January 14, 2021

What Small Businesses Need to Know About Point of Sale

What Small Businesses Need to Know About Point of Sale

When it comes to the basics of running a small business, few tools will help you more than a point of sale (POS) system. That’s why it’s key to understand exactly what a POS is and the benefits it offers. In the article below, you’ll discover the definition of POS as well as the components that make up a system. You’ll also learn about the advantages of a POS and which POS features are important for the seamless operation and growth of your business.

What is a POS?

POS simply stands for point of sale. It’s the place where a customer completes their transaction, such as paying for a purchase. At its most basic, a POS is comprised of hardware and software. Hardware is the electronic equipment used to perform a transaction while POS software is used to manage sales and day-to-day business operations.

An essential part of any enterprise, a point of sale is critical for many tasks beyond accepting payments. Whether it’s managing inventory, tracking employee performance, pulling sales reports, or determining the best way to market to customers, the right POS makes operating a business faster and simpler.

What are the elements of a POS system?

The hardware components of a POS system can vary based on your business needs. Typically they include a:


All-in-one terminals, like those available with Exatouch® POS, are touchscreen monitors that run POS software enabling a business to conduct transactions.

cash drawer
Cash drawer

A secure place to store cash and coins that your business needs to operate.

Barcode scanner

Scanners make checkout fast and easy so you can get customers on their way quickly.

Credit and debit card reader

These machines enable your business to accept swipe, contactless, and EMV chip card payments.

receipt printer
Receipt printer

While you may want to email customers receipts, many shoppers still prefer a printed receipt at checkout. A printed receipt also gives you a clever place to advertise upcoming sales—or even the availability of gift cards and loyalty programs.

receipt printer
Label printer

Label printers make it easy to print shipping labels and even shelf tags when you need to update pricing on the fly. They’re also handy in printing customized name labels, ensuring customers receive their correct items.


For operations from yogurt shops and delis to craft supply stores and shipping outlets, a weight scale is an integral part of everyday business. When scales are integrated with your POS system, it ensures fast transactions and consistent, accurate pricing.

PIN pads, tablets, mobile card readers, and customer-facing displays are examples of peripherals that can be added to your POS bundle, depending on need.

What are the advantages of a POS system?

Point of sale systems streamline operations by providing quick and seamless payment transactions as well as tracking critical business data. It’s a vital component to growing your business. Equipment such as barcode scanners, weight scales, and touchscreens make checkout a breeze for your customers and staff. Moreover, a POS system’s host of features and applications enable you to track sales and identify patterns over time, ensure pricing and inventory accuracy, and catch potential discrepancies. You can even monitor inventory and trends to help you avoid stock-outs, provide better customer service, and tailor marketing offers.

A POS system helps you complete business functions and provides insights that enable you to make more informed decisions. A leading point of sale can assist you with:

Growing sales and revenue
Providing sales metrics and detailed reporting
Effectively managing customer information
Managing inventory—even across multiple locations
Employee management
Adapting to changing needs with customizations

What features should a POS have?

There are countless options when it comes to POS features. That’s why it’s important to make sure the technology suite you choose has the POS features your business needs to successfully operate, expand, and grow. Exatouch POS includes:

  • Affordable payment processing
  • Inventory & stock management
  • Menu management
  • Order management
  • Table management
  • Delivery manager
  • Promotions & discounts
  • Customer relations & management
  • Memberships
  • Appointment scheduling
  • Employee management
  • Purchasing & vendor management
  • Taxes
  • Reporting
  • Integrations

You can read more about Exatouch’s extensive features, capabilities, and applications on our Knowledge Base. Plus, it’s all backed by our in-house, U.S.-based Technical Support team who’s available 24/7.

When is a good time to switch POS systems?

Whether you want to install your first POS or are looking to upgrade your current system to match your business’s evolving needs, there are some telltale signs it’s time to make the move.

  1. If your POS doesn’t accept contactless or EMV chip cards, it’s time to switch. EMV chip cards reduce chargebacks and fraud, which can result in significant savings. With the onset of COVID-19, NFC or contactless payments saw huge adoption. If your business doesn’t accept the payment methods your customers prefer, they may go elsewhere.
  2. How much are you paying to accept credit cards? Electronic Payments is committed to providing small businesses with affordable processing rates, backed by a meet-or-beat guarantee.
  3. Has inventory management become more difficult? If your inventory isn’t matching customer demand and you’re missing out on sales, or you’re losing track of your inventory costs, it’s time to shop for a better option. A smart POS system like Exatouch is designed to help you find money in your business and increase profits.
  4. Do you have a mobile payment option? Whether your retail store wants to add curbside pickup or set up a booth at a local festival—or your restaurant wants to start deploying a food truck to bring in additional revenue—mobile POS options are the solution. And don’t forget to make sure they sync with your brick-and-mortar POS!
  5. Are you able to offer your customers gift cards? They’re popular year-round and are a clever way to boost sales as well as reach new customers. eGiftSolutions® offers free gift card processing, real-time online reporting, a free marketing kit with custom orders, and even a QuickStart℠ option to get gift cards in your hands in a matter of days.
  6. How difficult is it to schedule your staff members and determine who has the highest sales per shift? Exatouch makes employee management simple with access cards, timekeeping, payroll reconciliation, permission controls, activity tracking, and more.

If any of these issues are slowing your business down, you’re not alone. Check out success stories of merchants just like you who were able to overcome these common setbacks after partnering with Electronic Payments.

When it comes to understanding point of sale systems and deciding which one is the best fit for your business, educating yourself on the options available is the first step. Learn which POS features and benefits will give your business an edge and get answers to all of your questions about point of sale. Simply schedule a free demonstration of Exatouch today!

Schedule a free, personalized demo today!