The age of the internet, of information, of data collection, has led to huge changes in the way commerce takes place. From the origin of the manual cash register in the late 1800s to the first electronic cash register in the 1970, the evolution of Point of Sale is now being impacted by the new technology era. Hard to keep up? In this article, we gathered everything you need to know about Point of Sale (POS) terminology so if the terms POS, NFC or SKU does not or vaguely ring a bell to you, you should keep reading.
Point of Sale (POS)
POS refers to Point of Sale, the place where the sale/transaction for a good or a service took place in the past. Nowadays, POS stands for the technical system used to physically process the sale/transaction for a good or a service in a retail store, at a café or at a ticketing office.
Electronic Point of Sales (ePOS)
ePOS simply refers to electronic Point of Sale as opposed to the good old cash register. The first ePOS being introduced more than 50 years ago, POS and ePOS terms are commonly used interchangeably as almost every POS is an ePOS nowadays.
Native or on-premise POS
The native or on-premise POS stores all transaction data on local servers and can be used only on dedicated devices where the software has been previously installed by the service provider’s company.
The term cloud-based refers to applications or services that are available from everywhere via the Internet from a cloud computing provider’s servers. In that sense, a cloud-based POS is a web-hosted point of sale that stores transaction data on remote servers making them accessible everywhere where there’s Internet access.
The native Point of Sale is usually rather inflexible and costs a lot of money in installation and maintenance. Cloud-based systems are accessible from your living room couch but they are also much less reliable based on the fact that they work only with a strong internet connection.
You might have understood that it’s the best of both worlds. A hybrid POS usually offers all the flexibility of a cloud-based system, but with the integrated hardware and payment processing as well as the added security of a local connection in case the Internet goes down.
Mobile Point of Sale (mPOS)
mPOS stands for mobile Point of Sale and refers to any devices such as a smartphone, tablet or other dedicated wireless device that performs the functions of an electronic Point of sale wirelessly.
The inventory is a complete listing of items you have in stock for your retail shops, cafés and restaurants.
Stock Keeping Unit (SKU)
SKU means Stock Keeping unit, a unique scannable barcode that is most often used printed on items in a retail shop or café. It’s used to identify, scan and track the item's inventory.
Near Field Communication (NFC)
NFC stands for Near Field Communication or contactless which allows two devices to communicate when touched together through magnetic field induction. For example, smartphones, credit cards and payment terminals are now equipped with NFC technology to allow contactless payments.
Radio Frequency Identification (RFID)
RFID refers to Radio Frequency Identification, a form of wireless communication that transmits through radio waves. We can illustrate this technology as very small tags embedded on tickets and items. These tags contain a certain amount of data such as SKUs for example, that uniquely characterise tickets and items. You’re able to read the tags with a reader device such as a scanner.
The use of RFID is already a big thing in the ticketing industry to speed up the at-the-door process, increase security and track your visitors' journey. In a retail shop or in a restaurant for example, it helps to track your inventory and speed up the checkout process.
The inventory alert is the lower limit your stock can reach before you get notified by the system that you should order the item again. Some inventory management systems even automate the order of items by automatically notifying your providers that you need restocking.
The open tab is an unprocessed customer order on the POS.
Initial cash amount
The initial cash amount is the amount of cash that is in the drawer at the beginning of the shift.
The Point of Sale configuration determines what activities, retail and F&B products will be available at each point of sale through sales collections. You can associate a Point of Sale configuration to specific staff members to monitor sales and have as many point of sale as ticket offices, cafés, restaurants or shops you have.
Sales collections correspond to how you categorise under one button your activities, retail and F&B products in the point of sale configuration. For example, at your ticket office, you easily want to access your tickets for entries, memberships, special offers of the day and goodies that you sell at-the-door. You can do that by creating a sales collection for each.
Europay, Mastercard, Visa (EMV)
Europay, Mastercard and Visa abbreviated EMV refers to the global standard for cards equipped with computer chips and the technology used to authenticate chip-card transactions.
Card Verification Value (CVV Code)
The CVV code corresponds to the 3 or 4-digits number that you find on the back of most credit and debit cards such as Visa, Mastercard, and American Express.
Payment Card Industry (PCI)
PCI Data Security Standard, applies to companies that accept credit card payments. They must abide by PCI compliant hosting providers to host data securely.
Customer Facing Display (CFD)
The Customer Facing Display, usually a small screen, is the part of the POS that faces the customer. It displays very little information such as the name and the price of the item, the tax amount, and the total price.
Are you looking for your new Point of Sale?
We might have the solution you’re looking for. At Smeetz, we offer attractions and cultural venues a data-driven hybrid POS that offers both of the best worlds in terms of cloud-based flexible system, offline capabilities and hardware integration. See it for yourself by booking a demo with one of our experts at email@example.com or by booking your demo here: book a demo with Smeetz.