Shopify POS Review: Unifying Online & Offline

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A quick note before we get stuck into this Shopify POS review: if it’s the website builder you’re interested in – rather than the Point of Sale system, which we’re reviewing here – we suggest heading to our full Shopify review for a comprehensive take on the ecommerce platform.

Otherwise, stick around – because Shopify POS may help with uniting your bricks-and-mortar store with your online one: and collecting, analyzing, and reconciling data from both in a way that can fuel your business’ growth.

In this Shopify POS review, we’re going to show you what Shopify’s POS system can do to streamline your business and save you time. So read on for our full Shopify POS take.

What Is Shopify POS?

Shopify Point of Sale (POS) is a system, provided by Shopify, that allows businesses like yours to seamlessly integrate your online and offline sales – and boost your sales and revenue accordingly. It’s a set of hardware and software tools designed to facilitate in-person transactions for businesses using the Shopify ecommerce platform.

How Does Shopify Point of Sale Work?

The Shopify Point of Sale system works by integrating your online store and your in-person sales. To make it work, you need a supported device (iOS ideally running iOS 13 or higher, or Android devices running version 10.0 or higher). You also need the Shopify POS app, a Shopify online store, and your products to sell! When you charge customers in person, all your sales records, customer information, and inventory tracking are automatically synchronized with your Shopify store.

What Are the Pros and Cons of Shopify POS?

Pros

  • Unified system: Shopify POS seamlessly integrates with Shopify’s online platform, creating a unified system for managing both online and offline sales.
  • Slick inventory management: The platform offers real-time inventory syncing, preventing overselling and ensuring accurate stock levels across all sales channels.
  • Easy to use: Shopify POS features an intuitive and user-friendly interface, making it easy for merchants to set up, navigate, and use the system.
  • Hardware compatibility: Shopify supports a range of compatible hardware: including card readers and receipt printers.
  • Mobile accessibility: The Shopify POS app allows you to make sales and manage their store from tablets and smartphones, offering flexibility for on-the-go businesses like yours.
  • Offline mode: The system has an offline mode, enabling businesses to continue processing sales even when an internet connection is unavailable.
  • Customizable receipts: With Shopify POS, you can customize receipts to include branding, return policies, and other relevant information, providing a personalized touch.

Cons

  • Transaction fees: While using Shopify POS, you’ll be eligible for per-transaction fees, especially when processing payments using external payment gateways.
  • Cost of hardware: While hardware compatibility is a pro, the cost of purchasing additional hardware is something to consider.
  • Limited offline functionality: While there is an offline mode, certain features and functionalities may be limited when the system is not connected to the internet.
  • Targeted for Shopify users: While beneficial for businesses already using Shopify, those not using the platform might find a steeper learning curve – and if this is you, you may need to migrate your online store to Shopify for full integration.

How Easy Is Shopify POS To Use?

Shopify POS was designed with user-friendliness in mind – so how easy is it to use?

According to our own testing, very.

Getting started with Shopify POS is straightforward. I navigtaed to the Shopify POS tab of my Shopify dashboard and it asked me a couple of simple questions to get started. First it asked me where I wanted to sell in person; I selected “In my own brick and mortar store(s)”:

Shopify POS dashboard page with a "Getting Started" header, showing a multiple chocie question about where you plan to sell in person
Shopify asks some simple questions to get you started with its POS. First I had to tell it where I plan to sell in person. Source: Website Builder Expert

This then took me to a second setup page which asked about my current POS system. This offers various options including Square and WooCommerce, but I selected “I’m selling in person without a POS system” before hitting “Submit”.

Shopify POS dashboard setup age with a multiple choice question with various POS options
In the second stage of the 2-step onboarding, I selected "I'm selling in person without a POS system". I found the setup quick and easy, although you can skip it if you prefer. Source: Website Builder Expert

You can quickly, easily connect your online store, import products, and configure each setting to your preferences. Shopify POS offers step-by-step guides to assist you throughout.

Shopify POS’ layout is clean and well-organized, making it easy to navigate through different sections and perform tasks. And, if you’re already familiar with the Shopify ecosystem, that transition will be even more seamless. The integration between the online store and the POS system creates a unified system where you can manage both online and offline sales from a single dashboard.

Shopify POS dashboard showing a 7-step setup guide
Once I'd answered the setup questions, I was taken to this helpful checklist page, with tasks to get POS set up properly. Source: Website Builder Expert

And we haven’t even mentioned the hardware yet. Shopify offers a range of compatible hardware – such as card readers, receipt printers, and barcode scanners – and these devices’ plug-and-play nature makes them simple to set up and use.

If you are struggling to use Shopify POS, don’t panic – customer service is a cinch to access, and highly effective to boot. Explore Shopify POS’ full range of support options below.

How Much Does Shopify POS Cost – and is it Worth the Money?

The Shopify POS system has three monthly plans, suitable for different levels of users:

  • Basic Shopify – $29/month (two admin accounts)
  • Shopify – $79/month (five admin accounts)
  • Advanced Shopify – $299 / month (15 admin accounts)

The higher the plan, the more advanced features you get access to.  You can always start with the Basic Shopify plan, and upgrade as necessary.

Shopify POS pricing plans screenshot December 2023
Shopify POS' plans start at $29/month, but that doesn't include transaction fees.

There’s also a credit card fee (or payment processing fee) per payment you accept. These differ based on the plan you select, and whether the transaction takes place in person or online:

  • Basic Shopify – 2.7% in-person, 2.9% + 30 cents online
  • Shopify – 2.5% in-person, 2.6% + 30 cents online
  • Advanced Shopify – 2.4% in-person, 2.4% + 30 cents online

These are the only transaction fees you’ll have to pay to accept all credit cards on your mobile device – no other fees will be involved. What these mean, though, is that Shopify’s advanced plans (despite the monthly outlay being more of a strain on your budget) will work out cheaper if your business does a lot of sales.

For smaller businesses, we suggest opting for Shopify’s Basic plan.

We have a much more detailed review of Shopify pricing plans here, where we discusses credit card rates (vs PayPal) and transaction fees in much more depth.

Does Shopify Have a Free Trial?

Yes, you can try Shopify free before you have to pay, although the trial only lasts for 3 days. After this, you then get the first month for just $1.

What Are Shopify POS' Tools and Features?

Shopify POS (Point of Sale) comes with a variety of tools and features designed to streamline in-person sales for businesses.

Here are a few.

Unified Inventory Management

Shopify allows you to sync online and offline inventory in real-time, and maintain accurate stock levels across channels to avoid over-selling.

In-Person Sales

With Shopify POS, you can accept payments through various methods – including credit cards, cash, and other payment options – as well as processing sales at physical retail locations, pop-up shops, or events.

Hardware Compatibility

Shopify POS offers connectivity with compatible hardware, including card readers, receipt printers, barcode scanners, and cash drawers.

Customizable Receipts

With Shopify POS, you can customize receipts to include branding, return policy information, and other relevant details.

Customer Profiles

Use Shopify POS to create and access customer profiles that sync with your online store: enabling you to track customer preferences, purchase history, and contact information.

Discounts and Promotions

Apply discounts, promotions, and loyalty programs directly through your Shopify POS system – and offer in-store customers the same promotional benefits as online shoppers.

Offline Mode

Continue processing sales – even without an internet connection – using Shopify POS’ offline mode. Then, automatically sync data with the online store once the internet connection is restored.

Sales Analytics

Gain insights into in-person sales performance through your Shopify POS dashboard, then utilize that data to track best-selling products, monitor trends, and make informed business decisions.

Mobile Accessibility

Access your Shopify POS app on tablets and smartphones for on-the-go sales to manage your store from virtually anywhere.

Order Management

Manage orders seamlessly, including processing returns and exchanges; view and fulfill orders directly from your Shopify POS interface.

Integrated Payments

Process payments securely through Shopify Payments or integrate with third-party payment gateways.

Barcode Scanning

Utilize barcode scanning to quickly add products to a sale and manage your inventory efficiently – across both bricks-and-mortar and online iterations of your store.

Staff Management

Create staff accounts with different permissions to track their sales activities, monitor staff performance, and restrict access to sensitive information.

Customer-Facing Display

Use a customer-facing display to show order details, prices, and promotions during the checkout process.

Location Management

Use Shopify POS to manage multiple physical locations efficiently from your Shopify dashboard: keeping tabs on sales, inventory, and performance for each location you do business at.

Gift Cards

Sell and redeem gift cards in-store, providing customers with a flexible gifting option.

Tax Calculation

Shopify POS automatically calculates and apply taxes based on your business’s geographic location and tax rules.

Integrated with Shopify Online Store

Seamlessly integrate in-person and online sales channels for a unified retail experience.

How Good Is Shopify POS' Help and Support?

Being a Shopify product, Shopify POS enables you to benefit from the all the same help and support options as the ecommerce website builder.

That includes self-service avenues such as consulting the Shopify Community – an enormous online forum powered by Shopify’s glut of 900,000 members – or looking to the Shopify Help Center for answers.

For more pressing answers to your – perhaps more complicated – Shopify POS queries, Shopify’s live chat is available 24/7, and accessible from its Help Center.

You can also email Shopify about issues with your POS setup, reach out via social media, or call its team 24/7.

For the full list of Shopify POS phone numbers – and for our comprehensive review about its support options – head to our guide to the best ways to contact Shopify customer service.

What Shopify POS Integrations Are Available?

Shopify POS integrates with a variety of third-party applications and services to enhance its functionality and cater to the specific needs of your store.

Here are some notable Shopify POS integrations for your business.

QuickBooks

Shopify POS integrates seamlessly with QuickBooks, a popular accounting software. This integration streamlines financial processes by automatically syncing sales, taxes, and payment data between Shopify and QuickBooks: transferring sales and financial data for you, to save your team time on manual data entry.

Shopify POS also integrates with Xero, another popular accounting software provider.

Mailchimp

For businesses focusing on email marketing, the Mailchimp integration allows you to sync customer data between Shopify POS and Mailchimp. You can create targeted email campaigns based on customer behavior, segment customers based on their purchase history, and set up automated, personalized email campaigns to engage with customers at various stages of the buying cycle.

Zendesk

Shopify POS integrates with Zendesk, a customer support and engagement platform. This integration allows you to manage customer support tickets seamlessly, access relevant customer information to provide personalized support, and enhance communication and collaboration among your support teams.

Capsule

Capsule CRM integration enables you to manage customer relationships effectively by syncing between Shopify POS and Capsule CRM.

You can keep customer information organized and accessible in a centralized CRM, identify sales and follow-up opportunities based on customer interactions, and streamline task management related to customer interactions.

These integrations are just a few examples of the many Shopify apps available in the Shopify App Store. You can explore these integrations to tailor your Shopify POS system to your store’s specific needs: whether it’s accounting, marketing, customer support, customer relationship management – or more!

Shopify POS: Summary

Shopify Point of Sale system is a great asset to the ecommerce builder’s platform. We highly recommend it if you’re using Shopify for your online store and need to take in person payments to sync with your online inventory.

Shopify POS shows Shopify’s commitment to helping its merchants grow both online and offline.

If you are a pure online shop, this won’t be so relevant for you. But if you conduct any sales in a brick and mortar retail store, adopting the Shopify POS system can be very helpful to create a smooth customer experience, as well as easier inventory management for you or your team.

Whether you have one or more in-person locations, or you need a POS system to attend events or popups, Shopify has tools to cater to your needs. Why not give its free trial a go and see if it’s the right fit for your business?

FAQs

You can add more locations through your store’s online admin panel.
No – you can choose what products you want to be available for your offline store, and these can be different from your online store.
No – all your online store products will be automatically loaded in the Shopify POS when you log into the POS app on your iPad.
Yes – the Shopify POS App allows you to integrate your existing payment terminal.
Yes, you can configure your sales reports to separate the sales to online or offline, or blend them together if you prefer.
Yes, simply plug in more Shopify Readers and use as many iPads as you want to!

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I’ve written for brands and businesses all over the world – empowering everyone from solopreneurs and micro-businesses to enterprises to some of the ecommerce industry’s best-known brands: including Yahoo!, Ecwid, and Entrepreneur. My commitment for the future is to empower my audience to make better, more effective decisions: whether that’s helping you pick the right platform to build your website with, the best hosting provider for your needs, or offering recommendations as to what – and how – to sell.

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