How to Effectively Make Portable POS a Part of a Retailer’s Strategy

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Retailers know they can benefit from taking point of sale capabilities to the point of decision. On-the-spot service and immediate transactions eliminate the wait and the chance that customers will change their minds about purchases. Retailers can also enhance customer experience (CX) by making shopping faster and convenient. Portable POS systems give merchants the freedom to create the processes and experiences that their customers want without the constraints of technology that keeps them at a counter.

Portable POS, Defined

In this blog, “portable POS” includes all devices that store employees can easily move from place to place and connect through the store’s wired or wireless network. Some point of sale (POS) solutions are small and compact enough to move as needed. Employees can easily set up an additional checkout lane by plugging in one of these solutions.

The portable POS solution category can also include mobile devices that employees carry and connect to the network via Wi-Fi. When employees use them outside the store for curbside service or managing sales at a pop-up shop, they may require cellular network connectivity to keep them functional.

You can configure portable POS solutions for your clients with all the features they need, from access to customer data to receipt printing. With the variety of options available, you can equip them with the specific devices and functionality for their applications and help them optimize customer experiences.

Portable POS Payments

Taking payments with portable POS devices required companion devices in the past. Card readers were separate–and added to IT management complexity. The industry then moved to using payment devices built into cases or enclosures, but they were still separate tools.

Now the standard is a single device that has POS and payment capabilities built in. A POS terminal may include payment technology. Conversely, a mobile payment terminal, particularly one running an Android-based payment platform designed for flexibility–can run business applications to provide merchants with everything they need in one device. Android-based systems streamline the process of adding alternative payments, like buy now, pay later (BNPL) and QR code payments, at the in-store point of sale. Merchants can also choose new features to enhance transactions, such as eco-friendly digital receipts. Portable POS devices also include near-field communication (NFC) technology to allow merchants to meet the growing demand for contactless card and mobile wallet payments.

SoftPOS is another option. This technology allows merchants to accept payments directly on a consumer smartphone or tablet. SoftPOS makes accepting contactless payments easier for merchants of all sizes, from micro-merchants that currently don’t have that capability to enterprises looking for a solution that integrates with their existing payment solutions and adds new options for enhancing CX.

Where Merchants Are Using Portable POS Devices

The new world of commerce includes a variety of applications for portable POS solutions:

  • Home delivery

This option came into its own during the pandemic but remains a popular choice in certain sectors. A consumer survey by McKinsey, for example, found that nearly half of pharmacy customers are choosing home delivery even more than they did at the beginning of the decade. Portable POS solutions allow delivery drivers to complete transactions at the door.

  • Line-busting and in-aisle assistance

Retailers are deploying portable POS devices to eliminate waiting in line. Mobile payment devices can accept payments anywhere, so employees who meet customers in the sporting goods department or next to the clothing display can complete the sale right at the point of decision.

  • Curbside pickup

The pickup economy is growing even faster than home delivery. In one study, almost a third of U.S. ecommerce consumers used curbside or store pickup for their most recent online purchases, a 37% increase year over year. Portable POS devices allow store employees to complete transactions and confirm fulfillment efficiently.

The Future of Retail POS is Portable

Digital-first consumers crave the same speed and convenience in-store as they’ve become accustomed to online. Merchants can meet their expectations with portable POS solutions that enable sales associates to access POS features and data and decrease payments friction.

Contact us to learn more about how to build solutions for your market with all the capabilities that merchants need to operate competitively.

Tim Reidy.png

Tim Reidy

Sales Executive, Retail Channel

Ingenico US

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