Mailing the POS software customer newsletter

Screen Shot 2016-05-05 at 3.28.47 pmHere at Tower Systems we think too many POS software companies have distanced themselves from their customers.

We stay close.

Not only do we offer easy communication via email, online, by voice and face to face, we have a snail mail newsletter that offers tips and advice – delivered the old fashioned way so the information can be shared with all users of the software in the business.

The image shows one of the pages of our May newsletter put i the mail this week.

Communicating with customers by mail demonstrates our care of service for those not keen for electronic communications.

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HELPING SMALL BUSINESS RETAILERS MAKE POS SOFTWARE HELP DESK CALLS

Calling a help desk, any help desk can be confronting and challenging for anyone. It can be even more so for small business retailers who may not be experienced computer users. To help our 3,500+ small business retail customers using our POS software to get the most from our help desk, we developed and published this practical advice. We shared this with them as part of our regular weekly customer service communication:

Calling any help desk can be intimidating. To help ensure you get the best possible experience, here is our advice on how to prepare for and make a call to our POS software help desk. This advice should work for jus about any help desk.

We are it here to show what we now understand to be another example of the Tower Systems difference, the Tower AdvantageTM.

Here is our POS software help desk advice:

BEFORE THE CALL

Know for certain what your query is about. Know the error message, what you were doing before it and whether anything different was done this time compared to last time you did this and it worked.

Being clear in describing a problem or stating a question is the most important step in getting the response you want.

Check to ensure you don’t have the answer already or cannot access the answer through the knowledge base.

MAKING THE CALL

Be ready with your business name (and account number if appropriate.

Explain the problem or ask your question.

Stay on point, be calm and focus on your query.

Follow the advice provided. Do not type ahead or act without the full advice. This can see you make mistakes without the full picture.

If you are not sure about what you have been told ask for the advice to be repeated.

If written advice, an advice sheet or a knowledge base article, is offered, take that as it will provide step by step advice that is peer-reviewed rather than one person’s opinion on what to do.

If we cannot answer the call right away, please tell our receptionist who answers the call how urgent it is – we will get back to you according to the urgency you allocate.

CALL ETIQUETTE.

Please don’t serve customers, stay focused on the call.

Don’t swear.

Listen.

Take notes.

ESCALATE.

If, for any reason, you are unhappy with the call, escalate the matter out of the help desk. Tower Systems has an escalation process to serve your needs. This is detailed in our weekly email.

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SUNDAY RETAIL MANAGEMENT ADVICE: CELEBRATE THE BIRTHDAY OF YOUR RETAIL BUSINESS

Business birthdays are important – for you and for your customers, especially in a locally owned small retail business.

Embrace the opportunity of your business birthday for a celebration. But be sure to not make it all about making more money. Take time to embrace the achievement and love it.

Here are practical tips for celebrating the birthday of your business:

  1. Setup a photo board and invite customer engagement. Let’s say your business is six years old: ask customers to bring a photo showing them at six years of age. Their stories become part of your story.
  2. Setup a noticeboard. Let’s say your business is twenty years old. Headline the board with: To celebrate our twenty years in business, join us and list twenty things you love about this town.
  3. Recognise local heroes. Host an after drinks night in your shop and take a moment to acknowledge and thank local heroes. The number you acknowledge should be the number of years you have been in business.
  4. Thank previous owners. Create a history board of previous owners. Where they are now. Their stories. Show the rich long history of your business from before you owned it.
  5. Hand out a flyer listing X hidden gems of your region (where X is the number of hears you have been in business). The flyer is your birthday gift to your customers.
  6. Have cake. Everyone loves cake. If for no other reason than to get to eat cake have a birthday cake. Make it special. Have a big cake or lots of cup cakes. Set and date and time for the celebration.
  7. Party favor bags. Give every customer shopping on your birthday a bag of treats and favors you have chosen to celebrate your big day.
  8. The Happy Birthday discount. Offer a big discount to any customer who comes in on the day (or through the week if you wish) and sings, at full voice, Happy Birthday.
  9. Say thank you. In your front window, create a stunning and personal display saying thank you to the town. Do it visually, creatively and with a full heart.
  10. Half price birthdays. On the day itself, offer birthday cards at half price. While you are giving away margin and will bring forward what might otherwise have been full margin sales, you could get people buying cards from you who have not done so in a while.
  11. Be thankful. On Facebook leading up to your birthday share what you are thankful for from and through your business. Be sure to write with a voice of gratefulness and celebration.
  12. Dress the shop for a party. For at least the week of the birthday dress the shop as a themed party, maybe a kids party. Get everyone involved. Have fun and bring your customers in on the fun.
  13. Maybe a birthday party celebration sale. One night, after the shop has closed, put on some wine, cheese and nibbles inviting people to join you for some party games, prizes and deals.

A key aspect of these ideas is to remind people that your business is stable, can be trusted, is locally connected and knows how to have fun.

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PRACTICAL RETAIL MANAGEMENT ADVICE BEYOND TRADITIONAL POS SOFTWARE SUPPORT

Tower Systems offers help, advice and assistance beyond traditional POS software support and has done for many years.

Our small business retail management advice is fresh and developed from our own hands-on retail experiences and from suggestions from our helpful customers. Each article of advice is jargon-free and accompanied by how-to steps and practice advice any retailer in any situation can read and use.

Here are topics we have published advice for our customers on in recent months.

  1. How to confront feeling overwhelmed in your retail business.
  2. Gift certificates – for selling when you don’t have the gift a customer wants.
  3. How to stop price comparisons with major retailers in your retail business.
  4. How to cut shopper theft in your retail business.
  5. How to protect your business from a ransomware attack.
  6. Don’t be bound by what is usual for your type of retail business.
  7. Make every day your pay day.
  8. Compete by not competing.
  9. Leveraging what sells with what in your retail business.
  10. What manual processes can you eliminate in your business?
  11. 5 Rules Every Small Business Retailer Needs For The Sales Counter.
  12. 5 Ways small business retailers can market for free.
  13. How to cut mistakes in your retail business.
  14. How to be more local in your retail business.
  15. How to find optimism in your retail business.
  16. How to check prices using your Tower software.
  17. How to develop your unique selling proposition and why you need one.
  18. Competing against your most important competitor.
  19. How and when to quit stock in your retail business.
  20. How to transact if your computer system is down.
  21. How to cut employee theft in your retail business.
  22. 30 free marketing ideas for small business retailers this Christmas.

This is a small sample of the advice from us and available to our POS software customers through our searchable and accessible from anywhere Knowledge Base.

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SUNDAY SMALL BUSINESS MANAGEMENT ADVICE: BE MEMORABLE

Memorable customer service is the most important point of difference a retail business can have, especially a business which does not make what it sells and therefore could have its products being sold by any other business apple to reach the same pool of shoppers.

We call it memorable customer service because it truly has to be that … memorable. So memorable that it is praised by your customers to others.

Good customer service should be the norm, the lowest hurdle any retail business can jump. Memorable customer service, the level of customer service that makes a shopper talk about the experience to their friends, must be the goal and it is the word of mouth from these customers that is a factor in driving traffic growth.

Memorable customer service is just as vital to Point of Sale software companies as it is for retail businesses. Since we own retail businesses as well as our POS software company we see it, live it and reach for it from both sides.

This is why we work hard to encode the ability to focus on customer service in our Point of Sale software.  That’s right, retailers using our software have touch points they can leverage using software which help deliver the kind of memorable customer service we are talking about here.

Memorable customer service in retail, just as in a software company, is experiences which exceed expectations, it delivers benefits outside of what you expect even from a good business.  In our IT company we compete with big IT companies and small, like us, IT companies. While we want our software to be the point of difference customers notice and talk about positively, it is our customer service which is loved and mentioned to colleagues more.  Realising this was an epiphany for us.

We focus on building stronger, better and more valuable software. But we also surround this, completely, with customer service experiences which are the very best of the best. This gives us, and our customers, the best of both worlds. And we love it ourselves.

Given that most retailers do not have products unique to their businesses, delivering memorable customer service is critical to the business plan.  Small and independent retailers can do this more easily and effectively than big retailers. From the genuine smile to shoppers to product knowledge to that extra information which helps a shopper get more out of the product purchased than they would have had the purchased the product elsewhere. This added value is the key and it can be delivered in almost any situation and with any product from a stapler through to a high-end road bike.

So, beyond our software and as part of our customer service focus, we seek out opportunities to help our customers deliver memorable customer service.  Indeed, this was one topic we covered in the recent face-to-face user meetings we ran in capital cities and major regional centres around Australia.

As a Point of Sale software company, our mission is to deliver constantly improving retail management software backed with memorable customer service and going beyond this with business insights and assistance which helps our retailers themselves deliver exceptional and memorable experiences to their customers.

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WHAT MAKES THE TOWER SYSTEMS POS SOFTWARE MAGENTO LINK A BEST PRACTICE SOLUTION FOR RETAILERS

Not all POS Software Magento links are made equal. Some POS software Magento links are slow, out of date, not direct and / or cumbersome. Some make doing business online and in a bricks and mortar store from the same stock data set cumbersome,

Thanks to relationships developed in the US with the Magento team over years, Tower Systems offers a best-practice solution, one powerful, easy to use and ideal for independent retail businesses.

Linking directly with the Tower POS software it is a breeze to use – as the many e-commerce sites already using it can attest.

A weakness we have seen in some other products is their use of an old version of Magento. By using the latest release, we are able to deliver something far more useful and valuable to small business retailers. Indeed, we can show the difference live through sites we have developed even for our business retail and e-commerce businesses.

This use ourselves of our own software enables us to speak with experience and authority on these things. We are not selling you something thinking how it should work. No, we are selling something we use ourselves for our own retail business, something that meets our own exacting needs, something of which we are most proud.

Using our Magento link it is easy to share data, images and other vital content between your shop and your online store without extra time or technology overhead. The Tower Systems approach is a breeze to implement and manage.

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POS SOFTWARE SCALE INTEGRATION HELPS SMALL RETAILERS COMPETE

IMG_7467The seamless scale integration facilities in the Tower Systems POS software make selling easy in a range of specialty retailers including pet stores, garden centres, jewellers, whole foods stores and confectionery stores. Helping retailers sell by weight helps them drive fast and accurate selling. It can also offer retailers greater flexibility in pricing structure. All of which helps small and independent retailers to compete more successfully and effectively.

The terrific LollyBomb store in the heart of Adelaide is a good example of a smart retailer leveraging the scale facilities in the software to help run a more successful business.

Selling by weight is easy thanks to the facilities in the software that were developed by Tower Systems in close consultation with retailers.

This is another niche service handled by the Tower software, making it a genuinely beneficial tool for niche and special interest small business retailers.

Integrations are important to small business retailers. They can often set POS software companies apart in that not all integrations are approved. take Xero, for example – they do not approve all POS software requests for integration. They have a structured process to follow. This is why being approved is a badge of honour and an important differentiator.

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THE JB HI FI 3 FOR $10 IS EASY WITH OUR POS SOFTWARE

IMG_8947Retailers using the Tower Systems POS software can easily handle package or bundled offers, like the JB Hi Fi 3 for $10 offer they are running for greeting cards.

Using our smart small business POS software, retailers can run bundled deals like we see in JB Hi Fi with ease. Small and independent retailers can match the retail giant simply and easily. This is important as offers like this make price comparisons difficult.

In addition to bundled offers like this, the Tower software also handled multi buys where shoppers can purchase over time, reaching an award point where they get free product.

These facilities are in addition to myriad other discounting options including catalogues, loyalty facilities, discount vouchers and more.

All of these tools help small business retailers to be competitive in their offers, competitive against other local businesses, competitive against online and competitive against big businesses, like JB Hi Fi.

The beauty of offers like the JB Hi Fi offer is shoppers are drawn to the deal of Three cards for $10 and often times purchase one card at a higher margin for the retailer. Our software handles this, kicking in the Three for $10 pricing offer only when the shopper purchases the three cards. This counter management based on volume is easy and automatic – delivering good outcomes for the retailers and ensuing maximum margin.

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EXTRA POS SOFTWARE TRAINING SESSIONS DUE TO DEMAND

Tower Systems is thrilled to announce the addition of the following training sessions due to demand for the original sessions:

  1. Meeting Name: How to handle non EDI invoices to keep stock accurate. Date: Thursday 12th of May Time: 2pm Description: See how easy it is to process invoice’s manually for suppliers that do not send electronic invoices to help keep your stock figures accurate.
  2. Meeting Name: Getting Ready for EOFY Date: Tuesday 17th of May Time: 2pm Description: Get ready for End of Financial Year now. What you need to do and the reports you need to run.
  3. Meeting Name: Retailer software settings you will be shocked you have access to. Date: Thursday 19th of May Time: 2pm Description: Help desk expert Colin Harris will show you settings you most likely don’t know exist that can help your enjoyment of the software
  4. Meeting Name: Stocktaking for EOFY Date: Thursday 26th of May Time: 2pm Description: Doing a stocktake in retailer and what option works best for you.

We are grateful to our customers for embracing our free training program. We know those attending training make better users of the software and better retailers.

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LOCALLY DEVELOPED POS SOFTWARE FOR AUSTRALIAN LOCAL RETAIL BUSINESSES

As overseas online businesses compete with local retailers for sales of almost anything, so too do overseas based POS software companies compete with Australian software companies.

Here at Tower Systems, we understand local. We understand our local retail business customers. we understand their shoppers. We understand what being local is all about and why it matters to our customers and the communities in which they serve.

This is what being local is really about, it is about being knowledgable of and engaged with your local community.

Through our POS software and through our customer service we live and breathe the local message. Our actions speak for us through locally focussed software changes and how we serve and connect with our customers.

here is a short video explaining our local pitch. This video serves multiple purposes: it speaks to our in-house video production facilities, it has our owner speaking up for us and what we stand for, it shows our commitment to plain speaking anyone can understand and it speaks to our professionalism that you can trust.

This is the Tower Advantage, our Tower Advantage, offered to you.

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EASY ACCESS TO POS SOFTWARE DOCUMENTATION FOR SMALL BUSINESS RETAILERS

When it comes to POS software, small business retailers want an easy life. This means hassle free, straightforward.

Key to achieving an easy life with POS software, besides the software itself being easy to use, is the ease with which parts of the software not often used can be learned and understood in the context of business operation.

Whereas in the past, a user manual was the key learning tool, today, the key learning tool is a good online, searchable and constantly evolving knowledge base, a knowledge base that keeps up to date with the software, evolving as the software evolves. A good knowledgeable includes how to text, step by step guides and instruction videos. It facilitates access to all these resources from anywhere including mobile, tablet and computer – at work, home and elsewhere.

This is what best practice user documentation looks like for smart POS software for small and independent retail businesses.

Whereas a printed manual is hard to update and not easily searched, evolving online searchable documentation is different, more useful and more valuable for engaged users who want to achieve more from their software.

Yes, the printed manual is so last century.

At Tower Systems we provide access to our documentation through a searchable knowledge base. This is setup in such as way so as to make searching easy for non technical people, so they can search based on plain English terms and find what they are looking for. The knowledge base is interactive too, allowing users to add comments and provide feedback. This makes it a customer driven resource and open to two-way communication.

Our experience is that small business retailers love the accessibility of the knowledge base and the documentation it contains. Better still, they love the ability to request enhanced coverage on this or that topic and then seeing us deliver this enhanced content.

Helping users enjoy easy use of our software is vital to their success and the commercial value of the software. So, to us, good documentation starts with easy to use software. Screen designs, data field descriptors, on-screen information and more combine to make using the software easy. The online documentation through the knowledge base makes it easy to, to learn more about the software.

Our approach to POS software user documentation is that the job is never done. Just as our software evolves so does the documentation supporting our software.

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SUNDAY SMALL BUSINESS RETAIL MANAGEMENT ADVICE: HOW TO KEEP YOUR BUSINESS MORE SECURE

Security is important in any business but especially in a small independent retail business. Here is a list of actions we recommend you consider to ensure your business is secure.

  1. Know how many keys there are to your premises and who has them.
  2. Keep a spare key in a safe place away from the business.
  3. Keep a current data backup off site. Regularly check that you can restore the data from your backup and that the data is current.
  4. Regularly check the use of your business software for the deletion or alternation of sales as this could indicate employee fraud.
  5. Have current reputable virus protection on all your computers.
  6. Have current reputable firewall installed on your network.
  7. Never open a zip file sent by email.
  8. Never open an email from a bank, the ATO or the police.
  9. Change the most powerful / valuable password for your computer software monthly and share it sparingly. Passwords should be complex. Check the strength of your password here: https://howsecureismypassword.net
  10. Be discrete when talking about the business and its performance.
  11. Do not do the banking at the same time every day or every few days. Do not follow the same route. Do not carry the same bag.
  12. Have a camera system installed to get a good shot of the faces of everyone entering and leaving the business.
  13. Consider registering your CCTV with the local police – this is an option in some jurisdictions.
  14. Ensure customers can see they are being filmed.
  15. Train employees to make eye contact with customers.
  16. Train employees on emergency procedures for handling: theft, aggressive people, shoplifters.
  17. Use the full stock control facilities of your software to understand the financial cost of shoplifting.
  18. When doing magazine returns, check discrepancies weekly to understand magazine theft.
  19. Ensure your windows are not cluttered. The police advise cluttered windows are a security risk because of what they can hide.
  20. Ensure there is good lighting outside if the store is locked up when it is dark.
  21. Ensure you have the best possible sight lines of the shop from the counter.
  22. Have a no personal items at the counter policy.
  23. If you catch someone in the act of shoplifting ask them to wait in the store, and call the Police. Also (advice from NSW govt. Crime prevention):
    1. Tell them who you are.
    2. Tell them why they have been asked to stay in the store. o Advise them that Police have been called
    3. Ask the person to surrender any property that doesn’t belong to them. Remember, retailers and other citizens have no legal right to search a person.
    4. Most importantly, do not put yourself at risk.
  24. Have a clear refund processing policy and ensure all employees are trained on this.
  25. Track all sales by employee code.
  26. When hiring: ask if applicants agree to a police check, check their references, do not hire friends of employees, explain your commitment to zero tolerance re employee theft.
  27. Have an employee theft policy in full view.
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KUDOS FOR TOWER SYSTEMS XERO POS SOFTWARE INTEGRATION

You know you are doing when when small business accountants recommend your POS software and its link with the highly-regarded Xero cloud based accounting software.

That is what’s been happening to us. We are winning new customers who are discovering us thanks to recommendations from their accountants, in part due to the Xero approved and endorsed POS software Xero accounting software link.

Creating an approved link is not an option for all POS software companies. Indeed, Xero says no to some POS companies that approach them. We are thrilled to have been approved and to be able to help small business retailers save time and money through the linking of their POS software to Xero.

As our software evolved as does our partnerships and interfaces. That iOS what we have delivered with our successful Xero interface – a facility backed by knowledgable accounting related support and assistance.

What is Transferred to Xero?

Sales
End of Shift based department-level sales are transferred to Xero via a sales invoice. Each department can be assigned its own Xero account.

Invoices
Invoices received into Retailer are transferred to Xero at department level. No individual stock items are transferred.

Write Offs & No Sales
These are transferred to individual expense accounts depending on the transaction reason chosen.

Cost Of Sales
An option on sales exporting is to export Cost of Sales. While not a full implementation of COGS it does transfer over the cost price of items sold each day to reduce the value of Stock On Hand in Xero. If you use this option you will export Write offs, not as expenses, but as adjustment to your Stock on Hand. This makes processing stock adjustments for the End Of Month much easier.

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POS SOFTWARE UPDATE IN BETA RELEASE

A major update to our POS software has moved to beta release following extensive testing in house and an alpha live release.

This latest update delivers enhancements in the areas of fast retail sales, loyalty management and marketing, catalogue management and handling special customer orders.

The update delivers new functionality, genuine enhancements to the software, enhancements that continue the lead of the Tower systems software in selected specialty retail channels.

Retailers on our beta release panel have been contacted with details on how to access the update and provide feedback leading into the commercial release program.

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SUNDAY SMALL BUSINESS RETAIL MANAGEMENT ADVICE: MAYBE IT IS TIME TO CHANGE YOUR FRIENDS

Who do you talk to about your retail business? Are they sympathetic, pandering almost? Or, do they challenge your perception of your business?

Do they agree with everything you say? Do they offer pity as a response for you explaining your situation?

Good friends will challenge what you say. They will ask tough questions to test what you say about business performance. They will not put up with a victim mentality. They will want to know what you are doing to improve your situation and that your actions are rooted in your business data.

If your friends don’t challenge you when you talk about your business consider seeking out others you can talk to who do challenge you. 

Owning a business of any size can be tough and lonely. In the business it is rare you will be challenged. In your immediately family, too often, you will not be challenged. This is why you need to seek out those who could and will challenge you. You need to be challenged. Your plans need to be tested through tough questioning.  While some good friend will do this for you many will not.

So, do you need to change your friends?

Seek out people who will give you truthful assessment of what you say, people who will have an opinion and be unafraid to share it. You want people who will actively listen to you and give you their insights.

Seek out people who will want the same from you.  The ideal friendship is one that is equal, open and honest in conversation.  This is what retail business owners need – people who can help them see what they may not be seeing for themselves.

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DON’T BE BOUND BY WHAT IS USUAL FOR YOUR TYPE OF RETAIL BUSINESS.

Now, more than ever, retail businesses are not bound by strict borders in terms of what they sell. You only have to look at what pharmacies sell today compared to ten years ago to realise the value of change.

But this type of change, retailers trading outside what is usual for their type of business, is common. There are successful coffee shops today that started out as a customer service experience in vehicle repair shops, fashion outlets and more. 

What is it you could sell in your business that does not fit neatly into what is usual for your type of retail business?

In our work in a range of specialty retail channels we see successes where retailers play outside what is usual for their type of business, where they ignore the borders of tradition.

Doing this successfully starts with looking at the type of customers you currently attract and considering this with the capacity of the business to offer other products and services within the space and capital restraints of the business.

A good place to start is to analyse basket data in your software and, through this, to build up a better understanding of what people purchase. Using departments, categories and tags, you can build an understanding beyond what you recall from serving customers.

Use your data to explore possibilities beyond what you sell today.

  1. Who is your customer?
  2. What else do they buy?
  3. What can I sell them allied to what they buy from me yet that I do not carry today.

Data analysis shop could uncover a niche interest among customers that could be served by the business carrying something you may not usually see in a your type shop.

We see this activity as important. If you rely on traffic that is usual for your type of business your results will most likely be usual for your type of business. Whereas if you attract traffic beyond what is usual, your results ought to be beyond what is usual.

Retail today is more borderless than ever. While it is important your business can be easily understood, you can do this and reach beyond what is traditional with careful management and attention.

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ACCESSIBILITY TO POS SOFTWARE ARCHITECTS IS KEY TO SMALL BUSINESS RETAILERS

Hey small business retailers: When as the last time you got to speak directly with those responsible for the POS software you use? When were you able to influence the decisions they make on the design of the software?

Here at Tower Systems that happens daily. Access to the decision makers in our business is easy for any of our small business retailer customers.

Such access is important to us as it helps us make more useful software, the kind of software retailers love.

At our current national user meeting tour where we are vuisiting more than twenty locations our customers can directly and one on one talk with our decision makers. They can share suggestions and find out wh6y we do what we do.

We get as much out of this dialogue as our customers. Indeed, it is a thrill to have ah ha moment when we discover opportunities for our software beyond what we may have been thinking.

Beyond the current user meetings our customers have access to the development team through our open door policy of end user contact. We don’t believe in hiding those creating our software from those who use it.

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SUNDAY SMALL BUSINESS RETAIL MANAGEMENT ADVICE: 6 WAYS TO PROMOTE YOUR POINT OF DIFFERENCE THIS WINTER

Winter can be tough for some people. It can be tough for retail too as traffic is often down. Independent retailers have an opportunity to leverage the season, to make it more enjoyable for you and your customers.

Here are six suggestions to get you thinking abut winter differently:

  1. Reach out to retirement villages and nursing homes. Pack up key items from your shop and tele it on the road – go to those customers who can’t come to you because of the cold.
  2. Offer free delivery. If option one does not work for you promote a delivery service so people shut in can still get their  fix. Be the retailer who goes the extra mile.
  3. Add to your customer service. have somewhere people can place their umbrellas and raincoats when they enter.
  4. Keep your shop warm. Offer hot coffee, tea or hot chocolate. Maybe have a slow cooker with some delicious home cooked vegetable soup using a recipe from a magazine you have in-store.
  5. Have a summer sale. In the middle of winter, at the coldest, have a blow-out sale and call it something like a SIZZLING SALE. Get people warm with great prices.
  6. Change your music playlist. If you’re using an online music service, select brighter, warmer music.

If your shop is in a really cold area consider an outer door to keep the warmth in. They do this a lot in Europe and the US in Winter.

Winter is a seasoning which you can show off your point of difference and get people seeing your retail business differently.

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HELPING A SMALL BUSINESS RETAILER CONFRONT THE WORST TYPE OF THEFT

The worst type of theft any small business retailer can encounter is that by a business partner. It can be challenging to detect as a smart partner can know processes and opportunities to steal without detection. A well run business, however, has checks and balances, checkpoint opportunities to indicate theft that can be investigated and proven.

We have been working on this for a customer through this Easter period, helping to gather evidence that will resolve the matter.

While we offer excellent theft mitigation opportunities in our POS software, retailers can choose the level to which these are used. Offering local choice is something retailers want. We confront the risk of choice in our training and support of retailers as we want them to choose what is best for their business, to keep the cost low.

We are proud to offer management level business assistance and advice to help retailers uncover evidence of theft and to take appropriate steps to recover stolen funds and bring perpetrators to justice.

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THERE IS A BIG DIFFERENCE BETWEEN CLOUD BACKUP SERVCIES FOR SMALL BUSINESS RETAILERS

The cloud backup service offered by Tower Systems to its small business retailer customers is best practice, offering the ultimate in protection for our customers.

The features of the service include:

  1. Whole of PC backup. This is crucial.
  2. Local copy storage.
  3. Cloud based storage in a secure independent server farm location.
  4. Speedy recovery back to a selected data.
  5. Certainty over the management of the processes.
  6. No user triggered backup activity required.

While there are free cloud based backup services, when it comes to protecting your business data a free service is most likely not the best.

Your business data needs to be treated with the respect it deserves.

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CANBERRA AREA RETAILERS POS SOFTWARE USER MEETING

IMG_7636Plenty of retailers using our Tower Systems POS software got together with us today at the Mercure Hotel for a POS software user meeting and networking session. In addition to covering new facilities and delivering appreciated training, we also connected with prospective users keen for a new solution.

From our side at the Canberra session we had our software development manager, COO, national sales manager and CEO all present and engaged in the session.

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SUNDAY RETAIL MANAGEMENT ADVICE: CHECK YOUR BACKUP

A backup of business data is only any good if it can be restored. For decades, Tower Systems has offered a free backup check. Our customers are welcome to post us a backup. We will restore this and check that the backup is current. This provides a real peace of mind that is better than any other approach.

Any of our customers is welcome to use this free service.

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SMALL BUSINESS RETAIL MANAGEMENT ADVICE: MAKE EVERY DAY YOUR PAY DAY

There was a time when small business retailers could rely on selling their business for a handsome increase on the price they paid thereby providing a good pay day, when businesses sold for a good multiple of net earnings.

No more. Today, the best way to extract value from our businesses is to make every day your pay day, to not rely on your pay day being the day you sell the business.

The challenge is how do you do this?

Retailers need to look at their businesses differently. This starts with the mindset of every day being your pay day. Each decision needs to be considered in this context.

Focusing on profit today will give you a better result today and make your business more valuable tomorrow.

Here are some suggestions for making every day your pay day:

  1. Run with the leanest roster possibl Just about every retail business we review has capacity to lower labour costs.
  2. Have your best people working the floor, helping customers spend more.
  3. Have stunning displays that attract people from outside the shop.
  4. Have compelling displays in-store that encourage people to browse beyond their destination purchase.
  5. Always have impulse offers at high traffic locations.
  6. Charge more every time you can. Loyalty programs such as discount vouchers, bundling into hampers, multi buys such as 2 for 3 and other opportunities enable you to do this by blocking price comparison.
  7. Buy as best you can.
  8. Grab settlement discounts every time you are able.
  9. Promote outside your store using online and social media opportunities.
  10. Leverage adjacency information. Chase a deeper basket – people purchasing more each visit.

Be responsible for the profitability of your business. Don’t blame your suppliers, your landlord, your employees or some other external factor … it all comes down to you – the decisions you make and the actions you take.

If you relentlessly pursue profit with a clear focus you are likely to see profit grow. That’s better than waiting to make money when you sell because that’s less likely to happen in this market.

Doing all this relies on your measuring the performance of your business. The Tower software helps with this. It is easy.

This advice is an example of the small business management advice POS software company tower Systems offers its customers in its weekly business builder email.

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