Is Cash Still King or More Trouble Than It’s Worth?

Cash is still KingThese days, there are plenty of ways for customers to pay for purchases, depending on the options you choose to offer at your retail store. Where cash and checks were once the only ways to pay, consumers can now buy on credit, use bank cards, or even use mobile phones to proffer payment.

Still, you can’t necessarily get rid of the cash payment option. When you understand the problems inherent to this form of legal tender, you can minimize risk factors and continue to serve the needs of your customers. Here are just a few common problems for retail stores that deal with cash.

Cash Management

Cash flow and money management are essential when your retail operation uses cash. When dealing in cash, you could encounter common problems like counting errors, accountability issues, and limited cash flow visibility, just for example. How can you address such issues?

The place to start is by putting policies and procedures in place. At the beginning and end of each shift, both managers and employees should count out cash to ensure a balanced till. This addresses both counting errors and accountability issues.

Cash flow visibility is a bit more difficult. Even with daily deposits, cash won’t hit your accounts immediately, and you also have to consider the inefficiency and extra man-hours associated with frequent cash deposits.

A good solution here is to update your accounting software so that you can easily input cash balances and create reports that compare your daily cash take to current bank balances. In this way, you can more easily track and manage cash flow.

Also, it is important that all employees are trained on how to spot counterfeit bills. Using a detector pen or a mini detector is a great place to start. Employees should also know how to handle the customer passing bad cash and when to contact the authorities.

Trouble with Arithmetic

Does anyone add in their head anymore? With computerized POS systems, employees rarely need to add or subtract when taking payment and counting back change. What about when computers go down?

It’s probably best to test your employees regularly to ensure that they’re up to the challenge if and when it arises. An employee that can’t master basic arithmetic is a major liability, and shouldn’t be handling cash.


In addition to potential cash-counting issues during sales and before and after shifts, it’s important that you concern yourself with the potential for thievery. Cash just doesn’t leave the same paper trail as credit, which makes employee skimming a lot more tempting. Also, there is a greater risk of robbery when a business handles a lot of cash.

The best way to address both issues is by bumping up security. You should always have eyes on the cash, and this means installing surveillance cameras and recording equipment. This way managers can keep an eye on employee performance and backtrack if the money goes missing. It may also help to deter would-be burglars. An on-site safe is also wise, and employees should drop cash whenever tills reach a preset limit.

Handling cash is not always ideal, and it could entail a variety of problems, but it is necessary when running a retail operation. With proper policies, procedures, and technology in place, you can reduce risk factors, protect your business, and properly manage cash.

If you are a Specialty Store Services customer that would like more information on Security Products for your store, shop our website, Specialty Store Services, for all your retail store needs.  If you have a question that you would like answered immediately, you can Live Chat, or phone us at 800-999-0771.