Until a few years ago, retail businesses in India were habituated to use traditional, manual billing methods and serving customers. Today, however, many of the retail stores across the country have embraced the latest POS technology which has automated their business and improved revenues besides offering an upscale shopping experience to customers.
Customers at Point of Sale (POS) or billing counters are now used to see sophisticated POS billing machines, commonly known as POS Terminals which are easy to operate and efficient in crowd management. Departmental stores, Kirana shops, textile showrooms, medical shops, supermarkets and hypermarkets are using POS machines to augment their business with customer satisfaction reining high in their agenda.
These days, post demonetization, even small vendors have started using POS terminals/card readers to receive cash through credit/debit cards.
POS Terminals can speed up the billing process, reduce customer traffic and increase customer satisfaction by reducing wait-time. Payment through card reader alone is not enough to improve sales and customer experience.
A retail store needs a comprehensive set of POS Peripherals in order to gain maximum sales efficiency. Point of Sale products such as touch screen monitors, receipt printers, barcode scanners, pole displays, magnetic stripe readers, programmable keyboards and electronic cash drawers are collectively known as POS Peripherals.
They can be used in various industries such as Warehousing, Food & Beverage, General Retail, Healthcare, Transportation, Healthcare, to name a few. Businesses belong to respective industries can function better if they use appropriate POS Peripherals.
Thermal Receipt Printers: These printers are used to generate bills instantly after every transaction. They can be integrated easily with POS terminals and are fast and noise-free. Receipt printers find useful in almost all retail applications.
Barcode Scanners: All products have barcodes printed on them that contain product information which can be accessed by scanning the barcodes using a barcode scanner. It is used at the time of billing and the scanned product pops up on the monitor that adds up the bill.
Touch Screen Monitors: These monitors have the smart-touch facility and are used for billing. The real-time availability of stock can be monitored. This is just like a computer monitor. Operator can execute a lot of functions such as bill generation, correction of bills, inventory management, inventory ordering, staff management, introduce offers, redeem coupons, etc.
Cash Drawers: These are used for storing cash that open and close automatically during the billing process. They are password protected. They have small compartments for storing notes and coins of different denominations. Cash drawer cannot be opened in between a transaction and hence ensures safety.
Pole Displays: These are also known as customer displays. These are digital boards perched atop a long pole behind the POS billing machine that reflect the bill to the consumer as it is being generated. This ensures transparency and enhances customer satisfaction.
Magnetic Stripe Readers: These are devices that read and process debit/credit card payments. They also help in accounting loyalty points for customers. Having a magnetic stripe reader is highly useful as customers find it easier to pay through cards.
Programmable Keyboards: It is a keyboard where the keys are programmed to send codes to the main POS Terminal when they are pressed to generate bills. These keyboards can be reprogrammed to perform both normal keyboard functions and the coded functions that the keys are supposed to do.
All the POS Peripherals are attached to one main Peripheral, usually the Touch Screen Monitor. A POS software binds all these hardware products. Even if one of the peripherals is missing, it may slow down the process of sales.
Say, if the bill has to be computed manually, then the salesperson would take more time to complete the sales. Thus, POS Peripherals are important for effective sales, and utilising them provides greater advantage for retailers and customers.