Questions To Ask Before You Choose a POS and Website
This topic has been weighing heavily on me. I’m guessing this will be the first of many blog posts, conversations, and workshops in the future with many questions to come.
Shop owners are choosing their Point of Sale systems and Website platforms blindly and it could be costing you many hours of frustrations and a loss in sales or potential sales. Including me.
I want to stress this again…
It could be costing you countless hours of frustrations and a loss in sales or potential sales
There I said it. I admit that many years ago I jumped on the bandwagon of what was trendy, simple and affordable.
I suppose I had no idea the direction my business would head in. But the second we received the key to our brick and mortar store, I should have taken the time to research five very important aspects of a retail business and the integration capability of each:
- A point-of-sale system
- A website platform
- An inventory management system
- An E-commerce store
- Selling on Social Media
But we already had a blog and website, added a POS, then mistakenly neglected inventory management. Then we had to work backward, which I often see retailers doing, and I had to piece together a system that works.
This is my truth. I share this with you because I see so many conversations about these systems in our Shopkeepers Lab membership group and I see other retailers making the same mistakes I did.
So today, I’m sharing my reality and teaching you the first step to AVOID it!
If you are looking to grow with your business and stay on trend with retail – which includes selling online and through social media – make sure the system you choose can do the things you need it to.
Questions to Ask
Ask the right questions of the companies and vendors trying to sell you their hardware and software. Not all of these might apply to you at the moment – but make sure you’re thinking of 5 years down the road.
- Is the website capable of hosting an online (e-commerce) shop? Can you list products in your online store and is there a maximum number of products?
- Can I easily ship from the e-commerce store? Will my e-commerce store calculate shipping for my customer?
- Will my Point-of-Sale system sync with my e-commerce shop? If someone buys something online, will that item be deducted from inventory in my store too?
- What kind of inventory management capabilities does the system have? Can it tell me how old an item of inventory is? Can I include the cost so margins are calculated for me?
- Is credit card processing included? And what are the rates? Will this payment platform work with the e-commerce store, too?
- Can I easily link products from my e-commerce store to the Facebook Catalog (in Business Manager) so I link that with Instagram and tag my products?
There are so many more questions to ask when you’re buying hardware and software for your store. These are specifically about selling your products and how well each system plays with the other.
If you’re just starting or find yourself in the middle of a technological mess and want to find the ideal setup, make sure you take the time to ASK THE RIGHT QUESTIONS.
Use this blog post as a starting point. If you want to sell products in your store, sell online, via your website and social media, have accurate and excellent reporting on your inventory then make sure you start asking the questions above.
I wasn’t afraid of technology. I’m still not. I just chose to “go with the flow” and “go with affordable” and it was a poor decision as a business owner. Just remember, you get what you pay for.
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I look forward to learning from all of you too. Thanks for being here! ~ Kathy
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