Free POS software training: How employees steal from retail businesses

stealHow employees steal from retail businesses is a free training workshop from the POS software experts Tower Systems. Delivered by our COO, this training is vital for retail business owners. It will draw on expert advice from one who helps police, prosecutors and insurance companies deal with employee theft in retail businesses.

With just a few places left, this training will fill up for sure.

Tower Systems leads its marketplaces with live online training opportunities – helping retailers to learn more about their software and how to save their businesses time and money.

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Sunday retail business management tip: roster staff for commercial success

Rostering is a vitally important business activity in indecent retail businesses. Get it right and you save money. Get it wrong and your bottom-line suffers.

Retailers using the Point of Sale software from Tower Systems can roster employees based on their contribution to the business. Using the tools in the software can result in better rosters, rosters which deliver a more valuable contribution to the business.

This is just one way POS software which offers roster facilities can genuinely benefit a business – save time and help driver better earnings. It is another way good POS software pays for itself.

Tower Systems helps retailers drive better outcomes through rostering and other facilities delivered in its software for a range of specialist independent retail channels.

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Xero accounting / POS software link helps retailers embrace technology

The link we launched last year connecting our smart POS software with leading accounting solution Xero is helping us grow our business as more retailers seek a whole of business solution. Our training resources help retailers understand the link and the benefits. here’s one of the videos we have produced in house.

We use Xero ourselves in our own retail businesses.

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Bike shop software users to benefit from Tower Systems US retail tour insights

nybikesLearning from US bike retailers and how they engage with bike fans is one of the takeaways from Two weeks in the US for two Tower Systems executives. The trip culminated in almost a week in New York including attending the National retail Federation annual conference. While in New York at the conference and on the streets meeting with bike retailers, insights were shared that will help position tower Systems to further improve on its already popular and widely-used bike retail management software.

Using the Tower Bike Shop Software, retailers are able to manage warranties, track serial numbers, manage repairs and provide a whole of customer life experience and thereby drive (ride) more value for the business. Our intuitive bike shop software is world class as we have seen in this most recent overseas marketplace study.

For commercial reasons we will not share any comprehensive outcomes here as these are best deployed to our customers for their and our commercial advantage.

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Sunday retail management advice: make Lay-Bys work for you & your customers

Tower Systems has helped many retailers get into offering Lay-By services when installing our Point of Sale software. Over many years we have developed extensive experience in Lay-Bys and through this we have refined suggestions on how to make the most of the opportunity.

Here is a summary of more extensive Lay-By advice we provide to retailers, based on our years of experience.

  1. WHAT TO LAY-BY. Set a minimum item and or purchase value. We’d suggest $80.00 in a small retail business.
  2. DATA REQUIRED. Always ensure you are satisfied you know who your customer is. Require proof of ID from a driver’s licence or similar legal ID document.
  3. 20% of the total GST inclusive purchase price.
  4. Only Lay-by to people 18 and over.
  5. Lay-bys should run for between eight and twelve weeks. You could run for longer pre Christmas to get early sales.
  6. PAYMENT CYCLE. Require payments to be made weekly or fortnightly.
  7. PAYMENT METHOD. Accept any payment form you choose.
  8. Do not allow someone to take home a single item from a group of items on Lay-by together in one purchase. It’s all or nothing.
  9. Have a policy you are comfortable with. We suggest a 20% cancellation fee applies. Note that you could equally choose to have no cancellation given that Lay-by product may not be able to easily re-sold.
  10. Decide what you would consider a breach. This has to be something you stand by. We suggest two missed payments without reasonable excuse or rectification. On breach, cancel and charge the cancellation fee.
  11. We suggest a no-exchange policy.
  12. When a customer Lay-bys, print two dockets – one for them to take immediately and one to be placed with the goods. Have your customer sign both copies, accepting your terms and conditions.
  13. Set aside a clean and secure storage location for Lay-bys in your business where locations are coded for easy finding. Place Lay-by goods into a single clear plastic bag per transaction for clean and safekeeping. Staple to this a copy of the Lay-by docket. Let your customers see you do this so there is no doubt when it comes time to collect the products.
  14. Have one person responsible for Lay-bys to ensure product care, track payments and contact customers.
  15. TERMS AND CONDITIONS. Enter these into your software so they are included on every Lay-by docket. Points 2 through 11 above are a good example of what to include in your terms and conditions.
  16. COMPLETE PAPERWORK. To not over complicate things, rely on your software’s Lay-by docket as your complete paperwork / contract. Get that right and Lay-by management will be easier.

We are grateful to our retail partners who have worked with us on developing this experience and advice. Their help has enabled us to provide this help.

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Comparing specialist bike shop software to Retail Manager from MYOB

The Tower Systems specialist bike shop software plays in a completely different field to MYOB’s Retail Manager software.  While both software packages offer Point of Sale facilities, only our software offers facilities which serve the needs of today’s specialist bike retailer.

MYOB’s Retail Manager is a successful mass market package and therefore remains generic in the services it provides.  This is how they keep their price down, by not offering specialist facilities.  It is a business model which has served them well.

We have gone the other way and created specialist bike shop software because we understand that this will help bike retailers make more money from their businesses.  Bike retailers can leverage our specialist facilities to drive revenue and build businesses of greater value for when they decide to sell.

Specialist bike retailers see themselves and quite different to mass merchant bike retailers.  One way of leveraging their specialist focus and services is through specialist bike shop software.  Those who don’t see their business as different opt for mass merchant software and miss an opportunity to drive their unique selling proposition at every opportunity.

Here are some of the bike shop specialist areas where our software is quite different to the generic MYOB and other software:

  • Loyalty marketing.  Bike customers are more valuable than the first tracking.  By tracking purchases through a robust loyalty management and marketing system, bike retailers using our Tower Systems software are able to extract greater value from each customer.
  • Text message customer communication.  Letting customers know when repairs are ready to be collected, special orders have arrived in-store and special offers are available helps better connect specialist bike retailers and their customers.  MYOB does not have these facilities.
  • Multi store facilities.  Centralised internet based multi store facilities.  What we offer beats the current MYOB offer hands down.
  • Supplier connection.  By connecting with key bike shop suppliers, processing electronic invoices and creating electronic orders, we are helping bike retailers cut labour costs.  This makes our software considerably more valuable than generic software when it comes to managing business payroll.
  • Theft management.  By connecting the bike shop software with a sophisticated security camera system, bike shop owners are able to leverage better management of the employee and customer theft risks.  This is another difference between generic POS software and our specialist bike shop software.
  • Serial number tracking.  A full service bike shop wants to provide a more professional and complete service to the mass merchants.  Serial number tracking is one such example.  This can help with insurance claims.  It can also ease the registering of the purchase with the manufacturer.
  • Repairs management.  Tracking a repair from when it is presented to when it is collected can be a real time saver for a bike shop.  Doing this work manually costs time and leads to mistakes.  MYOB offers no such facility.
  • Managing custom built products.  Being able to track the assembling of a number of items and labour into a saleable product is important for a specialist bike retailer.  MYOB cannot handle this.

Bike retailers who see their business as different to that of a mass merchant selling bikes prefer software which respects and supports their difference.  This is the Tower Systems AdvantageTM.

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Sunday retail management advice: professional management of the sales counter

In our work with small business retailers we have been fortunate to see many different sales counter situations. The best retail sales counters are the ones run in a structured and professional way.

We are often asked for advice on management of the counter. Here are nine points of advice for counter management (outside of direct sales) which our customers have found useful. This list is our retail management advice today.

  1. No food or drink to be visible to customers unless it is packaged and for sale.
  2. No personal staff items like bags, purses, wallets or mobile phones to be visible at the counter.
  3. Clean the counter at least every day.
  4. From the customer side, remove all products from the counter once a week, clean and rebuild.
  5. Keep counter messages, signs and notes that shoppers see to a minimum. Every note, sign or message must have a purpose that speaks to the mission of your business.
  6. When employees purchase from the business have them purchase from the customer side of the counter.
  7. Have a rule on how many people you have behind the counter at any time. Too often retail employees use the counter as a refuge. More impulse purchases are achieved by working the shop floor than at the counter.
  8. Dramatically change your counter at least once every three months – as much for your team as for your customers.
  9. When assessing the counter for product placement, cleanliness and being on-topic, do so from the customer side. How it looks from behind the counter is far less relevant than from the customer side.

In helping retailers use our Point of Sale software we often find ourselves helping beyond the technology. Developing and sharing this list is one example of our broader help of small business retailers.

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Retailers make good use of gift cards to drive retail sales

giftcardRetailers using our POS software can provide gift vouchers on the fly directly from the software or they can load value onto a professional card like major retailers use. Either approach to gift cards / vouchers works easily.

The photo shows four gift cards designed by our in house graphic design team. Each card in a run has a unique barcode to which funds can be loaded by customers.

Offering a gift card design and production service helps us provide a more complete one stop shop service to our customers. It saves retailers time and ensures they receive vouchers designed to work well with our Point of Sale software.

We have produced hundreds of cards for our retail partner customers.

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Busy lead up to Christmas for this POS software company

The team at Tower Systems has had a busy lead up to Christmas 2014 with new installations being completed even this week, new software plans being finalised and fresh training opportunities being workshopped and retail business help being dispensed in good measure.

There has been no slowing to our efforts for our independent and small business retailer customers as we serve their needs of today and plan for great things for tomorrow.

With many staff not on leave at the moment, we have taken the opportunity to make a series of moves that position us well for 2015. We’re excited this last day before Christmas.

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Helping retailers prepare for BOXING DAY SALES

discoubtWe’ve had plenty of POS software help desk calls this week from retailers asking questions about setting their businesses up to handle Boxing Day sales.

Using our software it’s easy and flexible to setup for handling special event sales – retailers have many options for sales from individual to price to volume and mix and match discounts – that run by date and by time. flexibility is discounting is important in retail today as retailers compete with each other – especially at these major sale times.

Our smart POS software makes managing discounting easy and secure for our partner businesses.

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PayPal payments POS software integration helps small business retailers compete

Here is another video in our instruction series on how to use our POS software integrated PayPal payments platform in any retail store. Whole the video was created for newsagents, it relates to any retailer using our software.

We are grateful to PayPal for choosing to launch this partnership with us.

What we have done with PayPal in 2014 has provided us with a valuable point of difference.

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Tower Systems / PayPal partnership helps small business retailers

Screen Shot 2014-12-15 at 7.00.13 amPOS software company Tower Systems is helping small business retailers with its brilliant PayPal integration.

Using this first to market opportunity, retailers can expect to find new shoppers thanks to the help of PayPal in unlocking access to more than 5.5 million PayPal users in Australia.

This is an excellent example of how a POS software company can help retailers grow their businesses by attracting new and valuable shoppers.

Tower Systems is grateful to PayPal for selecting them as a launch partner.

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POS software customer displays help drive sales

cdispThis photo shows how one newsagency is using the smart customer display through our POS software by having ads play between customers and then the screen share the ad with details of purchases being scanned.

Being able to manage the serving of ads to customers at the counter is an important feature of our software, something that has been enhanced as hardware has evolved. The latest HP all in one registers are particularly good to work with thanks to their small footprint and smart customer display technology.

Small business owners love that thanks to the HP technology and our software they can offer a customer-facting IT solution that is competitive with bigger businesses.

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Sunday retail management advice: how to cut labour costs in your retail business

Plenty of retailers are cutting labour costs in their businesses thanks to opportunities within the Tower Systems Point of Sale software. Here are some of these:

  1. Time saved by eliminating the end of shift backup by switching to the secure perpetual backup that requires no staff time.
  2. Time saved on accounting thanks to the smart Xero accounting software interface.
  3. Faster selling at the counter – less staff needed to process more sales.
  4. Faster reordering through the software.
  5. Faster processing and pricing of new stock.
  6. Faster decision making thanks to accurate business data being at your finger tips.
  7. Faster answering of customer queries freeing staff for making money on the shop floor.

Tower Systems offers not only excellent POS software, it also offers retail management expertise on the best use of this software for valuable business outcomes.

We love helping retailers in practical ways to get more from their partnership with us.

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POS software users love extensive online knowledge base for self serve assistance

Small business retailers often use technology because they feel they have to more so than because they want to. Their reluctance for technology often spills over to their engagement with POS software help desks and other assistances.  Not so the POS software knowledge base offered by Tower Systems to its approaching 3,000 small business users.

In the knowledge base, Tower customers can find out how to use the software, how to change settings, how to learn new facilities as well as how to integrate parts of the software more seamlessly into the business.

Evolving every week to fresh content that is searchable in a variety of ways, the knowledge base is proving to be a resource customers love as they can access it any time, from any place and in a way that keeps them in control.

The POS software knowledge base from Tower Systems is helping the company win new customers!

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POS software training workshops help retailers save money

Pos software company Tower Systems has announced details of three new live and interactive half hour POS Software training sessions for december, offering small business retailers excellent opportunities for learning in a time efficient way.

Here are the three new workshops the company has developed in association with partner retailers:

  • Using Catalogues for Christmas – 30 Minutes, Tuesday 2nd December 2pm AEST. Quickly and easily setup automatic discounts for a Christmas sale.
  • Applying Discounts In Retailer – 30 Minutes, Tuesday 9th December 2pm AEST. Discount stock in Retailer at Point of Sale.
  • Free up cash in your business – 30 Minutes, Tuesday 16th December 2pm AEST. Find and quit dead and slow moving stock in retailer.

Participating in the training is free to all Tower POS software customers.

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Xero features Tower Systems POS software

Screen Shot 2014-11-21 at 7.24.39 amWe are thrilled to see the Tower Systems POS software featured on the Xero website as an approved partner.

This has come about following certification of our software as offering required and proven integration with xero accounting.

We are thrilled!

Being first with this in a specialist retail marketplace helps not only us but our close to 3,000 customers.

The Xero link is easy to use and seamless. It’s our recommended accounting system link but not our only one.

We use Xero ourselves in our retail shops – making our advice and assistance more knowledgeable than a software company without their own retail businesses.

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PayPal payments at breeze at the retail counter

Paypal RetailerThis screen shot is from a  live in-store PayPal payment using the Tower Systems  POS software. We have removed the customer name – but that would usually appear. The customer details are shared by PayPal as part of the line integration in our software.

It’s fast, easy and it is another first from Tower systems.

We are grateful to PayPal for the opportunity to be a trial developer and to lead in our retail channels by bringing shop floor PayPal market and marketing to our small business customers.

The integration is live in our software and retailers are embracing it – not only for sales but to drive new traffic for their businesses.

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POS software shines with comprehensive serial number tracking

SerialNumberScreenSerial number tracking is so complex that many POS software programs ignore this functionality.

The Tower Systems POS software offers enhanced serial number tracking, new tools that help retailers who sell products with serial numbers, to track goods by serial number from the moment they enter the business to when they exit through sale or return.

The serial number facilities have been enhanced in our latest POS software update.

What’s interesting is that the serial number facilities are being used by businesses outside what we expected. We are thrilled to see this.

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Beautiful POS software receipts help retailers look more professional

RecThe humble retail receipt has been overhauled in the latest POS software from Tower Systems.

While Tower receipts have always been flexible and professional, the new style receipts offering extraordinary customisation take receipts into a new world, they allow small retailers to leap-frog major retailers.

The extended flexibility and attractive graphical interfaces make the receipts more useful in attracting shoppers back into the business, they make the receipt a key element in business marketing.

Already in use in many retail businesses, the new receipts are a winner not only with customers but also with retail business owners.

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POS software provides small business retailers with a competitive customer display solution

CustDisplayTerrific new retail customer display facilities are being embraced by retailers using the Tower Systems POS software. Serving customised content on customer displays within the context of a sale helps retail businesses drive sales and improve business outcomes. While the Tower software has served customer display access for years, enhancements take the facilities to a new level, offering small and independent retailers facilities with which they can more effectively compete with major retailers.

Feedback from customers is that the new customer facing display looks beautiful. We love hearing this and love even more the feedback that they are helping shoppers spend more money with our customers.

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POS software Stocktaking on the retail shop floor with your tablet computer

StocktakeScreenRetail shop floor stocktaking is easier than ever thanks to even better support for portable hand held devices from Australian POS software company Tower Systems. Standing in front of items on the shelves or in warehouse racking, counting and recording on-hand quantities is fast and easy with the Tower software and the HP Elite Pad.

Collected wirelessly, the Elite Pad maintains accurate real time stock on hand data for the business, allowing disruption free stock taking – saving time and helping the business grow.

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Making the sign-up for POS software / xero integration easier

xerosignupTower Systems has automated the process for connecting its POS software with Xero thanks to a completely online cloud-based service for the bridge and data flow connection.

From the Xero page on the Tower website, users have access to all they need to make the link live and working for them. And Tower users are doing this, turning on the link and switching to Xero for a more integrated and comprehensive accounting solution.

Tower Systems is thrilled to be acknowledged by Xero as an authorised partner and listed on their website.

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Sunday retail management advice: say no to poor customer service and improve your business

Tower Systems is thrilled to have won several more customers from a competitor this month. We have done this on the back of delivering better customer service.

Good customer service from your POS software company can improve your business.

One customer switching lost important business data as a result of poor service from their old POS solution provider.

Another customer switching lost hours of time as a result of delays in help desk assistance from their POS solution provider.

This is our retail management tip today – use POS software from a company that delivers timely, professional help desk customer service on which you can rely. You will save time and money.

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