If you want to open a restaurant, there are probably many reasons for wanting to do so; however it’s a pretty safe bet that bookkeeping, accounting and inventory management are not likely to be among them. Chances are, the type of point of sale (POS) system you want to install isn’t at the top of the list, either. And perhaps it shouldn’t be the number one item on your list, but it should be pretty high – a modern POS system, like those offered by North American Bancard, can literally make the difference between a successful restaurant and a failed endeavor.
Some experts believe you should upgrade your POS system every five to seven years, because the technology is constantly changing. Think of your smartphone or computer – after a few years, they’re probably a bit dated, and after five years, they’re practically obsolete. Modern POS systems are loaded with many features, allowing you to streamline every aspect of your business from a single point, leading to efficient and effective restaurant operations without a lot of time spent by management and owners. This allows you to spend more time on the parts of your business you enjoy the most. They also provide you with crucial customer information that can help you make the right decisions for your business. Below are some features of modern POS systems that would most benefit restaurateurs:
Managing inventory. This is probably the least favorite task of anyone in the restaurant and retail industries, and modern POS systems can help you greatly in this area. They can track your shipments and update inventory, often in real time, and sometimes as immediate as when items are ordered off the menu! The POS can also notify you when your inventory is getting low, which ensures you only order what you need when you need it, saving you time and money.
Accounting. You probably didn’t go into the restaurant business to spend hours with your nose in ledger books, trying to make everything balance. POS systems can take this task off your shoulders, automatically updating everything so the overall performance of your restaurant is just a few taps away. As an added bonus, because all your financial data is kept in one place and constantly updated, tax time will be a lot easier.
Trend reports. You can program a POS system to give you daily, weekly and monthly reports, allowing you to track your restaurant’s trends, such as peak hours, popular menu items and revenue per customer. These important statistics can help you to identify opportunities, such as which menu items to keep and which to replace, as well as staffing – you will want to have more staff working during peak times.
Online reservations. Many people have turned to the internet to make their restaurant reservations. There will always be people who prefer to call in their reservations, but giving customers the opportunity to make them via your website or an app can help you better manage your tables and staff. Plus, you don’t need to have your own dedicated app in order to accept reservations from a mobile device. There are several apps, like Open Table, Resy and NoWait, with which you can integrate that will allow you to do that.
Marketing. You can have a great restaurant, with an awesome menu and wonderful décor, but if you don’t have customers, it won’t mean much. This is where marketing comes in to play, and your POS system can help you out, by establishing a database of your customers and maintaining information for giveaways, newsletters, email marketing, special events and more. It is simple to get started – just offer a giveaway that requires customers to provide their email addresses and you can create a marketing list.
The best thing about many modern POS systems is that they can be customized for each individual business, putting you in control of which features you want – and which you don’t – that will be most beneficial for your restaurant. They put you in the driver’s seat, and choosing wisely can save you both time and money.