How Much Does an Electronic Point of Sale System Cost?
Written by Eric Fleming
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When bringing a business into the modern age, one of the first things to consider is implementing an electronic point of sale system. As the name implies, an electronic point of sale system is simply a way for your customers and clerks to ring up purchases using a computer. A good system can not only save your employees and customers time at the checkout line, but also money in the long run.
Benefits of an electronic POS system
The primary benefit, at least from the customer’s point of view, is speed. Comparing an old-fashioned cash register with an electronic POS system, the increase in speed is astounding. So, too, is the level of accuracy you’ll experience. With old systems, a cashier could mistakenly type in $1.99 instead of $19.99. If the error wasn’t noticed, your business would shed profits. If you had one cashier error like that per shift, per day, your business would soon be bleeding money.
With an electronic point of sale system, prices don’t need to be entered manually, which cuts back on errors. From the business owner’s perspective, an electronic POS system also makes it simpler to track inventory. With each sale, the numbers are updated automatically.
What to look for in an electronic point of sale vendor
If your company is looking to upgrade your ancient cash register to a new electronic point of sale system, there are a couple of things to consider.
First, how disruptive will the switch over be? In some cases, you might want to run both systems in parallel, continuing to use the old system for day-to-day transactions, but entering every transaction into the new system to spot of trouble potential areas. Will the vendor help with that, or simply come in one day, set up your new POS, and leave? Will your employees be trained by the vendor, or is it up to your management team to read through the instruction manuals and train everyone outside of work?
Also, what if you have plans to expand your store? Will the system you’re purchasing today work for you tomorrow? A good vendor should be able to point you in the direction of a system ready to use today, and ready for expansion should you want it tomorrow.
Finally, what are your employees to do if they experience trouble with the system? Is your vendor also your technical support? These things should be at the top of your list when you’re looking at potential vendors.
This will vary greatly depending on whether you’re purchasing the computer on its own, or as part of a turnkey solution where all components are packaged together. If you’re looking at just the computer, keyboard, and mouse, you’ll likely spend $500 to $1,500. Once you add a touch-screen monitor, your costs will increase by at least $500. Other accessories will add to your costs, but in general, the total will usually range between $1,500 and $3,000. It depends primarily on which features you feel are important.
You have a few options when purchasing your electronic point of sale. It can be purchased piece by piece (buying the computer and monitor from one vendor, the software from another, etc.), or you can purchase an all-in-one unit, with the individual components specially designed to work together.
All-in-one units, depending on the number of terminals you want, can range from $1,500 to $3,000 or more. Individual components will vary, but the computer can run you $500 to $1,500 by itself, a monitor for $200 to $1,000 (depending on if you purchase a standard or touch-screen display), and peripherals like cash drawers, scanners, and receipt printers from $100 to $500.
This will be a fairly major purchase for your business, so do your homework. Figure out what you need and what your budget is, and find the right dealer. Remember that in the long run, you’ll not only save money and time, but also make your customers – and your employees – happier and more productive.
Ready to get an electronic point of sale system for your company? Submit a free request for quotes and get matched to multiple dealers who will try to get you the best deal.