iPad, Cloud-Based POS Solution A Winner For ISV
By Chris MacKinnon, Business Solutions magazine.
The combination of the right hardware and a SaaS model earned this channel company a new retail client.
OnePiece Jump In, a retail store located in Los Angeles, sells trendy loungewear (e.g. pajamas) garments. When the store owners wanted a POS system to reflect the company’s unique style, they went online in search of a solution that included an iPad. They discovered ShopKeep.com, an ISV (independent software vendor) that offers a full end-to-end SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) POS solution with an iPad front end (also called ShopKeep).
According to David Olk, ShopKeep’s COO, his company’s solution was the natural choice for OnePiece because the cloud-based technology is as new and innovative as the clothes the retailer sells. Olk comments, “There is a ‘cool’ factor in having an iPad, especially when it is being used in a way that people have never seen before — at the POS. The iPad allows for great mobility, giving OnePiece more options for sales tactics. As a customer is ready to complete the purchase, what sounds better: ‘Please follow me to the register,’ or ‘cash or credit’?”
Receipt Printer Plays Important Role
OnePiece has one full-register configuration complete with a MagTek iDynamo secure card reader authenticator for credit card processing, a POSIFLEX cash drawer, a Cradlepoint MBR900 router, and a Star Micronics TSP100LAN receipt printer. Olk says the latter plays an integral role in ShopKeep’s POS solution. “The Star Micronics team was easy to work with and very responsive,” says Olk. “The Star TSP100LAN is a dedicated Ethernet receipt printer that comes with all the needed accessories in the box at the time of purchase (interface cable, power cable, complete mounting kit, and paper roll), which was an added benefit for our customer.”
The TSP100LAN is a direct-line thermal printer with a print speed of 22 RPM (receipts per minute). The printer includes a full set of software utilities which can be used for customizing receipts. Users also can add personalized business logos, add coupons, preview receipts, and enhance bar codes. OnePiece Jump In connects the iPad to the Star printer via the store’s wireless network, which allows sales associates to roam the store and check out customers from any location, if necessary.
Sell The Simplicity Of A Cloud Solution
OnePiece Jump In was one of the original beta testers of the ShopKeep POS solution and has been using the iPad POS since April 2011. For Louise Ohlsson, manager of the OnePiece LA location, the allure of the cloud-based, SaaS POS solution was rooted in its simplicity. Total training time took approximately 1 hour, and according to Olk, most merchants can install the system themselves. “Installation and operation have gone smoothly from day one,” Ohlsson comments. “Designing the retail buttons was a bit challenging at first, but we quickly got up to speed with the help of ShopKeep’s support team.”
Considering ShopKeep is a cloud-based SaaS application running native thin-client front ends, any additional functionality or upgrades are immediately and effortlessly deployed to each and every customer. “Gone are the days where merchants need to install and update server-based technology to run their stores,” Olk explains.
The ShopKeep system stores all the data in the cloud on Amazon servers. Olk comments, “Because of the low up-front cost [less than $1,000 for all hardware, including a tablet computer], ShopKeep is also a financially viable alternative to a basic cash register. This means that a whole world of retail sales data that used to be stored on paper will now be stored in the cloud.” The Web-based back office system enables OnePiece Jump In to access sales reports and inventory management through any computer. The solution can also integrate with the merchant’s accounting, customer relationship management, marketing, and payroll systems.