When running a restaurant business, you need to have systems that help you to streamline business operations. Such platforms allow you to have more time to concentrate on building the business and delighting your customers.
Toast POS focuses on automating all your restaurant operations. It saves you from the chaos of manual processes, such as collecting data on excel worksheets. The focus of Toast is the success of your business. It, therefore, offers you functionalities that allow you to delight your guests. The point of sale ensures that your guests spend minimal time waiting for service. It is, therefore, accurate to state that Toast POS focuses on helping you grow your revenue.
When budgeting for a Toast point of sale system, you will need to consider hardware, software, installation, and payment processing charges. Toast will also cost you for continued use of the software.
Toast subscription starts at a monthly charge of $79 for each terminal. You may need additional terminals, and Toast will charge you $50 per month for each additional terminal.
Toast offers quote-based pricing for single restaurants that have more than six terminals.
Is Toast a Good POS system?
Features of Toast POS
- Simplicity and Efficiency
Toast POS comes with the functionality to allow restaurants to centralize all the operations. The system enables the firm to bring all the business operations under one platform. The synchronization of processes interprets as efficiency for the company and a delight for the guests.
If your restaurant guests are excited to come back, because your service is excellent, it will translate into increased revenue.
- Hardware Reliability
Budgeting for restaurant hardware is a massive upfront investment for the business. Most of the equipment the company would need is costly. When the company is taking the investment steps, the organization must be sure that the machine is durable.
The hardware should also serve the business such that it helps ease the business operations. Such a device will give room for the staff to concentrate on offering the best customer service. It will increase revenue for the business, and in that sense, the hardware will be an added value for the company.
The durability of the hardware is critical because, in instances of hardware breakdown, the business operations will slow down, and the staff will have extra labor burdens to bear.
Toast is aware that restaurants require easy to use hardware. It, therefore, ensures the device is easy for your use and that it can serve you with minimum possible breakdowns.
- Regular Software Updates
Regular software products help to fix any possible bugs and to introduce product enhancements. Software updates will enhance new product features to integrate with ease to your POS. Features such as online ordering and managing the menus are critical for the firm. Frequent software updates will ensure you have every advanced product availed in your system with ease.
Toast ensures that you receive software updates as frequent as possible. It helps your business to operate seamlessly and to keep you free from bugs.
- Detailed Reporting and Analysis
You cannot make informed decisions for your business without accurate data collection and analysis. Such analysis and details will only be possible with the generation of reliable data reports.
Toast saves your firm from the trouble of generating reports manually. Creating manual reports is to involving in terms of time and effort and is also prone to errors.
Toast gives you the feature to generate automatic reports by using the Toast point of sale. Toast will create sales reports which will show you exactly how the business is performing. The labor-management data will enable you to see how efficient your labor force is and what changes you need to consider to maximize your workforce. The report generation will also guide you on how to schedule your staff, depending on the busiest restaurant hours. It will be a valuable source of data when you need to plan on shift allocation for your team.
Inventory reports will help you to manage your resources with accuracy. The business needs to experience as minimal waste as possible. The inventory data will enable you to know the stock that is available for use and the ingredients you need to restock.
Toast will use the automated report generation to keep updating you on how the business is spending on all resources.
- Custom Made POS
All restaurants are different, and all businesses operate in their unique ways, even if they are in the same industry. The Point of Sale should not be a platform where the uniqueness of the company is lost.
Toast POS gives each restaurant the ability to customize the POS to fit the needs of the firm. It allows the organization to have a combination of hardware and software to meet its specific needs. Toast, therefore, saves businesses from the pain of paying for features they do not need.
- Loyalty Programs, Gift cards, and CRM
When a firm introduces loyalty programs and gift cards, it creates an avenue for an increase in sales. Loyalty cards boost sales by causing the guests to visit more frequently. The guests that use loyalty cards also tend to spend more per visit than non-loyalty guests.
Diners also spend more when a restaurant allows them to use gift cards to make payments.
Toast POS enables you to integrate the customers’ loyalty cards and gift cards with the POS. The business can engage the customers with target marketing and allows the restaurant to drive the guests back to the restaurant.
The loyalty programs enable the business to learn its clientele behavior and buying patterns. You will, therefore, make informed decisions on the products you need to have in the restaurant per time. You will identify the products that customers tend to buy more at particular seasons and prepare accordingly.
Your restaurant may once in a while introduce discounts on products. You will know the customers you need to alert because your POS will empower you to learn your customer favorites.
- Integrating Online Ordering
Integrating online ordering will benefit your restaurant in two primary ways:
- You will do away with vendor’s fees the restaurant would otherwise incur. The business will not need to route the request through a third party. Initially, the company would pay the intermediary for the service.
- It helps reduce an order request’s turn-around time since you will not need to re-enter an order request.
- Tablets, Tableside Payments, and Kiosk Ordering
Automation is massively impacting the restaurant industry. The use of tablets, tableside payments, and kiosk ordering allows the business to offer quality customer experience. Mobile POS tablets enable the servers to send order requests at high speed. The customers’ waiting period is minimal, making the client delighted to come again. The facility also allows the clients to view their bill at the table, pay, and quickly leave the restaurant. The convenience of paying without going to their seats is worth the investment.
Toast Restaurant Kiosks provide your clientele flexibility in how they make order requests in your restaurant. The Toast Kiosks is an easy to use interface that allows self-service restaurant ordering.
The Kiosks have several advantages:
- It enables your clientele to enjoy the experience of digital ordering in your space. The customer selects their order from the display on the kiosk screens. They receive a notification on their mobile phones when the order is ready. The guest can view the photos of your dishes on display, so they know what they are purchasing. It is an opportunity for the business to show off their products.
- The kiosks bust your lines open, allowing more order requests to flow more quickly into your restaurant.
- The kiosks open more channels for clients to make order requests instead of waiting for service through the waiter person. The business then ends up serving more guests than it would without the self-ordering platforms.
- In case your business is experiencing staff constraints, you will still be able to serve as many guests as possible.
- The screens also offer the guest prompts of tip amounts on the screen, which reduces turnover.
- Reliable Customer Service
When you introduce services such as online ordering, you need to be sure that you have competent customer care to count on in case of any technical hitches. You do not want to lose sales because you had a disconnection or a few things not loading on the system. The online order requests are bound to come in at any time of day or night. You, therefore, need customer care that operates 24/7 and responds quickly to your needs.
Toast customer care ensures you have the help you need and the back up to keep your business running until your system is up and working. You also have the offline mode option with Toast. The mode allows your POS to keep operating until you restore connectivity. If the issue persists, there is a technical team on call to attend to you.
- Tracking and Managing Inventory
It is critical for the business to monitor how it is using its resources. Toast inventory systems keep data of the stock you purchase and keep count on its usage. It will alert you on the items you need to buy and restock.
Such data will keep you from waste and unnecessary purchases. The system is core to the decision- making the process of the firm. The managers will use the data to make smart decisions. It will also keep track of the profitability of each of its products.
The inventory management system will help the business owner to identify the items that sell most at particular seasons. You will not end up stocking your restaurant with products that will sell at a slow pace. The clarity of the quantities of stock you have in the restaurant and its usage will cut down on over-portioning. It will also cut down on theft cases.
How much does it cost to install a POS system?
Calculating the much you can spend to install a POS system; you need to have a comprehensive breakdown of the hardware to purchase. The type of equipment you will invest in will depend on the kind of system you intend to install.
There are two types of systems for your choice:
Cloud-based Systems: The systems store data on remote servers. The users access their data from wherever they are in the world as long as they have an internet connection.
The Systems are also known as Software-as-a-Service or web-based systems.
Legacy systems: The systems are also known as traditional Point of Sale. The systems store data on local servers and in a closed internal internet connection.
Hardware to Purchase
Installing POS in your firm will require you to purchase some hardware items to work with the software. Some of the things you will need to purchase are:
A terminal is an electronic device that enables the business to process payments at retail locations. It is a combination of hardware and software to accept payments.
The terminal starts by reading off the information from the visitor’s credit or debit card. However, the payment process is such that the terminals do not update the cash registers to read the tags directly. The process protects customer data. It then checks if the funds in the bank account are sufficient for the purchase. It then moves the funds from the guest’s bank account to the business account. It happens through the credit card network for accountability and record tracking. It keeps the data and prints out a receipt for the buyer.
The cost of installing terminals will depend on the company size and the conditions of the supplier.
- POS Stands
When calculating the cost to fix your POS system, consider the cost of purchasing POS stands or displays. Your business has the opportunity to display excellence and impress the guests by using quality POS stands. POS displays are a great way to promote your business products. When the customers are making their payments, they can view what else you are selling and will increase sales.
The first thing to decide on is the purpose of your POS stands. If the aim is to show off your brand, you will need to invest in strong imagery and attractive colors. If your focus is to increase sales, your display should focus more on displaying products and their unique selling points.
The display is not there to delight the business but to delight and pass information to the customer. You should, therefore, make the display focusing on the customer. Think through the experience the clientele will get by interacting with your POS stands. Ensure that your display can pass the intended information to the guests in the minimal time possible. Focus on the screen to introduce impulse purchases if you keep the screen near the till the user might not have enough time to get the point of the display.
When using the display, make it clear to the buyer the reason why they should buy from your company. Pass the message in a simple, concise language. If, for example, the reason behind the display is your product price, display clearly that your price is lower than other brands.
- Credit Card Readers
When running a business, you will realize that most people do not carry cash or checks to pay for things. It is for that reason your firm should invest in a platform that accepts both credit and debit cards.
When investing in a platform where you can accept cashless payments, consider purchasing the most advanced credit card readers. It will enable your business to process digital payments and to accept chip cards.
When purchasing the credit card readers, go for the ones with NFC and EMV. Near Field Communication (NFC) is a technology that allows customers to make payments from their smartphones and other devices. The amount then reflects at the point of purchase. The other term for the technology is contactless payments. Europay, Mastercard, and Visa (EMV) is a technology that has international standards to accept and process payments.
Are Toast POS Systems Expensive?
Toast Bundle Pricing Breakdown
You need to understand the Toast bundle price breakdown so that it is clear what you are purchasing.
The charges per month for the software are as low as $79 per terminal. The software comes with critical functionalities such as automated report generating, kitchen management, and menu management. Additional software functionalities of the POS include online ordering, payroll management, generating gift cards, and managing labor.
Toast offers a hardware starter bundle. The bundle includes equipment that is robust enough to survive in the restaurant environment. Toast also offers your business hardware such as handheld devices, screens for your display in the kitchen, terminals, among others. It ensures that your equipment can serve the entire restaurant.
You also get a package with systems that run on the Android platform. It offers you more frequent updates keeping you safe from bugs. The most renown hardware package Toast offers one terminal, a flip stand, and a card reader device. The package comes at a fee of $899.
The Toast POS installation cost starts at $499. Toast allows remote and in-person installation plan. It also allows you to install dedicated phone support. The Toast installation experts can also visit your site and help you out.
Toast also offers 0% financing options and customer care support throughout the year, day and night.
Toast offers integrated payments processing package at a flat rate without hidden fees. Toast customizes the flat rates to your restaurant needs. You also get an offline mode, which allows you to accept credit cards even when your internet connection is interrupted.
Should You Invest in Toast POS?
When you consider the value a POS will add to your firm, you have all the reasons to purchase the system.
You may be asking whether you will pay any fee to get Toast Customer Care support. When you make your Toast POS purchase, customer care support services come with the package. You will not need to pay anything extra to get the support.
Regular software updates and new feature releases also come with your first POS purchase. You will not need to pay an extra amount for the service. Your system will, therefore, remain up to date, and the newest features will power your system. Toast terminals come with a two-year warranty and Toast also provides additional warranty services if you need to extend the warranty period.
You do not need a WIFI connection to use the Toast terminals. The terminals have an offline mode, which allows you to keep going with what you are doing, and update transactions when you have a stable connection.
It is possible that you already have hardware compatible with the Toast software. However, Toast prefers to install the software on Toast hardware. Toast does not just ship out equipment to use but spends time configuring the device to ensure it is compatible with the software.
Toast only offers support to systems that are running on hardware purchased through Toast.
The success of your business is the core reason you invest in a Point of Sale System. You, therefore, need to invest with a service provider who will give you maximum support. Toast will offer precisely the kind of service your business needs.