Stuck in a One-Size-Fits-All POS? You Need a Custom POS System

  • By Matthew Davis
  • Jun 24, 2024
  • Day-to-Day Operations

Feeling like your POS system is slowing you down, not speeding things up? You’re not alone. Many retail stores struggle with inflexible POS systems that don’t adapt to their unique workflows.

This can turn simple tasks into time-consuming hassles. Often, POS customization is the answer.

Here’s an example:

Liquor stores often buy beer by the case, but then “breakdown” the case to sell in smaller units (like 6-packs or singles). For inventory management purposes, it’s easier to count all the variations as a single SKU. But that may not be possible with an inflexible system (resulting in long cycle counts and reconciliations).

The good news? You might not need a completely custom POS system to adjust workflows. Instead, the key is finding a system that allows point-of-sale customization, allowing you to adjust settings to perfectly fit your business.

This guide will help you understand the difference. We’ll explore features you can tailor in a customizable POS system, and contrast that with a completely custom-built POS. Plus, we’ll cover some essential ways to optimize your POS for your business.

Custom POS System: What Is It?

Most retail stores need a POS system that bends to their will, not the other way around.

That’s the power of a custom POS system. However, before we dive into specifics, let’s clear up a common point of confusion: Customizable vs custom-built POS systems.

Customizable POS System

This is a pre-built POS system with the flexibility to adjust features and functionalities to better suit your business needs. FTx POS is an example of a customizable POS system for retail. Our platform allows you to customize POS features like:

  • Checkout screens: Rearrange buttons, add custom fields, etc.
  • Tax settings: Configure tax rates for different product categories.
  • Receipt headers: Add business info and branding to your receipts.
  • Inventory settings: Set up case break inventory (multi-item inventory).
  • Reporting: Build custom POS reports to track KPIs for your business.

Custom POS System

This is a POS system built entirely from scratch to meet your business’s exact specifications. Although a truly custom POS offers 100% flexibility, this type of point of sale requires a serious investment of time, resources, and ongoing maintenance.

Do I Need a Custom POS?

Not usually. In most cases, a customizable POS system is the better option. A customizable solution offers the flexibility to refine operations and cater to your business’s specific requirements, without the hefty price tag of a custom-built POS system.

Here are some signs a customizable POS system is the right fit:

  • Your business has unique workflows or processes, e.g. a consignment shop that needs to track ownership.
  • You have unique inventory management needs, e.g. tracking items by weight or expiration date.
  • You need to integrate your POS system with other business tools, e.g. combine a POS with loyalty programs.
  • You’re looking for a scalable solution that can grow with your business, e.g. accommodate new features as your business needs evolve.

Why You Should Use POS Customizations

Pre-set POS configurations are a missed opportunity.

Point of sale customization empowers your business. It drives efficiency, customer satisfaction, and ultimately, your bottom line. Here are some of the key reasons you should be customizing your POS settings:

I. Maximize Efficiency

Stop wrestling with clunky workflows. Customization lets you streamline processes to perfectly match how you operate, saving you time and money.

Example: An item that requires manual lookup is a best-seller. Add a new item button to your POS screen to save time.

II. Inventory Under Control

Generic POS systems might not understand your unique inventory needs. Customization lets you set up multi-unit management (case break), track variations, and gain real control over your stock.

Example: You create custom reorder points in your inventory tool, which automatically generates a purchase order if criteria are met.

III. Happy Customers

Customizable settings can help you improve your branding and customer experiences. Delight your customers with personalized receipts, easy loyalty integration, or custom payment options.

Example: You offer a promotion for store credit. Your POS should allow you to create a new payment type and track it at the register.

IV. Better Data

Don’t settle for generic reports. Customizable POS systems let you generate reports specific to your business, giving you the data you need to make smarter decisions.

Example: You set up a report to track individual vape sales by vendor, allowing you to make better inventory decisions. This is a must-have feature in top vape shop POS systems.

7 Point of Sale Customizations to Consider

What POS customizations will you need? A run of thumb: Get as close as possible. The best POS systems for small businesses offer many settings and functionalities to make your own. Here are a few of the most common:

1. Hardware Integration

Some POS platforms – like Clover or Square – offer hardware that only works with their POS software. For example, if you bought a Clover receipt printer… that’s only going to work with Clover POS.

This becomes a problem when you want to switch; your printer is now obsolete.

With a customizable POS system, you’re generally only limited by the operating system. For example, FTx POS is compatible with a wide range of Windows POS hardware devices, including barcode scanners, label printers, kitchen displays, ID scanners, and item weight scales.

2. POS Screens and UX

In your business, you may want to prioritize frequently used items on the POS checkout screen or custom buttons for unique items like “gift wrapping”.

What about dashboards or POS analytics reports? Top POS systems allow you to optimize checkout flows for your staff and make UX changes like:

  • Grouping products by category in inventory lists
  • Custom inventory groupings for upselling
  • Customizing the look and feel of the POS (button and design colors)
  • Adding or deleting POS screens

3. Payment Processing Options

A flexible POS system allows you to choose the best credit card processor for your business.

Unfortunately, many systems limit your options. For example, Lightspeed POS locks their customers into POS software and payment processing, which is known as integrated credit card processing.

The better solution is having the option to choose between:

  • Integrated payments – POS + payments
  • 3rd party processor – A third-party company handles processing.

FTx POS offers both. Use us as your payment processor, with great rates for high-risk industries like smoke shops, CBD stores, and businesses that sell kratom. Or stick with your existing processor.

4. Custom POS Reporting

POS analytics can be a powerful tool for business growth. The right data can help you identify best-sellers, trending products, and upselling opportunities. A customizable POS system allows you to build custom reports like:

  • Track sales by product category, employee performance, customer purchase history, etc.
  • Uses custom dates and filters to gain insights into specific sales periods or promotions.

Many POS systems only provide basic reporting. Or they only provide reports based on templated settings.

In FTx POS, there are numerous ways to customize your POS reports:

5. Tax Settings

Charging the right taxes can be a mess with a one-size-fits-all POS. For example, many retail stores use many different tax settings. Some items, for example, might be charged a flat-rate dollar amount (like cigarettes), while others require a percentage-based tax.

A customizable point of sale like FTx POS allows you to create:

  • Tax groups – Grouping products by your custom tax rates.
  • Tax rates – Set unique Rate Value (%), Flat Tax ($), or Occupational Tax rates.
  • Discounted item taxes – Choose how to tax discounted items.

6. Receipts

Your POS system should allow you to customize the look and feel of your receipts. This can create a powerful touchpoint with customers. A few settings you might want to look at:

  • Header logos
  • Company address and phone #
  • Date and time
  • Other useful information and messaging

A strategic receipt message, for example, can be a powerful tool for promoting gift card sales. In addition to receipts, your POS should allow to print custom shelf label and barcodes:

7. Employee Access Levels

This is super important for growing retail locations. The ability to finely tune access to the POS helps you protect your system. For example, in FTx POS, you can restrict who can:

  • Make pricebook & pricing changes
  • Change product or tax details
  • Track employee activity
  • Restricting employee access to certain modules

Generally, these customizations are set at the employee or user level. This allows you to set who can access workflows and/or conduct important steps.

FTx POS: Customization to Help You Thrive

Retail businesses can’t settle for out-of-box solutions. Every business needs the ability to fine-tune their software to simplify their needs.

The key: Get as close as you can. Choose a system that best aligns with your business for the best results. Consider FTx POS. Our point of sale system offers a wide variety of customizations:

  • Limitless options for reporting (set filters and groupings)
  • Update design and POS panel layouts
  • Backend customizations for access and permissions
  • Product customizations (taxes, discounting, by location)
  • Payment processing flexibility
  • Accounting reports and settings

Bottom line, FTx POS provides you the tools to refine your POS experience to help your business thrive. That’s why we’re one of the best retail POS systems for small businesses.


The process for setting up custom payment options depends on your specific POS system. However, here's a general guideline:

  • Check your POS system's settings: Look for a section related to payment options or integrations.
  • Explore available options: Some systems might allow adding custom payment types manually (e.g., "Store Credit").
  • Integrate with third-party payment processors: Many POS systems integrate with popular payment processors that offer various payment methods. You might need to set up an account with the processor and then link it to your POS.

Yes, integration capabilities are a major benefit of customizable POS systems. Here's how to find out:

  • Check your POS system's features: Look for information about integrations or API access.
  • Explore app marketplaces: Many POS systems offer app marketplaces where you can find pre-built integrations with various software solutions like accounting software, inventory management tools, or loyalty programs.
  • Consider custom development: For complex integrations not available through pre-built apps, you might need to involve a developer to create a custom integration solution.

There can be some costs involved depending on the level of customization:

  • Monthly fees: Some POS systems offer tiered pricing plans with higher tiers allowing for more customization options.
  • Integration fees: Third-party integrations might have additional monthly fees or transaction charges.
  • Custom development: If you need a custom integration or advanced customization, you might incur development costs.

Yes, many POS systems allow you to modify the receipt layout. Here's what you can typically customize:

  • Include your logo and contact information.
  • Edit receipt messages.
  • Rearrange line items.
  • Add custom promotional offers.
  • Offer digital receipts via email or text message.

The process varies depending on your POS system. However, you'll generally be able to:

  • Set up multi-unit inventory management: Track products sold by different units (e.g., cases and individual items).
  • Manage product variations: Track variations like size, color, or other attributes.
  • Set stock alerts: Receive notifications when inventory levels reach a predetermined threshold.
  • Define low-stock and out-of-stock behavior: Choose how the POS system handles low stock or out-of-stock situations (e.g., prevent sales, display warnings).

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Business Experts & Contributors

A New Solution Coming To FasTrax

Danielle is a content writer at FTx POS. She specializes in writing about all-in-one, cutting-edge POS and business solutions that can help companies stand out. In addition to her passions for reading and writing, she also enjoys crafts and watching documentaries.

Danielle Dixon

Content Writer
A New Solution Coming To FasTrax

Matthew Davis is a content marketing specialist for FTx POS. With experience in marketing, brick-and-mortar retail, and ecommerce, Matthew enjoys writing about strategies and technology retailers can use to grow. Previously, he managed retail operations for a sports/entertainment facility and worked in marketing consulting.

Matthew Davis

SEO Specialist/Content Writer

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