Update June 13th, 2013 - Thanks to the comments on this blog post, conversations with Harbortouch users, and conversations with Harbortouch, I am now an approved Harbortouch reseller. You can read more by clicking here. I will be keeping everyone informed on how the first series of installations go.
I've talked about this in the past but a recent recruitment letter from Harbortouch reminded me that I should remind you that there is no such thing as a free point of sale system. If Harbortouch is truly shipping over 1000 point of sale systems each month (which is what the letter stated), then there are a lot of small business owners who are either willing to put up with higher merchant services fees or just don't have budget to purchase, lease or or finance a point of sale system.
What do I mean by "put up with higher merchant services fees"? The letter from Harbortouch states that the dealer will double their average monthly residual (this is the amount that your merchant services salesperson makes off of your credit card processing fees). The letter also states that higher margins are possible as well.
The most likely scenario is that Harbortouch simply charges more in credit card (merchant services) fees. It may not sound like much but even a 1/2% difference can mean that the business owner is paying $2,500 more per year in credit card (merchant services) fees. $12,500 over the course of five years (typical minimal lifespan for a point of sale system) is not free. In fact, with point of sale systems running around $3,000 - $8,000, $12,500 is much higher that what you should be paying.
Still convinced that Harbortouch is a good deal? They also pay the person selling each system up to a $500 commission (source: Harbourtouch dealer ad March 2013). I wonder who actually ends up pay for that commission?
Are you in the US and in need of no cost retail point of sale advice? I'm happy to help and can be reached on my cell at 208-340-5632 (mountain time) or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.