For retailers, the benefits of using a Point of Sale (POS) system are well known. They can increase the accuracy of scanning and make managing transactions easier.
So what are the benefits of integrating your in-store POS system with your back-office enterprise software? Here are five key benefits:
1. Access real-time data in-store and at the back-office
Real-time access to critical data is one of the most attractive benefits of integrating your POS and enterprise systems.
Your sales reps can access the latest customer information and purchase histories to help them make better recommendations and effectively close the deal. While at the back-office, accounting and finance can access the latest sales data to gain more insight about the business.
Seamless integration between the POS and enterprise systems means processes like basic bookkeeping are automatically taken care of. The enterprise system can provide information about revenue and profitability, with the ability to drill down to specific areas. It can also help analyse sales data and perform forecasts.
2. Eliminate manual data entry
With an integrated POS and enterprise system, all sales, customer, and stock information is accessible from a central database.
This means that rather than having sales data handled by a stand-alone POS system, which then must be manually updated into the main accounting or inventory system, the POS system is fully integrated with back-office business processes.
This integration eliminates having to re-enter data, which is a time-consuming and error-prone process.
3. Improve customer relationships
An enterprise system can provide an integrated view of all your customers and make it accessible to every relevant faction of your business – both in-store and at the back-office. With all the information at their fingertips, your sales reps can build deeper, more personalised relationships with customers.
Customer history data is seamlessly shared between the POS and enterprise systems, which means sales and marketing can gain insights into customer habits to create promotions and deals that cater to their needs.
They can see which customers are buying what products, so they can target advertising more effectively and build better customer relationships. Special discounts can also be given to specific customers and loyalty programs can be implemented.
4. Enhance inventory control
Integration between in-store and back-office systems means much more visibility and control of inventory. Processes are more automated and efficient, with each sale subtracting relevant stock items from the retailer’s inventory, triggering other activities, like reordering.
There is also more visibility of stock at the back-office and in-store. For instance, back-office inventory control can let sales reps know when an item is available in another store, so they don’t miss the sale. Armed with real-time information, they can make timely decisions about discounting slow-moving goods. They can also receive alerts of potential problems, such as a product going out of stock.
5. Provide a true omnichannel experienceIntegration between your in-store and back-office systems is essential to ensure your customers have a consistent and integrated shopping experience.
For instance, an integrated POS and enterprise system allows for a seamless customer experience across both bricks-and-mortar and online stores, with customers able to purchase items online and pick up in store, or buy online and return in store.