Going Green at the Point of Sale

Every business has its own reason for implementing a new point-of-sale solution. Some may want a set-up that has beefed up features and functionality. Others may need a new system that complies with EMV or other security standards like P2PE or tokenization. But what about using a POS to go green? That's a possibility and potential sales tool as well.

 

Green trends
Going green has been a major business movement over the past year. Firms are doing whatever they can to cut back on the waste they produce, whether it's switching materials used to make their products, leveraging tools and machinery that require less fuel or energy, or simply turning off their lights when they leave the office at night. However, going green is something to which consumers are paying attention. A 2014 study conducted by Nielsen found that customers are putting their money where their mouths are - 55 percent of online consumers said they are willing to pay more for products and services provided by companies that are committed to improving their environmental impact.

"Consumers around the world are saying loud and clear that a brand's social purpose is among the factors that influence purchase decisions," said Amy Fenton, global leader of public development and sustainability, Nielsen. "This behavior is on the rise and it provides opportunities for meaningful impact in our communities, in addition to helping to grow share for brands."

"Employees at green companies were more likely to be satisfied with their jobs,"

But more than that, other studies have shown that going green can have a positive influence internally. Citing a study conducted by Charlton College of Business at the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth, Inc Magazine reported employees at green companies were more likely to be satisfied with their jobs when compared to workers at firms that are not as environmentally friendly. A separate report from the University of California-Los Angeles' Institute of Environment and Sustainability found that employees at green companies are 16 percent more productive than average. Clearly there are some huge benefits to going green.

Making the POS solution a point within green initiatives
While there are probably more meaningful ways to go green than switching POS solutions, the fact of the matter is that doing so is one way businesses can work toward that goal. Companies use a lot of paper each and every year to print receipts, and utilizing a POS that can send paperless receipts or has a paper-saving mode may help enterprises reduce their environmental footprint.

Many modern receipt printers have some sort of paper-saving mode, which works to cut down receipt paper usage. First, this feature cuts down on white space - the empty areas on the sides and bottom of receipts and in between the lines. At the same time, it is critical that businesses make sure this mode doesn't damage the integrity of the receipt - they don't want logos or contact information being completely illegible.

Paperless receipt options are another area in which businesses can reduce their paper trail. Paperless receipt functions allow enterprises to send receipts to customers digitally through email, text messages and other communication mediums. Some people prefer to have a hard copy of their receipt, so going paperless is not necessarily the ultimate method of going green, but once again, it is a feature that can be used to improve environmental friendliness.

Getting a POS with green features such as paper-saving modes and paperless receipt options is just one step in broader green initiatives, and can help companies become a more attractive prospect both to customers and employees.