How much does a POS system cost?
As an industry-leading small business point of sale provider, it's a question that we get all the time. The short answer? It depends.
If you're reading this article, there's a good chance that you're shopping around for a point of sale solution for your business. In your search, you've probably seen how varied POS pricing can be. The worst part is that there are so many different POS solutions out there, each with different software, hardware, and features. How can you make sure that you're not overspending on a solution for your business?
How Much Does a POS System Cost? 7 Key Factors
The truth is, it depends on the hardware, software, and functionality you need from a POS system. But there are some general numbers we can share to give you a better idea of what it can cost.
POS system hardware price range: free to just shy of $2,000
POS software cost (per terminal): free to about $300 per month. A few notable POS vendors charge the following for their software (costs are for just the software, per register).
- Lightspeed: starting at $79 per month
- Square: $0 per month (cost is per transaction)
- Clover: starting at $39.95 per month
- Revel Systems: starting at $99 per month
- Toast: starting at $0, next tier up is $165 per month
There are a few key elements that determine how much a POS system costs. A careful analysis of the following key elements will help you find a cost-effective POS solution for your unique business.
1. Product Catalog & Inventory Size
In some cases, the size of your product catalog could influence the amount of money you pay upfront and/or on a recurring basis. In this scenario, if you have numerous SKUs, you should choose a POS solution that has a high SKU threshold.
Some POS vendors tier their pricing based on the number of SKUs you need. Whether you have a handful of items in stock or an ever-changing inventory of products, you need to be sure that your POS system can handle your current inventory size and can scale as your business grows.
Fact: POS Nation offers an unlimited database of items and SKUs.
Often, price varies depending on the software's capabilities. You'll likely end up paying more for "advanced" systems. If you're just starting out, it's a good idea to prioritize systems that only offer the features and/or capabilities that you need. Of course, these systems need to scale with your business as you grow. In this scenario, the provider must introduce additional capabilities as you need them.
To help figure out the best solution and plan for your business, make a list of all the features you need and break those features down into two categories, including "nice to have" and must-have.
Fact: POS Nation takes pride in our ability to outfit businesses with customized, all-in-one software and hardware solutions. Our POS software and hardware is specially configured for your unique business. In this way, you're never overspending on features that you don't need.
3. Number of Employees
Some POS vendors will charge for additional staff accounts or logins. Most vendors have a set number of users per "tier," but others offer unlimited users, which can be ideal for large teams, businesses, and organizations.
A few other functionalities you may need that can influence pricing:
- Job-based permissions: each employee can be assigned to a specific role such as cashier, manager, or owner. Each role has specific features and functions assigned to them.
- Clock-in and clock-out functionality: allow your employees to track working hours and break times.
- Employee scheduling: schedule your entire team weeks in advance to ensure that you have proper coverage at your business or shop.
Fact: as an industry-leading POS solution provider, POS Nation supports an unlimited number of users.
4. Number of Registers/Workstations
A register is the device on which your POS software runs. In most cases, POS pricing varies depending on the number of registers you purchase.
Costs for POS system registers will also range from a basic setup to dozens of add-on peripheral devices.
Fact: POS Nation offers a wide variety of commercial-grade point of sale hardware. We've created a free guide to help you in your planning and decision-making.
Finally, POS pricing may vary based on the number of business locations. If you have multiple business locations, you'll likely need a plan that supports this distributed structure. Some vendors charge for additional locations, but others have plans to support an unlimited number of outlets or locations.
Fact: we have supported single-location and multi-location businesses, organizations, and enterprises.
6. Size of Your Business
More terminals and multiple locations generally mean a higher cost for many POS systems. Larger businesses also tend to need more complex functionality in a POS system to keep track of employees and inventory across their organization.
7. Payment Processing
This is a big one that a lot of business owners tend to forget about until it comes up in a discussion with a POS vendor. While it's not a part of the cost of POS systems, it is an expense you need to budget for to ensure your business economics stay profitable.
Here's what some of the notable POS vendors charge for payment processing:
- Lightspeed: 2.6% + $0.10
- Square: 2.5 – 2.6% + $0.10 (depending on plan)
- Clover: 2.3 to 2.6% + $0.10 (depending on plan)
- Toast: 2.49% + $0.15
- Revel Systems: 2.49% + $0.15
What Will a POS System Cost for Your Small Business?
With careful consideration of the aforementioned elements of a POS system, you can find the very best POS solution for your growing business without overspending. Of course, we might be a bit biased, but POS Nation offers some of the most affordable small business POS software and hardware.
In fact, cost is one of the reasons why we've become an industry-leading provider.
"We decided to go with POS Nation over the several other companies out there because I found that most were for restaurants/bars instead of retail and the ones that did serve retail were adaptations from restaurant/bar systems and weren't very customizable OR had high monthly costs of $60+ (that's a lot for a charity). POS Nation has nearly full customization and no monthly fees if you don't want the monthly tech support." - Justin S., Manager
Of course, selecting the right POS solution shouldn't be a scary experience. Download our buyer's guide and receive step-by-step instructions along with some must-ask questions that will help you choose the right POS solution.
You can also use our Build and Price Tool. You can build out your system, choosing from software and hardware to get a clear picture of what a POS system will cost your business.