Blog/ Point of Sale

Cloud POS: What Is It And How To Choose One

Cloud POS

Cloud-based POS systems have the potential to transform your venue's operations. They offer a range of features that go beyond traditional POS setups, such as real-time data access, remote management capabilities, and seamless integration with other business tools.

Curious about how a cloud-based POS system can enhance your business? Read on to explore their powerful features, benefits, and key considerations for choosing the right system for your venue. From boosting operational efficiency to enhancing the guest experience, discover why switching to a cloud-based POS could be a game-changer for your business.

What is a cloud-based point of sale (POS) system?

Cloud-based can sound confusing. But essentially, it means 'web-based.' In the context of POS systems, it means a POS system that is run via the internet, as opposed to traditional POS systems, which are server-based. So your data will be stored securely on the web and not on a single device (server).

This article will discuss the differences between cloud-based POS and legacy POS systems and how moving to the cloud can help your venue increase operational efficiency, decrease risk, and provide superior guest experiences.

How does a cloud-based POS work? 

A cloud-based point of sale (POS) system uses the internet to manage transactions and business operations. Unlike traditional POS systems with local servers, cloud POS systems use remote servers hosted online, which allows for real-time data processing. This means you can access up-to-date sales, inventory, and customer information from any device with an internet connection.

The system includes essential hardware like POS terminals (think tablets or touchscreens), barcode scanners, receipt printers, and payment devices. These work together with cloud-hosted software to handle transactions, manage inventory, and store customer data. While a reliable internet connection is important, many cloud POS systems can work offline and sync data once the connection is back.

Security is a key feature, with encryption and automatic software updates keeping data safe. Cloud POS systems also integrate easily with other tools like accounting software and CRM systems, making them scalable as your business grows. Plus, they’re easy to maintain, with updates handled automatically by the provider.

Legacy POS vs. cloud-based POS

Traditional legacy POS systems were built for a time when servers were the only option. But now, there are more options available to help you more effectively run your business! Here are the key differences and why a cloud POS could be right for you. 

Legacy POS systems

Traditional, server-based POS systems have several drawbacks:

  • Expensive and bulky: These systems require a significant upfront investment in hardware and infrastructure. The equipment, often including large servers and multiple terminals, takes up considerable space and can be cumbersome to manage.
  • Software licenses: Venue operators often need to purchase a POS software license, which can be costly and require periodic renewals. This adds to the overall expense and complexity of maintaining the system.
  • Limited payment options: Legacy systems typically offer fewer payment methods. This limitation can be inconvenient for customers who prefer modern payment options like digital wallets, contactless payments, or mobile payments.
  • Costly maintenance: Updates and maintenance for server-based systems are expensive and often require professional IT support. This not only incurs additional costs but also can result in downtime and disruptions to business operations. Updates may need to be manually installed, adding to the time and expense.

Cloud-based POS systems

Cloud-based POS systems offer modern solutions that address the limitations of legacy systems:

  • Online transaction processing: Transactions are processed online, eliminating the need for bulky, on-site servers. This reduces the physical space required and the complexity of the setup.
  • Remote access: Business owners can access the POS system remotely from any device with an internet connection. This feature is particularly useful for managing multiple locations, keeping track of business operations on the go, or making real-time decisions based on live data.
  • Seamless updates: Cloud POS systems receive automatic updates from the provider. These updates are typically faster, cheaper, and cause minimal disruption to business operations. There’s no need for manual installations or expensive professional support to implement updates.
  • Enhanced payment options: Cloud-based systems support a wide range of payment methods, including credit cards, digital wallets, contactless payments, and mobile payments. This flexibility enhances customer convenience and can lead to increased sales.
  • Data security: Cloud POS systems often include advanced security features such as encryption and secure data storage. Regular backups and stringent security protocols help protect sensitive business and customer information.
  • Scalability: As your business grows, cloud POS systems can easily scale to meet increased demand. Adding new terminals, integrating additional features, or expanding to new locations can be done without significant hardware investments or complex installations.
  • Cost efficiency: Cloud POS systems generally have lower initial costs and ongoing expenses. Subscription-based pricing models can be more predictable and manageable, especially for small and medium-sized businesses.

By leveraging the advantages of cloud technology, businesses can achieve greater operational efficiency, reduce costs, and enhance the overall customer experience. The flexibility, ease of use, and advanced capabilities of cloud POS systems make them an ideal choice for modern businesses looking to stay competitive and agile in today’s fast-paced market.

Did you know? Over 2021 and 2022, more than 60% of recent POS system purchases were cloud platforms, setting a new milestone!

Which industries use a cloud-based POS?

All businesses can benefit from cloud-based POS systems.

Because of the speed and ease with which cloud POS systems can be handled and the multiple payment options accepted, in-venue operators and their guests can benefit from faster and more efficient transaction processing. And if a venue offers multiple self-serve POS devices, these efficiency levels skyrocket!

This means more satisfied staff and guests, which increases your operational efficiency and helps you grow.

Now, let's look at how cloud POS can help improve staff and guests' experiences across multiple industries.

Entertainment, leisure, and retail industries

Inventory management is a challenge for even the most established venue, including FECs. Having a cloud-based POS system can assist in the reduction of human error through the use of automation.

Automation means that sales and inventory information can be synced and stored electronically immediately after purchase. This provides operators with far greater inventory control.

Multi-venue locations

Venues that operate out of multiple locations are the perfect candidate for cloud-based POS systems.

Cloud-based POS systems streamline and centralize business data across all locations. From the one dashboard, a venue operator can get a clear view of how every location is operating﹘making management simpler than ever.

Additionally, this type of POS allows operators to make changes once and apply this change to all required locations. These changes can all occur quickly and in real-time, optimizing operational efficiency.

Benefits of a cloud POS for your business

Log in from anywhere, any time

You'll never miss a beat. Cloud-based platforms allow you to check in on your point of sale activity anywhere, on any complying device.

You'll be able to see what's selling and what's not and be better equipped to make business decisions in real-time.

Faster in-store transactions

Every extra second it takes your team to process a transaction increases friction in the guest experience. So the faster the service, the better the experience!

Higher level of data protection

Now, this is a contentious one! We hear operators often question whether this point is correct. Indeed it is.

PCI (Peripheral Component Interconnect) compliance is a payment processing provider's obligation to adhere to the policies and procedures developed to protect cardholders' personal information. So, payment security will be your provider's job, not yours!

Finally, the data processed by cloud-based systems is stored in a robust data center using tokenization, not on the actual POS, device﹘providing a premium level of data security.

Lower costs and fees

Wave goodbye to costly software upgrades and maintenance fees! Maintaining a server in-venue is both time-consuming and costly. When you go cloud-based, updates occur seamlessly within the system at no further cost to your business﹘saving time and money!

Starting up is fast and easy

Getting started with a cloud-based POS system is faster than traditional legacy servers. Operators won't have to wait for a lengthy business service review process to be completed before operation can occur.

For more information about the setup process, click here. And for more information on ROLLER's cloud POS features, click here

Is a cloud-based POS system right for my business?

Deciding if a cloud-based POS system is right for your business involves considering a few key factors. First, think about your internet connection. If it's stable and reliable, a cloud-based system can be very effective since it relies on internet connectivity for real-time transaction processing and data updates. For businesses with multiple locations, these systems are great because they let you manage all your sites from one platform, keeping things consistent and making inventory and sales tracking much simpler.

If you need flexibility, cloud-based systems allow you to access your POS system from various locations or devices, perfect for managing operations on the go. They're also easily scalable, which is handy if your business is growing – you can add new terminals or features without hefty hardware investments. Plus, they generally have lower upfront costs compared to traditional systems, with subscription-based pricing that's easier to manage, especially for small and medium-sized businesses. By thinking about these factors, you can see if a cloud POS system fits your business needs, offering efficiency, scalability, and cost savings.

How to choose the best cloud-based POS system for your attraction

We've talked about how cloud POS systems benefit any business in any industry looking to optimize its operations and efficiency. But how can you choose the one that's right for you?

Take time to evaluate must-have features and ascertain which will help your business excel. Then, seek the cloud-based POS software that caters to all your needs.

1. Modern, user-friendly interface

Your staff deserves to use tools that help them do their job better. That means having well-designed software and all the functionality they need to serve your guests!

Using purpose-built systems will greatly improve team member satisfaction and output rates. And increased staff satisfaction is a win!

Cloud POS: Modern interface

2. Customizable interface

You want to be able to edit your POS views quickly and efficiently so that you can get onto more business-critical tasks!

With ROLLER, you can simply drag and drop and publish changes and updates to your devices.

Cloud POS: Customizable interface

Functionality like this is perfect for pushing promotions without the hassle (and wasted time) of entering manual updates at each machine.

3. Hardware that looks good

ROLLER's cloud-based platform runs on modern devices and allows you to choose the hardware that you like and fits in with your business. So no longer do you have to settle for old, slow, large, clunky machines that detract from the experience that your valued guests have with your hard-working staff!

4. Table management, tabs, and memberships inclusions

ROLLER's POS devices will enable your venue to easily:

  • Track orders and bills against table numbers
  • Allow guests to create running tabs, and close the tab out at the end of their visit
  • Allow your members to receive discounts at the POS on certain stock items

Cloud POS: Discounts

All of which work towards enhancing your guest experience and leaving a lasting impression in their minds!

5. Cashless wallet options

Cloud-based POS devices offer the greater ability for guests to pay as they like - with the inclusion and acceptance of digital wallets, RFID wristbands, and BNPL options.

Not all cloud POS systems will provide these options, however, so ensure you choose one that does. Cashless wallets are the future, and including them will guarantee frictionless spending at your POS.

6. Manage bookings quickly and with ease

Cloud-based POS systems allow your venue to seamlessly manage your walk-in guests and guests that have already booked online. All through the one easy-to-use POS interface.

A cloud POS system like ROLLER is fully integrated, meaning your employees can find everything in one view﹘keeping lines flowing without delays!

7. Sell merchandise, food, and drink, all from one platform

You no longer have to manage multiple systems for your ticketing and retail point of sale systems. Now they are the same!

How's that for a fast, convenient, and powerful POS system?! It will help you serve your guests faster and free up more time for your employees to ensure guests have incredible experiences in your venue.

Cloud POS: One platform


Benefit from the new age of cloud-based POS systems

What once sounded like a new-fangled piece of technology that didn't require your attention is now here to stay. Bring your venue into the new age of POS and reap the benefits of using a cloud-based POS system.

The most crucial part of venue management is ensuring continual guest satisfaction, and with cloud-based POS systems, you will have an incredibly powerful tool to help you do just this.

Learn more about ROLLER’s all-in-one cloud-based platform.