Magento POS is an advanced online Point of Sale extension that links both the Magento website and the physical store. Using the Magento POS extension allows sellers to use all of Magento’s rich pricing and promotion rules, identify customers, make offline orders visible in online history, and more. We have prepared a comparison of Ebizmarts and Magestore, two particularly remarkable POS solutions. We have highlighted the most crucial differences between them to help you choose the best software.
Cutting the Gordian Knot of omnichannel integrations
Though most attention, when discussing the omnichannel approach, goes to CX design, the biggest obstacle remains a technological one.
One will never be able to deliver a seamless shopping experience if product information, orders and transactions are not fully integrated between online and offline channels.
Achieving near-real time coupling of customer service between channels would require building integrations between systems (POS-ERP-eCommerce-Loyalty), which is labor-intensive to implement.
The weakest link in the chain is usually the POS system.
Why is this important?
As popular ERPs usually support customizable integrations, POS’s were most often designed with a very limited goal: to receive orders. Getting pricing, a limited set of promotional methods from ERP, and sending it orders, is not enough if we want to give offline customers the same possibilities as they have online.
As the loyalty and promotional methods offered by eCommerce platforms are often quite wide, this leads a merchant to a dead end. He needs to decide between limiting the scope of promotions available online, or putting the customer in the troubling situation where he realizes at the register that he can purchase the same item with a lower price if he leaves the shop and opens the eCommerce site.
Cutting The Gordian Knot
One approach to this issue seems to receive much less attention than it deserves. Maybe we can eliminate separate POS software completely, by replacing it with a client supported by the eCommerce platform. Using an eCommerce platform to handle all offline transactions may seem like a radical move, but it is already proven to successfully eliminate the previously mentioned issues.
By using one of the Magento POS extensions, retailers can easily apply all of Magento’s rich pricing and promotion rules, identify customers, make offline orders visible in online history, and more. With Magento as an eCommerce platform, ensuring a seamless shopping experience is in fact quite easy.
Ready to use POS solutions for Magento already exist, two of which are especially worth
mentioning: Ebizmarts POS and Magestore Magento Web POS 3.0.0.
Both are ready to install modules, allowing retailers to process orders in store with the Magento platform. Items scanned at a cashier’s desk are treated as a cart, allowing retailers to apply all existing promotional methods. Payment is taken by an integrated credit card scanner or cash drawer. ERP receives all the orders and consumer data from Magento.
The whole sales process and inventory tracking are covered, but as usual, the details of the
solutions may be most important. Therefore, we analyzed both solutions to find the additional merits and flaws of both.
Magento POS solutions comparison
The Ebizmarts and Magestore solutions both offer an attractive, webstore-like UX; using Magento cart rules in POS (promotions, coupons) and executing the omnichannel strategy. The following comparison focuses strongly on key features and differences which may be important for a company’s business model.
Please note that the comparison is based on documentation provided by product owners and interviews with their representatives.
Additional coding required?
Kiosk mode (app as an interface for a client in store)
Integrating POS with other sale channels is a strategic challenge. The more complex a developed integration, the more dependent on the solution a company will become. Modifying POS software already installed in stores is a risky process, as any issue here may cause sales downtime. Replacing it with another, more modern POS system is even more time consuming and there is little guarantee that the new solution will not bring new problems.
Compatible hardware (barcode scanners, cash drawers, printers, credit card readers)
Customizable receipt format (for sales in physical stores in multiple countries)
Themeable? (allow retailers to change and adjust layout and colors to CI)
Shift work management
The Ebizmarts and Magestore solutions both seem worth considering. The key differences in functionality are in favor of Ebizmarts:
- ability to use external CSS without provider’s intervention
- ability to use custom receipt structure without provider’s intervention
- “kiosk mode” – enable customer to use directly in a physical store
- dedicated application
Also, documentation provided by Ebizmarts is very thorough. It is clear that this provider is very committed to their POS product. The pricing comparison strongly favours Magestore, however. If the budget of implementation is an important factor, it will be worth considering. Also, the built-in solution for shift work management may be important for some business owners.
Magento can replace your POS solution
Using one of Magento’s solutions, you are finally able to fully integrate your sales channels.
With a relatively simple implementation, this approach offers you full coherence of:
- promotion scenarios
- orders, and order history
- loyalty programs
- payment methods between online and offline channels.
What else to keep in mind?
Using one of Magento’s POS solutions is a way to cover the technological issues of introducing the omnichannel approach. There are a couple hof operational challenges to keep in mind, however.
- All stock and product data should be available for the eCommerce platform. If a product purchased offline is supposed to be visible in a user’s history online, its data needs to be present in the eCommerce system.
- Stock data needs to be passed to the eCommerce system with information regarding in which store the product is located.
- Any Loyalty program, if implemented, should give the same possibilities online and offline.
Published February 1, 2017