A point of sale (POS) is the final checkpoint for your customer.

Money and products or services are exchanged, and the customer goes on their way. It’s important to have the right tools to ensure your point of sale is effective, efficient, and simple for both you and your customers.

Here are five important point-of-sale tools that your business can benefit from.

1. An Effective POS Software System

When exchanging money, you should expect your point of sale system to be of a certain caliber. The software should be simple to operate, efficient, and most of all secure. Any electronic transfer of funds always carries a risk, as the information makes its way through internet channels to its destination.

There are hundreds of options when it comes to your POS system, each with its own security features and payment options. Some of the top-rated POS systems include Square POS, Lightspeed, and Shopify. Square POS is one of the most widely used and trusted brands, but Lightspeed and Shopify are close behind. Each brand has excellent security features and a top-notch customer service department.

Whether you’re running a small business or a large corporation, the right POS software can ensure security during sales, and create a long-lasting bond of trust between you and your customer base.

2. Invoice Generators

To go along with your POS system, you’ll want a good invoice generator that can help you create an invoice which clearly spells out the customer’s purchase. Detailed and concise, your invoice will be the reference your customers turn to when they need company contact information or details of their transaction.

An invoice can be as simple as a receipt printed immediately following the sale, and should include the company’s name, address, phone number, details of the sale including prices and quantities, as well as your company logo.

A simple receipt printer can be used to generate invoices, and are relatively easy to acquire at any office supply store, such as Office Max. Alternatively, you can choose emailed receipts as part of your company’s “going green” initiative, but be sure to always offer your customers the choice of a paper receipt.

3. Survey Generator

A company with excellent customer service engages in survey distribution to its patrons. This is the most effective way for your customers to spell out their wants and needs from your brand, as well as feedback on your performance.

At your POS, you can generate surveys or links to surveys on the bottom of a receipt or invoice. You can offer incentives such as a coupon or monetary sweepstakes as incentives for your customers to participate.

Be sure to have your staff trained to point out the survey and the opportunity for incentives to each customer. Often something at the bottom of a receipt can be overlooked and therefore forgotten, so its best to give the customer a gentle reminder when the need arises.

4. Your Customer Service Staff

The single most important POS tool at your disposal is your customer service staff. Even with the best technology on the market, poor performance from staff can cause a transaction to fall short of its true potential.

Be sure to train your staff to be courteous and polite, and to work for the customer, not against them. Should conflicts arrive, your staff should be able to navigate the issue efficiently, defusing the situation and bringing about an agreement.

Forbes magazine describes a common mistake business make when training customer service staff: “A costly and common mistake is to is to think of customer service training as essentially ‘trade school’ or ‘tactical training’”. Customer service does involve technical aspects, but its function is much more widespread than simply credit card returns and customer appeasement.

People want to feel like people during their shopping experience. Making the experience more comfortable and genuine helps generate customer loyalty and ensures your customer service ranking remains high. You’ll find new customers and returning customers alike satisfied with their visit if your staff are well-trained and courteous.

5. A Reliable Connection

Nothing is more frustrating than a downed credit card system at the height of your sales day. Your POS system may be the latest and greatest, but if your internet connection is falling behind, you’ll want to upgrade it to match your sales.

Customers aren’t likely to return to a place of business whose internet is always down or glitchy. Shop around your area for the best internet package, and be sure you have enough bandwidth to run all of your transactions throughout the day.

If your place of business offers free WiFi to its customers, make sure your internet package can handle the extra load. You may even have to purchase a separate connection for the store’s WiFi service. Keep everything running smoothly so the cash flow doesn’t stop and your customers stay happy.

Put Your Customers First

The point of sale is where you and your customers make the connection. The exchange of money for a product or service garners a certain level of trust between buyer and seller, and it is up to the seller to uphold this reputation.

By providing a quick and efficient POS experience, you’re letting your customers know that their time is valuable to you; and your company is willing to have systems in place to help the process along in as painless a way as possible. That is excellent customer service.