by Grace Barone
Clover has recently unveiled it's updated version of their handheld POS system, the Clover Flex 3. This device is a mobile POS system that runs off either Wi-Fi or LTE. Handheld devices like these are growing in popularity among businesses. In the past, businesses that were on the go, like vendors and food trucks were really the only ones that needed a mobile POS system. But recently, many more businesses have discovered the possibilities that having a handheld POS can bring to their business.
Clover Flex 2 vs. Flex 3
I want to highlight some of the updates that Clover has made to the Flex before I get into how it can benefit your business. The following are some of the notable differences between the two Clover versions:
Both versions of the Flex run on an Android operating system. The Flex 3 runs on Android 10 (API Level 29) which is a more updated and sophisticated compared to the Flex 2, which runs on Android 8.1 (API Level 27, Oreo). The Flex 2 does have an option to upgrade to the Android 10 but that means paying for the upgrade. With the Clover Flex 3, you have the current Android operating system right out of the box.
Clover also upgraded the Flex's display from 5" with a resolution of 720x1280 XHDPI to 5.99" with a resolution of 720x1440 XHDPI. While the Flex isn't tiny, it is much smaller than a traditional POS system. Making the screen slightly larger with higher resolution makes it even more user friendly than it already was.
The previous version has a trigger-activated 1D and 2D barcode scanner. The new version still has a 1D and 2D scanner, but it now has a dedicated external button for barcode scanning. This was also to increase it's user friendly lure as well as making the scanning process more accurate and efficient.
This is the most important upgrade Clover made to the Flex in my opinion. The Clover Flex 2 only supports 4G/LTE, the Flex 3 now supports Wi-Fi on top of 4G/LTE cellular data. Having the ability to run on both is a major plus. The Flex 3 connectivity is also available in more regions compared to the Flex 2. Regions that support different cellular bands have the same connectivity with the Flex 3 compared to the Flex 2 which only offers 4G/LTE for all regions.
Features that Haven't Changed
The Clover Flex 2 was already a great device, so here are the things that have stayed the same between the two. Both versions have the same memory setup, 2-GB RAM and 16-GB flash storage as well as identical Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 octa-core processor. The Flex 3 still has the same 5MP camera as the earlier version. Both devices are also equipped with the same MSR and NFC reader as well as an EMV chip card reader. The thermal receipt printer, 3.5mm audio jack, speaker and microphone have also stayed the same between the two devices.
How can your Business Utilize a Clover Flex?
Businesses are quickly seeing that having a handheld POS system has many benefits. People are constantly on the go, so why shouldn't your POS system be the same? With a mobile POS system your business can now go to where the sales are. Taking your business out to the public can increase your sales, help you network with other businesses, and bring in more customers. Having a handheld POS system can also help with your customer experience, retail stores and restaurants can utilize these devices to maximize their efficiency.
Typically business owners use the Flex in conjunction with a Clover Solo or Duo, which are larger more traditional POS systems. Although, the Clover Flex has a lot of the same features as larger Clover POS systems. Inventory and sales tracking, business reporting and the Clover app market are all available with the Flex. This means that in theory, your business can essentially run with just the Flex.
If you're considering whether or not to implement a Clover Flex at your business, here is a list of businesses that may not realize the benefits of having one.
Pay at the Table
Restaurant's can use the Clover Flex in a few different ways. The obvious way is if a restaurant goes to an event. When summer rolls around fairs and farmers market are very popular. Being able to sell your food outside of your restaurant can increase sales and introduce more people to your business. Another way that many restaurants have implemented the Flex is paying at the table.
The most annoying thing about eating out is paying, especially if the restaurant is busy (at least I think so, and I used to be a waitress). You get your bill dropped off to you, then you wait for your server to come back and get it, then you wait for them to ring it up and bring it back to you. This is a lot of waiting for customers and a lot of running around for the servers. It wastes a lot of time. Well now with the addition of a handheld POS system, your customers can pay right at the table with the Flex.
To maximize its efficiency, the server can use the flex to place the order instead of writing it down and inputting it into another POS system. The order gets sent straight to the kitchen and when the customer is finished, their order information is all on the Flex. This will speed up the entire process and chances are customer satisfaction will increase. A great app to download on your Clover device is Clover Dining. This app allows you to create your own floor plan, making hosting easy, simple bill splitting and more. It's also a great app to have if your restaurant also has a bar inside it.
This is a given. The whole premise of a food truck is to hop from location to location. If you have a food truck, you're going to need some kind of mobile POS system. The Flex is a great option for this type of business. Not only is it compact, so you don't have to worry about it taking up any counter space, but there are apps specifically for food trucks. One app that's great is Food on a Truck. This app will revolutionize the way your food truck runs.
Within the app you can create a schedule of where your truck will be and when. The app integrates with twitter and will automatically send out tweets with information on where and when your truck is open. This ensures your customers know where you are. If you're just showing up at places without making an effort to tell people, you're really just rolling the dice on whether or not people are going to come visit you. It also gives you great sales data. You can see how well you did at each specific location. This can help you figure out where the most lucrative spots are, so you don't waste any time being in an area where you aren't seeing business.
The world of fur babies is at an all time high. Dog daycares and groomers are seeing a boom in business. One business that I have been seeing a lot more of are mobile groomers.
Some pets get easily stressed out, going to the groomer may be a stressful situation for them. Or maybe the owner isn't able to get their pet to the groomer on a regular basis. Its much easier for pet parents to have the groomer come to them. This also opens up opportunities for independent dog groomers who maybe don't want to be a part of a larger business. These mobile groomers either go inside the clients homes. Or, they have a set up similar to a food truck, where the inside of the vehicle is where the grooming happens. In both scenarios, the dog groomer needs a way to accept payment that isn't just cash.
This is where the Clover Flex comes in handy. Not only can you accept all forms of payment on it, but the app Groomer.io makes mobile grooming seamless. This app lets you schedule appointments and it will send out reminders to your clients. Not only can you schedule appointment but you can schedule them based on location. If you're traveling to different places all day, it makes more sense to schedule them based on where they're at. You don't want to be traveling all the way across town for every client. With Groomer.io you can efficiently schedule appointments and make sure your clients are getting groomed on a regular basis.
Another business that needs to have a mobile POS system are ride share services and taxis. One app that can be downloaded on your Clover Flex is called TeckyPay Ride. This app optimizes taxi fleet management options and the overall customer service experience. It will calculate fully customizable fares based on real time. It also has GPS tracking, including fields for tolls, tips or other costs. As well as produce reports calculating all charges based on date, driver, or geographic area. With the combination of this app and your Clover Flex, being a taxi driver has never been easier.
Similar to the way restaurants can use the Flex, boutiques and other retail stores can use it too. If you have a small shop and frequently run into the issue of having long lines, the addition of a Flex can free up space by checking customers out quicker. You can have one employee at the main register checking people out and another going around to customers in the store and checking them out on the spot. Since the Flex connects to your other Clover devices you can continue to track your sales and inventory while checking out customer in line and around the store simultaneously.
Contractors, Tow-Trucks and Locksmiths
These businesses are all sort of in the same realm and all need to be able to accept payment on the go. In the past, these services were either cash only or they had to send invoices. This meant waiting for payments and having to carry around cash. By having a Flex these businesses can now accept all forms of payment on the go. This means payments get made faster and hit your bank quicker too. Not to mention, most people prefer paying with a card so if your competition only accepts cash, you now have an advantage.
Getting a Clover Flex at your Business
No matter what business you run, there are benefits to having a Clover Flex. If you're interested in getting your own handheld POS system, head to getvms.com , call us at (888) 920-6227, or fill out the form below. We can help you get a Clover Flex or another mobile POS systems, as well as any other Clover device and get you set up with the right apps for your business!