POS trends shaping the future of retail | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, September 18, 2020 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:16 AM, September 19, 2020

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POS trends shaping the future of retail

POS systems have gone from merely being a tool to record sales transactions to a robust platform for improving customer experience. The point of sale system is the very heart and soul of any business, one that can integrate marketing, inventory, accounting and data analytics and create synergy between them. According to a report from Grand View Research, global point of sale terminals market is expected to reach USD 108.46 billion by the year 2025. As business owners depend on data to make better decisions for their businesses and customers demand unique shopping experiences, POS systems are becoming the bridge between businesses and consumers.

As with all things rooted in technology, POS trends are continually changing and evolving. As POS systems are going through a makeover, business owners and retailers should stay up to date with the latest trends coming in the industry.

Increase in Mobile Payments

As the number of mobile users keeps growing, customers are using smartphones for most of their transactions. This development not only took us away from two traditional industries – cash and cash registers but also encouraged the technology to move further and create a portable Point of sale solution for the retailers. Asia Pacific countries have fully embraced the use of mobile payment as there is a 16.2% year on year growth of mobile POS users. It mostly consists of scanning codes and authenticating the transaction. Startups with new technology are creating digital wallets which are enabling users to pay from their phones conveniently.

Usage of data analytics

The change in demand alongside technology also pushed for changes in POS systems. Retailers are turning to data analytics to understand their customers better to make more data-driven decisions. Customers want to make their shopping experiences as flawless as possible. POS systems have a feature similar to some of the best business intelligence tools in the market. It can help you process the data from your customers to create the best experience. Using this trend, businesses can identify buyer habits, improve their marketing strategies and use real-time data to make improvements.

Transition to cloud-based POS

Cloud-based POS is currently one of the leading POS technology trends today.  Forbes reported that 61% of merchants are looking into getting cloud-based POS for their businesses. Additionally, it is predicted that there will be a 50% increase in cloud-based POS adoptionbefore the end of 2021. The advantages of cloud-based POS are simplicity, flexibility and functionality. Client-based POS requires time to set up. It also requires an IT team to deal with the maintenance of the system. Cloud-based POS replaces all of that with a single app.

Faster payment processing

Customers want transactions to be faster alongside having a personalized shopping experience. With increasing spending capabilities, more customers are coming in and business owners have to find newer modules to keep up with the demand. Upgrading the POS systems and adding features accordingly will help to ensure faster transactions. These features include contactless payment options that support RFID like Google Pay, Apple Pay and Samsung Pay.

Online spending

There has been a huge shift in customer spending from in-store to online, with better deals being available online. Many retail stores are trying to offer a more 'online' experience, by making tablets available for people to look up information and make transactions. Customers can place these orders to be delivered to their home as well. Retailers are looking for processes to improve their businesses. As a result, they are collecting customer details such as e-mail addresses at POS to set up digital sales accounts for them to send an e-mail receipt and personalize their shopping experience while connecting online platforms, mobile apps and physical experiences.

AI Integration

The added benefits of AI integration are leading this trend. Customers are increasingly favouring the idea that artificial intelligence would shop for them given that their shopping preferences are understood. Moreover, using AI-enabled POS system has other benefits as well. AI-enabled POS system can help secure customer information and prevent fraud by sending instantaneous alerts. As online shopping is gaining more popularity, the bar for shopping experience has been raised higher. Through the use of AI, the same experience can be provided for the in-store shopping experience. AI can personalize shopper's behaviour and offer relevant products to customers. As AI uncovers customer's buying habits, it can help to reduce the loss of inventory by detecting checkout errors.

Having a state-of-the-art POS system for business means that more can be done other than just collecting payment. Combined with a CRM platform, customer data can be collected and analyzed more efficiently and more accurately. With a state-of-the-art POS system, more transactions can be handled and consumers using the latest payment methods like mobile payments can be catered to.

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