Business

Zing wants to liberate retail chains from crappy old point-of-sale systems

Zing POS mobile platform
Image Credit: Zing

Point-of-sale (POS) technology has made huge leaps over the last decade, and yet most brick-and-mortar business chains are stuck using bulky, rigid, and costly systems that have been around for decades.

It’s something payments startup Zing is trying to do something about with the release of its new POS platform today.

The platform is initially presented as a way to ditch clunky, old desktop computers in favor of tablets, which means the user interface and navigation is much friendlier (see image below). Businesses can also customize the look of the POS interface, get automatic updates/bug fixes, and push the POS to a company’s main website for online ordering as part of Zing’s premium monthly service. Zing replaces existing POS systems (Micro, Retail Pro, MCR, etc.) being used by businesses with multiple locations, and plugs into other SaaS sales services like Bigcommerce, MailChimp, and Quickbooks Online. Zing’s service runs about $50 to $129 per location per month.

A screenshot of Zing's Point-of-Sale (POS) user interface.

Above: A screenshot of Zing’s Point-of-Sale (POS) user interface.

Image Credit: Zing

“We see a lot of customers running old POS systems that cost $10,000 or more to install, and [these] can’t do much more than run payments from a single machine,” said Zing CEO and cofounder Nate Stewart in an interview with VentureBeat. “Of course, those retail chains can still do things like online ordering or setting up a mobile POS, but they have to pay more to plug it into an additive [third-party] service. Zing wants to do everything via built-in integrations.”

Stewart pointed out that a lot of businesses view changing a POS system as a major cost, and usually that’s what is holding them back from upgrading. At the same time, he said he and the Zing team is also hearing from newer businesses that might have started out with a mobile point-of-sale solution from a company like Square, and now find it impossible to scale as they add locations.

“Square is good for popup businesses and businesses that only ever have one location with products that don’t change very often,” he explained. “But most of the time, Square tops out for growing businesses, and the [legacy POS] systems are either too complicated or expensive to upgrade to.”

Right now Zing is focused on pulling in retail chains, but its system can be used by restaurants as well. And although Stewart declined to share financial details or its number of clients, he did say Zing is generating revenue and adding about 600 new locations to the platform every month.

Founded in 2012, the Austin, Tex.-based startup has raised $500,000 in seed funding from Silverton Partners, Floodgate, Capital Factory, and others.


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