Don’t let the fear of migration put you off upgrading your POS system. With just a little research and planning, you can make a smooth change and start reaping the benefits of an up-to-date and robust payment solution. With that in mind, here is a guide on how to migrate effortlessly to a new POS system.
Choose the right POS system
Whenever you do any sort of migration, look at it as a way to prepare your business for the future. Since you can only make educated guesses at what the future will hold, you should aim to prioritise flexible payment solutions.
For example, Square POS software can be as lightweight or as feature-rich as you wish. You can start out with a Square Terminal or a more complete Square Register with its numerous hardware options. All these different options can be easily swapped or combined as your business develops.
Part of choosing the right payment solution is choosing the right payment platform to process your transactions. In particular, there are five key points you need to check:
- Transparent pricing
- Reporting capabilities
- Support for partner integrations
- Prompt support for new payment formats as they emerge
It’s also advisable that you check what value-add services a payment platform offers. For example, with Square, you get access to a huge suite of in-built applications to help you run your business. Many of these are available completely free and will give you access to the Square App Marketplace where you can find thousands of partner integrations.
Clean up your data
You want your data to be clean before you transfer it to the new system. You can do this while you’re researching new POS systems or as part of the migration process. But bear in mind that if you choose the latter route, it should be your first step.
It’s also a good idea to analyse why your data became degraded in the first place. If the underlying issue was with your POS system, then it should be solvable by upgrading your payment solution. If, however, it was related to other business processes, e.g. data capture on your website, then you’ll probably want to get it fixed before you migrate.
Review your backup process
You should be backing up your data regularly and effectively regardless of what payment solution you use. Migrating to a new payment platform is an excellent opportunity to double-check your backup process to mitigate any loss.
Map out a project plan
A project plan is going to help you manage the whole process and keep it organised. If you’re running a small business, then it may be enough just to set up a Gantt chart for this. If you’re a large business, however, proper project-management tools are recommended. Regardless of which approach you take, you need to know the answers to three key questions.
- How do you sign up for your new payment solution?
The signup process will likely involve completing a form with your details and going through some form of verification process. The safest approach is to wait until this verification process is complete before you start processing transactions on your new payment platform. Most verifications go smoothly, however, occasionally there are complications that can take a little extra time to resolve.
- What is the process for getting up and running on your new payment platform?
If you’re working with a reputable payment platform, you can expect to be given clear instructions on what steps you need to follow. You will also be guided on the right order for them.
For example, you can find the getting started guide for Square.
It breaks down the overall process into five steps. These are:
Step 1: Get set up to take payments
Step 2: Set up your account on Square Dashboard
Step 3: Set up hardware and the Square app
Step 4: Train your team and go live
Step 5: Grow your business with Square
Each of these stages is then split out into its component parts. For example, step 1 is broken down into the following actions.
- Create an account with a business email address
- Enter business and personal info
- Enter bank account info
- Order hardware
- Download the Square app
If you need any further help, then you can contact our Support team by email or by telephone Monday to Friday between 09:00 and 17:00 GMT.
- What steps do you need to take to decommission your old payment platform?
When decommissioning your old payment platform, think carefully about every aspect of its former usage. For example, if you use integrations, how do you disconnect them and reconnect them? Will this require you to know your login details? If it does, make sure you have them ready. If you’ve forgotten or lost them then resolve the issue before you migrate.
Consider the impact on your business processes
If you’re upgrading your payment solution, there is a very strong chance that you will unlock new functionality. It makes sense to integrate this into your business processes. This may mean that your staff need some additional training.
Similarly, it can make sense to keep your old payment solution in operation for a short while after you have migrated to the new payment platform. There are two main reasons for this. Firstly, it will give you a backup plan if there are any issues with the migration. Secondly, it can make it easier to process returns.
As a rule of thumb, you should aim to keep at least one register linked to your old POS system until the returns period is over. By that point, your new payment solution should have been thoroughly tested. You can then cut the cord and stop using your old payment platform completely.
Are you ready to upgrade your POS?
If you’re interested in upgrading your POS system, please contact our sales team for personalised information on how to migrate to Square, how long it takes and the costs involved.
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