Posted July 16th, 2017
Upgrades to retail management and POS systems are today at a historically high level. In fact, according to research conducted for The 2018 Smart Decision Guide to Retail Management and POS Systems, which is currently in production and scheduled to publish in Q1, almost one-third (31%) of retailers that have not purchased a new system within the past 3 years indicate that they plan to do so in the next 12 months.
In selecting a new system, the buying considerations are sure to depend to a large extent on a retailer’s specific size and category as well as its differing priorities. Large retailers with a strong bricks-and-mortar and online presence may be most concerned with channel integration — making it possible, for example, for an in-store cashier to check the status of a merchandise item ordered online or credit its return. This means tightly coupling the POS system with a consolidated array of disparate inventory and order management databases. Small brick-and-mortar retailers, on the other hand, may be more concerned with improving efficiency around basic core functions.
Regardless of category, most retailers will have certain requirements in common. All need to ensure secure payment processing, for example, and be able to analyze POS data using the right tools to gain insights into business performance.
The business case for a next-generation retail management and POS systems is easy to make, given the benefits. Return on investment can be measured in terms of cost reduction, which is largely a function of increased efficiency and productivity. It can also be measured in terms of revenue growth, which is largely a function of improved customer satisfaction as well as improved marketing and sales effectiveness. Other benefits such as more effective rewards programs, merchandise management and performance reporting and forecasting capabilities should also translate into positive financial outcomes over time.