EPoS Buyers Guide - Price
EPoS systems represent a significant investment, even more so if you are planning on doing a multi system installation. As a buyer while price is very important, don’t buy a system solely on price. You need to consider whether a particular system meets your needs, whether the you are happy making sacrifices on the quality of the components and whether the company can afford to provide you the level of support you need. Will the company you are dealing with still be there in 2 years? There are many horror stories on business forums of companies who were ostensibly the cheapest but who quickly went out of business. You want to ensure that your EPoS partner is still there when you need them. Also consider that paying a little more for a system that does exactly what you require, solves the challenges your business faces and that saves time and makes you money will have no trouble paying for itself. It’s not uncommon to have paid for your EPoS system in under a couple of years in increased profit.
Be clear about what you need and what areas of your business you want your EPoS system to assist with. What aspects of your business can your EPoS system help with? What new functionality (e.g. web sales) do you want to be able to handle? The software functionality will determine what you can and can’t do. So it’s best to be clear about what you want before you start. It’s also during this stage that you can determine how much customisation you need for your particular business. When speaking to EPoS suppliers be conscious of whether they are taking the time to understand your business and your needs. You are looking for a long term partner - if they are not listening to you, then it should be ringing alarm bells. No two businesses are run in exactly the same way; only by taking the time to understand your business can a vendor hope to provide you the perfect solution.
The support provided with your EPoS system needs to match your needs. Be honest about your potential needs, do you need 7 days a week support? If so, ensure that this is something the company provide. Be clear about what is and what isn’t included in your support contract. This is even more vital when you purchase software from one company and EPoS hardware from another. What you don’t want is to sit in the middle of 2 suppliers - each of whom blames the other. This is a great argument from buying everything from one company.
Found in almost all major retail stores, restaurants and other businesses.
Electronic Point of Sale (EPoS) systems give businesses a fast and convenient way of transacting sales, while at the same time recording vital business information.
Demonstration & References
While it’s tempting to go along to an industry trade show and just ‘pick up’ an EPoS system, it’s not the most considered way to buy. Similarly, looking at a nice glossy brochure may appear to be all you need to choose a system. There have been plenty of purchases made on this basis that have later been regretted (or which have undelivered). Aside from the financial investment, your EPoS system is likely to be an integral part of your business. As a buyer, you need to invest your time in the process. Take the time to have a proper demonstration, its unlikely this is something you can do in 10 minutes, think several hours. Ask for references, call up your suppliers existing customers and ask them how they find the system. If they are in the same type of business as you, they can provide a mine of information which you can use to make the most considered choice. They can also give you a far greater insight into after sales support.