Restaurant POS Systems: 10 Key Features to Look For to Increase Sales
Restaurant management technology allows for seamless restaurant operations. Restaurant POS systems are a major part of running a successful eatery, providing managers with large amounts of data. Insights about inventory and customers fuel the restaurant industry to expand beyond the competition while boosting restaurant profit margin.
Restaurant technology is essential. But first, let’s determine how restaurant POS systems work to streamline the business.
How Do Restaurant POS Systems Work?
Restaurant POS systems work by accepting payments and storing relevant data. New technology in restaurants allows businesses and consumers to handle standard processes quickly and efficiently.
Be mindful that restaurant POS systems can entail various features. When you begin a restaurant POS launch plan, you become more familiar with which features will benefit your business most.
But before this takes place, decide which feature your platform must include. Let’s learn about the ten features every all-inclusive POS system should offer.
1. Inventory Management
Take inventory with a tool that’ll accurately showcase what you have in stock. The right system will be able to show you a wholesale marketplace for each product category, price options, and delivery dates.
With an app like BlueCart, restaurants can save money by ordering the correct amount of ingredients depending on what they serve. Plus, restaurant managers can save hours each day placing orders from individual marketplaces. Book a demo today to learn how inventory management can accelerate your business.
2. Customer Reports
To effectively manage a restaurant, you’ll need to understand exactly what your customers want. Detailed customer reports provide you with valuable insights.
Customer reports show what consumers enjoy most and stray away from. It plays a major role in mapping out your restaurant’s buyer persona. Such information will come in handy when planning and scheduling restaurant promotions.
Customer data to use to grow profits include:
- Order history
- Average cart value
- Favorite dishes
- Frequency patterns
Such information can help marketing and merchandising efforts. Restaurant POS systems can function as business analytics tools, which can be a time saver.
3. Allow Multiple Payments
Split payments are simple solutions for single guests and parties. A customer may use a gift card for a portion of the bill and pay the rest in cash. Or, maybe multiple families are dining at the same table. Regardless of the situation, allowing more than one payment method per bill is an easy way to simplify customer processes.
When parties of more than one person want to split the bill, a simple solution can prevent awkward situations. Plus, restaurant POS platforms that have this feature built-in will save servers time.
The most popular scenario this feature will come in handy is for payments with cash and a card. Typically, this would take a few extra minutes but can be easy with the right POS system.
4. Mobile Integration
The ability to integrate restaurant POS systems with online ordering apps is essential. Mobile ordering can increase restaurant profits. It expands the ability to serve customers far beyond your dining area.
Mobile integrations will effectively input information about off-premise orders. From customer data to order history, consumers won’t need to visit your brick and mortar shop to provide useful data points.
Mobile integrations with restaurant POS systems help managers with handling tasks. Deliveries, catering schedules, and order monitoring are areas where a mobile integration can streamline tasks.
5. Notices and Automation
Are there certain supplies that you run out of faster than others? Is there a specific food supplier that takes longer delivering ingredients? Some restaurant POS systems can notify you when inventory is running low.
Staying on top of inventory turnover is necessary for fast-paced environments. It’s also important for new businesses that are beginning to track patterns.
Order management tools take the stress away from minor tasks, so you can focus on what’s most important. Power your restaurant with automation, and you’ll never have to worry about missing deadlines again.
6. Marketing Promotions
Restaurant POS systems can host numerous discounts and promotions. Once you grasp who your customers are and what they enjoy, determine which marketing efforts to set in place.
From happy hour drink specials to half-off items from the appetizer list, there are promotions that will suit vast audiences. When restaurant POS systems accommodate deals, accepting payments is a much simpler process.
Restaurant POS systems that include marketing features are also ideal for loyalty programs. Remove punch cards with customer rewards tracked by phone numbers.
Do you want to launch a 360-degree marketing plan? View a complete list of restaurant marketing ideas to determine what you’ll integrate with your POS platform.
7. Refunds and Credits
Restaurant POS systems that can process refunds and issue credits are ideal for the customer experience. If customers receive the wrong food or are unhappy, you’ll want to easily make it right.
If this is a major feature you want your POS system to include, consider which types of credits and refunds apply. Sometimes, issuing a gift card for restaurant credit is easier. In other scenarios, the refund will place funds back into a payment method.
You won’t be able to return items to inventory storage like in retail stores. However, knowing what results in refunds can dictate the amount of inventory you purchase or where it comes from.
8. Product Reports
Product reports will go hand-in-hand with your inventory management software. Restaurant POS systems that offer product reports are vital for determining best-sellers, seasonal favorites, and which items go to waste.
New restaurants will benefit from product reports more than others, as the owners are beginning to determine their ideal customers. For seasoned businesses, reports will help in planning restaurant promotions.
Restaurant owners can use product reviews to create special holiday menus, host giveaways, and schedule them at the right times. Speaking effectively to consumers is key for success, and it all starts with understanding who they are.
9. Allow Contactless Payments
Some restaurant POS systems allow for contactless payments. Popular options include pay-at-table devices that eliminate the need for wait staff.
Customers can purchase menu items and pay the bill on their own accord. Flexibility in restaurants is key for production. By adding innovative payment options, customers and servers will save significant amounts of time.
Another form of contactless payments to consider is mobile transactions. Eateries can use a bar code scanning device to accept payments via smartphones.
Removing cash and cards from the equation makes it simpler and more convenient for customers. Whether they forget their wallet or don’t bring enough money, it’s not an issue with mobile payment.
10. Cloud-Based Software for Chains
Restaurant POS systems that allow eateries to sync data from one to the other are fantastic for operations. Since chains and enterprises typically draw similar audiences, relevant information will likely apply across the board.
Unique consumer data based on geography will also be good to know, too. For instance, if frequent customers visiting a chain differ depending on their region or state, the company can adjust its strategy on a corporate level.
Understanding metrics across multiple locations is beneficial for filling gaps. Is there a restaurant that experiences a surge of customers on weekends? Or, do food trends differ between the East and West coast? Syncing information in “the cloud” can help answer these questions.
When you store data in the cloud or off-premise (see what is off premise), you can access it from anywhere with an internet connection. This is convenient if you need to share files or collaborate with others, as everyone can access the most up-to-date file version. It also eliminates the need to keep track of multiple versions of the same file, as everything is automatically updated in the cloud.
Frequently Asked Questions About POS System Features
What Are Features of a POS System?
Key features of every POS system include payment processing software, digital screens, custom reports, and more. Remember that not all POS systems are the same, so view comparison charts before choosing one for your business.
What Are the Benefits of a POS System?
The major benefits of a POS system are that businesses and customers can easily process payments. Without a POS system, digital orders and card payments wouldn’t be possible.
Other benefits of POS systems include:
- Simple payments
- Data management
- Accurate inventory
- Boost customer satisfaction
What Are Popular POS Hardware Components?
To use your restaurant POS system, you’ll need to acquire hardware. POS systems include the following hardware components:
- Cash drawers
- Receipt printers
- Card readers
- Computer or tablet