Anyone who has gone to a department store recently has probably noticed checkout counters scattered throughout the store. The idea is to make it easier for customers to make purchases—the point of sale (POS) is more decentralized now than ever, with POS systems located beyond the conventional exit point of a store. Now, new technology has it possible to for POS systems to change the flow and experience of traditional brick-and-mortar retailers. The era of mobile point of sale (mPOS) is here.

Employees with smartphones or tablets, a card reader, and a merchant account can check out customers anywhere in the store now with mobile POS systems. This means greater convenience for the customer, and likely greater sales. After all, if a business can make the sale right then and there, the customer will not be able to change his or her mind between the sale and their finding a checkout counter. This is especially true if a business is holding an in-store demonstration. With mPOS, retailers can have a salesperson close the sale then and there, when they are still excited about the product or service.

Salespeople with mobile devices are not only able to make sales on the spot; they can also help customers locate products in the store and even check prices. Returns are made much easier as well, since customers will not have to hunt down the returns department. This kind of ease and convenience will improve the customer experience and increase the chances of a return visit.

With mPOS, brick-and-mortar retailers are no longer tied to their physical space. Outdoor plant sales, for example, would be made much easier. Booth sales and even mobile sales are made possible. Indeed, there could be many mobile sales options that would be made much easier with mPOS technology.

Mobility has changed the way businesses collaborate and engage with customers. Mobile technology has already revolutionized ridesharing, hospitality and other industries, and it is only natural that the retail industry, in desperate need of innovation, can benefit from these innovations as well.