Posts Tagged ‘Point of Sale’

Is Your POS System Truly Modern?

June 3rd, 2015 Manasi Kulkarni No comments

Retail businesses, no matter how big or small, have come a long way from the cash register days to web-based POS systems that give greater control to the POS operator.

With a variety of POS players in the market and rapid advances in technology, it is easy for businesses to be confused or settle for a lesser system that does not give the complete benefits of a POS system. We have discussed how to choose a good POS system in a previous post. This post points out some important consequences of using an outdated POS system.

  1. Delays in the checkout process: A slow moving checkout line can frustrate even the best of us, and thus lead to lost sales. Customers greatly value – and therefore come back to – stores with a fast checkout process that is not riddled with avoidable delays. A POS system that is not easy to operate can cause the POS operator to spend longer on processing/completing a sales order, leading to disgruntled customers and fewer sales, and possibly even bad word-of-mouth. All of this could easily have been avoided, however, with an efficient POS system that is easy to use even for a first-time POS operator.
  2. Limited payment options: These days even in-store retail customers like to have multiple payment options available to them, and having such a variety available increases your chances of completing a sale successfully. An up-to-date POS system would let you accept both online and offline payments such as cash, credit card, and check, along with other options such as gift card, vouchers, credit notes etc. You would not have to turn away a customer just because he does not have enough cash on hand or balance on his card, if your POS system is equipped to process multiple payment methods for a single order.
  3. Inability to provide personalized customer service: Even for a retail customer at the checkout counter, personalized service that offers exclusive discounts or loyalty benefits is important. A good POS system lets you offer special discounts/offers to individual customers that are customized as per their purchasing habits or brand loyalty. Creating such discounts is feasible only if the POS system allows the POS operator to store customer data, and pull up discounts set up at the POS backend based on mobile phone number, or email ID, etc. 
  4. Gaps in data integration: For the POS operator, an up-to-date POS system that integrates sales order and customer information with your backend ERP system can make the difference between good and average customer service. If your frontend and backend systems are not in sync, customer and inventory data cannot be utilized to its fullest potential. Just as your POS operator will be limited to simply processing a standard sales order, your backend team would not be able to utilize information to create targeted marketing strategies that are essential to meet your business goals.
  5. Loss of sales due to internet issues: Outdated POS systems can prevent your POS operators from processing sales orders, or from accepting certain types of orders and payment methods simply because the internet connection is down. Conversely, an efficient POS system lets your sales order processing continue seamlessly irrespective of whether you are online or offline, including processing all types of payments, applying discounts, collecting customer data, etc. Such a system will sync back all the information to the backend ERP and ensure your inventory and accounts databases are updated as soon as you are back online.

Ignify provides a comprehensive retail solution that includes a competitive POS system that caters to the requirements of all types of retail businesses, as well as ecommerce channels. The solution can be used across multiple terminals and store locations, thereby allowing you to maintain a uniform system across stores and not worry about your customer’s checkout experience as your business expands.

To learn more about Ignify’s retail systems, contact us at

Manasi Kulkarni is a Product Marketer at Ignify. Ignify is winner/finalist of the Worldwide Microsoft Partner of the Year Award in 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011 and 2010, and offers eCommerce, ERP, CRM, Order Management and POS solutions based on the Microsoft Dynamics line of products. Ignify has been included as the fastest growing businesses in North America for seven years in a row by Inc. Magazine and Deloitte in the FAST 500 from 2008 to 2013.

10 Tips for Choosing a Good POS System

May 14th, 2015 Manasi Kulkarni No comments

When you are a retailer, the one thing at the top of your mind is streamlining the checkout process and giving your customers efficient service. Having a good point of sale (POS) system can go a long way in ensuring that you not only send out, but also bring back happy customers to your store.

While the competition is high when it comes to choosing the right POS providers, the following pointers could help you narrow down the best one that suits your business needs – please also refer to our infographic for the quick checklist.

  1. Single screen interface: To ensure that your sales executive at the checkout terminal can process items faster, it is important to have a single screen interface that lets you input the item details, review the order details and process the payment. Navigating between multiple screens/windows for these primary functions can be confusing and cause the POS operator to waste precious time.
  2. Ease of use: A single screen interface also lends itself to ease of use that requires minimum training for the POS operator. This should be an important factor in deciding upon your POS system to factor in the various skill levels of POS operators (interns, students, freshers, part-time workers, etc.) at your checkout terminals. Irrespective of whether your POS operator has previous experience using a POS system, he should be able to manage your checkout process efficiently with the POS system in your store.
  3. Ability to function online and offline: The POS system should be able to function seamlessly irrespective of whether you are connected to the internet or not. It is not advisable to have only an offline or online system, as internet downtime for a web-only system can have serious repercussions on your sales. The system should be able to operate offline and then sync your records/transactions with your database once you are online again. 
  4. Flawless payment processing with multiple payment methods: The system should support all types of payment methods such as credit cards, cash, checks, and gift cards etc. as per your business policies. The method of payment should not impact the efficiency of the checkout process, nor should you be required to turn away a customer simply because your system does not accept the customer’s preferred mode of payment.
  5. Customer data encryption/security: One of the most important functions of the POS system that accepts credit cards and stores any form of customer information is to ensure that the information is transmitted and stored securely and in an encrypted format. Assuring the customers that their information is secure will help your gain their trust and repeat business.
  6. Ability to apply promotions/discounts: The various promotions/discounts that you offer your customers should be reflected and applicable via your POS system. Having to tell a shopper that a particular discount is not available to them can lead to a disgruntled customer and cause you to lose his business.
  7. Real-time inventory updates: All sales and modifications to your inventory should be reflected and available real-time to all your sales executives and/or online customers irrespective of the number of stores you operate. This can help avoid backorders for online customers. Inventory management and stock-keeping can be made easier as well.
  8. Connect brick and mortar stores to the web store: Your POS system should be connected to your inventory database and ecommerce web store, while keeping all three in sync at all times. Having two different systems for your physical stores and web store can lead to inventory and accounting management problems. 
  9. Integrated with backend ERP system: If you are already using an ERP system to manage your catalog, inventory, customers and accounts, it is advisable that the POS system integrates with it real-time for most of the basic functions such as sales order placement, inventory updates, etc. Being able to keep your systems in sync at all times helps improve overall business efficiency.
  10. Customizability: There is usually no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to managing your retail stores through POS systems. Based upon your unique business and customer requirements, the POS system provider should be able to provide you a customized solution that helps you maximize your sales and bring efficiency to the checkout process. 

point of sale

ax for retail webinar

For more information on how to choose the right POS solution for your business needs, please email us at

Manasi Kulkarni is a Product Marketer Ignify is winner/finalist of the Worldwide Microsoft Partner of the Year Award in 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011 and 2010, and offers eCommerce, ERP, CRM, Order Management and POS solutions based on the Microsoft Dynamics line of products. Ignify has been included as the fastest growing businesses in North America for seven years in a row by Inc. Magazine and Deloitte in the FAST 500 from 2008 to 2013.

Faster Checkouts, Faster Revenues: 5 Ways Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail POS Improves Checkout Speed

June 2nd, 2014 Brianne Schaer No comments

In-store sales representatives are the first, and often only, point of contact between your business and your highly-valued shoppers. They must be well-trained and dedicated to your brand, but also require the most up-to-date technology to ensure an efficient buying process.

The last thing we want to do as shoppers is spend time waiting in a long line because the cashier is struggling with a faulty or outdated system.

We’ve all been there: the customer at the front of the line has a shopping cart full of items, tries to claim each one has a discounted price, and then stacks several coupons toward the order. Additionally, the customer in front of you has a baby that won’t stop crying and the one to the rear keeps nudging you with a shopping cart.

Just as you’re about to abandon your items and leave, the register next door opens. You breathe a sigh of relief and rush over to pay for your items and leave.

Powerful, scalable POS systems, like Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail, can help combat long lines at checkout

Powerful, scalable POS systems, like Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail, can help combat long lines at checkout. 

Experiences like this are far too common in today’s retail stores. Your customers deserve more than this; they are spending their hard-earned cash at your business. Keep them coming to you instead of your competitors with a reliable, efficient Point of Sale system.

Why Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail POS

From clocking in to completing a variety of customer transactions, the Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail POS system is simple enough for each employee to quickly respond to customer needs and powerful enough to connect to headquarters processes alongside enterprise resource planning and financials.

Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail POS makes each step of the day easy for customer service representatives, in-store management, and corporate-level employees. The single, end-to-end solution can accelerate business success and empower employees to improve customer satisfaction. Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail is equipped to handle a variety of transactions, from the most basic sale to mix and match deals.

Please see the five ways below that Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail POS allows salespeople to move the checkout lines quickly and efficiently – and keep the cash flowing in. 

  1. Apply Discounts with Ease

    With this system, sales reps can easily apply discounts to orders without having to fumble for codes or overrides. For example, the system can be configured to recognize sales of different types, like bundled discounts.

    If the system is set to discount items after the customer purchases three or more of the same item, the system will automatically deduct the savings without any additional keystrokes from the sales associate. Please see the screenshots below for an example of how this particular discount would look on the POS. 

    Apply Discounts with Ease

    When a customer purchases two of the same T-shirts, the POS system charges each at the full retail price of $5.99.

    Apply Discounts with Ease

    As soon as the third shirt is scanned, the cost of each shirt is lowered to $4.79, showing that a 20 percent discount has been applied.

    Alternatively, the system can also be configured to give mix and match discounts, like buy two pairs of jeans and get a T-shirt for free.

  2. Prevent Checkout Line Hold-ups by Suspending and Recalling Transactions

    In the case that a customer wants to purchase additional items, or mistakenly grabbed the wrong size, there is no need to hold up the line while the issue is being resolved. The POS system can easily suspend and recall transactions as needed to keep the line moving steadily.

    Prevent Checkout Line Hold-ups by Suspending and Recalling Transactions

    This recall transaction screen shows the cashier which transactions are on hold. A description of the items in each transaction appears in the box to the right when the cashier clicks on each check on hold.

  3. Find Items/Customers Instantly with Inventory Lookups

    Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail POS provides additional advanced sales capabilities to ensure each cashier has a wealth of information at their fingertips.

    Cashiers can look up inventory in real time throughout the chain, add new customers to the customer database, and create customer orders with a few clicks on the screen.

    With the ability to look up inventory and customer information quickly and in different ways, cashiers are able to find answers in minimal time.  

    Find Items/Customers Instantly with Inventory Lookups

    Items can be looked up by simply typing in a keyword, like “jean.”

    Find Items/Customers Instantly with Inventory Lookups

    Once an item is selected, the system will show which stores in the area carry the product and how much is currently in stock.

    Cashiers also have the ability to look up a customer by a number of criteria such as name, email address, or phone number. This is helpful in processing returns without a receipt or to verify important loyalty information per individual customers.

    Find Items/Customers Instantly with Inventory Lookups

    This search screen narrowed down store information to show customers who have the numbers “1234” in their listed phone number.

  4. Provide Customers Convenience with Different Item Pickup Options

    The fact that an item isn’t available in-store doesn’t mean a transaction can’t still take place – cashiers are able to create custom orders in the case that an item is not available in store. Options such as in-store pickup, pick up at another location, shipping directly to the customer, or shipping to another residence can all be easily configured within the system.

    You can also configure the POS system to apply fees to specific custom orders. For example, if a customer wants an item that is available at a different store, a 10 percent payment fee (or whichever fee amount you wish) can be applied.

    Provide Customers Convenience with Different Item Pickup Options

    The POS system can be configured to charge a 10 percent fee toward the price of the item for customers who wish to order an item that is not available in store.

  5. Customizable Point of Sale Interface – Helping Cashiers Help Themselves Be Most Efficient

    The POS system is highly configurable and can be designed to have as many or few buttons on the home screen as desired for specific functionality. Retail stores can allow sales representatives to configure their own point of sale interfaces according to their preferences. For example, if an associate has certain high-use buttons, those can be preset on the screen. Additionally, the screen can be configured for left or right hand use.

    Customizable Point of Sale Interface

    This screen has key buttons on the left and a number pad on the right for item search or quantity input. There are also quick-access buttons on the bottom for dealing with different types of tender or gift cards.

    Customizable Point of Sale Interface

    This screen features less buttons, and also has an interface more intuitive to left-handed users, since the key pad and quick-access buttons are located on the left of the screen.

The examples listed above provide a snapshot into the daily functions a cashier would use in a POS system. For more information, please email

Stay tuned to the Retail Blog for more articles about store manager functionality, retail headquarters functionality, and loyalty management in Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail.

Brianne Schaer is a Product Marketing Specialist at Ignify. Ignify is a technology provider of CRM, eCommerce, ERP, and Point of Sale software solutions to organizations. Ignify has won the worldwide Microsoft Partner of the Year Award in 2013, 2012 and 2011. Ignify has been included as the fastest growing businesses in North America for seven years in a row by Deloitte, Inc Magazine and Entrepreneur Magazine from 2007 to 2013.

Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail 2012 Virtual Launch event on Wed Feb 1st

January 30th, 2012 Sandeep Walia No comments

Be among the first to get an in-depth look at the Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 for Retail Point of Sales, multi-channel management, social commerce, merchandising and more. Microsoft Dynamics AX 2012 can help you deliver the complete shopping experience to meet and exceed today's consumer expectations. Learn how this powerful solution has helped top retailers connect to their customers and out-innovate the competition, while empowering them for rapid growth as the destination for their customers.

This FREE virtual launch event takes place on Wednesday, February 1st, 2012 at 9 a.m. Pacific Time. Register here

Microsoft Dynamics AX for Retail POS

Sandeep Walia is the CEO of Ignify. Ignify is a global leader in retail and ecommerce solutions for retailers and has been ranked Microsoft Partner of the Year in 2011. Ignify has been ranked in the 100 most innovative companies globally by Red Herring in 2010 and 2011. For more information, email , call Ignify at (866) IGNIFY5, or visit