To differentiate itself in a saturated market, Revel Systems is launching branded mobile apps for merchants.
The white label service has an upfront fee of $8,900. Merchants will also have to pay $119 per store location, per month.
Revel is one of the many iPad based point-of-sale systems that have flooded the industry. Since its founding in 2010, it’s deployed 20,000 terminals at chains and franchises throughout the U.S. The company counts Smoothie King, Popeyes Chicken, Goodwill, and Arby’s among its clients.
Its new app-building service lets merchants create a mobile marketplace which can be designed to handle pre-orders for food pick-up, delivery, and retail shipping. It can also show users a list of nearby store locations. Like its physical point-of-sale system, Revel’s white label apps will accept a variety of payments including PayPal and Apple Pay.
Revel designs and makes apps in collaboration with merchants, and then handles the process of getting the app into app stores. Through Revel’s custom mobile apps, merchants also have an opportunity to get deeper insights into customers. Cofounder and CTO Chris Ciabarra said that using beacon technology, his point-of-sale system will be able to recognize nearby customers, so merchants can pull up a profile when a customer walks in the door. Merchants can also develop their own loyalty programs for customers through the app.
Stanford University is the first institution to develop a mobile app for its students through Revel. The new Stanford app will let students pre-order meals from the cafeteria and pick them up on arrival, which means no more long cafeteria lines.
Though many point-of-sale and payments companies set brands up with ecommerce sites, not many provide mobile app services, which can otherwise be a huge expense for merchants. One competitor, PayPal, is already building mobile apps for its clients through its acquisition of Paydiant. The company recently rolled out an updated app for Subway restaurants that lets users pay for meals with PayPal. But as consumers increasingly shop from their phones, it’s likely more merchants will consider building their own standalone mobile apps, and, as a result, more payment companies will want to offer app services.
For now, though, Revel is still one of few point-of-sale systems to provide merchants with their own branded app, giving it an edge over the competition.