First Look: Intuit's Retail Solution

By SmallBusinessComputing Staff | Posted April 22, 2002
Wayne N. Kawamoto
Managing Editor, www.smallbusinesscomputing.com

According to Intuit, of the 1.4 million small business retailers in the United States, 80 percent use rudimentary tools such as calculators and electronic cash registers to manage their businesses. With these retailers in mind, Intuit launched its QuickBooks Point of Sale Solution for Retailers, a PC-based point of sale (POS) offering that helps give small business retailers the same levels of insight and control over sales, inventory and customers as large superstores and department chains.

The QuickBooks Point of Sale solution consists of software and standard hardware tools, including a bar code scanner, magnetic stripe reader, cash drawer and receipt printer. QuickBooks Point of Sale software may also be purchased as a stand-alone product.

Intuit says that its QuickBooks Point of Sale solution is priced 20 to 50 percent less than a majority of other PC-based POS systems and is the only POS solution available 'off the shelf' for self installation. Using intuitive screens, the product is supposed to walk retailers through the entire set-up process to ensure the system is tailored for their specific needs. Additional screens guide and prompt users through the software's features and functions, requiring no computer expertise or training.

According to Intuit research, 45 percent of small business retailers manually enter sales data into their QuickBooks accounting software on a daily basis. To eliminate this need for duplicate data entry and ensure greater accuracy, QuickBooks Point of Sale features one-click integration with the QuickBooks 2002 accounting products. With a single keystroke, users may be able to transfer summarized sales data directly into their QuickBooks accounting software.

QuickBooks Point of Sale is designed to offer a full range of capabilities, allowing users to make smarter decisions about their business, while providing them control over mission-critical activities, including:

- Processing Sales - Users can ring up sales, process credit cards, and manage all transaction data from a single system. Users may benefit from fast and reliable processing and tracking of credit card transactions with QuickBooks POS Merchant Service, powered by Wells Fargo Merchant Services. The service offers QuickBooks Point of Sale customers a discount processing rate, in addition to free online reconciling and reporting capabilities. (*Requires application approval. Fees apply.)

- Managing Inventory - Users can track up to 50,000 individual store items in real-time as well as gain any-time access to relevant data, such as item pricing and stock availability. Inventory items can be categorized by department, color, size, vendor or other customized variables.

- Tracking Customers - Users can maintain customer data, including sales history, contact information, purchase habits and more - helping store owners better manage their customer relationships.

Additionally, QuickBooks Point of Sale offers more than 30 reports and 10 filter options, allowing users to run reports on 'best seller' and 'worst seller' product lists, sales associate performance, and on-hand quantities by item. It also features employee tracking capabilities, allowing storeowners to monitor employee activities such as individual sales and hours worked. Additional security options allow owners or managers to limit access to certain data and specific functions, such as returns and price change authorization.

Pricing and Availability
The suggested retail price for the complete QuickBooks Point of Sale Solution for Retailers is $1,499.95, including both hardware and software components. QuickBooks Point of Sale Software for Retailers costs $799.95. Expected availability is mid-May. For more information about QuickBooks Point of Sale, please visit www.quickbooks.com/pointofsale/

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