There are dozens of POS systems available out there, many with amazing features and extras to help better manage your business and increase your efficiency. An effective POS system brings all of your business’s information together in one place, for an easily accessible business terminal where you can plan and implement marketing campaigns, inventory management techniques, and even manage employee performance. Ensuring your POS system’s compatibility with third-party soft and hardware means making the most of your software.
Not all POS systems come equipped with their own, software-specific hardware like card readers or terminals. Square and Lightspeed provide their own hardware, but other POS systems like Vend do not, and simply rely on the software’s compatibility with third-party hardware.
When you purchase POS software that is incompatible with your store’s hardware, you run into a number of issues. You’ll either have to purchase different software or buy all new hardware including registers, receipt printers, etc.
This can be costly, time-consuming, and incredibly frustrating. Compatibility is, unfortunately, a tricky thing, and older hardware can have difficulty integrating with some of the modern POS solutions.
It’s best to download a demo of the software you plan to purchase and ensure that it operates with your hardware. This will save you the agonizing process of returning the software or purchasing all new hardware for your store. Always test before you buy!
Some POS software operates specifically with iPads and no other mobile devices, so if you’re looking for a mobile terminal, be sure the software is compatible with Android, Windows, and Apple devices alike. A cloud-based system is your best bet here, as they will function as a web-based system and therefore work with any operating system.
Software integration is another important factor in POS compatibility. Your bookkeeping software is an essential part of your business, keeping accurate financial information so that you can pay taxes and know exactly where your costs lie.
Many POS systems will integrate with bookkeeping software for easy balancing. Other third-party add-ons, such as employee management and scheduling software can also integrate with specific POS systems, though not with all. Finding a system that works with each of your separate software systems can be difficult, but it’s certainly not impossible.
Be sure to look into the POS software’s compatibility with other software before you make a purchase. Don’t be afraid to contact the company itself and ask questions in regard to the software’s compatibility. Remember that the right questions can literally save your business thousands of dollars!
Payment Method Compatibility
There are dozens of ways to complete a payment, from credit and debit card transactions to touchless payment methods like Apple Pay. Ensuring your POS system’s compatibility with various payment methods ensures that your customers have multiple options when paying their bill and that your business doesn’t miss out on specific customers because of unsupported payment methods.
Monetary exchanges are becoming more and more digitalized, with fewer cash transactions occurring than ever before. This requires unique software that can accept digital payment methods as well as cash. While most modern POS systems to support such methods as Apple Pay, it’s important to be sure the system you’ve chosen does support touchless payment methods. You don’t want to lose out on a sale because the customer is a die-hard Apple Pay fan.
While digital currencies such as Bitcoin haven’t exactly made their debut in the general retail market, the future does hold some hope for such payment methods. Older registers and terminals will likely be unable to accept such payment methods, but with a modern POS system, you’re setting your business up for the future as well as the present.
Troubleshooting becomes all the more difficult when you’re running incompatible software. It can take hours to locate the source of the problem if the software doesn’t work well with your other store systems, so compatibility becomes a necessity rather than a suggestion.
Most POS systems do offer 24/7 support, so you’ll have access to help when you need it. Does your old register offer the same service? It’s likely that outdated equipment will malfunction, but it’s just as likely that the support line either doesn’t exist or is operated by someone who is unfamiliar with the older models.
Why It Matters
The bottom line on why compatibility matters? Efficiency. When all of your hardware and software systems integrate properly, you don’t have to make any extra purchases or changes to your business to accommodate incompatible software. This can be costly and time-consuming, the exact opposite of efficiency.
An efficient business not only better serves the customers better, but it also serves itself better. Saving time and money benefits the business by freeing up funds for other projects, such as marketing efforts or upgrades to the store, or even research and development for new products or services.
Software compatibility can mean the difference between increased efficiency and troublesome experience. You should always research your POS software, and if possible, try the demo with your equipment before purchasing it.
Be sure that it’s compatible with both hardware and software, and that the terminal is easily accessible. 24/7 support is another consideration, as you may run into issues with integration or the software itself. Save your business time and money by ensuring the compatibility of your POS software.