How to get the most out of your ePOS system
As a retailer, your ePOS system is the most important tool you have in your store. More than just a device that sits on your checkout counter, it can also help you manage multiple aspects of your business — including stock control, customer relationships, analytics, and more.
For this reason, it’s essential that you not only select the right system, but you should also learn how to get the most out of the software. This is particularly important if you’re using a paid solution. When you invest your hard-earned revenue, you should make sure you get the most bang for your buck.
Here are a number of tips to help you do just that.
1. Explore the platform’s full range of features
If you’re only using your ePOS at checkout, you’re missing out. Be sure to fully explore the system, so you can take advantage of all the features that can benefit your business.
Each ePOS system is different; there aren’t any hard and fast rules around which capabilities you should use. But here’s is a quick overview of what most solutions offer. Go through the list and see if you can use any of these features in your store.
Aside from ringing up sales, most modern solutions have features that can streamline and enhance the checkout experience.
- Quick keys or shortcuts – Does your system allow you to access popular items on the sell screen? This is a handy feature that can speed up the checkout process.
- Gift cards – If you sell gift cards, make sure they’re integrated with your ePOS so can accept them as a form of payment. Some point of sale solutions have partnerships with gift card companies, so check with your provider and see if you can score a deal.
- Alternative payments – Standard payments like cash and credit cards are great, but if you’re catering to younger consumers, you may want to consider alternative payments such as mobile payments and “buy now, pay later.”
The best solutions help you stay on top of stock control so you can have the right products at the right them. Here are some inventory management features that you should utilise (assuming your provider offers them).
- Multi-channel inventory management – If you’re selling on different channels (i.e., bricks and mortar + e-commerce) your system should automatically sync your stock across all your stores.
- Multi-store inventory management – The same goes for multi-outlet retailers. You need a solution that lets you centrally manage stock across multiple locations. Ideally, your solution should enable you to transfer stock from one location to the
next, as well as generate reports for each store.
It’s a pain to manage stores on separate systems, so if you own a multi-outlet retail business (or you’re planning to expand) strive to do everything from a single solution.
- Stock counts – Counting your stock regularly keeps your inventory records up-to-date and accurate. If your solution has a feature for stock counts, you’ll certainly want to use it.
Having data and insights into your sales and stock movements will allow you to make more informed decisions in your business. To that end, see to it that your solution has reporting features that can shed light on things like:
- Product performance -Your system should be able to tell you which items are doing
well, how fast stock is moving, and which products are making you money.
- Sales – Ideally, your solution should generate sales reports per category, product
type, and employee so you have a better idea of how you can refine your sales
- Customer activity – Who are your most active customers? Who’s spending the most in your store? Where are your customers located? Your system should be able to answer these questions and give you insights to inform your customer experience strategy.
2. Look into your provider’s customer success and educational offerings
Explore your provider’s customer success and educational initiatives. Many ePOS companies employ support reps and retail specialists who can lend a hand to retailers who need help navigating the software.
Vend, for instance, has Launch Specialists and Account Managers to help retailers get up and running and ensure that they’re getting the most out of the system.
If you’re looking to learn more about your solution, give your provider a call and ask them about their onboarding and training initiatives. Doing so can do wonders for yourself and your team.
You should also check your provider’s online resources. Do they have a help centre? A blog or resource hub? Video tutorials? These types of content often contain useful tips, not just for using the software, but also for running a more successful retail business. So, if you’re
provider offers such resources, keep yourself updated by subscribing to their content.
3. Invest in staff training
Your ePOS system will only be as good as the people using it. That’s why it’s important to devote the time and energy to fully train your staff on the system. For best results, use a mix of training materials and methods to ensure that the knowledge sticks.
“People learn and retain information best when they are using several aspects of their brain simultaneously,” says Sarkis Hakopdjanian, principal at The Business Clinic.
“So first they may hear the information from me, then they will read about it in a book or manual, then they will see it demonstrated in person, then they will role play it themselves, and finally, they will teach what they’ve learned to others. The more I can incorporate various aspects of their brain during training, the greater they’ll be able to learn and retain information.”
4. Work with an expert
Need more help in using the software or training your team? See if you can get an expert on board. Some vendors have networks of certified experts who can train you and your team and even provide custom solutions for your business.
A great example of this in action comes from Kate Sheridan, an accessories and womenswear store in East London. When setting up her ePOS solution, Kate got help from Vend expert Albion, who did most of the heavy lifting to get her system up and running. Albion uploaded all her product SKUs, installed the right hardware, and trained Kate and her team.
As a result, Kate was able to establish her store quickly and easily, and she was able to get the most out of Vend right from the get-go.
Maximise the results of your ePOS
Your ePOS system is one of the best investments you can have in your business. But to make the most out of it, you need to explore the system’s features and take advantage of your vendor’s resources. Doing so will put your business in the best possible position for retail success.