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Point of sale software for payment processing, commonly referred to POS software, is often referenced yet rarely understood.  The purpose of point of sale software is to facilitate the processing of payments for optimal efficiency.  Music Shop 360’s retail software connects point of sale with ecommerce, empowering music business owners to maximize profitability and boost customer loyalty.  

Our payment processing is seamlessly integrated into our point of sale software, making it easy to sell music instruments and other music-related products online, complete with automated marketing tools.  If you own or manage a music store of any type, your business will benefit from our payment processing.  

Here’s the inside scoop on payment processing with point of sale software.

The Basics of POS

Point of sale is a bit intimidating at first glance, simply because the phrase is indirect and somewhat ambiguous in meaning.  Invest a little bit of time in learning about payment processing including point of sale technology and you’ll have at least a superficial understanding of how such systems help businesses operate like well-oiled machines.

Point of sale systems, also referred to as point of purchase systems, refer to the place and time when retail transactions are processed.  The merchant determines the money owed for the product in question, identifies that amount and uses software to process the sale.   

Point of sale software is highly complex, highlighted by features that:

  • Empower music store owners to process transactions
  • Gauge inventory levels
  • Track trends in purchases
  • Monitor pricing accuracy and more

Some point of sale software is advanced to the point that it gathers information for marketing data.  This technology also manages purchases made by customers, collects payments and generates receipts.

The Evolution of Payment Processing and POS Systems

Payment processing originated at traditional retail stores where customers shopped in-person.  As time progressed, POS systems have partially shifted to the cloud to process digital e-commerce sales.

The first-ever point of sale system debuted way back in 1879.  Created by James Ritty, a shopkeeper, this initial system was developed to prevent cashiers from keeping the money paid for products and services.  Ritty’s device was essentially a cash register powered by a computer.  

Fast forward to the 1980s and fast food chains such as McDonalds were using even more complex point of sale terminals.  These models, powered by microprocessors, were created by William Brobeck.  Point of sale terminals hastened the processing of food orders with the use of individual buttons for menu items.  Such a high-tech approach to order processing empowered fast food businesses to manage reports along with receipt generation in mere seconds.  

By the late 1980s and early 1990s, point of sale systems were high-tech featuring touchscreens along with colorgraphic monitors.  The first-ever electronic point of sale system or e-POS, referred to as “Nisyst”, debuted in 1992.  Information technology-driven retail point of sale software soon became available on Windows operating systems.  By the time the 2000s rolled around, point of sale systems had evolved to the point that they processed information lightning-fast on the web.  

The e-tail landscape was completely transformed by point of sale systems that functioned on the cloud.  It is now possible for businesses to automatically update licenses and software through software-as-a-service (SaaS) instead of relying on vendors.  The best point of sale systems are advanced to the point that they empower business owners to manage both back-end and front-end operations.  Such system integration enables music store owners to manage inventory and additional processes such as accounting, the analysis of customer data and more.

How Does a POS System Work in Payment Processing?

Point of sale payments are taken at the point when the sales transaction is processed.  Such payment is typically made with a credit/debit card or digital wallet when the purchase is online.  If a credit/debit card is used to purchase the item, be it on the web or at a traditional brick-and-mortar store, the merchant is charged a processing fee in accordance with that unique card and its issuing bank. 

Point of sale systems are fully integrated systems capable of handling the entirety of music store needs in the context of payment processing, syncing online sales and in-store register sales with merchant software.  

Merchant accounts are bank accounts that take credit card payments.  POS terminals process customer payments with such synchronization.  The integration of payment processing is ideal as it ensures orders are processed with optimal efficiency, ultimately preserving time and maximizing efficiency.  

Businesses that provide merchant accounts provide fully customized payment solutions for all businesses, regardless of their size, ensuring each type of credit/debit card payment is accepted.  Merchant accounts are required for both online and offline sales.  In short, the merchant account is the middleman between your music store and the credit card company.  Payment gateways empower merchants to take credit card payments through processors, creating highly efficient connections for payment. 

In the context of point of sale software, gateways are services that facilitate payment, often provided for an extra fee.  Gateways process card payments on the web through e-commerce websites.  Gateways are also used for brick-and-mortar store sales with the use of a credit card terminal where cards are swiped.  

The payment gateway empowers music store owners to take credit card payments on the web or in-person with a transfer of money between the merchant account and the payment processor by way of credit card terminals/processors.  

The virtual version of such terminals, commonly referred to as internet POS/cloud POS is the software that empowers music store owners to accept payments from web-connected devices.  Those devices include but are not limited to laptop computers, tablets and smartphones.

Types of Payment Methods Supported by POS Systems

The best point of sale systems are highly flexible, meaning they take all different forms of payment including:

  • Different types of credit cards
  • Debit cards
  • Digital currency
  • Other forms of contactless/mobile payments

Aside from cards and digital currencies, cash is still accepted yet declining in popularity as it is comparatively inefficient.  Moreover, the best POS systems are advanced to the point that they are capable of processing alternative forms of payment including store credit cards and gift cards.

How POS systems handle different payment methods

Point of sale hardware takes the form of cash registers with buttons, sometimes including touchscreens.  Cash drawers are also used to collect and record cash transactions.  Receipt printers play an essential role in printing receipts for end-day reporting and posterity’s sake.  POS systems are linked to barcode scanners to track inventory counts.  

Card machines process credit/debit card payments as well as mobile wallet payments through NFC technology.  Even if your business is primarily dependent on a cloud-based point of sale system, a network device will be necessary for full web functionality and also for connecting the computer system onsite.  Such network setups include a modem, router and/or hub for linking computers.

The Benefits of Using POS Systems for Payment Processing

Point of sale systems are revered for efficiency, accuracy and tracking/reporting capabilities.  This technology boosts customer satisfaction with rapid and convenient payments and even facilitates inventory management.  However, no two point of sales systems are exactly the same.  

Consider your business’s unique characteristics ranging from size to budgetary limitations, current systems and the payment preferences of your customers.  Even if your business currently sells most items in-store through a conventional point of sale system, recognize the fact that a transition to online sales will likely occur and choose a point of sale software technology provider with cloud-based technology.

Trends and Future of POS Systems and Payment Processing

Point of sale technology is improving with each passing year.  We are proud to provide the industry’s latest point of sale technology for music store owners yet we don’t rest on our laurels.  Our crew keeps its metaphorical finger on the pulse of point of sale systems and payment processing.  

We are weaving in mobile point of sale solutions along with contactless payments and additional industry developments for mutual benefit.  As time progresses, point of sale systems will likely be enhanced all the more with artificial intelligence (AI), loyalty program integration and more.

Your Music Store Needs the Best Point of Sale Software

Choose the right point of sale software for payment processing and you’ll maximize efficiency, ultimately keeping your valued customers loyal to your music store business.  If your music store is relying on an outdated point of sale system, seize the opportunity to upgrade to a more modern system to maximize payment processing efficiency.  

Reach out to our team today for more information.  You can contact us at (385) 474-1116 to schedule a consultation or directly add a point of sale system included related services that help your music store business reach its true potential.