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How to Utilise POS Data to Improve Your Customer Experience

Tanuj Rastogi May 14, 2018

One of the most inevitable elements of retail business, POS systems are much more than just a cash register. Though these systems are typically used as advanced machines to process customer transactions and record sales, the significance of data that POS systems collect through daily transactions can’t be overlooked.

Whenever a sale or transaction takes place at the point of sale, your POS sales systems gathers multiple bits of information that provides valuable insights into your customer.

Having the right figures and facts at your fingertips, reduces the guesswork and helps you make smarter decisions.
However, there are many merchants out there who are using POS systems to only record and process sales while missing out on opportunities to increase sales, traffic, and revenue through POS data analysis.
Here’s a rundown on some basic yet useful data points that can be put to work to bring more shoppers through your doors and improve overall customer experience.

INVENTORY

Managing inventory is one of the basic functions of a POS system. After each transaction, your POS system will automatically adjust inventory levels, providing insights into availability of products. This allows you to restock your inventory in a timely manner while avoiding empty shelves in display, which can easily aggravate customers.

Besides, up-to-date inventory information offers a great level of transparency into your stock. Availability of real-time data about inventory allows your POS staff to precisely answer on-the-spot customer queries regarding products, contributing to customer satisfaction.

Not to mention, comprehensive inventory data analytics help you determine top—selling and slow-moving items so that you can optimise your marketing practice and invest more in inventory that are bringing revenue to your business.

CUSTOMER PROFILE

With each purchase, there come nuggets of information that tell you a lot about your customer. An efficient POS system prompts cashiers to collect customer data during the checkout process to create useful customer profiles, which include customer’s name, address, phone number, date of birth, email address and past orders.

You can use customer data to create personalised email marketing campaigns and promotions for each customer to make them feel valued and encourage them to make repeat purchases.

ORDER HISTORY

A customer’s order history is another great piece of information you can look into your POS bundles for. It provides you details about items a customer purchased in the past including product cost and purchase date.

Insights from order histories help you to identify customers’ shopping patterns, needs and trends while reducing the guesswork in your marketing campaigns and promotions. By analysing order history data, you can determine products that are constantly selling fast, items that don’t sell at all, specific times when sales are likely to increase, products that are frequently bought by certain customer groups and more.

You can put these insights to use to offer the right products to the right people as well as organise your products (online or offline) to promote sales.

Furthermore, customer shopping trends gained from order history analytics can be used to level up your marketing and offer a highly personalised customer service. You can upsell or make product recommendations, create personalised content for your marketing campaigns and target ads and promotions to the right audience at the right time.

POS STAFF ACCOUNTS

Advances POS systems come with a built-in functionality to manage employee accounts. Each employee gets an ID which they use to log in and log out of your personal POS account.

Using POS employee management features, merchants can track each employee’s working hours and sales for the day. The detailed reports you get from employees’ accounts are an effective way to determine their productivity.

For staff members who are making most sales and generating higher revenue, you can give out rewards for outstanding performance while encouraging others to put in more effort. On the other hand, those who are unable to meet their daily sales targets or aren’t bringing in as much revenue, can be provided with required training, professional support and additional opportunities to improve their skills and performance.

SALES REPORTS

Every POS system performs the basic function of processing sales. Comprehensive sales reports generated by a POS system allow you to view items sold in a day, week and month, total revenue generated through daily sales, average order amount, most and least preferred payment methods, best performers, slow performers and more.

With access to these sales figures and information, you can make more informed decisions around your inventory management, retail operations, marketing and customer service.

For example, if an expensive payment method isn’t being much used by your top customers, you can eliminate the payment gateway from your retail business and save a lot on your budget. Similarly, you can strategically stock inventory while avoiding running out of stock during peak times or overstocking during slow sales periods.

EXCHANGES, REFUNDS AND RETUNRS

No retailer wishes for their products to be returned. However, cases of returns and exchanges are not uncommon for any online retailer.

Fetching regular reports on refunds, returns, and exchanges, can provide valuable insights into aspects that are causing such situations. Use POS data to determine products that are frequently exchanged or retuned. What are the common reasons? Does the quality of the product fail to meet customer expectations? Or the product often turns out to be ill-fit.

Also, find out what type of refund customers prefer. Do they choose to exchange their refund for store credit? Or do they opt to get their money refunded to the original source of payment. These informative insights will allow you to make small changes in your refund and exchange procedures to make a big difference in your customer experience.

The Bottom Line

POS data is an invaluable resource sitting right on the checkout counter with the potential that many merchants fail to realise. When utilised strategically, POS data bits can help you optimise your marketing efforts to bring in more traffic and sales.
Use the above-mentioned data points to optimise your retail function and boost your revenue.