Electric Cash Register… Should you get rid of yours?

Electric Cash Registers… Why should you get rid of yours?

I talk to customers almost every week who are using an electric cash register. Some use it because they’ve had it for years. Others, because they believed it would be cheaper than it’s cloud based counterpart.  But by the time they talk to me, they’re generally looking for some more advanced features. Things like gift or loyalty cards. These aren’t compatible with cash registers, and as useless with credit card terminals. What they really need, is a POS system.

Here’s 5 reasons you need a POS system, and need to dump the electric cash register:

1.) POS is cheaper than an electric cash register

I mean, that’s a pretty simple look at it. But it’s true. A cash register often costs upwards of $1,500. But a cloud based POS system will often run on a standard household PC. Every morning I get an email from Newegg.com with PC’s for $300 that have what you need.  You also need software. But POS software is cheap too these days! The prices range anywhere from free (not recommended,) to $100 a month. That’s for a single register station.

2.) POS offers better reporting

Do you want to know how much you made today? Easy enough on a cash register, right? But what about how much inventory you sold? Or the cost of the inventory? How much did payroll cost today?  These are simple questions for POS. Your employees use it to clock in and out, so you know the payroll costs. You enter the costs of items as you receive them, so as they’re sold, you know the profit margin. But it’s so much more detailed than that. Have you ever advertised in the paper? Did it work? How would you know? With POS you could keep track of coupons used. You can see a report of how many came in because of the ad. And you can make sure that it was worth your money!

3.) E-commerce integration

Do you sell online? Do you want to? With a POS, you can track inventory sold in-store and online with the same program. That way if you sell out of an item in-store, the online store can show them as out of stock.  Many of these POS systems even offer online e-commerce sites you can build yourself. Then you don’t have to hire anyone to build the site out for you. You can make it what you want.  You won’t get that with an electric cash register.

4.) Gift and Loyalty Cards

Almost every POS system offers a gift card program these days. And if you’ve read any of my other gift card posts, you know that gift cards are a real revenue enhancer, (read about it here). But better than that, POS systems won’t charge the swipe fees that credit card processors do. So you can process gift cards for free!  They’re also loadable for any amount. This is particularly nice because you can’t steal them! They aren’t live until they’re loaded. If someone steals a card, all they have is a piece of plastic.
But what about loyalty cards? mPOS companies are making great strides with loyalty. This is becoming a huge part of how brick and mortar businesses keep people coming back. Loyalty programs give people a reason to come back in your store. It’s why Kohl’s, Target, and Super America, have loyalty programs. They know this is the easiest way to keep people coming in the door!

5.) Tech Support

Have you ever had problems with your register? Or your credit card machine? What kind of support do they have?  All your good POS companies have tech support. Most have 24 hour tech support. So if you have problems, you can get in touch with someone. This is an important feature! This is your business, and if something goes wrong, you need to be able to fix it quick!

Electric Cash Register, Final Thoughts

If you’re using a cash register, I know it’s tempting to avoid switching to something else. But the amount of time you’ll save will shock you. The ease of reporting, estimating, and payroll, will be worth it.  And if you have any questions about POS, or providers, you can always reach out to me, and I can recommend one for you! Just leave a comment, and I’ll get back to you in no time!