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BarTab logo
 
BarTab is an on-premise point of sales solution designed specifically for bars and pubs and is suitable for small to midsize businesses. Key features include cloud-based till records and stock tracking with full customization of features... Read More
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BarTab is an on-premise point of sales solution designed specifically for bars and pubs and is suitable for small to midsize businesses. Key features include cloud-based till records and stock tracking with full customization of features... Read More
 
Cybex Enterprise Retail Suite logo
 
Founded in 1986, the retail software suite from Cybex includes point of sale, inventory management, distribution and replenishment, warehouse management, CRM, and e-commerce. The Cybex Enterprise Retail Suite focuses on information... Read More
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Founded in 1986, the retail software suite from Cybex includes point of sale, inventory management, distribution and replenishment, warehouse management, CRM, and e-commerce. The Cybex Enterprise Retail Suite focuses on information... Read More
 
ERPLY logo
 
ERPLY is a cloud-based retail solution built for small and midsize businesses. Key features include point of sale (POS), customer database and inventory management. The solution can run independent from web access and data is auto-synced... Read More
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ERPLY is a cloud-based retail solution built for small and midsize businesses. Key features include point of sale (POS), customer database and inventory management. The solution can run independent from web access and data is auto-synced... Read More
 
Gotmerchant.com logo
 
Gotmerchant.com offers a free retail POS system for restaurants and bars that are interested in using a solution with integrated gift and credit card processing services. Gotmerchant.com gives the merchant everything they need, from... Read More
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Gotmerchant.com offers a free retail POS system for restaurants and bars that are interested in using a solution with integrated gift and credit card processing services. Gotmerchant.com gives the merchant everything they need, from... Read More
 
Phorest Salon logo
 
Phorest is a salon management software solution designed for small and midsize businesses that features appointment bookings, point-of-sale, inventory management and reporting. The software offers cloud-based deployment and a salon-branded... Read More
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Phorest is a salon management software solution designed for small and midsize businesses that features appointment bookings, point-of-sale, inventory management and reporting. The software offers cloud-based deployment and a salon-branded... Read More

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Pomodo Tech POS logo
 
A fully customizable retail solution, Pomodo Tech POS provides a modular solution that is available as web-based, on-premise, as well as a hybrid cloud-based model. The cloud-based version of the system can be accessed from any Internet-capable... Read More
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A fully customizable retail solution, Pomodo Tech POS provides a modular solution that is available as web-based, on-premise, as well as a hybrid cloud-based model. The cloud-based version of the system can be accessed from any Internet-capable... Read More
 
Rapid Bev POS logo
 
Rapid Bev POS is a point-of-sale solution that can be deployed on premise or accessed through the cloud. It's designed to meet the needs of liquor stores, wineries and breweries, with features to track product attributes, ratings and... Read More
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Rapid Bev POS is a point-of-sale solution that can be deployed on premise or accessed through the cloud. It's designed to meet the needs of liquor stores, wineries and breweries, with features to track product attributes, ratings and... Read More
 
Rentrax logo
 
Rentrax is a cloud-based sports equipment rental solution designed for small-scale sports retailers. Retailers can use this solution to manage rental sales for bicycles, scooters, skis, snowboards, kayaks, motorized sports equipment,... Read More
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Rentrax is a cloud-based sports equipment rental solution designed for small-scale sports retailers. Retailers can use this solution to manage rental sales for bicycles, scooters, skis, snowboards, kayaks, motorized sports equipment,... Read More
 
Ricochet Consignment Software logo
 
Ricochet Consignment Software is a cloud-based point of sale (POS) solution designed for consignment and second-hand retailers and helps them to manage their daily business operations, interactions with the customers and process financial... Read More
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Ricochet Consignment Software is a cloud-based point of sale (POS) solution designed for consignment and second-hand retailers and helps them to manage their daily business operations, interactions with the customers and process financial... Read More
 
RunIt RealTime logo
 
RunIt RealTime is a cloud-based point of sale (POS) and inventory management solution that caters to businesses in industries like multi-store apparel, footwear, sports and gift and merchandizes. Key features include business intelligence,... Read More
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RunIt RealTime is a cloud-based point of sale (POS) and inventory management solution that caters to businesses in industries like multi-store apparel, footwear, sports and gift and merchandizes. Key features include business intelligence,... Read More

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SimpleConsign logo
 
SimpleConsign by Traxia offers a web-based single or multi-store solution for consignment stores, resellers, small retailers, antique malls, and art galleries. No download is required, and set up, data conversion and backups are included.... Read More
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SimpleConsign by Traxia offers a web-based single or multi-store solution for consignment stores, resellers, small retailers, antique malls, and art galleries. No download is required, and set up, data conversion and backups are included.... Read More
 
Bravo Pawn Systems logo
 
Bravo Pawn Systems is a point-of-sale platform built specifically for pawnbrokers. The software offers inventory management, advanced reporting, customer management, tight security, integrated e-commerce, and mobile applications. The... Read More
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Bravo Pawn Systems is a point-of-sale platform built specifically for pawnbrokers. The software offers inventory management, advanced reporting, customer management, tight security, integrated e-commerce, and mobile applications. The... Read More
 
Cegid logo
 
Cegid provides cloud-based retail software to fashion and luxury, beauty, as well as specialty retailers. The system is built on a single, centralized database that is shared across all channels and updated in real time with customer... Read More
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Cegid provides cloud-based retail software to fashion and luxury, beauty, as well as specialty retailers. The system is built on a single, centralized database that is shared across all channels and updated in real time with customer... Read More
 
COMCASH Retail ERP logo
 
COMCASH ERP is a cloud-based retail management solution that caters to multi-channel and multi-location retailers. The point of sale module utilizes multi-touch capabilities allowing users to navigate the menu similarly to the iPad.... Read More
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COMCASH ERP is a cloud-based retail management solution that caters to multi-channel and multi-location retailers. The point of sale module utilizes multi-touch capabilities allowing users to navigate the menu similarly to the iPad.... Read More
 
Epos Now logo
 
Epos Now is a retail management system for small to mid-sized businesses. In addition to its Point of Sale module, the solution also offers integrated Inventory Management, Customer Management, and Retail Accounting, including general... Read More
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Epos Now is a retail management system for small to mid-sized businesses. In addition to its Point of Sale module, the solution also offers integrated Inventory Management, Customer Management, and Retail Accounting, including general... Read More

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KORONA logo
 
Created for retailers of all sizes, KORONA provides a point-of-sale, inventory management and CRM system for many types of stores, including fabric stores, florists, gift shops and more. The system is offered as a cloud-based option,... Read More
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Created for retailers of all sizes, KORONA provides a point-of-sale, inventory management and CRM system for many types of stores, including fabric stores, florists, gift shops and more. The system is offered as a cloud-based option,... Read More
 
MultiFlex RMS Fashion logo
 
MultiFlex RMS Fashion & Apparel Software is both a front-end retail POS Software and a back-end financial and inventory management system that integrates and manages both physical and eCommerce operations and can be used to handle... Read More
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MultiFlex RMS Fashion & Apparel Software is both a front-end retail POS Software and a back-end financial and inventory management system that integrates and manages both physical and eCommerce operations and can be used to handle... Read More
 
Nobly POS logo
 
 Nobly POS is supported in over 20 countries including the US, UK, and Canada. Merchants use Nobly POS to manage inventory and staff, gather business insights using more than 30 reports, set up loyalty schemes, and take credit card... Read More
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 Nobly POS is supported in over 20 countries including the US, UK, and Canada. Merchants use Nobly POS to manage inventory and staff, gather business insights using more than 30 reports, set up loyalty schemes, and take credit card... Read More
 
Rapid Gun Systems logo
 
RAPID Gun Systems is an on-premise and accessible through cloud Point-of-Sale solution for gun stores. It caters to firearm retailers and helps them manage compliance and gun store management process. It is suitable for both new and... Read More
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RAPID Gun Systems is an on-premise and accessible through cloud Point-of-Sale solution for gun stores. It caters to firearm retailers and helps them manage compliance and gun store management process. It is suitable for both new and... Read More
 
Rezku POS logo
 
Rezku POS by Guest Innovations is an all-inclusive point of sale (POS) system designed for bars/nightclubs and restaurants. The solution is available through on-premise terminals and cloud-based iPad tablets. Key features of the system... Read More
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Rezku POS by Guest Innovations is an all-inclusive point of sale (POS) system designed for bars/nightclubs and restaurants. The solution is available through on-premise terminals and cloud-based iPad tablets. Key features of the system... Read More
 

Buyer's Guide

by Justin Guinn,
Market Research Associate
Last Updated: June 8, 2018


Web-based point of sale (POS) software is the Software as a Service (SaaS) solution to a retailer’s needs, and it’s a rapidly growing market, especially as more and more businesses turn to the Web to support their sales and/or marketing strategies.

There are a number of advantages and disadvantages to selecting this deployment model, particularly in the retail software market, so we’ve written this buyer’s guide to help you understand the benefits, potential pitfalls and popular vendors associated cloud point of sale software.

Here’s what we’ll cover:

What Is Web-Based POS Software?
A Comparison of Top Web-Based POS Solutions
What Type of Buyer Are You?
Benefits and Potential Issues
Market Trends to Understand
The Web-Based Vendor Landscape

What Is Web-Based POS Software?

Traditionally POS systems have all been on-premise, designed to help retailers increase the speed and efficiency of their checkout process and to alleviate much of the administrative burden associated with retail management.

In recent years, however, a number of online solutions have cropped up to perform this same function. These come with many of the advantages typically associated with cloud-based software: lower up-front costs and technical/hardware burdens. Web-based POS software is designed to meet the needs of the retailer, but with minimal hardware installation as compared to a traditional POS.

Screenshot of Lightspeed user interface

Screenshot of Lightspeed user interface

A Comparison of Top Web-Based POS Solutions

There are many popular Retail solutions on the market, and it can be hard to understand what distinguishes one product from another and which is right for you. To help you better understand how the top Retail systems stack up against one another, we created a series of side-by-side product comparison pages that break down the details of what each solution offers in terms of pricing, applications, ease of use, support and more:

Top Square Comparisons Top Quickbook POS Comparisons Top Clover Comparisons
Square vs. QuickBook POS
Clover vs. Square
Revel vs. Square
Shopify vs. Square
Square vs. QuickBook POS
QuickBook POS vs. Microsoft POS
Clover vs. Square
Revel vs. Clover
Top Revel Comparisons Top Shopify Comparisons
Revel vs. Clover
Revel vs. Square
Shopify vs. Square
Lightspeed vs. Shopify

What Type of Buyer Are You?

Before digging into software, you will want to know what type of buyer you are. For Web-based POS systems, there’s basically two types of buyer:

Simple systems. Smaller businesses typically want a straightforward POS for customer checkout and inventory management. Many of these systems also have built-in CRM and accounting capabilities to manage everything a small business would need.

Enterprise systems. Larger companies may be looking for a more robust solution that has extra levels of functionality beyond those typically associated with a POS. These may include pricing controls and/or variations, merchandise planning and warehouse or transportation management. Not every enterprise solution will have all of these features, so consider carefully which features you want  and use those criteria to narrow down your search.

Cellular retailers. Businesses that specialize in cell phone and similar telecommunications have a ton of extra features specific to that industry: phone activation, tracking service plans (including family plans with multiple customers on one system), commission and vendor rebate calculations, feature comparisons and so on. These companies will want one of the many systems dedicated to this market.

Like for the cellular industry, specialty retailers may wish to consider the benefits of getting a solution that’s dedicated specifically to their market. These will be best-of-breed solutions with specific functionality that your store needs but may not be available in a generic POS system.

Benefits and Potential Issues

Web-based software solutions are growing in popularity, and for good reason. They come with lower up-front costs and fewer of the maintenance challenges, and these days almost all of the same functionality, making them the perfect choice for smaller businesses in particular.

In the retail market, SaaS has other very significant benefits, namely those discussed under “Market Trends” below: built-in customer portals to transform your brick and mortar shop into an ecommerce store as well; integration with social media to expand your sales and marketing strategy and mobile applications to let the user take the store anywhere it needs to go.

There are two main drawbacks to online POS software. First, are the hardware limitations or add-ons. Most retailers aren’t operating with a standard computer setup, rather you’re using a scanner, a touch-screen and receipt and credit card machines, and all of these require special hardware that then has to integrate with the software. The more of this hardware you want to purchase, the more carefully you should consider whether an on-premise system will make more sense.

Second, Web-based software relies 100% on a strong Internet connection on the store’s end in order to function properly. If the Internet goes down, so does the ability to conduct business in your brick and mortar environment. So a Web-based system is not a great solution if your Internet is spotty or unreliable.

The Web-Based POS Vendor Landscape

This type of buyer … Should look at these systems
Simple systems MMS, SmartWerks, Real Time
Enterprise systems RICS, RunIt Realtime, NetSuite, Jesta Vision Suite, Cegid, Epicor, Microsoft Dynamics
Cellular retailers RetailIQ, Multiflex RMS, Wireless Standard, MMS Wireless

There are also specialty systems available for other specialty retail markets, such as Granbury for restaurants and SWIM for jewelry. Keep in mind that many of the POS and enterprise vendors listed above have multiple different products tailored to specific industries, so as you’re performing your search, be sure to ask what markets they specialize in.

Market Trends to Understand

Though the fundamentals largely remain the same, many facets of Web-based POS systems constantly evolve to meet the changing demands of retail businesses. As you evaluate retail systems, keep these trends in mind. How your vendor fits within these trends could have a big impact on their viability.

  • Mobile. Since many retailers conduct sales at tradeshows and other remote locations, remote checkout applications that let users access sales/inventory data from the tradeshow floor are growing in popularity. This trend has exploded with the development of the iPad and other tablet devices, although there always have been and will be numerous deployment models for this.
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  • Online sales. The tight margins of traditional “brick and mortar” businesses are leading to more and more online sales channels, allowing retailers to develop a Web portal to sell their products online, which can ultimately be much more cost effective. These integrated ecommerce modules run the full range of functionality, integrating the shopping cart with the sales and inventory data. Web-based POS software is particularly well poised to take advantage of this trend.
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  • Social media. As Facebook and Twitter impact the way consumers and businesses interact online, Groupon and LivingSocial are enabling retailers to leverage that and turn it into concrete sales. Connecting your solution to social media is an outstanding way to grow your brand and increase sales, and online systems are designed to support this function.

Free Download:
Retail Software Pricing Guide

Free Download:
Ten Steps Guide to Selecting Retail Software

 

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