6 Reasons To Upgrade Your Cash Register To An EPOS System

6 key reasons why you need to update your traditional cash register till system to an EPOS system and the most common EPOS myths debunked!

With technology continuing to advance, why are many small businesses still using old cash register till systems?

Many believe that there aren’t enough benefits to upgrade, or that it’s too expensive. However, that’s simply not true.

EPOS software & hardware has never been more affordable, and it’s easier to set up and use than it ever was.

Long gone are the days of extortionate fees for a POS specialist to come set up your system for you. You can now do it easily by yourself and at a fraction of the cost.

In the following guide, we take a look at what a cloud-based point of sale (EPOS) system is, the differences between a traditional cash register and EPOS, 6 reasons why you should upgrade your old till system, and some common myths about EPOS systems.

What is a cash register?

Simply put, a cash register or till, is a system that allows you to process sales & store cash, normally in a retail environment. It’s basically a big calculator for your daily sales. They have very little functionality outside of that, hence why retailers like you are transitioning to more flexible and powerful EPOS systems.

What is an EPOS system?

Put simply, an EPOS system consists of 3 components, EPOS software, EPOS hardware and merchant payments (or payment processors).

EPOS Software can be installed on devices, including, but not limited to mobile devices such as tablets, mobile phones and laptops.

EPOS hardware generally consists of a tablet device (or touch screen), a cash drawer, card terminal, receipt printer, and barcode scanner.

EPOS software will act as your till interface, enabling you to speed customers through checkout, process transactions and manage inventory all on one device.

Merchant payments or payment processors are responsible for taking money from the client and depositing it into your bank account, normally for a fee, examples include WorldPay, Stripe, Zettle and PayPal.

Read the full EPOS guide here.

EPOS Device

What does EPOS software do?

EPOS software is similar to a traditional till system, however, the system is much more powerful & flexible.

EPOS software is cloud-based which allows for easy updates, flexible integrations such as accounting software & payment processing, increased security and enhanced reporting when viewing your sales data.

EPOS Software has the following functions:

  1. To act as your till system for processing sales
  2. Advanced business & sales reporting
  3. Inventory management
  4. Multi-store management
  5. Ecommerce integrations
  6. Other integrations like customer loyalty, gift cards, accounting etc.

If you’d like to learn more about EPOS systems, click on the link below.

old cash register

What is the difference between a traditional cash register system and an EPOS system?

Traditional cash register till systems are the old cash register machines (or an old computer-based POS) you’ll remember from your childhood, you might still find them in the odd store.

They are fixed to one location, aren’t backed up by the cloud and have limited functionality.

Fast forward to the 21st century and we now have the EPOS systems or cloud-based point of sale systems. They are connected to the web, can integrate with a bunch of other software, and make the sales process quicker, easier, and more cost-effective.

There are no expensive license fees, maintenance or upgrade costs. Updates are simple and pushed from the cloud, most of the time you won’t even notice updates happening as they’ll run during the night when your store is closed.

You can manage your business on the go (as long as you have an internet connection), you can even take your POS with you (if you’re using a tablet device this is very easy) to trade shows and events.

EPOS hardware (& software) just gives you more flexibility, information and functionality, at a fraction of the cost.

Traditional cash register vs EPOS systems a comparison

The following table gives an overview of some of the key differences between a traditional cash register and an EPOS system.

Features Traditional POS AirPOS EPOS
Accessible anywhere? Only accessible via the terminal Can be accessed via the cloud as long as you have an internet connection.
Reporting Basic reporting Advanced and customisable reporting options generated from real-time data, available anytime in the back office
Pricing Expensive upfront license fee & monthly maintenance Pay monthly, cancel anytime
Scalability Must add a new device, software license, monthly fees and setup charge Can add a new device and software license at any time, and set it up yourself. All your existing data and products are already available.
Mobility Fixed to one location Mobile. Available anywhere with Wifi including mobile devices
Hardware Stationary and normally fixed to the software providers offerings Works with nearly all modern POS hardware options, and runs on iOS, Windows and Android
Feature Updates No. Normally you need to upgrade to get new updates Yes. We have a development roadmap based on customer feedback, so you’ll always have a modern POS that grows with your business
Omnichannel No. It doesn’t sync with your website. Yes, they can be connected to sync with your online website, scale to have multi-devices in multiple locations
Data Storage Internal server Secured via the cloud with automatic backups
Integrations Not normally Integrate with other software providers, such as accounting & payment providers
Reliability Stored on an internal server, hard to find and fix errors All data is stored on the cloud, highly secure, and backed up

6 reasons why you should invest in a cloud-based system

If the preceding table wasn’t enough, here are 6 reasons why you should upgrade your old till system to an EPOS system.

1. Advanced reporting

Gain more visibility of your business with advanced reporting features.

EPOS software will track your data in real-time storing it on the cloud making it accessible to you anytime, anywhere.

Before you may have had to collate months of sales data to prepare your own reports, but with EPOS this information is available at the touch of a button with pre-defined reports already set up for your ease of use.

This increased reporting visibility will not only assist you in your accounting but also in highlighting if mistakes have been made. This gives you more control over your business even when you’re not in-store as you can access the information from the cloud anywhere.

Advanced reporting gives you better business insights, and allows you to gain a competitive edge over your competitors.

Try doing that with your old push-button till.

2. Better pricing & No contracts

Traditional till systems will have a much larger upfront cost than an EPOS system. You need to purchase all the appropriate hardware, the hosting software itself as well as the installation fees.

We all know that point of sale hardware is a necessary expense for any business however traditional cash register point of sale providers are known to charge extortionate fees with long term fixed contracts.

This means that you can be locked into a contract even if you’re unhappy with the company you’ve chosen.

EPOS providers have been one of the biggest disruptors to the market in the past decade, with the emergence of SaaS (Software as a Service).

This has allowed EPOS providers being able to offer affordable pricing to businesses of all sizes.

It also offers greater flexibility, with many businesses offering monthly contracts that you can cancel anytime.

With AirPOS we take this to the next level offering monthly payments but with no fixed contract or hidden fees, that is how confident we are in our software and service.

Despite having no fixed contract we have a customer lifetime value of 5 years and a 97% referral rate

Therefore you are not tied to us through specific hardware or payment providers, you have complete freedom with your point of sale.

3. Reliability

It would be incorrect to say that traditional push-button tills are unreliable. They’ve been utilised by large companies for years and if used correctly can be very powerful and efficient.

Normally it doesn’t start out this way, initial costs are expensive and it requires much training to have staff trained to be sufficient with the equipment.

Another issue is the cost of maintenance, upgrading proprietary equipment can be expensive.

The biggest issue with traditional cash register systems, however, is the lack of data backup if a connection is dropped or an issue with the system.

Due to all information being stored in one server you could be at risk of losing all your sales and consumer data.

As mentioned traditional cash register systems also do not give you the same level of visibility, therefore there is no opportunity for you to recognise if mistakes have been made which is a significant problem in businesses with a larger workforce.

EPOS systems on the other hand offer a solution that is a reliable option for any business.

With mobile capabilities and cloud-based storage of data on an encrypted network, you are never at risk of data loss.

Time to train staff with cloud-based POS software is quick, with handy guides available online.

Lastly, it’s inexpensive to upgrade or repair hardware as software works on a large number of industry-standard devices.

4. Flexible hardware

The reason why traditional till systems are commonly seen in larger businesses is due to space and capabilities. Traditional POS hardware tends to be larger in size with many different functions however they are static and come as a set.

If a smaller business you don’t want to be stuck paying more for extra features that you don’t need.

If you are operating from a smaller premises or on the go, traditional cash register POS systems would be cumbersome.

These systems can be much more complicated and therefore will require a representative from the provider to actually install the equipment along with the software.

If you are searching for a flexible solution that is customisable, a cloud-based solution is what you need.

Worried about how to set up a comprehensive hardware package with an EPOS system?

No problem, EPOS systems give you a great number of options when it comes to choosing your hardware set up.

You can integrate hardware from different companies across, scanners, printers and even the tablet device you run your software on. Even better it’s pretty simple to set it up.

Unlike the traditional POS system, one size fits all approach, EPOS systems are designed to scale with you allowing you to build a system to specifically meet your needs.

Don’t waste your valuable profits on a kit that is far too complex for your business and doesn’t make sense for your requirements.

For more information on EPOS hardware check out the guide.

5. New features & updates

One of the biggest downfalls of traditional cash register systems is that they are outdated.

They have poor integration capabilities, are immovable and are far from innovative.

There are some providers who are adding to their software, particularly those who cater to specific industries such as hospitality or fast service however these are usually much more expensive.

Where traditional cash register systems fall short, EPOS systems are there to meet consumer needs.

EPOS systems are ever-evolving with features designed to help users sell more and make the management of their business simple.

Similar to traditional systems there is a cloud-based solution for every industry, offering unique features to allow your business to do more.

Cloud-based software businesses are always improving and will have a roadmap for updates each year.

If you need a feature, you can request it, and if it’s something that has been asked enough of it’s likely it’s going to be added.

This year we added customer accounts and loyalty programs to our system to give our customers opportunities to build brand loyalty and to sell more to their existing customers.

Integrated ecommerce with AirPOS

6. Ecommerce growth

With ecommerce sales globally increasing by 19% (that’s huge) there is no better time than now to start selling online. Better EPOS providers offer the chance to make integrating ecommerce and in-store sales easy. This gives you, the retailer a huge advantage, larger audiences, more sales, and a 24/7 sales machine.

With systems like AirPOS, you can sync sales between your EPOS system and your ecommerce store. This means you have synced inventory, one set of sales reports, better visibility over your stock and a much-improved customer experience.

Check out these 6 reasons why you should have an integrated ecommerce store as a retailer.

Why do some retailers still not use EPOS systems?

It’s pretty simple really, they are normally scared, set in their ways, or they believe some common myths and misconceptions surrounding EPOS systems that just aren’t true.

Let’s take some time to debunk these misconceptions.

EPOS Systems are too complicated

This is a very common concern for retailers who have never used an EPOS system. To those who have little experience with cloud-based technology, it may appear to be a complicated concept however it couldn’t be simpler particularly with the dedicated support from your EPOS provider.

My data will be vulnerable to hackers

False. Although data is stored in the cloud which can be targeted by hackers, this is no different from these same people targeting your main server on a traditional system.

It is worth noting that EPOS companies will have experienced development teams in place to eliminate any potential weaknesses that hackers could exploit. Your data will be protected by the latest data encryption techniques making it much more secure than any other system.

Also with cloud-based providers such as AirPOS, dedicated free support is available every day from 9 am to midnight so in the unlikely case that there is a breach or you are concerned someone is trying to access your Data it can be dealt with immediately.

Our current system is fine, why change?

The largest reason POS providers hear from businesses still using a traditional till system is the mentality “if it ain’t broke why fix it”.

Traditional systems have been used in businesses for decades and owners have become comfortable using them however this laid-back attitude could be holding you back.

Traditional till systems are limited in their reporting capabilities, which are crucial to help you to better understand your customers and maximise their loyalty.

How are businesses expected to stand up against their competitors who have integrated these systems?

They will better understand the market and be able to give back to customers rewarding their loyalty.

And importantly EPOS systems are a way to future proof a business with integrations with your online website.

EPOS systems are actually a lot simpler to understand than any traditional cash register system that you may be using. There are no complicated hardware or payment integrations, no tricky connection issues causing missed sales. POS software provides a simple all in one solution that is as easy as using your smartphone.

EPOS Systems are too expensive

As mentioned previously, it is a common myth that cloud-based services are the more expensive option for retailers. However, this is simply not true with the options for monthly subscriptions and without a fixed contract.

You can save huge amounts with an EPOS system in the long run, no crazy contracts, no need for expensive setup fees, and the opportunity to scale your business anytime by just adding another device.

Only big businesses need EPOS systems

This is very far from the truth. In most cases, it is these larger businesses who choose to stick with their traditional systems as they’re used in so many locations and hold a huge amount of historical data.

EPOS systems are ideal for smaller retailers who benefit from being more agile and disruptive in the market.

EPOS is the cheaper option for retailers so it only makes sense that this would be the choice for smaller businesses.

It’s also true that EPOS systems are intended to be scalable allowing retailers to grow and downsize easily when they see fit.

Unlike with traditional systems, you can add on an extra device for special events and connect them to your account allowing for connected reports.

Being in the business for over a decade we have seen so many of our retailers grow from the ground up. They have been able to open multiple premises, sell at events and take their point of sale on the go at international trade conventions.

If using a traditional cash register system they would miss out on these sales and exposure.

Click here to read more of our retailer stories and how they’ve used AirPOS to transform their businesses.

EPOS system

Let us help you get started with EPOS today

Whether you’re using an old school till, an out of date EPOS system in need of a refresh, or just starting a new business and looking for the best EPOS solution, we can help.

You can try out AirPOS’ comprehensive EPOS system completely free for 14 days no commitments, no contracts, or shady sales tactics here.

We genuinely want you to experience the benefits of using an EPOS system.

If you want to learn more about EPOS systems, hardware and software for your business, feel free to reach out to one of our team for a free consultation, we’d be happy to help.

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