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What is an Online Cashier?

Erin J. Hill
Erin J. Hill

A career as an online cashier is generally different from that of a typical in-store cashier. No face-to-face contact with customers is generally necessary, and duties may include things totally separate from typical cashier duties. Responsibilities may include customer service, bookkeeping, inventory, and marketing. There are also many types of computerized cashier services that are accomplished through specialized software instead of an actual person.

The majority of online cashiers work in customer service either at the business's offices or from their own home. Help for customers can be offered both through traditional phone usage by routing incoming calls to the cashier's phone line, or through instant messaging. Oftentimes they help consumers with common issues regarding products and services as well as in trying to sell goods by answering questions and presenting benefits of making a purchase.

Woman doing a handstand with a computer
Woman doing a handstand with a computer

Other times they role of an online cashier involves bookkeeping. This means that he or she keeps track of expenses, sales, revenue, and other monetary aspects of a company. He or she may also be responsible for managing the payroll and keeping track of how long other employees of the company have worked.

Inventory and marketing are also roles the online cashier may play. Keeping track of how many items are sold compared to how many have been ordered is the primary goal of doing inventory, along with knowing when to order new items. Marketing of the website and/or store is another job which requires the skills of a professional online cashier. He or she may help with various aspects of advertising the site, such as web design and copywriting. In many cases, a cashier will take on many of these roles at once.

There are also many software programs which take the place or supplement the use of an online cashier. These can include shopping carts, which allow customers to buy online with just the click of a button. They often allow customers to pay via credit card, while providing the company with many benefits over the use of an actual person. For example, many programs can add which items are purchased and sold into a database with each sale. This allows inventory to be taken automatically as each unit is sold, instead of the more time-consuming method of having an employee do it at set intervals.

Many programs can also be used in virtual chat features to answer common questions customers may have. While this can be an effective method for streamlining common tasks, it is often appreciated by consumers when a live person is available to answer questions and offer information. For this reason, it's generally in the best interest of most companies to use both technology in combination with a live online cashier.

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