The POS is the time and place where a retail transaction is completed. It is the point at which a customer makes a payment to the merchant in exchange for goods or after provision of a service. At the point of sale, the merchant would prepare an invoice for the customer (which may be a cash register print out) or otherwise calculate the amount owed by the customer and provide options for the customer to make payment. After receiving payment, the merchant will also normally issue a receipt for the transaction. Usually the receipt is printed, but it is increasingly being dispensed electronically. The point of sale is often referred to as the point of service because it is not just a point of
sale but also a point of return or customer order. Additionally, today POS software may include additional features to cater for different functionality, such as inventory management, CRM, financials, warehousing, etc.
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Point of Sale (POS) software is a bundled solution that is best described as a combination of a billing, accounting and inventory management solution. Simply put, a POS software helps businesses process billing and purchasing easily, generate invoices and keep a steady track of their products sold and in stock. Such tools combine the functionalities of both a computer and a cash register. With POS software, sellers can input orders, compute the cost and receive customer payments.
There are two major components that comprise a POS system – the hardware and the software.
This system can be accessed directly from the Internet and is often compatible with most POS hardware (cash drawers, printers, etc.) Cloud based POS systems are less expensive, and they're convenient because merchants can access customer data from anywhere provided they have an Internet connection. This is great if you're a small business who sells in a brick and mortar store, ecommerce store, or participates the occasional trade show or flea market.
POS software can have as many features depending on the requirement of the end user and the industry it will be used for. Few POS software offer integrated modules in comprehensive ERP software packages, while others are sold as standalone solutions. However, there are basic functionalities common to POS systems such as:
Some of the benefits of a POS system are as follows:
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