POS (Point of Sale) is a combination of hardware and software which brings the merchant’s ecosystem together. When a customer makes a payment for the products or services he purchased, he is completing a POS transaction. POS software application eases the task of financial transactions along with other business operations in the field of hospitality, and retail. With POS, you can ditch the manual methods, cash register, Excel for bookkeeping.
What is POS Testing?
In POS testing, generally POS application or system is evaluated to check if it has an acceptable level of quality in all the domains and is executing its operations without a breakdown.
Software Components of POS System
POS system consists of software as well as hardware components, which makes the daily operations of your business smoother and faster. There is On-Premise POS and Cloud POS.
In On-Premises POS, the buyer purchases the license and installs the software on the computer system. Buyer is responsible for updating and maintaining the software; the maintenance part may require dedicated IT personnel. On-Premises POS requires upfront hardware purchase, which may prove to be a costly affair.
On the other hand, in Cloud POS, the buyer can access the software on any device, provided there is an internet connection. The software updates are pushed to POS. One or two individuals can manage POS. Cloud POS has a lower upfront cost.
Hardware Components of POS System
Now, let’s talk about the hardware components of a POS system. POS testing responsibilities include taking care of hardware components as well. Below are the things required to get your POS running.
Monitor or Tablet
You will be able to see the product database and other important functions, such as sales reports, employee clock-in, etc.
Barcode scanner automates the checkout process. By scanning the barcode, the product information is pulled and added to the checkout total.
Credit Card Reader
EMV compliant credit card readers are a necessity as they are secure. EMV chips are more secure than the magnetic stripe. They encrypt the bank information, hence are more secure.
You need to provide the customer with the receipt, and for that, you need to have a printer. Text and email receipts are gaining popularity, but cash receipts are preferred by customers.
Cash may fade away in years to come, but it is still used widely. That’s why it is important for you to keep a cash drawer to place the amount of the transaction securely.
The Testing Architecture of a POS System
Three components of a POS system that are evaluated while assuring its quality:
• POS Terminal
• Local Server
• Enterprise Server
Various performance aspects and functionalities are checked in POS terminal testing, such as barcode reader, printer, scanner, check reader, etc. along with other performance attributes.
Local/store server has important data related to business, transactions, and POS terminal, and it is internally as well as externally linked to enterprise-level server. It requires security testing, business intelligence and analytics testing, interface testing, and recovery testing.
Enterprise server requires the same testing as local/store server.
What Should Be Taken Into Consideration By The QA Team During The POS Testing?
It is important to take connected devices into consideration while performing POS testing. Peripheral devices such as barcode scanner may cause issues that must be considered by the QA team.
Positive and Negative Scenarios
The test cases should cover positive as well as negative scenarios to prevent any issues at the customer end. Scenarios such as expired card, invalid pin etc. should be considered by the QA team.
The base of any POS payment is electronic payment. The QA team should ensure the POS system is meeting the globally accepted security standards to protect the data of the cardholders.
To ensure high-quality POS solution, the following things must be considered:
The Activities Of the Cashier
The QA engineer should check
- The correctness of the entry of items purchased
- The total of the items purchased
- The validity of gift cards and discount coupons
Retail point of sale is crucial for businesses. The things that should be kept in mind while testing are sales with debit or credit card, management of exchange and return, prices, quantities.
Data of loyalty members
Point of sale test data is one of the crucial factors that should be checked properly. The system should be able to track the loyalty customers, how often they make purchases, and what type of purchases they make.
The system performance is measured by how much time it takes to send a request and get a response by applying the transaction rules.
The system should have a smart ability to read various types of cards.
POS Testing: Test Case Scenarios
In this section, we are going to make you aware of POS testing test cases.
There are POS testing scenarios that must be considered, such as:
- Validating the encryption as well as decryption of the card details
- Processing financial transactions with and without the printing receipts
- Time taken to process and respond to a query
- Examining card details (credit and debit) and transaction information
How to Perform POS Testing?
Point of sale system testing can be performed manually as well as with the help of automation tools; quality evaluation of POS system ensures that it is working as expected.
POS Testing: Challenges and Solutions
There are unique challenges and solutions in manual POS testing; some of the challenges are described below:
Multiple configurations require an enormous amount of time and efforts for manually preparing and executing the test cases. To avoid any problem at the customer end, both valid, as well as invalid scenarios, are covered.
As there are a number of internal and external connections, the system inherits a vast amount of complexities.
There are always new advancements in technology; the advancements are happening too fast. Therefore, it is important to upgrade the software.
There could be issues with the peripheral devices connected to the POS terminal.
It is a must for organizations to adhere to PCI compliance. Security should never be compromised.
POS Test Automation
Point of sale test automation saves time and efforts required in testing. There are multiple devices in stores such as mobile self-checkout solutions; with these solutions, customers can complete their purchase quickly through mobile phones. POS software runs on different types of the operating system. Toshiba runs on its own custom-built operating system, NCR runs on Windows. Companies choose automation testing tools that can run on these operating systems.
How to Choose the Best POS System?
Buying the POS system for the first time can be overwhelming. You should make a list of features that are necessary for you. It is also advisable to talk to your fellow business owners who are working with a POS system. While looking for solutions, make sure vendors cover the points that are essential for your business. In a POS system, vitality and agility are of utmost importance. While choosing the solution, consider data security, quality of customer service, and ease of use.
In today’s world, it is a necessity to go for a POS system. Stats show that retail stores and hospitality businesses are investing in POS systems to provide a smooth experience to customers. Retail POS systems must undergo strict testing so that customers can complete their purchase without any issue.