The Local Marketing Stack

Payments & POS

Zone 1 • Difficulty: • Free Options Available

Choosing your payments or point-of-sale provider may not seem like it has anything to do with your marketing stack, but it’s one of the most important decisions you have to make as a small business owner.

The data that your POS collects can (and should) form the basis for a whole host of future marketing activities. So as you consider which system to select, think about the following criteria:

  • RELIABILITY
    Obviously. Your payment system is how you actually make money as a business. It can’t be flaky and it can’t have outages, or else you can’t get paid.
  • EASE OF USE FOR CUSTOMER
    Does the system minimize friction for people who want to purchase from you? Every additional hurdle on a checkout page or at the cash register makes the experience just a little more frustrating and may impact a customer’s willingness to purchase from you in the future (if not in the moment itself).
  • EASE OF USE FOR YOU
    You’re going to have to use this thing a lot, whether it’s to manage inventory, add coupons, track sales, etc. Your payment processor should be a product you truly enjoy using.
  • COST
    The best payment processors are free, and only charge a nominal transaction fee for each purchase. There shouldn’t be exorbitant setup costs or minimums involved.
  • INTEGRATION WITH ACCOUNTING SOFTWARE
    Some point of sale or payment systems are natively integrated with accounting software (such as Quickbooks Payments). But if these don’t work for you, make sure that your system “plays nicely” with your accounting software of choice.
  • EXTENSION TO MARKETING
    The most cutting-edge point-of-sale systems either offer best-in-class marketing solutions that build on their native features (Square), or integrate so easily with third-party solutions (Stripe) that the marketing offering may as well be their own.
See where Payments & POS fits into the overall stack in:


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