Whether you’re thinking about getting your first ePOS system, or looking to upgrade to a new ePOS, it can be tough to choose between the different systems available. To help you avoid the pitfalls of selecting a system that has more style than substance, here is our rundown of practical points to consider:
- Functionality. To get the best out of an ePOS system, you need to first understand exactly what you want it to do. Before you engage with any vendors, it’s a good idea to write a list of ‘must have’ functionalities – present and future – and prioritise them. Examples might include: tracking popular dishes; inventory management; real-time sales reports; and speeding up customer payment times. If a vendor doesn’t appear to offer all you want on paper, some can tailor their systems to meet your specific needs, since they write and develop their own ePOS software. At Comtrex, we do just that.
- Bonus features. Once you’ve sorted your essentials, consider making a list of ‘nice-to-have’ features. These are the kind of add-ons that will make your restaurant function that much smarter and make it an ever better place to eat and work. The ability to manage your recipes via your ePOS system and upload photos, as well as ordering ingredients via the system, are great examples of add-on features that can significantly boost the performance of your restaurant.
- Price. Every business wants to make sure they are getting value for money, but deciding which ePOS system to purchase should not be about price alone. That said, there is no reason to pay for features you do not want, or to pay high (or indeed any) installation costs. The ongoing price of your ePOS should be transparent from the start, with different pricing packages available to suit your specific needs. At Comtrex, we offer a fixed-term maintenance-inclusive lease rental agreement and prices start from as little as £6 per day.
- Ease of use. A sign of a great ePOS system is that it’s so user-friendly that even inexperienced staff can be trained to use it in no time. An interface that is intuitive is therefore a must, and the ability to use touchscreen technology also helps. As well as ensuring that staff are comfortable with the day-to-day use of the ePOS system, check how easy it is to update the software. Ideally, team members should be able to quickly install updates without any need to contact the ePOS system vendor.
- Mobility. Having a tablet-enabled ePOS system and mobile chip and pin terminals will allow serving staff in the restaurant to take orders and payments on the go. A mobile ePOS system will also enable them to have menu information, including ingredients and allergens, available at their fingertips. In turn, this should help to improve the level of customer service provided.
- Flexibility. Investing in an ePOS system is all about making your restaurant more efficient – and a better place to dine. That includes offering a range of payment options to diners and a good ePOS should be able to accommodate everything from chip and pin payments to contactless cards, as well as emerging app technologies such as Qkr!
- Compatability. An agile ePOS system will integrate seamlessly with your existing systems architecture, including stock control and accounting software. There should be no need for clumsy bridges to be built, or separate systems to be used. Your vendor should also have a strategy in place for ensuring that integration is maintained, especially when technologies are upgraded or new technologies emerge.
- Security. With payments fraud on the rise, it’s important to know that your ePOS system is equipped with the latest security standards. A respectable vendor will be able to demonstrate how their system is secure – and how it will remain secure in the future.
- Implementation. No restaurant can afford huge amounts of down time while an ePOS system is rolled out. Opting for a cloud-based solution can significantly reduce implementation time and costs. What’s more, a cloud solution is easy to scale across a chain of restaurants, so as your business grows, your ePOS system will grow with you.
- Support. An ePOS system vendor shouldn’t just be a supplier, they should be a partner. Someone who provides training for staff, who has support teams on hand around the clock to deal with any queries, and who will keep you in the know about new products and technologies that could further improve your efficiency.
Before you take the plunge, it is advisable to take a full demo of the ePOS system you’re interested in buying. This should help you understand exactly how it will fit into – and improve – the day-to-day running of your restaurant.
To learn more about what makes Comtrex’s ePOS system the right choice for your restaurant, or to arrange a live demonstration, get in touch on 01293 789 500.