Differences Between A Cash Register, ATM And POS

In this article, we will be learning the difference between a Cash Register, POS, and an ATM. You may be wondering if there is any comparison between the three. Let’s take a quick look at the meaning of each of them.  


Cash Register: Cash registers are heavy and bulky items that can take up a considerable amount of space and they require specific locations within your store to be plugged in and operational. They are difficult to move to clean around, and cannot be locked securely away.


Point Of Sale (POS): A point of sale (POS) is a place where a customer executes the payment for goods or services and where sales taxes may become payable. A POS transaction may occur in person or online, with receipts generated either in print or electronically. In most cases, a point of sale (POS) system is a hardware and software system that processes transactions and records data.


ATM: What is an ATM? It’s a machine that dispenses cash or performs other banking services when an account holder inserts a bank card.


At some point, you may have seen them at retail businesses and/or restaurants. As you can see each of them has different functionalities. But all have one thing in common, they are used to make transactions of some sort. Whether it be to accept, hold or dispense money. Though an ATM is only used to dispense money and perform other banking services, some businesses have them in their establishments so that consumers can have access to a way of getting money to spend. Having an ATM in your business can attract more customers, but keep in mind that it’ll be an added expense on a monthly basis. Also, an ATM has limited options and functions. An ATM may eventually earn some income for your business, but the initial costs involved can be daunting. Keep in mind the cost of the machine itself and bank fees. Regardless of whether or not you end up choosing to add an ATM, it’s a good idea to be well-informed on the various pros and cons.


Now let’s talk about the similarities between a Cash Register and POS. As you may already know the cash register was created a long time ago for business purposes, especially as a preventative measure towards employee theft. In fact, it still concerns business owners. Did you know that employee theft is the second-most leading cause of shrinkage for businesses? While traditional cash registers might have been the norm for retailers of past years, modern devices look and work a little differently now. Though some business owners are still holding on to the traditional machines or other outdated systems, they are missing out on valuable benefits that range from added flexibility to improving their sales through data and analytics. Retailers today, whether running a kiosk or managing multiple store locations, face the reality of finding smarter ways to run their businesses while staying current with what consumers expect from their in-store experience. A cash register in the traditional sense is entirely different from a POS system. Basic cash registers are limited in their capabilities and can only handle things like basic day-to-day operations such as logging transactions, making calculations, or generating receipts.


That being said upgrading your cash register to a POS will not only modernize your day-to-day operations, but will also give your establishment a wealth of data that will help you see your business in a completely different light. It will also give your business flexibility and access to data, to create efficiencies, a POS has countless benefits that will transform the way you do business. Here is a list of said benefits:


  • Save time and money
  • Flexibility and convenience
  • Omnichannel capabilities
  • Customer relationships management tools
  • Access in-depth reporting and analytics
  • Touchscreen device
  • Card scanner
  • Chip reader
  • Barcode scanner
  • Server (Cloud-based)
  • Inventory management
  • And much more


POS systems have become more advanced throughout the years and continue to evolve in a way that will enhance your business. POS systems are essential for multi-channel sellers, as they can track and sync data across multiple store locations, warehouses, and/or fulfillment centers. It also provides a centralized location for data which allows business owners to stay on top of various channels and stores from a single platform. Choosing between a cash register and POS for your business is a very important and major business decision. So when doing so make sure that you make the right investment choice to meet your business needs. Remember it’s very important that you educate yourself well enough by doing some research and asking questions that will guide you in the right direction to be a smooth and easy process.


 ABPay is always ready and available to answer any questions you may have. Our goal is to guide business owners in the right direction. For more information don’t hesitate to contact us.

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