For many retail based business having a simple credit card terminal isn’t enough to get the job done.
Whether you run a restaurant or bar, spa or salon, clothing business or stationary store, having a POS system to track specific items sold – as well as your inventory – is a godsend.
But at what price?
Your typical POS system can cost $2,000 to $4,500 (or more) per unit.
And how are you supposed to run your business should it break down…
POS systems for retail
When it comes to getting a POS system for your business there are typically three choices:
- “free” equipment deals
Buying a traditional POS set up can be expensive (obvious point, I know).
And if you need more than one unit for your business the out-of-pocket cost adds up pretty quickly.
In my opinion leasing equipment is never a good idea. The primary reason is the fact that they CANNOT be canceled until the lease term expires. Even then you have to call the company to cancel the lease once the term is up (i.e. they do not automatically end). Some companies even set you up with auto-renew features (did you know this?), or they continue month to month should you forget to cancel.
And that’s just what they’re counting on.
Additionally, though the monthly cost may seem small compared to buying your equipment outright, after a 4, 5 or 6 year lease term you end up overpaying for the equipment — by a LOT.
So is buying or leasing the better option?
Either way, you end up shelling out thousands of dollars (either up front or spread out each month). And what happens to your business should it start to malfunction or break down?
Yep, you guessed it…
You’re on your own.
So what about supposed “free” equipment deals?
Typical complaints tend to focus on one (or several) of these potential issues:
- poor quality
- service issues
- lack of support
- integrated solutions tend to mean you’re stuck
Often times business owners have to sign a contract to process credit cards with the company offering the “free” POS system. Now, this isn’t always a bad idea – however, an integrated solution means your options are limited. If you decide to go with another processing company, you may have to pay an early termination fee to get out of the merchant account… plus buy (or lease, etc.) a new POS system all over again.
Which means you’re right back where you started in the first place.
However, you do have an alternative.
A web-based POS system means you can use your existing computer and internet connection to create a “virtual” POS set up.
Now you don’t have to worry about equipment breakdowns, hardware issues, or other potential problems associated with buying or leasing equipment.
What’s more, a virtual set up means there is no software to buy (or upgrade), and no annual software licenses to renew. For a set low monthly fee you can have a safe, speedy and secure set up without all the hassles and headaches.
Does that make sense to you?
I hope you found this information helpful. Please feel free to share your comments below.
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