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Toast POS Alternatives: 6 Solutions That Simply Work Better

Tillie Demetriou
7 Nov 2022

Calling all restaurant owners! 

Are you looking for a restaurant management platform that offers more than what Toast POS provides? Do you need help finding robust features and reliable customer service?

Look no further. In this blog, we'll explore five top Toast POS alternatives in the market and how they can revolutionise your restaurant business. By the end of this guide, you'll know the following:

  • The best toast pos alternatives and why they are better
  • What is a restaurant management system, and how does it differ from a restaurant POS
  • The features and capabilities of each platform
  • Which solution will work best according to your needs

Whether you're a start-up or established in the restaurant industry, these solutions will provide powerful tools to help you manage everything from inventory control to employee scheduling. We'll review their features, pricing plans, and customer support so you can decide on selecting the best platform for your needs.

What is a restaurant POS system?

A restaurant point of sale (POS) system is a computerised system that allows a restaurant business to process transactions quickly and efficiently. It's an integral part of daily operations and can help streamline inventory control, customer tracking, employee time management, and more.

Suppose you're a restaurant looking for a POS system that's reliable, user-friendly, and cost-effective. In that case, you should consider the five Toast POS alternatives below. From cloud-based solutions to restaurant management software, these systems offer powerful features and robust customer support to help you manage your business better.

POS software vs. POS Hardware: what's the difference?

POS hardware refers to the physical components of a point of sale (POS) system, such as cash registers and card readers. These are essential components for processing payments quickly and safely.

On the other hand, POS software is the digital platform that runs on these devices. It includes features to help manage inventory control, employee tracking, customer loyalty programs, analytics reporting, and more.

Together, POS software and hardware form the backbone of a restaurant's POS system, providing efficient processes to help streamline operations.

TIP: Own a retail store? Check out our retail POS system. It's the perfect all in one POSsolution to assist you with your retail management.

Cloud-based point of sale systems vs. restaurant management software

Before diving into the five Toast POS alternatives, let's first discuss the difference between cloud-based POS systems and restaurant management software.

Cloud-based POS systems provide an all-in-one solution with integrated features such as customer relationship management (CRM), inventory control, employee tracking, and more. This POS system is ideal for businesses that need to manage multiple locations or those wanting to reduce the cost of hardware and installation.

On the other hand, restaurant management software provides a comprehensive solution specifically designed for restaurants. It helps you conveniently control inventory, process orders quickly, and view sales data in real time. This system is ideal for businesses requiring a more specialised solution to manage the complexities of running a restaurant.

However, some toast pos alternatives are both. They offer a complete solution with all the features of both cloud-based and restaurant management systems.

Benefits of a POS system for your hospitality business

Hospitality POS systems offer a variety of features that can enhance your restaurant business.

Some benefits include:

  • Automated orders: Streamline order processing with automated order entry and tracking, enabling you to quickly process customer orders and automated menu management.
  • Increased accuracy: Reduce errors in order taking, billing, and inventory tracking by automating data entry.
  • Enhanced customer experience: Increase customer satisfaction with a streamlined ordering process and mobile payment options
  • Increased efficiency: Streamline operations, reduce labour costs and improve the overall efficiency of your restaurant
  • Enhanced customer management: Manage a customer loyalty program, gift cards, and subscriptions more conveniently with POS software
  • Real-time data visibility: With pos software, you can get up-to-date data on sales, customers, inventory levels, and more.

Now let's review the five best Toast POS alternatives and what they have to offer.

Toast POS Alternatives

#1 Epos Now

Our leading choice for Toast POS alternatives is the industry leader, Epos Now.

The company was founded in 2011 in Norwich, England, and since then has been providing cost-effective POS solutions to businesses worldwide.

Founder and CEO Jacyn Heavens comes from a background in hospitality, and his mission was to make POS technology accessible to businesses that may not have been able to afford it.

This cloud based system comes with robust features, such as inventory management, customer relationship management (CRM), employee tracking, and more. With their intuitive user friendly interface and comprehensive sales reports capabilities, it's easy to manage your restaurant operations with Epos Now.

Let's take a closer look at some of the features offered by Epos Now:

Gets your front of house and back of house teams working in tandem:

An Epos Now integrated POS system will help to get both your front and back of house teams working in tandem. This includes real-time table management, helping you increase customer satisfaction with faster service times.

For example, customers can place orders directly from their table, and staff can process orders quickly. Your kitchen will be updated in real-time, so they know exactly what to prepare.

Integrated payment processing:

Epos Now's in-house payment processing makes it easy for customers to pay for their orders. Their flat-rate pricing means you don't have to worry about any hidden fees or extra charges. Plus, all your payment data is securely stored, so you can easily access it whenever you need it.

Epos Now payments accepts all popular credit card payments and debit card payments, plus you can also offer a faster, more convenient checkout process with a contactless or remote payment solution.

With one customer support team, working 24/7, you can rest assured that any issues will be quickly taken care of.

TIP: Check out our payment processing services today!

Integrates with third-party apps:

Epos Now integrates with a range of third-party apps. This includes accounting and payroll software, so you can keep an eye on your finances without leaving the system. Plus, it also works with loyalty programs and online ordering systems, enabling customers to place orders online for pick up or delivery.

Some of our favourite apps for restaurants and other hospitality companies include:

  • Epos Now Delivery: Allows business owners to connect with more customers on leading third party delivery apps, including Deliveroo, JustEat, and UberEats
  • Epos Now Order & Pay: Customers can place orders online and pay with their mobile devices. This order management system reduces customer wait times.
  • Quickbooks: Automatically sync your sales and customer data, saving you time on bookkeeping.
  • KDS: Synchronise your front and back of house with a kitchen display system (KDS) fit for purpose. Touchscreens are integrated with POS compatibility, audio order alerts for new and updated orders, and multiple station view and order grouping.

Inventory Management and stock control:

Keep track of your stock and monitor inventory levels in real-time. With an Epos Now system, you can track stock levels, create reports, and ensure your restaurant is always stocked with what it needs.

Get up-to-date insights into your business to help make more informed decisions. Epos Now's analytics dashboard gives you an overview of sales and customer data, so you can stay on top of things.

Overall, Epos Now is a great choice for restaurants and other hospitality businesses looking for toast pos alternatives. It is easy to use, comes with powerful features, and integrates with a range of third-party apps. Plus, it provides real-time data visibility and keeps your front and back of house teams in sync. So if you're looking for a restaurant management platform, then Epos Now should definitely be at the top of your list.

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Other Toast POS competitors

#2 Lightspeed

Lightspeed is another option for restaurants and other hospitality businesses looking for a Toast POS alternative. Lightspeed offers strong inventory management, including keeping track of stock levels and analysing sales data to help you make better decisions.

It also has integrated payment processing, so customers can pay quickly and securely with their mobile devices. Plus, Lightspeed has an online order management system, which customers can use to place orders for pick up or delivery.

Additionally, Lightspeed offers a wide range of integrations with third-party apps, including accounting and payroll software.

#3 Square

Square is a great choice for small businesses just getting their bearings in the restaurant space. It's easy to use and has integrated payment processing, so customers can pay quickly and securely with their mobile device.

However, it lacks key restaurant functionality that other Toast POS alternatives provide, such as online ordering systems and robust inventory management.

#4 Aloha

Aloha may have been left behind in the evolution of hospitality management platforms, but it still offers some useful features. Aloha is a comprehensive POS system that has integrated payment processing and online ordering. It also comes with analytics tools to help you monitor sales data and make better decisions about your business.

However, Aloha lacks important tech and service features when compared to alternative pos systems' real-time reporting, 24/7 support, and instant menu updates.

#5 Breadcrumb

Breadcrumb is a restaurant management platform that offers powerful features, including inventory management and analytics tools, to help you manage your business. It also integrates with third-party apps such as accounting and payroll software.

However, Breadcrumb lacks some of the features offered by alternative pos systems, such as online ordering. Additionally, Breadcrumb doesn't have 24/7 customer support or real-time reporting.

#6 Upserve POS: 

Upserve POS is another option for restaurants and other hospitality venues looking for a Toast POS alternative. Upserve offers an all-in-one restaurant management platform that includes integrated payment processing, online ordering, analytics tools, and more

However, if you want inventory management, online ordering, or other features, you will have to pay an additional fee, so it doesn't cater to all of your business needs.

10 Tips for Choosing the Best Toast POS Alternative for Your Business

1. Consider your budget

The first thing to consider when choosing the best Toast POS alternative for your business is your budget. Make sure you know how much you can afford to spend on a hospitality management platform.

Remember, some POS systems may be more expensive up-front but offer more features and integrations, while others may be cheaper in the short term but require additional investments down the line.

2. Look for a comprehensive feature set.

When choosing a Toast POS alternative, make sure it offers a comprehensive feature set that meets your restaurant's needs. This includes integrated payment processing, online ordering, and inventory management tools. Additionally, look for a platform that offers 24/7 customer support and real-time reporting.

3. Make sure it is user-friendly.

A restaurant management platform should be easy to use and understand, so make sure the one you choose is user-friendly. Additionally, look for a platform that offers training or tutorials to help you get up to speed quickly.

TIP: Your POS provider should offer demos beforehand to ensure that its platform is suitable for your restaurant. If they don't do this, question why!

4. Check customer reviews

It's always a good idea to check customer reviews before investing in any service or product. This will help you find out how others have experienced the platform and if it meets their needs. Additionally, make sure the POS provider has a good reputation and is well-regarded in the restaurant industry.

5. Make sure it integrates with third-party apps.

Your Toast POS alternative should be able to integrate with other third-party applications such as accounting and payroll software. This will help streamline your operations and make it easier to manage your business. Additionally, look for a POS provider that offers integrations with popular restaurant apps, such as Delivery or Order & Pay.

6. Consider scalability.

When choosing a Toast POS alternative, make sure it is scalable and can grow with your business. Some POS systems may only offer limited features, so look for one that can easily be updated or integrated with new features when needed. Restaurant owners need to be sure that when their business grows, so can their pos software.

7. Look for integrated payment processing.

Integrated payment processing is essential for a restaurant management platform. What it means is that your POS system should be able to process payments and manage customer data in a secure and efficient manner. Be sure the option you choose is PCI-compliant, meaning it meets the industry's highest standards for data security. You'll also want to ensure there's a fixed cost and no hidden fees to worry about.

8. Look for reporting and analytics tools.

Reporting and analytics tools are essential in any restaurant management platform. They help you make better decisions about your restaurant by providing insights into customer behavior, sales trends, inventory levels, and more. Additionally, look for a POS system that offers real-time analytics to help you make data-driven decisions.

9. Make sure it supports multiple locations.

If your restaurant operates in multiple locations, be sure the Toast POS alternative you choose can support them all. This will make managing customer data and sales easier across all your locations. Additionally, look for a POS system that offers cloud-based solutions, so you can access real-time data from any internet-connected device.

10. Don't forget about customer support.

Finally, ensure the POS provider offers 24/7 customer service and technical support. Having someone to call when you experience an issue with your restaurant management platform can save a lot of headaches down the line. Also, look for a POS system that provides regular updates to keep it running smoothly.

Final thoughts

So there you have it. When it comes to choosing a Toast POS alternative, there are many factors to consider.

Take the time to research different options and find one that meets all of your restaurant's needs. With the right platform in place, you can enjoy more efficient operations and improved customer satisfaction.

We hope this has given you some great point of sale (POS) alternatives to toast for the food and beverage industry.

Good luck!

Curious for more reviews? Check out these comparison pieces we prepared: 

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