Retail stores have a lot to keep track of. Information on employees, customers, profit, and inventory needs to be routinely updated, checked, and stored. In the past, people would be in charge of overseeing all of these things, but there were often problems with accuracy due to human error and difficulties keeping up with real time changes. Today, these matters can be handled by point of sale (POS) systems.
What are POS Systems?
POS systems consist of a main computer and multiple checkout terminals. These terminals retrieve information and relay it back to the main computer, which collects, compiles, and analyzes it all. The reason they are called point of sale systems is because sale information is tracked in real time. In other words, the same time a sale takes place at a retail store, data on the sale is electronically transferred from the checkout terminal to the main computer.
What Are POS Systems Used For?
As already mentioned, POS systems are a retailer’s best friend. But more than just sale and inventory information can be tracked through POS systems. POS systems can also monitor things such as sale trends and the success or failure of reward and loyalty programs, promotions, gift cards, and coupons. Not only do these systems decrease the hassle of having to manually account for all these things, they also save retailers money by efficiently filling orders and negotiating vendor costs to replenish items.
Retail Pharmacy POS Systems
The pharmaceutical industry has benefitted greatly from POS system implementation. Nearly half of all Americans (48.5%) have used a prescription drug within the past 30 days. The enormous amount of prescriptions that need to be filled necessitates the application of POS systems for pharmaceutical retailers.
Some additional perks of retail pharmacy POS systems in particular include the ability to store and retrieve customer information. This not only makes obtaining prescription medicine more efficient, it also increases the security and privacy of the customer. These systems feature signature capturing technology as well, so every transaction is secure.
The Future of Retail
The trend over the past decade has been a significant increase in the use and efficiency of POS software. As of 2014, the entire POS industry reached $3.2 billion. In a world where paper receipts and manual accounting are becoming more and more of a burden, it appears the point of sale industry will continue to expand and evolve as we move forward.