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Best POS System: 10 “Point of Sale” Tools to Look Into in 2021


Any successful store requires a solid Point of Sale (POS) system to receive payments from walk-in customers as well as online sales. A POS system is usually an additional tool/software built over eCommerce stores or payment processing tools. While they may have started off as mere cash registers, they have come to pack a lot more punch nowadays. The best POS system solutions record sales data, manage inventory, generate reports, store customer contact data and more.

One advantage of working with only the best POS system(s) is that you do not have to maintain elaborate hardware at different locations. Moreover, you can tailor it to suit your needs – use it simply as a cash register or, a complete POS system that communicates with back-end accounting systems and handles different payment methods.

As for the specific best POS system software, there’s a lot out there to choose from. Based on your needs, your ideal tool can be installed on local computers or hosted in the cloud. Whatever the level of complexity, here are some desirable features that any tool that wants to call itself the best POS system should offer:

  • Storing customer contact data
  • Allowing for returns
  • Managing inventory
  • Ability to track sales and issue receipts
  • Offering coupons, loyalty perks, and gift cards
  • Performing back-office functions like tracking employee productivity and detecting sales trends
  • Analytics and reporting
  • Supporting different payment methods – cash, checks, credit cards
  • Apps for different types of devices
  • Compliance with PCI DSS standards (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards)
  • Integrations with other software, particularly payment processors, back-end accounting systems, and CRM
  • eCommerce integrations with popular systems
  • Hardware support for barcode scanners, card swipers and cash drawers
  • Product support for the POS system itself
 

Apart from the above, one more thing to consider is different POS systems’ approach to payment processing. Some handle everything on their own (via proprietary software) and some use third-party payment processors, which sometimes means additional fees for each payment done. These are the kind of things that you need to look into before committing to your ideal, best POS system.

Best POS system in 2021

Square Point of Sale

Best POS system: Square Point of Sale

? Pricing:

Free to use, no monthly fees. 10¢ + 2.6% as processing charges for every payment collected.

? Key features:

  • Automatically creates customer profiles and loyalty programs
  • Add employees and locations easily
  • Connect to popular third party apps
  • Inventory management
  • Customizable real-time reports
  • Add as many locations as you want
  • Manage multiple locations from the online Square dashboard
  • Multiple ways to accept payments
  • Send custom invoices to customer inboxes
  • Fund transfer and refund processing

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Best POS system: Shopify POS

? Pricing:

The Lite version is included in all Shopify plans. Pro plans at $89 / mo / location.

? Key features:

  • Mobile POS and hardware accessories
  • Customer profiles
  • Order and product management
  • Unlimited store staff
  • Unlimited registers
  • Smart inventory management
  • Omnichannel selling features
  • Staff roles and permissions
  • In-store analytics
  • Shopify Payments built into plans

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Best POS system: ShopKeep

? Pricing:

Basic Pack at $69 / mo, Essential at $99 / mo, and Advanced at $199 / mo. Annual payments get you $20 x 12 discount for all plans.

? Key features:

  • Accept all payment types
  • Robust reporting to build a data-first business
  • Online ordering
  • Gift cards
  • QuickBooks integration
  • Free credit card reader to eligible merchants
  • Track all sales on mobile
  • Customizable payment processing solutions
  • Unlimited inventory items
  • Get paid via text messages

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Best POS system: Lightspeed

? Pricing:

Five packages at $99, $129, $149, $199 and $259 monthly. Rates go down by $30 / mo if you opt for Lightspeed payments. In that case, you can also get additional registers at $29 / mo.

? Key features:

  • Free terminal included if you opt for Lightspeed Payments
  • Sell seamlessly online and in stores
  • Omnichannel loyalty
  • Connects to accounting software
  • 50 built-in retail reports
  • Order and manage stock from within the POS
  • Accept all payment methods
  • Lightspeed subscriptions for recurring revenue
  • Smart retail inventory management tools
  • Manage multiple locations

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Best POS system: Vend

? Pricing:

Packages at $119 / mo and $159 / mo with discounts for annual payment.

? Key features:

  • Multiple locations and registers
  • No transactions fees
  • Real time inventory management
  • Secure cloud backup
  • Reporting and analytics
  • Integrated payments
  • Unlimited products and users
  • Promotions and gift cards
  • Add-ons and eCommerce channels
  • Multi-outlet retail management

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QuickBooks

? Pricing:

One time purchase: Basic at $1,200, Pro at $1,700 and Multi-store at $1,900. Hardware sold separately.

? Key features:

  • Accept contactless payments
  • Track and manage inventory
  • eCommerce integration
  • Manage customer data
  • Advanced reporting, including ‘by store’
  • Generate purchase orders
  • Rewards and loyalty program
  • Manage multiple stores
  • Built-in tools to cultivate customer relations
  • More hardware and tablet options

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EPOS Now

? Pricing:

Complete solution at £799 / mo or £47 / mo.

? Key features:

  • Automated real-time clock counts
  • Cash register and printer included
  • Track single item performance
  • Create automatic purchase orders to restock
  • Full barcode management
  • Data insights from any device or location
  • Integrate with popular eCommerce and accounting solutions
  • Build reward programs and customer loyalty
  • Integration with most payment providers
  • Suitable for retail and hospitality

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Bindo POS

? Pricing:

Price available only on request. Estimates peg it at about $60 with additional charges for extra registers and an activation fee.

? Key features:

  • Cloud-based iPad POS system
  • Bindo storefront
  • Inventory management
  • Reward program, store credit and gift cards
  • Customer data
  • Detailed metrics and analysis
  • Credit card processing options
  • Manage stores across multiple devices using online dashboard
  • Sell online or through a marketplace
  • A range of hardware options

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TouchBistro

? Pricing:

Licenses start at $69 / mo. Add-ons like reservations, online ordering, gift cards and payments available separately.

? Key features:

  • All-in-one restaurant POS
  • Online ordering
  • Menu and table management
  • Kitchen and customer-facing displays
  • Reporting and analytics
  • Personalized marketing, multiple reward options
  • Tableside ordering
  • Restaurant inventory management
  • Web app with mobile payment options
  • Unlimited users and logins for staff and management

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Revel Systems

? Pricing:

Software costs start at $99 / mo / terminal. Onboarding costs $674 plus flat fees for processing.

? Key features:

  • Cloud-based iPad POS system
  • Suitable for coffee shops, restaurants, quick services
  • Online ordering
  • Self-service kiosks
  • Mobile order takers
  • Loyalty program
  • Customer display systems
  • Gift cards
  • Employee and delivery management
  • Kitchen and table management

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Toast

? Pricing:

Packages start at $69. Higher packages at $99 and $189

? Key features:

  • Built specifically for restaurants
  • Cloud-based access
  • Competitive flat rates on all transactions
  • Restaurant grade spill-proof hardware
  • Hand-held technology for tableside service
  • Menu management that includes time countdown
  • Restaurant team training and Go-live support
  • Cloud-based real time reports
  • Loyalty and gift cards
  • Open integrations

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