24 January 2019

By Lisa SMITH – Account Manager, AURES UK

As in all areas of technology, the coming year will undoubtedly bring with it fresh waves of innovation that will open up brand new horizons in performance and potential.

But if, at the start of 2019, you are thinking about upgrading your point of sale solutions, what is the minimum you should expect from EPOS systems currently available on the market? Here we take a glance at the must-have features you shouldn’t compromise on.

High speed, powerful processing

The modern POS system is far from the standalone tills of old. With IT systems across entire businesses increasingly integrated, EPOS is now an essential hub not just for processing sales, but for inventory management, customer relationship management (CRM), data analytics and more.

When you process a sale today, you want to be able to automatically update stock records, check availability and gain instant access to customer records. To maximise the value of your EPOS terminal, you also want to be able to perform tasks like run sales reports from it, get live updates on KPIs, manage supply chain relations and cross reference with multiple sales channels, especially online.

This means that more than ever you should expect your EPOS hardware to be able to process multiple tasks at high speed and with complete reliability. That requires high performance processing components – we would recommend starting at a minimum of 4GB RAM for today’s business requirements.

Customer-facing screens

EPOS is as much about service as it is transactions. In retail especially, the advent of ecommerce has transformed consumer expectations around in-store experiences, and these carry over into other sectors like hospitality and leisure too. Having a customer-facing screen on your EPOS is all about transparency and adding value. It means transactions can be checked visually by the customer, product details shared, alternatives and recommendations made, empowering people in the purchasing decisions they make.

Multiple payment options

We all know that the days of cash-only transactions are long behind us and a majority of customer-facing businesses are now on board with contactless card transactions, as well as chip and pin. But with payment options multiplying, especially around smartphone-based mobile wallets and similar NFC-based technology, it is becoming important for businesses to have up-to-date multi-tech readers that can handle all options. Even for mobile and occasional retail and hospitality operations, the freedom and flexibility of being able to accept multiple payment formats can greatly boost your earnings potential.

Flexibility and scalability

Point of sale can no longer be viewed as a fixed place in store where people queue to pay for their items. In today’s convenience-driven world, too long a queue is likely to lead to lost sales as customers decide to spend their time elsewhere. Modern businesses need the flexibility in their EPOS solutions to counter this – light, compact, plug-and-play terminals that can be added to a suite at periods of peak demand, or mobile POS (M-POS) options that can be used to take transactions to the Customer.

As the focus in face-to-face sales increasingly shifts to creating rich and engaging customer experiences, businesses are also looking to introduce variety in how and where they offer products for sale. It might be pop-up themed events in store, it might be going out and about to set up stalls elsewhere. Again, mobility is key here, which is why the compact AURES NINO is so popular with outdoor caterers and events retailers, as is the innovative AURES SWING, a multi-use tablet that can be used as both a M-POS and fixed solution.

Great looks

Finally, no one in retail or hospitality should underestimate the importance of aesthetics these days. In pursuit of that all-important great customer experience, you want your premises looking great, and an ugly hulk of an EPOS system doesn’t do you any favours in that regard.

That is why the feedback we get about our two best-selling EPOS terminals, the AURES YUNO and AURES SANGO, consistently includes comment on how good they look in store. Compact, discrete, ergonomically designed and available in a range of colours to suit, the AURES YUNO fits seamlessly into practically any environment. The SANGO, meanwhile, with its ground-breaking ‘suspended’ design, creates space under the touchscreen to tuck away all your peripherals neatly.