The iPad as a POS system has changed the game for small business. Long before Google existed we were installing computer networks and small change point of sale (aka POS) systems for retail stores and fast food restaurants. Back then a single micros cash register could cost over $10,000. No you aren’t reading that wrong. We tried to become a dealer and didn’t have the $100,000 it took to join the club.
Starting a small Italian fast food business meant you needed at least three registers at the counter and a server in the back. The total bill? Over $50,000. The good thing about our customer relationships is that they trusted us to find a better solution and didn’t leave us for Squirrel, Micros or one of the handful of high priced POS systems.
Eventually, we ended up working with a programmer to design and install a custom one off system at half the price. Was it as good? I don’t know for sure but the company could not have opened as many franchises if the cost was an additional $25,000 per location, so I know it made a difference.
Capital is big reason most businesses fail. If you are a retail location, you need a way to sell, take credit cards, track inventory and know how your customers are buying. If you spend all of your start up capital on a POS system, you won’t have money to market your company. Lucky for you, all of that can be done with the iPad and an ap.
We don’t partner with or get paid by any specific company, so this is just what we see with our clients. There are others but the two that make life very easy and don’t cost a bundle for small business startups that we see are Square and PayPal. Square and PayPal both have options to create a very affordable POS system for small business. Square has taken the lead with really cool mounts that you can buy on Amazon for less than $100.
Even better now that cashless businesses are under attack for not serving those without a credit card, Square offers a cash drawer and printer kit that won’t break the bank. PayPal only offers tools to accept credit cards.
In our offices, we actually have accounts with both PayPal and Square but our primary payment system is through our marketing automation partner keap. All of these systems have ways to link your website to your sales program.
If you are looking for a better POS solution, take a look at the iPad, and all of the options it offers.