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Jim Agger
 
September 24, 2014 | Jim Agger

The Advantage of a Cloud-Based POS System

Mobility matters to you, which is why moving your point of sale from basic terminals to a tablet-based solution that runs on the cloud can greatly help your business grow. Sell wine anywhere, anytime.

Playing on the tablet
The first portion of this solution revolves around the tablet itself. Rather than using a complex set of terminals and card readers, everything is processed through the mobile device. Cards can be read through a dongle that is attached to the device and connects with the software. The reader and software can connect with the rest of the payment system including cash registers, thus making it possible to receive a wide variety of payments from cash to debit card to check.

The mobility of tablets make it easy to take sales out of the tasting room. All you need is the tablet, a reliable Wi-Fi or 3G signal, and a cash drawer to complete any purchase that customers make. The ability to mobilize anywhere can greatly help build a local and regional customer base from which you can gain reliable sales and a means to spread your winery's reach through word-of-mouth. In addition, it has benefits inside your tasting room. You can personalize the customer experience by having the device with you while talking to shoppers and can make transactions on the spot. This can greatly increase the chance of impulse purchases, but more importantly, you can deliver a better degree of customer service by going directly to the patron.

Software bubbles up options
There are other benefits to using a cloud-based retail POS with the tablet as the terminal. For one, as BusinessBee notes, the cost of using a tablet-based system is far cheaper than the typical POS solution. Beyond purchasing the mobile device yourself, which can cost under $400, there are often little to no upfront fees to sign up for the service. The monthly charges to run payments through the system often run $50 per month, though some may cost more depending on the software that is implemented.

More importantly, though, the software is fairly easy to manage. If you need to make upgrades to the current POS, the cloud service provider will do them for you, taking away the need for a technician or hiring an IT staff. You have access to large amounts of consumer data through each transaction that can be analyzed and charted, allowing you to plan ahead in terms of how you sell your wine to consumers. If you do start to sell wine online, you can integrate the site with the store itself using the same software to have an accurate picture of your sales and stock. This can minimize redundancies and give you the chance to plan ahead with where you stock your latest blends.

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