A POS terminal is a computer or tablet unit that has hardware components and software to process sales, track inventory and provide customer service. Unlike the more traditional, cash-register style of POS system or cash register, which only accepts cash and checks, most modern POS systems offer many benefits beyond accepting credit card payments. This article will walk you through the most important features of POS terminals, how they work and considerations for choosing a POS that suits your business needs.
A modern POS terminal will typically include a computer or tablet unit, a barcode scanner, a receipt printer and a cash drawer. A few different models of hardware are available, depending on your business’s size and desired mobility. For example, small businesses may prefer a portable, tablet-based POS, while larger businesses with a designated “cash wrap” area will likely opt for a more stationary, monitor-based POS.
The best POS systems feature an intuitive, user-friendly interface that enables employees to quickly and easily enter sales, track inventory and create invoices. Ideally, the POS system should integrate with other apps or programs you use for other parts of your business, like accounting and email marketing, to help streamline data sharing and improve workflow.
Some POS terminals are capable of processing magstripe and chip cards, while others support NFC-enabled digital wallets (like Apple Pay) and QR-code payment apps. Some POS systems also include built-in features for calculating discounts, taxes and tips during the checkout process. Finally, the best POS terminals offer 24/7 virtual and on-site support to address any technical issues that may arise. pos terminal