repair the replacement cost will be less than if it were an Apple device.
In fact, you may already own the smartphones or tablets that make installing the point of sale system for Android devices even simpler. There are even some services offered on Android devices that may be compatible with the POS technology such as card readers, bar code scanners, tablet stands, customer displays, scales, and so forth.
In the end, the benefits of using point of sale systems for Android are considerable and certainly worth the investment, particularly for restaurants and eating establishments where having the customer pay the bill on the spot is good for your business. The Android system in particular is one that offers advantages above and beyond what other major systems provide. Thanks to the versatility and popularity of devices that use the Android operating system, you can have a great deal of choice in selecting the specific devices used to help conduct your sales.
Monday, April 10 2023
Have you just opened your new coffee shop or café business and the customers are already pouring through the doors every morning? Congratulations! You know what you need now? A decent point of sale system to go with that cash box. You may love being a traditional little café and you might even think you're too small to need any kind of fancy equipment, but as you grow you're going to be glad to have a POS. Point of sale systems can not only help you keep track of how much you made, give you helpful stats on how your sales are doing, and help facilitate credit card transactions, but they can also keep track of your inventory so that you know what kind of supplies you will need next time you go to pick up your raw ingredients. The great thing about a POS is that it will help you stay organized, and you will never have to worry about where you left your scattered pile of receipts because you can always just print a new one.
Since the last thing you want is a POS that is too complicated or that won't fit your needs, let's take a look at one of the best point of sale systems that you can use precisely for a small, brick-and-mortar business like yours:
PayAnywhere Smart POS+
What's so great about the PayAnywhere Smart POS+? Well, just about everything, but there are some main features that make it perfect for a business that's just getting started or that needs to finally get organized:
- Easy to Use: Not a computer wiz? Why would you need to be? You're in the café business after all! If tech support is something you simply don't want to deal with (or pay an arm and a leg for), then this is the kind of POS you want at your restaurant. It is extremely easy to set up and includes a wizard that will do all of the heavy lifting and help you to get started. Updating can also be a hassle with most modern operating systems, but you won't have to worry about that with the PayAnywhere Smart POS+. It takes care of the updates automatically so you don't have to fiddle with anything to get the latest security features installed.
- Customizable: Your business is unique, so the interface on your point of sale system should be, too. Luckily, the software that runs on these machines is very modular and you can add or remove elements from the screen easily at your leisure. This means that if you have a very simple menu, you don't have to suffer from an overly-busy screen if you don't want to. It also means that you can use trial and error to determine what kind of interface is most efficient for you and your employees.
- Advanced Technology: You want the most advanced software for your store, and thats exactly what this POS is running. The system is cloud-based, so you'll have the convenience of being able to keep an eye on sales and other figures whether you're at your coffee house location or need to step out to address your latest emergency. If you lose Internet access for any reason, though, don't worry: this system is still capable of storing information locally, and it will sync with the cloud as soon as you're re-connected, so you'll have the best of both worlds. This POS is also capable of taking several different payment methods, including cash, credit card, and Apple Pay, so you'll never have to lose a sale simply due to an inability to take your customer's money.
- Great Hardware Overall: This is a very modern, very sleek and well-designed POS system that you'll be proud to have sitting on your counter-top. Unlike the old, bulky registers of yore, this system is thin and easily portable, and uses and extremely intuitive touch interface. The screen even twists around to face your customer so that they can sign off during a credit transaction, and it's just as easy to read and comprehend for them as it is for your employees as it mirrors the mobile interfaces that most of your customers will already be used to. The screen is just about the size of a large tablet at over 13”, so it's certainly big enough to to comfortably use, but not so big that it takes over your counter space. Don't worry about keeping your customers waiting, either, since this system is really fast. It uses a flash storage system rather than the old style of hard drive, so all of your orders can be taken and stored quickly.
- Great Support: As mentioned, the interface is extremely easy to use, but as with any kind of technology things can certainly go wrong. If you find that you need tech support, the company will provide it 24-hours a day, 7 days a week, so you never have to worry about being caught in a tight spot because they are always there to help. Another nice aspect of their support is that if your equipment ever actually physically breaks, they will replace it for you for free.
- Low Cost: North American Bancard offers a few different solutions, but the PayAnywhere Smart POS+ is the best value. It's one of their cheapest, costing only a small monthly fee (currently less than 40 dollars) to serve a small company with a few employees. Best of all, there is no upfront cost. For just a bit of pocket change practically, you can be up and running immediately, using some of the most advanced POS technology. There are many costs to not organizing your business properly, and considering how much this POS could save you in terms of time and labor, it will pay for itself many times over. So if you're looking for a POS that can serve you and your customers at your coffee shop, the PayAnywhere Smart POS+ is certainly one of the simplest, easiest, and cheapest options out there.
PA PAX E700 Smart POS+
Transform your countertop with the space-saving, tablet-based point of sale designed for your storefront.
The Payanywhere Smart POS+ is the ideal solution for merchants who want full POS functionality in a sleek and compact design.