Cloud technology is nothing new — by now it’s even become somewhat of a cliché to reference The Cloud when referring to said technology. That doesn’t mean, however, that everybody understands what it means and what the benefits are. We’re here to help!
Cloud-based means that a program or app, and its data, is accessed and stored on the internet via cloud computing. In simpler terms, your system lives online versus on your computer server or hard drive.
Cloud technology has affected every industry, from retail to hospitality and everything in between. Most advanced point of sale systems are now online and functioning at a much higher level (doing much more for the businesses that rely on these systems) than their predecessors. Here are six ways small businesses across industries benefit from a system that’s based in the cloud:
1. Cuts infrastructure and updating costs
While most technology traditionally came with a slew of costs in addition to the system in question, for example IT help and software updates, this concept is null and void when it comes to cloud-based systems. No more investing in costly IT specialists or hardware. Cloud-based software is on the internet and can therefore be accessed from anywhere with an internet connection regardless of the system on which you operate. What’s more, anytime there’s a software update to be made, the update takes place automatically, without requiring the user to do anything except open the app.
2. Allows for quick changes
In the hospitality industry, your menu can fluctuate on a nightly basis based on what you have in stock or what your chef wants to make. On a cloud-based EPOS, these changes are extremely simple to make from anywhere, meaning you can present the latest and greatest to your guests within minutes.
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3. The system will grow with your business
Whether you’re opening a new location or trying out a pop-up store during the holiday season, as your business grows and evolves into something new, a cloud-based system will accommodate your needs. Adding a new register is simple, adding a new location to your system takes seconds and adding (or removing) a user is no problem at all. You’re not restricted to the package you initially signed up for with a cloud-based EPOS.
4. You can take it wherever you go
Being internet-based also means that cloud systems are mobile – they go anywhere your iPad goes. For cloud-based point of sale users, this means anytime you leave your store and need access to your system, it’s there. Want to look at your daily sales from home — or the parking lot outside your store? No problem. Going to a trade show and want your inventory to come along with you? That’s what it’s there for. A cloud-based system is a mobile system that lets you run your business your way.
5. Simpler integration with other systems
Your point of sale doesn’t operate in a vacuum. In many cases, you may need to add features available through other apps, which means integrating them into your EPOS. This integration of multiple systems in one is much simpler when the apps in question are cloud-based. Basically, your system can do much, much more for you — and the possibilities are endless! — than one that isn’t.
6. Protection from hardware malfunctions
This may seem obvious based on point number 1, but should be said anyway. You are free from dependency on your hardware. If your laptop, iPad or iPhone dies, your data is remains unaffected. All of the business data, such as customers, employees, inventory and sales data, is kept safe online in case your hardware crashes and burns. You may need to invest in a new tablet, but that’s a far cry from losing extremely precious numbers or access to your business.
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Cloud-based tech is everywhere and businesses across all sectors and industries are benefiting greatly. From being simpler to integrate with other systems to being mobile and letting you run your business your way (i.e. making the changes you see fit without concerns about structural limitations), there’s no difficulty in understanding why most modern tech is cloud-based.