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What Is a Point-Of-Sale System and How Does It Help Restaurants Increase Business?

What is a POS Sytem

Point-of-sale (POS) systems have drastically improved since the early days of mechanical cash registers that only recorded sales. Today’s cloud-based POS systems are feature-rich, offering functionalities beyond order placement and transaction processing. They can manage inventory, track customer data, payroll, and manage delivery—all through a unified ecosystem that flows smoothly. This restaurant technology is making a massive impact on the restaurant industry. Undoubtedly, the cloud-based POS market is set to be worth $13.24 billion by 2028.

Ready to improve your restaurant’s operations? See how the latest in POS innovation could be the key ingredient to your success (and why outdated POS tech will hold you back).

Key Takeaways

  • Modern POS systems are the brains behind your restaurant operations–managing everything from orders to inventory in one place.
  • Cloud-based POS systems let you run your business from anywhere–giving you the power to manage menus, track inventory, and see sales data on the go.
  • Investing in a POS system can boost your sales, speed up service, and keep customers coming back for more with personalized experiences and rewards.
  • Special features made just for pizzerias and other fast-casual restaurants make handling complex orders and hundreds of modifications easy.

How Does a Restaurant POS System (POS) Work?

A restaurant POS system can be defined as technology that manages the sale of a transaction, receipt printing, sending orders to the kitchen, and more. It centralizes sales, inventory, and customer management into one piece of software. It helps manage every step of the customer experience, from ordering to kitchen to delivery.

POS systems can be broken down into two parts: Hardware and software. 

What Does Restaurant POS Hardware Include?

Depending on the technology, restaurant POS hardware can include the following components.

  • POS Card Readers: These devices take payments via—you guessed it, card. Think mag stripe, chip, contactless, etc.
  • POS Customer Displays: These displays show payment details and other messages to customers during transactions. This can enhance customer trust and reduce input errors.
  • POS KDSs (Kitchen Display System): Essential in a modern restaurant, KDUs display order information, streamlining communication between the front-end and kitchen staff.
  • POS Table-Top Terminals: These terminals provide full POS functionality in a smaller footprint. Ideal for businesses with limited space.
  • POS Self-Ordering Kiosks: You’ve probably seen these in your local McDonald’s or any QSR franchise. Self-ordering kiosks allow customers to browse, customize orders, and make payments without involving your staff. So you can redeploy employees where a human touch makes a difference—creating a truly excellent dining experience for your customers.

What Does Restaurant POS Software Include?

There are two types of restaurant POS software, legacy POS and a more modern, cloud-based POS.

  • A Legacy POS system is a classic or legacy POS system that needs to be installed manually onto your terminal. They take payments and sometimes sync with accounting software. They are not able to handle robust delivery, complex orders, marketing, loyalty, coupons, or any of the extra add-ons that help restaurant owners grow their businesses.
  • A modern cloud-based POS system is the future of restaurant management. Cloud-based restaurant POS software lets you manage multiple POS across multiple locations from anywhere in the world—well, anywhere in the world with internet access, that is.

“Starting a franchise is a daunting task and your POS system is critical to your operation. HungerRush provides a system that is fully integrated and seamless” — Bruce Redden, Franchisee, i Fratelli

Benefits of a Cloud-Based Restaurant Management and POS System

If you’re not using a modern POS system in 2024, you’re leaving money on the table. That’s because today’s POS systems are more than just electronic cash registers—they are (or should be) the centerpiece of your restaurant’s tech stack. Here’s what you should look for when choosing a POS.

Not all POS systems are equal, but these are some of the possible benefits and solutions modern POS systems can include.

Benefit 1 – Handle 100’s of Modifications and Complex Orders with Ease

Struggling to navigate the complexities of restaurant orders has become a thing of the past with a modern POS system. Here’s why:

  • Cut the complexity. Complex orders—especially for customizable items like pizzas and sandwiches, need to be handled with precision. You need a system that can intuitively manage intricate requests, ensuring ingredient upcharges are accurately applied.
  • Centralized insights: Access customer preferences, past orders, loyalty rewards, and coupons with ease. With all that information on one screen, interactions are now personalized experiences.
  • Boost sales: A modern POS actively contributes to increasing ticket sizes. By leveraging customer profiles and data from loyalty modules to create custom offers and coupons, you can encourage customers to order more.

Learn More: 7 Benefits of Pizza POS Systems (The Profitable Pizza Shop’s Best Tool) 

Benefit 2 – Store Customer Data and Manage a Restaurant from Anywhere with a Cloud-based POS System

As mentioned above, the cloud-based POS market is set to be worth billions in the next few years. Restaurateurs who take the leap and adopt modern cloud-based POS will experience benefits like:

  • Simple Menu Management. Update and customize menus across one or multiple locations (including third-party marketplaces and apps, like DoorDash). Launch specialty menus, adjust pricing, and roll out promotional coupons, ensuring consistency and responsiveness to market demands.
  • Inventory and Pricing Efficiency. Shift inventory management to a digital plane for real-time tracking and control. Implement market-responsive pricing strategies that update automatically, ensuring your business stays competitive and profitable, even as your inventory landscape shifts.
  • Comprehensive Staff Coordination. Centralize staff management, from scheduling and communication to pay rates and security protocols, for full-empire data visibility in one dashboard. Ensure smooth operations across all locations, fostering a productive and well-coordinated workforce.
  • In-depth Reporting and Insights. Dive into the details with an extensive array of reports. Gain a clear view of your business’s performance, from sales and revenue to labor statistics, directly from an intuitive dashboard, enabling informed decision-making and strategic planning.

HungerRush 360, our very own cloud-based POS system simplifies all the above. But that’s not all—keep scrolling to learn more.

Learn More: Short On Labor? How Restaurant Technology Can Reduce Labor By 21%

Benefit 3 – In-House Delivery Management and Third-Party Delivery Management

It is important for a restaurant POS system to have powerful delivery management capabilities that make managing your high-margin fleet a breeze. Let’s take a closer look:

  • Integrated Caller ID. Cuts down call times, enabling quicker processing of delivery orders. This feature not only speeds up operations but also improves the customer service experience.
  • Advanced Mapping. Sophisticated mapping integration allows for precise management of delivery zones, and real-time tracking of delivery times, ETAs, and driver routes, ensuring timely and efficient delivery services.
  • Flexible Dispatch Options. Whether managing an in-house delivery team or coordinating with third-party services, the system’s seamless integrations mean smooth deliveries, every time.
  • Enhanced Curbside Pickup: The mobile app feature empowers guests to choose their preferred pickup times, even for future slots, making curbside service more convenient and customer-friendly.

Learn More: 5 Ways: Boost Guest Delight With A Pizza POS

Benefit 4 – Multiple Ordering Channels

Your customers are used to having it their way. Whether that’s ordering on the phone, via an app, third-party apps, or through a website—they expect the experience to be cohesive across platforms and devices. But that can mean a lot of different applications, notifications, and alarms going off in your kitchen during rush hour. That, of course, can put your staff under a lot of pressure.

POS systems that can combine orders from various channels into a single, unified dashboard are imperative. This saves time and ensures that every order is handled with both efficiency and accuracy.

Learn More: 2024 Restaurant Dining Trends: AI Everywhere, Labor Optimization, and Beyond 

Benefit 5 – Coupon and Loyalty Rewards Management

Restaurant owners can leverage POS systems to keep customers coming back for more. That’s because they’re able to:

  • Store customer profiles from a unified dashboard–featuring contact details, purchase records, preferences, loyalty levels, and beyond.
  • Track hourly sales and order metrics to discern customer ordering patterns.
  • Retrieve customer loyalty details using their phone number, email, or loyalty ID for personalized service.
  • Use all of the above data to unlock automated, personalized remarketing that runs in the background–generating repeat orders on autopilot.

Learn More: All-In-One Restaurant POS System​ | HungerRush 

Can a POS System Solve Your Restaurant’s Biggest Problems?

The relentless pace of the industry leaves little room for error. Managing tight margins is a daily battle, under the twin threats of fluctuating food costs and operating expenses.

Competition is fierce. Restaurants must offer exceptional food and a customer experience to stand out from the crowd. Historically high staff turnover can feel like a challenge. Nevertheless, with the right POS the ability to handle a lot more than just orders, can feel like a secret weapon in these challenging times. As Tom Lemaster of Giovanni’s Pizza put it:

“We continue to transition existing stores onto the HungerRush system and expect the results to grow as we introduce features like the integrated loyalty programs and suggestive selling capability. We are thrilled to offer this technology to our existing franchisees and future locations and watch how it helps fuel their success.”

What’s Possible With the Right POS Partner?

Modern POS solutions like HungerRush are meticulously crafted for the restaurant experience, addressing the industry’s unique demands with precision. HungerRush was designed by a team of restaurant industry veterans who know what it’s like to work in the industry.

Integrated with payments, HungerRush 360 is a true, all-in-one restaurant POS system that combines easier order handling with customer loyalty, delivery, inventory, marketing, online ordering, and much more.

Built by restaurant experts to provide everything you need, the HungerRush 360 POS System is designed to make your restaurant unstoppable.

“HungerRush customer support is outstanding. I’ve worked closely with their department multiple times on projects, and they have always been extremely thorough and responsive. I am extremely happy with HungerRush’s customer service and with HungerRush as a whole.” —Ann Keller from Hot Tomato Cafe

Ready to dive even deeper? Check out some of the following:

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