The Orlando-based Epos Now is a market leader in the highly competitive POS space. Since joining the fray in 2011, they’ve built an award-winning suite of touchscreen solutions for retail and hospitality clients of all sizes.
There is a tipping point with most POS products when extra bells and whistles do more to inflate their price than their value. Thankfully, Epos Now understands its customers’ needs better than many suppliers do. Instead of offering a multi-purpose POS solution stuffed with superfluous features, they’ve created several software packages from the ground up to serve clients in each sector.
Epos Now’s hospitality package handles table and fast service in food courts, hotels, bars and nightclubs. On the retail side of things, Epos Now’s customers include independent stores, large franchises, and many businesses in between. They also produce an impressive range of POS products for the fashion and beauty sector.
The solutions are sold separately, but all Epos Now customers get access to uniformly excellent customer support (see below). Overall, this split solution approach is a smart one for a POS supplier with customers spread across more than 50 industries.
Getting Started with Epos Now
Epos Now makes the bold claim that its proprietary Athena POS software is so easy to use that staff can be trained within 15 minutes. While we’d advise you allow for longer, the software is undeniably simple in appearance and layout.
A clean tabbed interface greets you when you load things up on a tablet or terminal. From the main menu, it’s possible to access product information, order history and even the Epos Now AppStore with a tap on the touchscreen.
We found that spending just a few minutes customizing the layout made transactions faster and easier to process. Regular software updates continue to streamline an already smooth experience. There are different features included in the hospitality and retail suite, but the core layout and functionality is the same.
Epos Now Features
Epos Now’s POS solutions carry all the functions a user would expect, and then some. For retail and hospitality, core features include:
- Stock control (inventory management)
- Customer loyalty
- Sales reporting
- Table management (hospitality solution)
- Accounting and auditing reports
Check out a more detailed description of each feature below;
The system handles inventory management automatically, which is incredibly handy for reducing wastage and theft and protecting your bottom line. Managers can also customize permissions to prevent staff from applying excessive discounts to products.
Epos Now’s built-in CRM system enables you to set up special offers, loyalty schemes and membership bonuses. Of course, one would expect some sort of CRM integration in most modern POS systems. Uniquely, Epos Now can also send customers an e-receipt with a request for feedback on the service they received. Gathering feedback about customers’ in-store experience is notoriously challenging, so this is definitely an interesting inclusion.
Epos Now displays sales information, employee reports and end-of day summaries through a series of slick dashboards. Users log in to the back office interface, called ‘Epos Now HQ’, which houses the reporting functions and extensive FAQs for using them.
Advanced table plan management allows you to move tables, chairs and reservations around from night to night. The system lets you keep a track of which diners are eating in, taking out, or waiting for deliveries. Handily, the data synchronizes between your POS devices in real time, making the job easier for restaurant staff.
Accounting and Auditing Reports
Accounting functionality is also built in to the POS software, but some customers note that Sage, Xero and Quickbooks integrations don’t always work as advertised (see below).
Epos Now Products and Services
Epos Now offers the same hardware and software packages for retail and hospitality customers. They also supply extra add-ons, such as cash drawers and barcode scanners, depending on your needs. The purchasing options are summarized below:
The Complete Solution
The Full Tablet Solution
The Software Only Solution
Rental software license
Metal cash drawer
80mm receipt printer
Configuration and installation
12 month warranty
iPad POS stand
Metal cash drawer
Ethernet receipt printer
Chip and pin terminal
Installation and training
12 month warranty
Epos Now Integrations
Epos Now AppStore
In 2014, Epos Now became the first POS system supplier to introduce new features by way of an app store. Today, the Epos Now AppStore offers dozens of digital third party service integrations.
While the idea is great, reported issues hinder the integrations for one or two services. Most work well; the partnership with Zapper, for example, adds the essential ability to accept mobile payment from your customers. Sage, Xero and Quickbooks integrations, a big selling point for many customers, are also advertised.
However, an issue with the Xero integration has prevented some customers from syncing invoices and product details with the popular accounting software.
It’s worth noting that, thanks to strong company growth, Epos Now’s partnerships with third party products and services are growing. This makes Epos Now attractive for businesses looking to buy a somewhat future-proofed POS solution.
Epos Now is one of a growing number of entirely cloud-based POS solutions. However, unlike suppliers that host data on their own servers, Epos Now hosts customers’ data via Amazon Web Services (AWS). This doesn’t impact system performance, but it does mean that user data is kept securely.
One downside of being entirely cloud-based is that your POS system may be vulnerable to internet outages. It bears consideration if, for example, you have a weak WiFi signal or an unreliable ISP.
Epos Now’s customer service team shines. Customers implementing Epos Now receive dedicated support from a consultant, as well as assistance with staff training.
One drawback is that there is no way to see the status of a support request from the POS terminal itself. This is hardly an issue when the team are so helpful and quick to respond, but a digital notification that an issue is being handled would be a welcome.
Still, it's hard to argue with more than 2,000 customers who have given Epos Now's web chat and phone support a five star rating.
Case Study: Jurassic World
When Universal Studios launched a Jurassic World promotional stall at London Waterloo Station in 2015, Epos Now was their POS partner of choice for making thousands of movie merchandise sales a day.
The system’s simplicity and seamless merchant account integration helped turn a promotional stunt into a roaring success.
Epos Now’s pricing model is transparent. Core hardware and/or software is available from $1,145, payable upfront or in installments. Users also pay a monthly fee of $39 (Standard) or $54 (Premium) which covers software subscription, cloud data storage, reporting, and the phone support service.
There are two price considerations you should keep in mind when shopping for POS system quotes. The first is that, like many suppliers, Epos Now charges for some optional apps and hardware separately. The second is that their excellent 24/7 phone support service is only included in the Premium subscription. Otherwise, you’re limited to calling at 9.00am-6.00pm Monday-Friday, and 10.00am-4.00pm on Saturday. Remember to check Epos Now’s terms and conditions to make an informed purchase.
Epos Now is better than ever today. Incremental software updates have made for a more refined product over time, and third party integrations have expanded the system's range of uses. But it’s the exceptional customer service that should really elevate this standout system to the front of your mind when you're shopping for POS solutions.