Last Updated: November 13, 2020
There is no point of sale solution out there that can do it all. KORONA POS, for instance, is designed primarily for retail, ticketing, and memberships, but not for full-service restaurants. So if you’re shopping for a new point of sale it’s important to consider what features you need to make it a great solution for your store.
This is especially the case for multi-store retailers. There are 31.7 million small businesses in the United States, and many of these have multiple locations. These operations are bigger and more challenging to manage. So in order to stay organized and continue to grow, these businesses need great multi-store POS software. Below are the 7 most crucial features.
1. Connectivity to All Stores
The most important feature for a multi-store point of sale system is that all stores are seamlessly connected. Whether you have 2 locations of 200, each must be connected in ways to help streamline operations. Below are a few of the reasons that having an all-in-one POS is helpful:
- Uniform inventory tracking makes sure that each store has the products that they need. With massive amounts of products coming in and out, you need a system to keep track of it all.
- Gift cards should be redeemable at any location and all sales and redemption should be accounted for in the point of sale.
- A connection between your warehouse and retail locations is also imperative. Your multi-store point of sale must account for everything in the warehouse and track how much is shipped to stores and where it was sent.
- If you want to run business-wide promotions, a connected POS system makes this easy. Any change you make to pricing will be automatically reflected in each store’s system.
While you want the point of sale to be custom for each store that you have, you also want to make sure the system is connected in a way that provides you with important data. Such actionable data allows you to make decisions that improve your store and help your business grow.
2. Ease of Expansion and Growth
If your business plans are to expand, you must get a retail POS system that can seamlessly do so with you.
The last thing you need to deal with when opening a new store is a hassle with rolling out your point of sale. Look for a system that makes it easy.
Data transfer of sales and product catalogs should only be a click or two away. Import existing inventory directly to a new store.
You also want the multi-store software to be intuitive and easy to learn. Training new staff members should focus on performance, not a point of sale. This alleviates some stress from opening a new store and lets you worry about bigger things.
But ask about training and installation assistance – it’s always good to know that help is there when you need it. Support for your POS as your business grows is crucial for long-term success.
3. Automatic Software Updates
Modern POS software is almost exclusively subscription-based. Software-as-a-service models differ from traditional legacy systems in that the user never buys the software outright. It may seem like investing in buying the software upfront makes more sense, but it actually proves more costly in the long run: retailers are forced to make repeated pricey purchases of new releases of the software to keep up-to-date.
Instead, a subscription-based model means that you’ll always have the very latest version so long as you’re a subscriber. Automatic software updates are completed overnight whenever a new feature or tool is developed and released.
Moreover, these updates should occur without needing a prompt at each of your store locations. This helps ensure the best level of connectivity between stores and keeps each POS terminal, no matter the location, uniform.
4. Consolidated Analytics and Reporting
Speaking of connectivity, getting all sales data and reports under one roof makes running a business a whole lot easier.
But you can also break it down by individual store, too. All reports are fully customizable, allowing you to see your store’s performance in different lights.
Break down your total sales by any number of in-depth retail KPIs:
- Average transaction amount
- Year-over-year sales (or any time frame that you choose)
- Sales by total area
- Conversion rates
- Sell-through rates
- Shopper to staff ratio
- Return and refund rates
- And much more
Having such valuable data only a few clicks away is invaluable to retailers, especially when the data can be applied to each store.
5. Customer Database and CRM
Hopefully, your customers are shopping at multiple of your locations. They may have their regular spots, but they also may be in a different part of town from time to time. So when they are, it’s important that they are still in your system and recognized as being a regular customer.
Get a multi-store point of sale software that keeps your entire customer database in one system. This makes it convenient for both your staff and your shoppers. It also ensures that you stay on brand and present a consistent experience (in addition to the product, of course) for every customer that steps foot in your doors.
6. Cloud-Based Real-Time Inventory Updates
All inventory updates should be reflected in real-time. This can only be done by using a cloud-based POS for your retail stores.
A cloud point of sale means that all data (product info, inventory, CRM data, etc.) is stored on remote servers. Not only is it safer to store sensitive data off-site, but it also allows you remarkable convenience.
As with anything stored in the cloud, the data can be accessed from any location so long as you have an internet connection and the proper login credentials. Retail owners and managers can see everything that anyone at the physical store also sees.
This is especially critical for multi-store operations. No one has time to run around to every single location trying to gather data at each. This way, manage your business from one spot, saving you time to worry about more important things.
Additionally, a cloud system means that anytime a product is delivered, sold, broken, returned, etc. it is immediately reflected in the point of sale reporting. No more waiting around and being surprised by end-of-day inventory reports. This leaves you with less time to adjust and fix any problems you might have. Cloud reporting lets you identify issues as they occur so that you can solve them promptly.
See Related: Cloud POS Explained
7. Omnichannel Shopping
Most multi-store operations have embraced the omnichannel retail experience. Of course, a large part of this is your eCommerce platform. Online sales continue to skyrocket each year as more shoppers move there and retailers follow suit.
But this means that you must integrate your brick-and-mortar stores with your online one. You can’t afford to manage two separate inventory catalogs. So your point of sale must reflect everything from each channel.
This further allows you to optimize inventory and prevent overstock and stockouts, both of which are extremely costly for business.
Get the Best Multi-Store Point of Sale System
KORONA’s subscription comes standard with each of the features listed above. Your multi-store point of sale will come ready to expand whenever you are. The software is cloud-based and easy to learn. Plus, your dedicated account specialist will be with you to help with anything you may need for the duration of your subscription. To learn more, click below and sign up for a free trial!