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How to Choose The Best POS Systems for a Retail Store

9 min read

point-of-sale system, also known as a POS system, is designed to help retailers manage the financial aspects of their business. POS systems work by tracking inventory, processing transactions, tracking sales history, and more. Simply put, a quality POS system supports retail businesses to run smoothly and efficiently. There are plenty of POS systems for retail on the market today. This article will help you find the right one for your business.

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The Best POS System for Retail Businesses

Not all POS systems are equal. Finding the right one for you will depend on your specific needs and budget. Some systems were built to support smaller retailers, while others are better suited for bigger businesses. There are even free options available for those on a tighter budget.

Specifying your needs, reading reviews, and doing your own research will go a long way toward finding the POS system for retail businesses like yours. Here are some questions to consider before purchasing a POS system:

  • Does it offer customer management? A feature of customer management allows retailers to create customer profiles. Once a profile is on file, you can track their purchase history. Within this profile, you will have a customer’s email and/or phone number. These can be used for marketing purposes, which will help create more loyal customers.
  • Does it offer hardware compatibility? With hardware compatibility, you can access barcode scanners, cash drawers, and receipt printers. These are essential for retailers, no matter how big or small the business is.
  • Does it offer inventory management? All successful businesses have a clear understanding of their inventory. This starts with a quality POS system. Inventory management through a POS system makes keeping track of your product simple. It will automatically update your inventory count whenever someone purchases an item.
  • Does it allow for mobile payments? In today’s world, mobile payments have become increasingly popular. With a POS system, you can easily access mobile payment options such as Google Pay and Apple Pay.
  • Does it offer employee management? With POS systems, tracking employee progress has never been easier. With this technology, you can follow the progress of any employee and see who is performing well.
  • Does it integrate your website? A POS system that connects seamlessly with your accounting software (QuickBooks, for instance) can simplify all of your business financials. This way, you can follow your sales and expenses all in one place.
  • Does it have a multi-location inventory? This can be particularly helpful for retailers with more than one store. With multi-location inventory, you can track inventory within all of your stores.

Prices: POS Systems for Retail Stores

Bigger businesses may have a bigger budget for a POS system. Luckily, there are affordable options, no matter how big your business is. When it comes to POS systems for retail stores, it’s important to understand there are both payment processing fees and hardware costs.

Payment processing fees allow your business to accept debit and credit cards. Unfortunately, these fees take 2.5% out of your total sale, plus an additional per-transaction fee, which may be up to $0.30. It is possible to use your own payment processor as well, which is available with some POS systems. This will cost a monthly fee between $50 and $100.

On top of payment processing fees, you must also purchase the hardware itself. The most popular form of POS hardware comes with a touchscreen display, proper software, and a processor. This type of hardware is known as a terminal, and it may cost between $200 and $2,000. It is also possible to use your iPad or mobile phone as a terminal. These would require additional costs for a barcode scanner, receipt printer, and/or credit card reader.

Types of POS Systems for Retail

There are quite a few POS systems available on the market today. Types of POS systems for retail businesses include:


Lightspeed is considered a cloud based POS system for retail businesses. The POS system at Lightspeed is considered one of the best, particularly for omnichannel retailers (businesses with online stores, physical stores, catalogs, mobile apps, etc.). Lightspeed offers quick inventory syncing, customer subscriptions/memberships, built-in SEO tools, and more.

For what it offers, Lightspeed is particularly affordable, ranging from $69 per month to $399 per month. There are no free plans offered, and it may require a steeper learning curve than other POS systems.


The best part about SumUp is that it offers a free plan for retailers. They don’t require a long-term contract, and it is considered easy to use. This is perfect for businesses that don’t have a lot of transactions.

However, SumUp may not be the best option for bigger businesses due to limited hardware options and high transaction fees.

eHopper POS

eHopper POS has various flexible price options, including a free option. Whether you are a small or large business, there is a plan that can suit your specific needs. Moreover, there are options that avoid long-term contracts for eHopper POS. This system is considered especially good for restaurants.

However, a few cons of choosing eHopper POS is that you must purchase separate hardware. Additionally, there is no support included in the free plan.

PayPal Zettle

Many businesses desire a POS system for retail with a barcode scanner. However, some prefer a more flexible option. With PayPal Zettle, the biggest benefit is the low per-transaction fees for QR code payments. That makes it a particularly attractive option for businesses on the go, such as food trucks or mobile dog groomers. It is considered easy to use, accepts multiple currencies, and takes both PayPal and Venmo QR code payments.

A few cons include high invoicing rates and charges adding an additional 1.5% for foreign transactions. Also, deposits go through PayPal rather than straight to your bank, doing extra work for the retailer.

Sign Up for Ecwid by Lightspeed to Enhance Your Business

Are you a retailer or aspiring retailer hoping to build or expand upon an omnichannel business? Ecwid by Lightspeed is here to help. Our role is to help growing businesses sell anything, anywhere, to anyone, at any time. Ecwid by Lightspeed makes building and managing a business easier than ever through its state-of-the-art POS system.

To learn more about how to sell, market, and manage your up-and-coming businesses, sign up for Ecwid today!


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About the author

Max has been working in the ecommerce industry for the last six years helping brands to establish and level-up content marketing and SEO. Despite that, he has experience with entrepreneurship. He is a fiction writer in his free time.

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