Changing budgets and tastes, the growth of online shopping and security at the point of sale all represent challenges, and opportunities, for retailers.
In the last year, mobile point of sale (mPOS) has also continued to grow and evolve. Industry researchers point to the advent of tablets and powerful apps as driving the revolution in how organizations serve their customers.
A recent post on BizTechMagazine.com on the demand for mobile payment capacity includes a number of interesting observations from a 2014 Forrester Research report, which says that 79 percent of retailers are projected to have mPOS solutions deployed before the end of 2015.
As the only full-service point of sale provider — from software development to franchise incubator to ongoing support — part of Sintel’s commitment to our customers and business community is to share relevant ideas, information and industry news.
Here are the highlights of the BizTechMagazine.com post, “The Keys To Understanding Mobile Point Of Sale”:
• A key inflection point for mPOS was the introduction of the Apple iPad, which established tablets as a capable tool for both individuals and businesses. Numerous providers have leveraged the iPad, its apps and attendant peripherals into an attractive mPOS for smaller businesses.
• Bluetooth connectivity has enabled an ecosystem of mobile printers, scanners, card readers and other peripherals, even as snap-in peripherals for USB and other connectors continue to propagate. The post notes that vendors such as Ingenico, MagTek and Motorola have all introduced products that address multiple platforms, including Apple iOS, Android and Microsoft Windows.
• mPOS adoption has been heavily driven by consumer-grade tablets and smartphones. The 2014 Forrester Research report states that forty-three percent of surveyed companies report using iPad tablets in mPOS operations, more than any other device type. Twenty-six percent reported using iPod Touch devices, while 17 percent said they use iPhones.
• Low cost, peripheral support, broad application support, and location-based features make consumer-grade tablets and smartphones attractive targets for mPOS implementations.
• Many mPOS solutions also offer support for emerging technologies that enhance mobile payment options, including near-field communication (NFC) and chip-and-PIN EMV (Europay, MasterCard and Visa) card authorization. Modular mPOS systems, which allow a central display and processor unit to connect to different peripherals, can offer significant value. And when EMV card payment becomes broadly available in North America, stores with EMV-enabled mPOS solutions can simply deploy new readers and updated software to support these transactions, rather than replacing the entire POS solution.
• The mPOS value proposition is for richer customer interaction that can help increase sales, improve efficiency and enhance customer satisfaction by way of untethering transactions from fixed stations. The BizTechMagazine.com post listed a number of compelling use-case scenarios.
• The adoption of mPOS systems is driven in large part by the value of untethering transactions from fixed stations, as well as rich customer interaction that can help increase sales, improve efficiency and enhance customer satisfaction.
• Many consumers are likely to walk out of a store if checkout lines are too long. Mobile POS solutions enable retailers to “line bust” by deploying agents with mobile systems to check out customers as they wait in the queue.
• mPOS technology allows retailers to bring additional transaction points to bear during periods of peak activity, and thereby reduce wait times and avoid loss of sales.
• Mobile-equipped sales agents can conduct transactions at the point of service, such as the aisle or at a product display area, immediately after a customer selects a product. Such “in-aisle” transactions are also useful at big box stores such where large and unwieldy items can create disruptive backups at fixed point of sale stations.
• Because many mPOS systems support rich applications, such as customer loyalty signup and service programs, “Loyalty program awareness can enable sales associates to call attention to special discounts and offers related to a customer’s purchase or inquiry, as well as ensure that members are recognized for their patronage,” BizTechMagazine.com writes. “Mobile POS systems can also be used to sign up new members, boosting participation and helping drive more sales traffic to the store.
Read the full BizTechMagazine.com post here.
For more insights into mobile point of sale technology, check out our related posts, EMV Technology Chips Away at Credit Card Fraud and Near Field Communications And Tokenization Behind Apple’s Point of Sale Play.
Just as Sintel shares our vast point of sale experience and expertise with startup owners in order to help them make the best decisions from the very beginning, we are happy to share articles, advice and commentary about retail mobile point of sale and security.
Whether you’re a first-time franchise hopeful, a small business owner or an established chain, it’s always smart to stay on top of the latest point of sale technologies to achieve financial success.
If you are interested in learning more about Sintel’s point of sale systems and how our knowledge and support can impact your future success, call us for a complimentary phone consultation.
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