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Choosing the Right POS System for Restaurants – Must-Have Features

The life of a restaurateur is filled with hard choices, big questions, and moments of absolute delight. From your grand opening to your 5-year anniversary, hundreds of obstacles will fall in your path. You’ll handle each new challenge as it comes, but one aspect of your business should remain strong and stable—your POS system.

Some 21st-century POS systems can do more than move 0s and 1s from one account to another. With the advent of AI, the modern emphasis on analytics, and the emergence of “the cloud,” restaurants with simple tills or tablet add-ons are getting left behind. 

So, what bells and whistles should you be looking for when choosing the right POS system for your restaurant? Let’s find out.

Must-Have Restaurant POS System Functions & Features

Can the right restaurant POS really make a difference? Surely you have more pressing questions. How much does it cost to open a restaurant? How do I generate novel food truck ideas? How to start a ghost kitchen?

A POS system is just how I take payments, right? The answer to this question depends heavily on the POS system. Here’s what the best restaurant POS systems have to offer for new or developing businesses.

Mobile Ordering & Mobile Payment

Few sectors of modern American life were as impacted by the pandemic as the restaurant industry. But once-in-a-lifetime challenges present equally rare (and valuable) opportunities. 

As QR codes spread and curb-side pickup became the norm, quick-service restaurants and fine dining establishments adapted to a new kind of experience. Now, the idea of passing paper bills over a counter—or even swiping a card—seems painfully antiquated. 

Our customers aren’t hungry for the encounter. They’re not excited about lining up with the crowd. What they want is diversity in how they browse, how they order, and how they receive your delicious food. 

Tableside payments, curbside payments, and contactless ordering with QR codes not only provide your customers with the freedom they crave—these services also help you gather information for reward programs, email marketing, and so much more. 

The best restaurant POS system supports numerous payment types (including Apple Pay and Google Pay) wherever your customers are.

Online Ordering

New and seasoned restaurateurs will have to grapple with third-party delivery services at some point in their business lives. Regardless of the relationships you foster or avoid, one thing’s for sure—online ordering is here to stay.

The right POS system for your restaurant allows you to cut out so many middlemen. Provide service on your terms and go commission-free with a fully integrated POS system that supports online ordering. You may or may not offer your own delivery service, but you don’t have to pay someone else to accept online orders for you.

Loyalty & Marketing Features

New and existing restaurants have a lot on their plate (no pun intended). You have inventory shrinkage to worry about, staffing concerns, and the always-pressing menu development. 

But even after these decisions are made and mastered, you need customers to find you in the first place. Then, you need them to come back again and again. 

Restaurant POS System Marketing Features

Let’s face it—billboards and TV commercials simply aren’t cutting it anymore. Modern restaurants need modern customers, and they aren’t swayed as easily (or in the same ways) as their parents were.

Smart POS systems should support a multimodal approach to restaurant marketing, including reputation management and customer outreach. You may be missing out if your current POS system isn’t capable of:

  • Capturing customer information at the point of sale
  • Turnkey email marketing campaigns
  • Social media management from a central hub
  • Online review management & response
  • Integrating with your existing suite of marketing tools

To win your own backyard, you need to win your online presence and reputation first. The right POS system for your restaurant makes that easier.

Restaurant POS System Loyalty Features

When a diner tries your restaurant for the first time, it should be priority #1 to bring them back for a second meal. Naturally, your food will do some of the talking for you. But it doesn’t hurt to build relationships beyond the margins of the plate.

Customers are more likely to become and stay loyal when restaurants reward them. The right POS system for return business includes crafty features, such as:

  • Point-based reward programs
  • Personalized promotions (birthdays, anniversaries, etc.)
  • Traditional & digital gift cards
  • Loyalty tiers for repeat customers

Customers are passionate about your food. But with a smart POS system on your side, they’ll be passionate about your brand, too.

Reporting & Analytics

Red or blue? Left or right? When two choices appear even, how can you make the best decision? 

In the modern era, you’ll find data and analytics at play just about everywhere—from the NFL to Fortune 500 boardrooms. Yes, some decisions still benefit from trusting your gut. But with money on the line and nothing short of your restaurant dream at stake, how can you make the optimal decision 99.99% of the time? Simply put, you need information. 

The best POS systems for restaurants help you keep your doors open by providing daily, weekly, and monthly insights. From the best-selling item on your menu to identifying your peak hours, easy-to-read charts and graphs enable smarter decision-making and power up your profits in ways your gut instinct could never imagine.

What Kind of Data Matters to Restaurants?

Measuring the impact and value of data comes down to the bottom line. Information that saves you money or insights that maximize profit achieve the same key goal—business growth.

Restaurant operators need to know:

  • Peak hours
  • Net sales (daily, weekly, monthly)
  • Real-time social media exposure (visits, likes, reviews)
  • Top selling items & lowest selling items
  • Sales per guest
  • Cost of goods sold (COGS)
  • Inventory valuations
  • Gross profit margin (GPM%)
  • X and Z reports
  • More

Armed with this information, you can easily eliminate unpopular menu items, promote top-selling items, and even cut staff during traditionally slow hours to maximize sales and minimize payroll. Better still, you can monitor facts and figures across numerous restaurant locations. And with cloud connectivity, you’re always in the know—no matter where in the world you happen to be.

No-Fee Credit Card Processing

New and currently operating restaurants know the bite interchange fees take out of profits. Credit card processing fees range anywhere from 1.75% to 4.25% per transaction. That may not seem like a punch in the profits at first glance, but depending on your success, it can add up disastrously. 

If your restaurant aims for the average monthly revenue of $40,500, these credit card processing fees could total between $708 and $1,721. That’s the difference between having the money for a vendor bill or new fridge and charging those expenses to a credit card. It’s difficult to grow your business when you’re growing the credit card companies instead. 

At Sky Payments Group, we offer another way forward—no-fee credit card processing. Rather than punishing you for sales, our predictable (and much lower) monthly fee of $10 replaces hundreds, thousands, or tens of thousands in interchange expenses.

That’s money you can reinvest, save for a rainy day, or put toward hiring a front of house manager. Paying credit card processing fees is a 20th-century limitation. In the 21st century, we have our sights set on higher goals.

Every Restaurant Benefits from Smarter POS Systems

You’ve crafted a restaurant business plan, launched your restaurant website, and are getting ready to show off your small restaurant to the world, but you’re still missing the right POS system to bind it all together. 

Sky Payments Group POS systems bulldoze barriers, put money back in your pocket, and sync perfectly with any kind of service, including:

  • Full-service restaurants
  • Quick-service restaurants
  • Food trucks
  • Pizzerias
  • Diners
  • Bistros
  • Pop-up restaurants
  • Buffets
  • Hotel Restaurants
  • Coffee shops
  • Ghost kitchens
  • Night clubs & bars
  • Multi-location enterprises
  • More

Is your restaurant POS working toward your revenue goals, your business growth projections, and your ultimate success? It certainly could be with the right choice.

Schedule Your Sky Payments Group Restaurant POS System Demo Today

Seeing is believing, and at Sky Payments Group, we can’t wait to show you everything our restaurant POS systems can do. As restaurant owners/operators ourselves, we’ve been in your shoes, traveled your challenges, and know how to create the perfect POS system to support your restaurant from the ground up. 

Schedule your demo today and let us demonstrate how our POS system hardware, software, and credit card processing service make life easier for budding or veteran restaurateurs.

Welcome to The Future of Point-of-Sale Systems: Sky Payments Group

Launching a new restaurant or reinvesting in existing businesses can be a harrowing time. You need steady guidance, leading-edge tech, and a fuller understanding of your daily, weekly, and monthly operations. Sky Payments Group provides all of the above with a fully integrated POS system for restaurants. Schedule your demo today and let’s get your restaurant ready for lift off in 3…2…1.

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