Skip to main content
FFL-Focused POS Systems, 4473 Storage & The Critical Differences featured img

FFL-Focused POS Systems, 4473 Storage & The Critical Differences

September 27, 2021

For retail FFL stores, the form that often gets utilized the most is the 4473. And for many, that entails a lot of printing and physical storage that takes up space. But when operations are ready to ditch the stacks of paper and streamline the 4473 process, in addition to the various other important aspects of their business, they’ll turn to an FFL-focused Point-of-Sale system to achieve just that.

However, not all FFL-focused Point-of-Sale systems are created equal! With that said, it’s important to examine each solution closely, as even with a streamlined 4473 process, you could still be subjected to the same printing and physical storage you’ve been trying to eliminate.

At first glance, when you compare the plentiful FFL-focused Point-of-Sale solutions on the market, they appear almost identical in nature. Many boast about their cloud storage and robust 4473 capabilities, which are keywords that truly resonate with most, and, in many cases, halt operations from asking the critical question: “Will I finally be able to eliminate the physical 4473 form storage if I choose your POS?”

For those that found out the hard way, they know the answer to the above question is an unfortunate No. But for retail operations who truly desire to eliminate the physical storage of form 4473 for good by either switching platforms or implementing an FFL-focused Point-of-Sale system for the first time, there is a solution!

Enter AXIS Point-of-Sale

Did you know that AXIS is the only ATF-approved Point-of-Sale system with built-in digital storage of form 4473?

It’s true. Not only that, form 4473 cannot be stored on a cloud-based POS without a special variance from the ATF. In fact, with a cloud-based POS system, you will almost assuredly still need to sign, print, and physically store your 4473’s.

AXIS is not a cloud-based POS. It is, however, an on-premises POS, which means you, and you alone have full control over your data, hardware, and software, as it’s solely in your possession. Because of the added privacy and reliability of an on-premises based platform, in addition to the wide array of other security features implemented into the system, the ATF gave rare approval to AXIS to digitally store 4473 forms. As a result, physical storage is not only eliminated, but this also means more simplistic form pulling for traces and no-hassle audits.

Further Differences Between On-Premises vs. Cloud-Based Point-of-Sale Systems

Aside from the topic of security as mentioned above, there are two other major differences that should be highlighted when comparing an on-premises based POS vs. a cloud-based POS — Customization and Ownership.


Put simply, on-premises POS solutions, such as AXIS, are infinitely customizable to the specific needs of an operation, whereas with a cloud-based option, you’re typically limited to only being able to choose between specific setup options that are offered, which tend to be either too little or too much.


Now more than ever, data ownership is a subject that should be considered when comparing POS solutions. The main reason? ‘Cancel Culture’ is very real. Those in the 2A community, as well as many others, have felt the disdain of tech giants who look down upon them. As a result, de-platforming and even cancellation of services has been transpiring at an alarming rate. And this ties into the comparison between on-premises vs. cloud-based POS systems because of the critical difference as it relates to data ownership. In short, many cloud-based POS solutions utilize the networks of those very same tech giants who cancel anyone who oppose them for the storage needs of their customers. On the contrary, with an on-premises POS solution, that worry can be eliminated, as your data is just that — yours!

Ready to properly streamline your retail FFL store’s operation and maintain complete control over your data? Learn more about the benefits AXIS Point-of-Sale by requesting a personalized demo today!