Mobile point-of-sale: retailers get to the point

The increase in ownership of smart phones and other handheld devices is making us, as consumers, more used to finding information and undertaking transactions wherever and whenever we want. In turn we are becoming more and more demanding of the businesses we deal with. Companies that cannot offer mobile point-of-sale may soon become out of step with our fast moving expectations. The benefits of mobile point- of-sale however apply not just to the consumer though; they are evident for the business as well.  

 

If someone was to say “Mobile Point-of sale” to you, you are most likely to think of a retail environment.  I think most of us can imagine a forward thinking retailer that can easily deploy dynamic MPOS stations as needed to reduce wait times at the tills during peak shopping hours. MPOS can mean different things to different retailers from queue busting to taking orders for non stock items or purchasing large items too big for customers to carry that they can pay for either using MPOS or pay for at the till.

 

However the potential is even greater than that. In a world where outstanding customer service, and quick transactions are key to success, MPOS allows these seemingly opposed outcomes to be achieved at the same time.  It’s a win/win situation; customers are more satisfied and retailers have the potential increase in sales. Simply imagine if your retail staff could process purchases in the aisles of your store or beyond, capturing and influencing sales right at the moment of decision. Perhaps we are even on the verge of moving away from Point of Sales to a wider definition of Point of Interaction and to a certain extent, removing the limitations of the four walls of the store.

 

Outside the store MPOS with the ability to print is effective not only for direct store delivery but also for home delivery. Immediate invoicing and billing as well as on demand receipt printing rather than carbon copies of receipts/proof of work (which may have to be double input later) saves time and money. The key benefits here are the two way access to real time data and ability to receive money in a simple, secure and immediate way.

 

​Beyond the relationship with the consumer though, imagine the impact on cash flow if delivery drivers and service technicians could process payment upon delivery of goods or completion of service, eliminating days from your payment cycle times.

 

In hospitality and leisure, the goal is to encourage regular loyal guests. Whilst the chances of this are increased with attention to the service levels, for hotels, clubs and resorts that have stores located within the property, on the spot payment processing helps staff capture more impulse purchases. With this solution in hand, staff have everything needed to assist guests — including checking inventory and pricing, requesting a different size or colour from the back room to processing the sale  and giving a receipt—and all without ever leaving the customer’s side. Hospitality applications can even include sports stadiums where spectators don’t have the time to spend in the merchandise outlets. Imagine if the retailer can bring the store to the spectators using mobile devices and payment methods.

 

With MPOS opportunities to increase customer satisfaction and sales also arise from less expected markets such as passenger transport: rail, buses, ferries, and flights. In this environment end users clearly see the benefit of companies being able to offer on board payments and receipting.  However MPOS solutions also allow organisations to maximise opportunities offered by buffet cars/carts and in-transit stores selling travel necessities or gifts.

 

Wherever there is a point of sale opportunity it is further enhanced by being able to print receipts or information immediately.

 

Zebra’s mobile printers are undoubtedly robust, reliable and easy to use.  Choosing Zebra also means you benefit from the company’s wealth of experience in mobile applications, its support for Apple, Blackberry and Android devices and from its alliances with key movers in the mobile solutions market such as Motorola.

 

Ultimately regardless of whether your workers need to complete transactions on the retail sales floor, at a customer site on a delivery route, in an indoor or outdoor dining area or hotel lobby, the result is a significant improvement in customer service, sales and cash flow.