There are three broad categories when it comes to cash registers. They are entry level, midline and commercial. Midline will offer more advanced function than the entry level, including the ability to connect to a computer for programming and setup. For these two categories, there are also a few more things to look out for:
There are usually two types of screens. First is the digital readout. These only show only one line of data. Usually the total amount at the end of the tilling. Some units will show each item and cost as it is entered. The other option is the LCD. This will show the total, items etc. Another advantage of the LCD is that it is backlit so is easy to see.
PLU’s, which are product look up codes, are used to identify items. The number of PLU’s you can program into the cash register will vary by model. If you plan to us the PLU feature then look at cash registers that cover the amount of unique products you have.
There are two types of printers used with cash registers. There are thermal and ribbon ink based printers. Fortunately now thermal is the more common in models and it is rare to find ribbon based printers. With thermal the upfront cost is higher but it cheaper in the long run in terms of cash register supplies.