You’re in the market for a pizzeria point of sale and you have started to do your due diligence comparing options online with features and product reviews. Worst case scenario: you spend a lot of time and money on a system that neither your employees or your customers enjoy.
The trick is that many POS vendors try to package a “one size fits all” technology solution as one that can “probably” work for your business’s unique needs and demands (think delivery, coupons, and those half-and-half pies). These generic software options eventually lead to buyer’s remorse and a lot of headaches, but you can avoid such an ill fate by asking a few simple questions in your research to ensure that your technology partner delivers both your pies and your business operations efficiently.
Your questions should cover key areas of any pizza operation including delivery, online ordering, and specific features like inventory and pricing.
1. How can I pay my drivers and stay legal with tip credit wages and mileage tracking?
Avoid payroll nightmares.
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2. How can I customize what prints where -- by item? by station? By order type? How does your kitchen workflow match their printing options?
Nothing worse than a frustrated pizza chef...keep your make line happy
3. Are online orders integrated through the POS so I can easily manage them? What happens if an online customer calls and wants to add another pizza or forgot they had a coupon? Do I have to get their credit card again or can the transaction easily be modified?
If you’re online ordering system doesn’t have an open and honest relationship with the POS, your team could end up with decreased customer frequencies and check averages because your customers get frustrated.
4. Am I able to customize specialty or fractional pizzas in the POS? What are the pricing options?
It’s true, a meat lover and a vegetarian can share a pizza in harmony. If the software can’t handle it though, you’re looking at a complicated ordering process.
5. Can I track inventory and food cost - even with complicated pizzas, build your own with variable topping counts, fractional pizzas etc.?
Imagine a world where your pizza POS automatically tracks ingredients as orders are processed. It’s possible.
6. What can I access remotely and what impact does that have on in store users?
As much as you would love to be at the restaurant 24/7, being able to access your data and make business decisions on the go is essential. You should also be able to do it without interfering with ongoing operations in the store.
7. Do you support coupon logic that matches my specials and deals?
No matter what your marketing strategy is, the POS should walk through the coupon application process quickly and easily.
8. Are all credit cards encrypted and tokenized?
No responsible POS vendor today would sell you a system with non-encrypted card readers, and you don’t want credit card data stored on your system. Look for a vendor who is only storing “tokens” obtained from the credit card company.
9. What tools does the software have to help me increase customer return rates?
The key to a successful restaurant business is repeat business. Reward programs, loyalty programs and marketing tools that let you capture customer information and keep in touch are an essential part of your toolbox. They should be easy and automatic, as you likely never have enough time to spend on marketing.
10. What % of your customer base is pizza delivery?
Many POS companies may say they support pizza and delivery features, but if only a small percentage of their client base uses these features, it’s not likely that they will be enhanced or improved upon. Look for a provider who understands this niche and makes it a priority for their development.
11. What year was your software first released?
Red flags are if the software was written over a decade ago without a major architectural overhaul. The technology is out of date and may not have the flexibility to evolve. Older software is also likely to have security vulnerabilities. On the other hand, brand new software that came out just last year is likely to be lacking in features and full of bugs.
12. How often do you release updates?
Today’s best software companies iterate quickly, with small, regular updates that keep evolving their products. Get concerned if your vendor only updates once or twice a year - that means they aren’t investing much in the future of the product.
13. How is your software tested?
Software developers need outside input for software testing. Look for a company that believes in quality and backs it up with solid testing, including automated tests within the code and a quality team that tests every release before it gets to you.
It can be overhwelming to make sure your research is comprehensive, especially with somethig as complicated as software, but taking the time to ask these questions up front will save your business a lot of headaches. Want to read more about software quality? Tap below!