Technology Products

Boomtown Reviews: Kounta Point of Sale

The Basics

Since 2012, Aussie cloud software developer Kounta (imagine an Australian saying the word “counter,” and you’ve got an idea of pronunciation) has been rethinking the way digital POS is done. Historically, if you wanted to modernize your old cash register, you needed to spend $10,000 to $20,000 in hardware, software, support contracts, and implementation costs—for a single location. This effectively left small businesses out of the loop, not to mention at a competitive disadvantage given all the other things a good POS could do. Kounta aims to provide a robust, full featured Point of Sale that makes no compromises on features, and is built on an open platform where the end user is in control. Thousands of businesses in Australia already use and love Kounta, and rely on it for their daily operations.  And plenty of other businesses—cloud software developers like Xero, Collect Rewards, and Deputy, whose own apps perfectly complement Kounta—have taken notice as well; these partnerships bolster Kounta’s street cred as it launches in North America this year, and their focus on hospitality leaves the company poised to seriously disrupt industry leading legacy POS systems.

Compare the price tag of legacy systems with Kounta’s starting rate of $50 a month per register ($150/month for three) and you begin to understand why the old guard might be worried. Kounta also gives merchants the freedom to use a payment provider of their choice with its integrated EMV compliant credit card capabilities. Kounta isn’t just for the small, one-shop businesses of the world: Kounta Enterprise offers custom pricing and solutions for larger operations, with centralized management of, and reporting on, an unlimited number of stores and/or brands under a single umbrella.

The Features:

Kounta was designed from the beginning to be a complete solution for hospitality and foodservice operations.  Its clever and intuitive design means that it will work just as well in retail settings, too.  The POS interface can be laid out any way you like, making it easy to replicate your existing menu right on the main screen.  Inventory management is extremely granular: menu items can be stored as recipes so that each ingredient is tracked individually, and items like beer, wine, or liquor can be tracked down to the milliliter. Customer relationship management is built in, as well, with Kounta able to keep a database of all names, contact info, and purchase history.  This ties in nicely with 3rd party integrations for loyalty programs and marketing apps.  An included employee time clock simplifies labor costing (and also works well with other 3rd party scheduling apps), and an advanced reporting module ties everything together to provide new levels of business intelligence for small businesses.  And features like table layouts, easy split payments, and tipping pre-sets make running even the busiest restaurants a breeze.

The Highlights:

Kounta’s approach has been to make enterprise level software that just happens to run in the cloud click to read.  The idea of security is not taken lightly, from the near continuous snapshotting of its own customers’ data across multiple data centers to safeguarding payments through full EMV compliance.  Despite this conservative approach to data protection and infrastructure, the software is still highly customizable for each customer experience.  That experience is central to Kounta’s design; the interface is intuitive, and users will find it very easy to accomplish very complex operations.

Also, unlike other software, Kounta’s pricing isn’t based feature sets; rather, it’s the size of your operation that determines how much you pay, and you get the same features regardless of your size.  This means that a one store/one register boutique has access to the same robust analytics that a national chain would.  More so than ever before, small businesses are able to rely on enterprise-class reporting and analytical information to run smarter, more efficient operations.  Big box stores don’t just have lower prices because of volume: they have sophisticated software that tells them what, when, and how much of each item to buy for resale.  Having access to tools like these is a game-changer for the Mom-and-Pop stores of the world.

Who It Works Best For:

Because of its modularity and rich features, Kounta is just as at home in a small gift shop as it is in a 50-location chain restaurant.  However, with foodservice as its focus, owners of bars, cafes, restaurants, bistros, coffee shops, bakeries, and anything else you can think of in this category will see the greatest benefit.  Businesses such as these have very specialized and particular needs, because Kounta was designed with the purpose of meeting those needs.  Much thought was given to easing the process of ordering food, and the way the POS handles modifiers and variants ensures that kitchens will keep errors to an absolute minimum and customers will get exactly what they want.  Rules-based price lists make daily specials and Happy Hours effortless; item specific order printing makes sure that food orders go to the kitchen, and drinks go to the bar; integrations with other apps like Beat the Q for online take-out ordering, or the mobile/social app Collect Rewards for customer loyalty, give business owners new ways to retain customers while encouraging new people to give them a try.  Running a restaurant has never been described as an easy venture, but with Kounta you can’t exactly call it difficult, either.

Read more about Kounta’s Point of Sale System

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