Owners of brick-and-mortar stores will be familiar with the physical version of the point of sale or POS, while ecommerce sellers will see online checkouts as their major POS. However, the point of sale has evolved, and its evolution has brought improved utility for both types of merchants.
POS systems can feel intimidating and be non-intuitive, which means shop owners often have to spend precious time figuring out how they work.
However, ecommerce sellers that want to add physical touchpoints beyond their online stores will also need to get familiar with a POS and the ways it can help retail operations grow. It's worth taking the time to understand the extra features a POS can offer. In the long run, the time shop owners spend getting to know those extra features will pay off in several ways.
Improve customer service
According to a 2020 report by Hyken, 96% of people will leave a business because of bad customer service. With rising customer expectations and stiffer competition, small businesses, in particular, need to find ways to set themselves apart — the POS is one method of doing so.
There are many points at which customer service might fail, like the checkout experience, which plays a huge role in customer satisfaction. In a study from Popspots, 70% of respondents identified the checkout experience as something that influences their perception of a store more than any other factor.
The POS makes up a significant part of the checkout experience. Create a great checkout experience by unifying your online store operations with your in-store experience.
You can also offer different ways of collecting receipts as some customers might prefer digital receipts, which you can send via SMS text message or email instead of physical receipts.
A POS can also connect seamlessly to your customer data stored in the cloud so that you have instant access to the insights and information you need to help customers.
From the customer's perspective, you appear well-prepared and able to go that extra mile.
Track and surface essential data in real time
Staying on the topic of data, all business owners need to understand their customers’ behavior and business performance to make improvements and growth plans — and your POS system can help with that.
A POS can help your business keep track of customers and their buying habits, which, in turn, can help you identify items to stock more of or discounts to implement.
Gathering data from POS purchases helps you understand other parts of your business, like what your peak times are, return rates, and chargebacks — all information that assists with simplifying your entire operation.
By accessing customer purchase histories through your POS, you can make custom suggestions for additional purchases based on customers’ buying habits.
For example, if a customer buys a sweater from you and returns for another item, you can recommend more options on the sales floor or as they go through checkout.
This increases your store’s average order value or AOV — enabling you to increase revenue with the same number of customers.
AOV is a signal of customer retention, an important metric for businesses.
Returning customers shows that you provided a good enough customer experience to bring them back. It also means that you can focus more of your marketing budget on bringing in new customers.
Through data gathered from your POS activity, you can also create segmented customer profiles for marketing and targeting purposes.
Improve customer loyalty programs
Improving your customer loyalty program leads to more sales, and integrating the program into your POS makes the process of onboarding your customers smoother. With a good POS system, you can keep your customers updated on all of their discounts and quickly apply them as well.
Let’s look at a practical example. A clothing store might have set up a marketing campaign for the upcoming holiday season. Taking this a step further, you could also identify repeat customers from earlier in the year and offer them additional discounts on top of your existing program. Sending festive discounts during the holiday season could entice customers to pick your store over the competition during the most important sales season.
Integrate your POS system with loyalty programs and track each customer’s purchase history, shopping preferences, and buying patterns to reward the most active ones.
Offering customers discounts or free shipping at checkout based on their information will delight them and encourage revisits. Including specialized offers tailored to their specific buying habits (early access to a new product or little gifts at the holidays, perhaps?) is also part of making customers feel special.
Optimize inventory tracking and management
Sales and inventory are tightly woven, which is why the majority of modern POS systems offer inventory management features. For multichannel sellers, a POS system should let you view how much you have of an item and, if you have more than one location, which locations have it. An accurate and easy stock-tracking system is needed to keep a handle on your inventory levels and understand how and where your business is growing.
To avoid the nightmare of an online customer ordering the last of a product just as another customer buys it in your physical store, create a product catalog in your POS that lists each item with its attributes and available quantity.
This way, you and your employees can quickly and accurately access information about products your customers are looking for to find whether it’s in stock — all without having to leave the customer’s side.
With proper inventory-to-POS integration, you’ll always know which products are or are not in demand by the number of sales. Low-stock alerts while a customer is checking out will help you keep hot items on your shelf. Alternatively, alerts about slower-moving products will let you know when to offer discounts to help move stock or remove them from your shelves.
Find a POS that scales with your business
If you’re looking to create or improve your physical stores, your POS should be scalable and adaptable with the tools and integrations to help your business grow, no matter its size.
GoDaddy’s POS system offers the lowest fees on the market, multiple methods of payment, as well as seamless integration across your online and offline operations. Get started with GoDaddy’s POS system today.