Your POS system is not just a cash register. Your system coordinates inventory, purchasing, receiving, and transfers of products. It also tracks sales information and trends, and performs analyses of various elements -- cost, price, and profit -- as needed.
Using the information stored in your POS reports, you can improve your business's marketing, staffing, and sales processes.
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Your POS system can use customer data in a variety of ways. It is implemented in loyalty or rewards programs, where special or card-carrying customers can receive automatic discounts or perks through your POS system. That's good for your customers, and is an effective way to gain their loyalty. However, that is just the beginning.
When your POS tracks each customer's purchase history, demographic information, and payment information, you can use that data to:
- Identify who your "average" customer is -- i.e., your target demographic.
- Adjust your marketing to focus on that group. You can, for example, send direct mail to all of your customers, as well as potential customers who fit the profile of your target audience.
Many retail businesses sell their products both on-premise and online. This can cause issues with inventory and sales management if your online storefront data is not connected to your regular POS.
- Many new POS systems have a built-in ecommerce manager, or can otherwise integrate with your online storefront. When a sale is made in your online store, it is immediately reflected in your main POS, reducing confusion and giving you a clearer picture of your sales and inventory status.
The sales data that is generated by your POS system can be reported according to any number of parameters. You can view sales data by department, by day, by price, and many more. By carefully assessing this information, you can find places where changes to your prices or inventory can increase revenues without causing a negative impact on sales.
- This type of sensitive discernment is important; 46% of startup businesses fail due to incompetence -- and emotional pricing is one of the largest pitfalls (University of Tennessee).
Lower Credit Card Fees
Tracking what types of credit cards your customers use, and how often, can help you save money in processing fees. Credit card processing companies charge you different transaction fees for different types of cards. Make sure your merchant services provider is charging the qualified rate for the majority of the credit cards you process, and that your fees are appropriate for the volume of cards you handle.
How many sales do you get between 3 pm and 4 pm on a Tuesday? How does that number compare between 9 am and 10 am on Saturday?
Your POS system's hourly sales reports can help you identify the busiest weeks, days, and hours of your business. Rather than depending on subjective reports from your employees on how busy each shift is, you can ask your POS for the straight numbers.
- Once you've identified the ebb and flow of your sales volume, you can use that information to schedule your employees more effectively. You may find that you're horribly overstaffed on Tuesdays, but need to add extra staff on Saturday mornings to prevent your store from being swamped. This results in more satisfied employees as well as happier customers.
Your business needs data in order to make the best decisions in regards to pricing, marketing and scheduling. The reports that you generate from your POS system can help you make those decisions by giving you objective, accurate data about your sales volume, revenue, inventory, and employees.