Different Types of POS System for Retailers


A point of sale (POS) is a device that allows business owners to manage business operations and accept payments. There are different types of point of sale systems and each one of them is designed to cater to different business needs.

Why Use a POS System?

A point of sale system makes it easy for businesses to safely process payments and keep track of data related to each transaction. Another major advantage of a POS system is that it links to other business functions such as CRM and inventory – to aid in effective operations and reporting of business activities. Systems used for fast food POS have become retail mainstays.

As mentioned earlier, there are different types of POS and each one of them is designed to perform different tasks. Here are the common types of POS systems:

Desktop POS system

This type of POS operates on a laptop, desktop computer, an app, an on-premises system, or on a browser. The system is linked to a cash drawer, a card swiper, or a barcode scanner and works similar to a traditional cash register.

Desktop POS systems are most ideal for businesses that carry out large transactions every day such as grocery stores, restaurants, salons, spas, bookstores, fashion stores among others.

Mobile POS system

A mobile POS is different from a desktop POS. It is highly portable and functions almost the same way as a desktop point of sale system. This type of POS has a phone app that’s normally attached to a card reader. It is simple to operate since all you need is just to switch on the software and start selling.

Unlike a desktop POS, a mobile POS can easily be carried around and allows attendants to process payments right on the spot. The POS is commonly used by small-scale businesses like street vendors and freelance workers.

Tablet POS

A tablet POS operates almost in a similar manner as the mobile point of sale system. Both of them are software installed on various devices with optional attachments such as receipt printer or card swiper. The only difference is that a tablet POS is bigger with a larger screen that is able to display clear images. This type of point of sale system is ideal for businesses with larger inventory.

Self-service kiosk POS

This is another popular type of point of sale system. It is a POS system where customers can buy products and make payments without the help of a store attendant. The main goal of this POS is to enhance efficiency by automating all payment processes.

A self-service POS is almost similar to a desktop POS but it has added security features. The transactions are one-end in order to mitigate the risks.

Open source POS systems

This type of POS system is built on a platform where businesses can customize or change features based on their needs. The good thing about these types of point of sale systems is that they can be accessed free of charge. Even those that are sold are much affordable compared to traditional POS systems.

In a nutshell, there are several types of POS software available in the market. All you have to do is choose one that suits your business needs.


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