How to Integrate Terminal to Magento 2 POS?

It's hard to imagine a store where payments don't have to be processed. As a store owner, you need to deal with payment operations and make them as efficient as possible, especially if the POS system is a part of your store.

However what if you run both an online and an offline store and use the POS to track data between them in real time? Can you use terminals in this scenario?

The answer is "Yes". You can integrate a terminal into Magento POS and enhance the shopping experience of your customers. In this comprehensive guide, you'll find essential information about POS terminals and how they can be integrated into Magento.

What is POS Terminal?

A POS terminal is a piece of hardware used to process payment transactions. There is software running it which enables a terminal to read chips and magnetic strips of the cards. So, basically POS terminal is a combination of software and hardware making it an irreplaceable element of all store payment processes.

POS terminals have some interconnected components required for them to work properly. These are:

  • Tablet or smartphone — these devices are responsible for running POS software. Moreover, they bring your sales to a completely new level since they are portable and allow closing sales on the go.
  • Barcode reader — a barcode reader allows one to fetch product details by just scanning it and goes hand in hand with the terminal itself.
  • POS system — a technology biding all the mentioned elements together and providing more flexible functionality for effective store and inventory management.

Point of Sale System Setup

Types of POS terminals

The concept of the POS terminal is not new. In fact, it's gone through various development stages, growing from the most basic variants to the next-gen advanced solutions. 

That being said, we cannot but mention some of the most common types of POS terminals. Each has its own set of options. So you should analyze the needs of your store to choose a POS terminal that meets them.

Let's have a look at the types of POS terminals.

1Mobile terminal (mPOS)
— is a technology that enables any smart device you have to run a POS system. In this case, the transactions are made using the credit card reader. Its high availability and reasonable price greatly benefit the users. 
2Cloud-base terminal
— is one of the latest solutions in the area. It makes it possible to store the transactions' data on the POS system server. So there is no need for a separate on-site server.
3Self-checkout terminal
— is a terminal that allows customers to process the payment on their own. They don't have to wait in line to get to the cash register. The self-checkout terminal allows them to finalize their purchase quicker.
4On-site terminal 
— is a solution that needs a card reader and some device to work. It's usually connected to the receipt printer and cash register and has a static location.

How to Choose POS Terminal?

When it comes to choosing the POS terminal for your business there is always a lot to consider. You might wonder as to what solution is best, given the variety of options we've just discussed.

Thus, there are quite a few aspects you need to pay attention to. Let's have a closer look at them.

1. Assess the size and type of your business

When you search for a POS terminal to integrate with Magento, the first thing to consider is the size and type of your business. It determines what terminal it would be better to go for. The options vary for small and large businesses.

In some cases, you might want to have the on-site terminal. But if self-service is something your business needs, you should consider the self-checkout terminals. If you don't have a physical location for your store, you need to review a different set of solutions.

2. Determine the features you are searching for

Try to think about what features you'd like to have in your POS terminal. How do you expect it to work? What options will improve sales and facilitate your payment operations? You can even make a list and enumerate the features you'd like to have.

This helps you to have a clear picture of your expectations. Then you can just compare your list with the options various POS terminals offer to find a perfect match.

3. Consider your budget

Each type of POS terminal has a different price. For instance, cloud-based ones are more expensive than on-site terminals. It has to do with the functionality they offer.

So, you need to estimate your finances and check how much you are willing to spare for the terminal and its maintenance. 

4. Look up payment methods

It's also important to take into account whether a specific terminal supports the payment methods you accept. It always benefits to have multiple payment options. Perhaps you even have some local payment methods your case calls for. Thus, never skip such an important step when choosing a POS terminal. 

5. Pay attention to the interface and integration options

Your store might already be using some software or equipment. Therefore, you need to choose a terminal that can be easily integrated into your system. And you'd certainly want the POS terminal to be user-friendly.

It is an important aspect not only for you but your customers. The complex interface and complicated structure will do little good to your store.

6. Check out the trial period

If you are meticulously exploring the options available on the market, try to check if a POS terminal has any trial periods or demos. It helps you understand what you need since everything is much easier to test practically. Not only theoretically. 

After you analyze all the aspects mentioned above, you'll be able to narrow the list down and find the best POS terminal for your business. Yet, if you have a Magento store, you'd also need to integrate a terminal in Magento POS.

Jump to the next section to learn how to do that.

How to Choose POS terminal

How to Integrate Terminal to Magento POS?

As you know, Magento is a sought-after platform with great potential and flexible functionality. Correspondingly it allows you to integrate a POS and POS terminal. It's a great opportunity if you want to synchronize your offline and online stores effectively. Moreover, the Magento POS integration steps are not that complicated. 

So, let us guide you through the steps you need to take.

1. Choose the POS terminal 

One of the first tasks is to choose a perfect terminal for your store to eliminate any inconsistencies in the future. We suggest looking through the aspects we've discussed before and thoroughly analysing your needs.

2. Get ready for the integration

Make sure to have all the necessary equipment first, e.g. a receipt printer or barcode reader. The necessary items may vary depending on what type of POS terminal you've chosen. 

Then you need to connect the terminal to your Magento POS. Here you can go for the full or the semi-integration.

Full and Semi-Integrated Terminals

A terminal may be used as a reader in a fully integrated manner to collect card data. Then this data is processed by the POS system, converted into corresponding messages and sent to the gateways.

The semi-integration suggests more autonomy for the POS terminals. This way terminals save the payment data, create the messages and then forward them to the gateways to be processed. So they don't require the POS system's functionality to manage the process. 

After that, you select how exactly this integration will be happening: with SDK or REST API.

SDK/REST API Integration

SDK is usually a common choice because it's accessible and lots of POS systems support it. However, some deployment and security reasons prevent users from going for it.

Alternatively, you can choose the REST API since it doesn't require any source code alteration and is relatively easy to integrate. Yet, to control the terminal, you require a terminal application within the device.

Correspondingly, any application updates will call for terminal updates too. This case requires extra effort for the terminal management and not every user is ready to implement them.

3. Integrate terminal to POS

Now that you have all the assets ready, you can finally connect your terminal to Magento POS to transfer the data correctly. The steps you need to take depend on the terminal itself and its specifics. And of course, it also has to do with the way your POS system functions.

In order to cope with this task properly, refer to the corresponding documentation, not to miss any important details.

We don't recommend doing everything intuitively since even the simplest interface may be deceiving. It's better to rely on consistent information and follow the instructions tailored to your specific case.

4. Test integrated terminal

When you finish with the integration steps, you need to test everything out yourself before your customers do. Proceed with the test orders and transactions. Try the way different options work and see if data synchronization is correct in your Magento. 

For this purpose, you may refer to the Sandbox. Its functionality helps you conduct all the tests without any influence on the terminal or POS system. With the release of the new POS features you'll be able to download the new Sandbox software to test everything out.

In the process of testing, you can also train your cashiers to use the system. People working in your store, both online and offline, should know how to go through the POS checkout and terminal integration in Magento 2.

Magefan Magento 2 POS Terminals

As you might know, Magento 2 POS by Magefan is an essential solution for the effective management of your offline and online stores. It allows you to store important data in one admin panel though you might have different locations, devices and sales agents.

What you also need to know is that Magefan POS provides you with different POS payment options, including online and offline terminals, and self-checkout terminal. Using this POS system, you can connect your store to the on-store terminal.

POS terminal process

After integrating the terminals you operate into Magento 2 POS, you just need to create corresponding terminals and store locations in the admin panel to synchronize your data efficiently. 

Hopefully, now you have a better understanding of what POS terminals are and how they can be integrated into Magento 2. The process is not too complex. The most important thing is to find the best-fitting solution for your business and the proper software to run everything seamlessly.  

An ounce of practice is worth a pound of theory. So, don't hesitate to visit our live demo to go through the POS process and learn more details about it.