Compare Point of Sale SystemsDiscover the benefits of using an all-in-one point of sale (POS) system. Learn about several of the top all-in-one POS systems available in 2022.
A point of sale (POS) system refers to any device where you ring up customers for their purchase. The system refers to both the physical hardware as well as the software the device needs to run. Whether you run a physical or online store, you need a POS system for your customers to check out. Most physical stores use a cash register as the POS system.
With an online store, you can install the software on a separate device if it is connected to the internet. This can range from a traditional computer to your phone or tablet. If you do business outside of a store, such as events or conventions, you can use a digital POS on your phone to charge customers at your table. Because it is such a vital piece of business equipment, you want to take the time to research the best POS system for your needs. Listed below are several of the top all in one POS systems for 2022.
All in One vs. Traditional POS Systems
Previously, POS systems were sold in different parts, such as a receipt printer, cashier, cash drawer and a magnetic stripe reader for credit cards. Today, most POS systems are designed as all-in-one units. An all-in-one POS system is much more convenient because everything is included in a single unit. Thanks to technological advancements, a single POS system is small and easy to setup in your store. It is much more convenient than installing multiple systems, especially if you have limited space at the front of the store.
It is also easier to train employees to use a POS system if it is a single unit. Most POS systems use an intuitive touchscreen, which quickly handles both cash and credit card transactions. In addition to convenience, you end up saving money by having everything connected to one system, since you are running fewer utilities at the front of the store. If you own multiple locations, you can also network your systems to make sharing financial information easier.
Block, formerly known as Square, is one of the most common POS systems. While they were not the first company to provide digital all-in-one systems, they have become one of the largest providers thanks to their innovative technology. Many smaller merchants without physical stores use Block software at conventions and local events, such as farmers markets. Because it is a cloud-based system, all you need is a smartphone or tablet and the Block app. Once you create an account, you are automatically provided with a free magstripe reader.
Block uses monthly subscription plants, but there are no contracts required, which also means no cancellation fees or other penalties to worry about. Because of this, it is commonly used by small businesses and startup companies with limited budgets. As of writing, a standard account costs $60 each month, but new users get a 30-day free trial. In addition to POS services, the app also has inventory management tools, including stock forecasting and barcode printing. All account payments are made directly through the apps processing system, known as block payments.
While most all-in-one POS systems use monthly subscription plans, there are a few providers who charge a flat fee. With Toast, you purchase all the hardware and get the software included for free. There are still payment processing charges, but it is a flat rate of 2.99 percent for each transaction. Toast is most used by restaurants, bars and clubs. In recent years, the kiosk system was updated to include contactless orders, which was quite popular during the 2020 pandemic. You can access a shared account from any location, allowing you to create different menus across multiple venues. Toast does not have as many extra features as other POS systems, but it still allows online ordering and the option to setup loyalty programs for your customers. A Toast kiosk currently costs $799.
Lightspeed is most used in retail stores. While many of the features are designed for larger businesses with multiple locations, it is still a good choice for smaller businesses. Lightspeed has a wide variety of inventory tracking options, allowing you to tag specific items based on what stores they are sold at. You can also make variations to the items, such as changing the price based on where it is sold. There are additional options to easily setup sales, either by product type or at set locations. Lightspeed also has options to integrate your customer support into the app, so you can simplify returns or exchanges. There are even options for customers to place items on layaway.
While Lightspeed was previously one of the pricier POS systems, the price has drastically decreased over the last few years. As of writing, you can setup a Lightspeed account for $69 a month. However, additional options such as loyalty programs or accounting software integration will require a more expensive premium account.