What can you tell me about your company?
While this may seem obvious, a lot of people forget to ask this question. You can learn a lot in hearing how a salesperson speaks about their company. Do they have a lot to say about their services or are they only interested in talking about their prices compared to competitors? Remember, you are going to have a relationship with this person. Feeling comfortable with the salesperson and company is important as you will be communicating with them frequently.
Do you have customer testimonials or case studies of past work?
As an example, with an unknown brand, it can be pretty tough for retail stores to promote their products… especially while competing with the “Gaps” and “Ralph Laurens” of the world. When Ralph Lauren sells a polo shirt, every buyer becomes a walking billboard/referral. When it comes to products that are less visible, it is important to seek these examples or referrals out. Many POS hardware providers have case studies or customer testimonials to send to you. Request them, but most importantly read them!
What brands of hardware do you sell?
While IT Managers already have an idea of the type and brand of POS hardware you are looking for, explore your options! One of the most important aspects when purchasing POS hardware is reliability. Read this on IBM Retail-Hardened Solutions. Although the name brand might not matter to you, certain brands have a better reputation than others. Ask your POS provider about the different equipment, and request any information from the manufacturers. Do your research! While you may have been an NCR person all the way, technology changes and maybe IBM would be a better fit for what you are looking for!
Do you sell new or used hardware?
A lot of resellers only sell new equipment. While this is great, used/refurbished equipment can fly under the radar or receive a bad rap. However, used hardware may in fact mean “certified pre-owned equipment” which may include a 90 day warranty. This could be another option for companies who are looking to satisfy restrictive budgets, yet still purchase up-to-date POS hardware. Read more about the advantages to purchasing pre-owned equipment.
What are my maintenance/service/repair options?
Although you may not want to believe it, POS systems can break. Maybe not the entire system, but main boards, LCDs, touch screens, printers, etc. In this case, you will want to have a reliable repair service or plan in place if this happens. POS companies, like Retail Tech, may offer depot repair plans. IT managers comparing systems should consider time savings from additional support, if available. They should have parts, components, and the proper knowledge to service your equipment.
What is the standard warranty? Any extension options?
This may seem minuscule at first, but what if 50 of your printers stop working? Asking whether or not the reseller offers a warranty should be one of the more important questions. If the warranty isn’t very long, that could speak volumes about their quality.
How much will this cost me?
Cost is obviously very important to most buyers and IT managers. This may seem obvious, but remember, “You get what you pay for.” Does the reseller offer any free services such as check-stand ready installation? A helpdesk? Reasonable prices are important, but so is quality. Another thing to think about is where the POS reseller is located. Unless the POS reseller is going to pay for shipping, you will have to add the freight charges into the total cost.
What is the lead time?
This is a loaded question as there are so many options that come into play when it comes to POS hardware solutions….However, the POS reseller has to be reliable and be able to complete your project in a realistic time frame.
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