POS and CRM: A Powerful Partnership for Business Growth

  • By Matthew Davis
  • Feb 8, 2024
  • Customer Engagement

Forget cash registers and Rolodexes. Today’s point-of-sale solutions double as powerful POS and CRM systems, storing customer data and boosting your business.

One tip: Don’t buy a POS system unless it’s enabled with a CRM.

A CRM-enabled POS helps you target promotions based on buying habits, reward customers, and make data-driven inventory decisions. When used together, these systems can drive a sales increase and maximize customer retention.

You likely know what a CRM and a POS system is. But you might be wondering what a POS-based CRM is? We’re going to lay that all out for you now. Keep reading to learn what the CRM tools available in POS systems, why you need them, and specific ways you can use them to grow your business.

POS vs. CRM: What’s the Difference

It’s easy to get confused by the alphabet soup of business tools. POS and CRM sound eerily similar, after all.

While both play a role in increasing retail sales, they tackle different aspects of the sales process. Here’s a quick breakdown:

POS (Point-of-Sale)

Think of your POS system as a modern cash register. A POS manages sales, offers integrated payment processing, tracks inventory, and prints receipts.

Its primary role is processing transactions. However, modern POS systems do everything from pricing management, to creating accounting reports. Every brick-and-mortar shop needs a retail POS system.

CRM (Customer Relationship Management)

A CRM system is like a digital rolodex. It stores customer information, purchase history, marketing interactions, and preferences.

Using a CRM you can build personalized marketing campaigns, offer targeted promotions, and drive repeat business. One benefit: When you use a CRM point-of-sale system, you can capture customer data at checkout, allowing for a more seamless experience.

Why Combine These Tools?

POS and CRM systems are the perfect match. An integrated system offers numerous benefits:

  • Personalized Marketing: Personalize offers and promotions for higher conversion rates. Foster deeper connections and build brand advocates.
  • Savings and Scalability: Consolidate tools and potentially save on software subscriptions. Adapt to business growth with flexible and integrated systems.
  • Data-Driven Decisions: Gain insights into customer behavior and preferences. Use data to improve marketing outcomes and inventory decisions.

In short, your point-of-sale system is already a powerful tool.

By adding CRM features, you’ll expand its marketing capabilities and gain better insights into your customers. These benefits will help you maximize sales.

Exploring CRM Features in POS Systems

Standalone CRM systems can be very powerful. But generally, retailers don’t need the more robust features of a dedicated system. That’s why a POS with built-in CRM tools makes sense in retail.

Modern POS systems typically include features like:

  • Customer Profiles: Store customer names, contact information, purchase history, preferences, and even notes from interactions. Look up profiles via phone, email or an ID scan at the register.
  • Purchase History: Track items bought, frequency of visits, and total spending per customer. Use this data to personalize marketing campaigns or identify upselling opportunities.
  • Loyalty Programs: Create and manage customer rewards programs in your POS. Use rewards to incentivize repeat business and build customer loyalty
  • Segmentation: Group customers based on specific criteria (e.g., purchase habits, demographics) for targeted email marketing or special promotions.

You might be wondering: What’s the difference between a CRM-enabled POS and a POS loyalty program?

Generally, a POS system with CRM tools includes only the storing and collecting of data, e.g. customer profiles, purchase history, and, potentially, marketing capabilities. A POS with loyalty features, however, allows you to collect CRM data and offer rewards for repeat business.

What Are the Limitations of a POS-Based CRM?

A POS-based CRM offers a lot of functionalities. However, there are distinct limitations including:

Feature Depth

Dedicated CRM software offers more advanced features like lead management, sales pipeline tracking, and automation. These features are generally needed for B2B sales efforts, where the sales cycle is longer.

Integrations

A POS-based CRM typically limits integrations with other business tools. For example, a POS CRM system likely won’t integrate with a sales prospecting tool, which allows you to import cold leads. ERP integrations may also be limited (however, many of these features may already be included in the POS system).

Customization

Dedicated tools allow you to customize a variety of features and add-ons. For example, in a third-party CRM you might be able to customize profiles, create a variety of new fields, and generate highly detailed reports.

Choosing the Right Fit for Your Business

Generally, retail businesses using a POS system don’t need advanced CRM features. This is because the sales cycle is generally shorter, and the products and services require less selling.

For example, an independent grocery store doesn’t need lead management tools. Instead, small business retailers need a CRM that allows you to:

  • Quickly create profiles at checkout
  • Look up customers via phone or email at checkout
  • Record sales transactions to a customer profile
  • Loyalty program integrations to reward repeat customers

Additionally, a POS-enabled CRM saves small businesses from investing in two software systems. This can save time and money. Larger businesses, B2B companies, and companies with longer sales cycles, however, would typically need a dedicated CRM platform.

How to Leverage POS-Based CRM for Growth

A POS-based CRM isn’t just about storing information. It’s about transforming data into growth for your business. Here’s how:

I. Personalized Marketing

Imagine sending emails showcasing products similar to a customer’s recent purchase or offering birthday discounts. POS data unlocks this level of personalization:

  • Targeted Promotions: Segment customers based on purchase history and send targeted email blasts or in-store promotions. For example, upselling in retail gets easier with CRM, as you can offer target offers at the register via customer-facing displays.
  • Product Recommendations: Recommend products based on individual preferences seen in their purchase history. This fosters a “you might also like” experience, increasing sales and customer satisfaction.

II. Customer Retention

Loyal customers are gold. A POS-based CRM helps you build customer loyalty via:

  • Loyalty Programs: Reward repeat customers with points, discounts, or exclusive offers based on their spending habits. This incentivizes future purchases and builds brand loyalty.
  • Personalized Communication: Use purchase history to send birthday greetings, anniversary reminders, or special offers relevant to their interests. This creates a personal touch and shows you value their business.

III. Data-Driven Decisions

The combined power of POS and CRM data creates a treasure trove of insights:

  • Optimized Product Offerings: Analyze popular items, identify slow-movers, and adjust inventory based on real-time sales data. This ensures you stock what customers want and avoid costly overstock.
  • Dynamic Pricing Strategies: Use insights into customer behavior and competitor pricing to set competitive prices. This maximizes revenue without deterring customers.
  • Streamlined Store Layout: Analyze where customers gravitate within your store and use that data to optimize product placement and signage. This creates a more intuitive shopping experience and potentially increases sales.

Check Out the CRM Features in FTx POS

FTx POS offers a variety of customer management tools and options. You can use basic CRM tools in FTx POS to build customer profiles at the register. Plus, FTx POS includes three tiers of loyalty:

  • Integrated Loyalty – This allows you to run a single points-based campaign that tracks points per customer in a centralized database. You can use driver’s license scans to look up customers (or manually enter a phone number).
  • Enhanced Loyalty – Create multiple points campaigns, and customize coupons, redeem restrictions, expiration dates, and more. This includes many of the same features as Integrated Loyalty but increases your ability to customize campaigns.
  • Loyal-n-Save – Our full-fledged POS loyalty program. Loyal-n-Save includes app integration to allow customers to track discounts and promotions. You can also use the app to market and build a rewards marketplace.

Contact us today to learn more about the CRM tools within FTx POS.

FAQs

It depends! If you're a small-to-medium business with basic customer management needs, it can be a cost-effective and convenient solution. However, larger businesses or those requiring advanced features might benefit from dedicated CRM software. Consider your specific needs and growth aspirations.

While powerful, POS-based CRM might offer:

  • Less depth of features (e.g., lead management, sales pipeline tracking)
  • Limited integrations with other tools
  • Restricted customization options

Reputable POS providers prioritize data security. Look for systems that comply with industry standards and offer features like encryption and password protection. Regularly update your system and follow best practices for data security.

Yes, many POS systems offer integrations with popular CRM platforms. This allows you to leverage the strengths of both systems for a more comprehensive solution.

Here are some guidelines:

  • Clearly define your goals and KPIs.
  • Train staff to use the CRM features effectively.
  • Regularly review POS analytics reports and translate insights into action
  • Personalize marketing based on customer preferences.
  • Leverage loyalty programs and incentives to retain customers.
  • Continuously evaluate and adjust your CRM strategy for optimal results.

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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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