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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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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WHY WE THINK XERO IS THE BEST ACCOUNTING SOFTWARE FOR SMALL BUSINESS RETAILERS

We have used MYOB, Quick Books and xero in retail businesses we operate. It is this experience with all three from a bookkeeping through to a finalized accounts perspective that has helped us reach a view that xero is the best solution.

Each professional position in our company agrees from bookkeeper to management to our in-house CPA. xero is the best accounting solution for small business retailers.

There is an ease of use backed by excellent support as well as an easy and direct integration between our POS software and xero that helps us save time and money.

Retailers using xero can see this for themselves.

So this is how we came to our preference, our recommendation, through our own experience on a range of levels.

While our software supports MYOB, Quick Books and xero, our experience with xero is roe complete and our integration more direct. It is an integration tested and endorsed by xero, something the company gives out only after it is satisfied.

The above commentary from us aside, xero don’t just connect with any POS software company. They check out the business and their software. They research whether they want to partner with a business. I am aware they say no, that they reject proposals of integration. That we are integrated is a valuable point of difference for us.

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MELBOURNE RETAILERS EMBRACE POS SOFTWARE USER MEETING

IMG_7450We were thrilled with the participation at our first Melbourne retailer POS software user meeting yesterday. This was day three of a tour that will cover every state and territory, capital cities and major regional centres, offering free training, small business retailer networking and open-ended Q&A sessions.

Every session is different thanks to the mix of attendees. We are loving it.

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FOR SMALL BUSINESS WHO FIND RETAIL IS TOUGH

Yes, retail can be tough.

What are you doing about it?

Here is a letter we sent to retailers recently who have said it is tough. It is part of a confronting education campaign based on a truth that even in the toughest of circumstances, retailers can grow their businesses – yes, even small business retailers who are facing tough competition from big businesses.

We have used this letter to try and jog people to see their businesses differently…

I’d love a dollar for every retailer who has told me how tough it is in the last few years. Heck I’d retire with the money I’d have.

The thing is, retail is tough, especially small business retail like a gift shop. It’s always been tough for the little guy. I know because I own a small retail business myself.

We really do think we need to stop saying retail is tough and start challenging ourselves. Hence the question: What are you doing about it? Put another way…

  1. What are you doing to attract new shoppers?
  2. What are you doing to get your existing shoppers to spend more?
  3. What are you doing to drive down your costs?
  4. What are you doing to improve margin?

These are the four most important things for a retailer to act on. They sit at the core of every retail business failure and success.

Taking small steps in each of these areas can help you weather tough times. These same small steps can help you find success with less effort.

Tower Systems is a software company for small business retailers like you. We’re retailers too. We combine retail experience with tech smarts and a passion for small business to help our colleagues to grow their businesses. We’d like to help you.

Using our Point of Sale software for gift shops like yours we can help you

  1. Attract new shoppers.
  2. Get your existing shoppers to spend more.
  3. Drive down your costs.
  4. Improve margin.

Big claims yes … we have existing customers who will tell you that we do this.

Our system can cost as little as $7 day. Besides great software, hardware you can trust, friendly training and software support, you have access to our business skills, acumen and passion. We have your back, helping where we can with advice and ideas to help you grow your retail business.

We’re not your average software company. Tower Systems is a full-service passionate and engaged software company that wants you to succeed. We firmly believe…

In business, through our own actions we make our own success.

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POS SOFTWARE COMPANY ADDS MORE USER MEETINGS

Tower Systems is thrilled to add more dates and capacity to the national POS software user meeting tour that is ti kick off in the next few weeks. With strong demand for these free training sessions, the event management team at Tower has found rooms with more capacity.

Offering a free breakfast to make the early start more enjoyable, the Tower sessions are set to be satisfying in ways more than software knowledge. Providing training, support, business insights and more, these free sessions are POS software customer service at its best. It is another feature of the Tower AdvantageTM that thousands of small business retailers love.

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HOW TO FIND OPTIMISM IN SMALL BUSINESS RETAIL

Every day can be tough in small business. You can feel like the big competitors are winning and that you can’t climb the mountain to compete. You may not know where to start.

There are green shoots of good news and opportunities in every small and independent retail business. The key is to find these and to leverage them for more success.

A green shoot is a product or a category of products or a supplier performing above average in the business. Often, these successes have gone unnoticed.

We were working with a retailer recently who said business was down by 20% and they did not know what to do. It turned out that the best performing product category in their business was ‘failing’ for six months because they had not replenished stock.

They invested, instead, on new lines that had not gone as well as the successful product.

They, in part, created their own downward spiral and had not looked at their business data to understand that contributed to the problems they were confronting.

Once they realised the situation, they re-stocked the successful range of products and numbers started to improve. More important, their confidence level grew and with this their business decisions improved.

There are opportunities for optimism in every business.

Finding optimism is like mining, you have to look for it, sometimes for a long time. It is there, though, in every retail business.

As soon as you hear yourself talking your business down, STOP. Look at your data, look for the good news. That is what you need to think and talk about.

By looking at your data, we mean looking at year on year, quarter on quarter or month on month comparison data for departments, categories, suppliers or even individual products. Look for growth and once you see growth, think about what you can do with and around the products achieving growth so that you can achieve other growth.

Any product achieving year on year increases in unit sales is a product to be appreciated, nurtured and used to help grow other products that can sell to the same customer.

This is how you grow optimism. Find those small green shoots, leverage them with some small steps and, over time, build more success for your business.

While overall revenue, traffic count and profitability may be down, growth even at the smallest data point, such as for one or two products, could be enough to get you looking at your business differently.

In the Tower Systems POS software, the best initial reports for good news are: Monthly Sales Comparison (department level, category level and / or supplier level), the 10×10 Report, Ranked Sales Report (by units) for one period and then for the comparative period.

We’re here to help you find the good news in your business. Your business data is the key.

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Featuring on National Retail Federation promotion

nrfTower Systems CEO Mark Fletcher and National sales Manager Nathan Morrison are featuring on marketing material from the National retail Federation for the NRF Big Show that starts in two weeks in New York.

Attended by 30,000+ each year, the Big Show is an extraordinary business conference and trade show for large and small retailers. We have attended for many years.

The event is an excellent networking opportunity with overseas based peers as well as with engaged Australian retailers on matters of technology and retail business management.

The photo being used by the NRF was taken at last year’s event.

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Great gift cards for small business retailers through POS software from Tower Systems

GardenGiftCardsTSThe Tower Systems designed and manufactured gift cards are growing in popularity across a range of retail channels. We are thrilled to be of service to retailers keen to offer professional gift cards backed by professional gift card management software as they have access to through their smart and engaged Tower Systems POS software.

The latest design customer gift cards are being shipped right now – pitching fresh designs to retail partners in time for Christmas trade.

The image loaded with this post shows some of the cards we have designed for our garden centre customers.

We are grateful to have in-house graphic design capabilities through which we can promote deeper engagement with our software.

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30 Christmas marketing ideas for any independent retail business anywhere – Sunday retail management advice

Tower Systems works with more than 3,500 small business retailers in speciality retail niches including jewellers, garden centres, bike shops, toy shops, gift shops, newsagents, pet shops, adult shops and more. We offer these ideas as our Christmas gift to you.

  1. Be community minded. Choose a local charity or community group to support through Christmas. Consider: a change collection tin at the counter; a themed Christmas window display; promotion on your social media pages; a donation to their work; a collection point for donations from customers.
  2. Facilitate sharing stories. Find space in your shop for customers to share their Christmas stories. It could be a story wall inside or in front of the shop. This initiative encourages storytelling by locals and better connects the business with the community.
  3. Award a prize at a local school. Fund a year-end prize at a local school. Attend a school assembly to award the prize. Work with the school leadership on a prize appropriate to your business.
  4. VIP preview. Host a VIP shopper preview night when you show off your Christmas ranges ahead of being available to the general shoppers. Respect and reward your local shoppers with deals and the opportunity to preview ahead of others.
  5. Leverage Christmas traffic. Encourage the Christmas shopper traffic surge in after Christmas. Give them a reason to come back. A coupon promotion or a discount voucher on receipts could be the enticement to get shoppers back in-store. Note: the Tower POS software produces discount vouchers to rules you establish.
  6. Become a gallery. Work with a school, kindergarten, community group or retirement village to bring in local art for people to come and see through Christmas. A small space commitment can drive traffic from family and friends of those with art on show.
  7. Dress the shop. Fully embrace Christmas. Create a Christmas experience such that shoppers know they have stepped into somewhere special this Christmas. Go for more than some tinsel and a tree. Fully embrace the opportunity.
  8. Make your shop smell like Christmas.
  9. Send cards. Send Christmas cards early in the season to suppliers, key customers and local community groups. This connects you with Christmas. Invite all team members to sign each card.
  10. Host a Christmas party. For shops nearby. You are all in the season together – let your hear down before things get crazy.
  11. Ensure you have gifts targeted at occasions. For example: Kris Kringle, by price point and by recipient. Make it easy for people to know what they could give.
  12. Stocking stuffers. At your counter always have one or two stocking stuffers for impulse purchase.
  13. Offer gift vouchers – for someone to give when they are not sure what to give.
  14. Be local. Ensure you have a selection of locally sourced products available for purchase. Make it clear in-store that these products are sourced locally.
  15. Tell stories. On your Facebook page, talk about what is important to you at Christmas. Personalise the season and deepen the connection with those who could shop with you.
  16. Offer a free gift. Bulk purchase an item to offer those who spend above a set amount. For example, spend $65 and receive XX where XX may have cost $5.00 but could have a perceived value of $20.00.
  17. Keep it fresh. Every week make significant change to your Christmas displays and promotions to keep your offer fresh.
  18. Share Christmas recipes. Each week for, say, four weeks, give customers a family Christmas recipe. This personalises Christmas in your business, creates a talking point and makes shopping with you different to your bigger competitors.
  19. Free wrapping. Sure, many retailers offer this. Make your offer better, more creative and more appreciated.
  20. This is essential in any business. Manage it through your computer system with strict rules.
  21. Work the floor. Increase time on the shop floor. Be present to manage shopper flow and to facilitate purchases.
  22. Christmas is crazy busy I most retail situations. Give yourself and your team members sufficient time to recharge so the smile greeting shoppers is heartfelt.
  23. Keep a secret. If yours is a business selling gifts a partner may purchase for their loved-one, create some mystery with a closed off display for the shopper to see the products.
  24. Free assembly. If you sell items that require assembly. Offer to do this for free.
  25. Free delivery. Offer free Christmas Eve delivery for items purchased for kids for Christmas.
  26. Sell training. Leverage the specialist knowledge you have in your business by selling as gifts places at classes you run sharing your expertise.
  27. Hold back. Don’t go out with everything you have for Christmas all at once. Plan the season to show off what you have as the season unfolds. This allows you multiple launches.
  28. Share a taste. Regardless if your type of business, bake a family recipe of Christmas cake, Christmas pudding or Christmas biscuits and offer tastings to shoppers on select days. This personalises the experience in your shop.
  29. Offer hampers. Package several items together and offer them as a hamper. Time-poor shoppers could appreciate you doing this work for them. We have seen this work in many different retail situations.
  30. Buy X get Y. Encourage people to spend more with a volume based deal. Pitched right, this could get customers purchasing items for several family members in order to get the price offer you have. Use your technology to manage this.

Christmas is the perfect time to plan for next year. It is the time to do everything possible to leverage bonus Christmas traffic to benefit your business through next year.

Tower Systems offers Point of sale / retail management software tailored for your specific type of retail business. Our software can help you leverage Christmas traffic for year-long benefits.

We provide you with loyalty facilities that are fresh and small-business focussed, loyalty facilities through which you can pitch a point of difference compared to big business competitors.

One of our retail experts can help:

  • VIC/TAS – Mike Hill .. 0423 848 482;
  • NSW/ACT/QLD – Nathan Morrison .. 0417 568 148;
  • SA/WA – Tim Batt .. 0401 833 917.
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How Xero is changing how small business retailers use POS software

Small business retailers are loving Xero and retailers using the Tower POS software are loving our approved Xero integration. Saving time, cutting keystrokes and cutting accounting fees are some of the benefits being delivered to plenty of retailers partnering with us in the use of our POS software / Xero integration.

Using this ourselves in our own retail business, we have personal experience on which to draw when providing advice to our customers. It places us in a unique position for a software company and allows us to provide a level of service customers love.

Our own experience is that Xero does change a business forever. The time saving and other benefits claimed are real. We can speak to these and ensure our customers are able to leverage the time savings.

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Loyalty software helps #smallbusiness retailers

The small business loyalty software in our POS software is helping more and more specialist retailers such as jewellers, bike retailers, garden centres, pet shops, newsagents, gift shops and homewares shops to compete with big business.

Indeed, smart loyalty facilities in small business software are crucial to helping independent and small retail businesses to win against ferocious national competitors.

The small business loyalty facilities in our software are flexible and powerful, offering:

  1. Points based loyalty.
  2. $$$ off the next purchase.
  3. Buy X, Get Y.
  4. Preferential pricing.
  5. And, a mixture of the above configurable to the needs of a business.

The flexibility and options embedded in our small business loyalty software win us ne customers and help existing customers derive better outcomes from their own customer relationships.

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How specialist gift and homewares shop software from Tower Systems helps small business gift shops to compete

Gift shops are unique businesses. They offer a carefully selected range of products, supported with personal service and displayed in a locally appropriate way. Gift shop owners take pride in being different, offering an experience unique compared to department stores and national groups.

It is these local gift shops offering personally selected products for local shoppers on which Tower Systems focuses its services in the gift shop management space.

The Tower gift shop software has been developed specifically for locally owned gift shops. It is specialist software, packed with tools aimed to serve unique needs of these specialist retail businesses.

It is this commitment to specialisation that helps Tower Systems to be in such a strong position with gift shops, serving hundreds of businesses in this specialist retail space. These retailers help us further develop the software to provide even deeper connections with the specialist requirements of gift and homewares businesses.

In addition to providing excellent gift shop software, Tower Systems also provides sound advice to help gift and homewares retailers improve the in-store experience.

One example of gift software management advice is this advice on shop floor product rotation:

  1. Rotate gifts at least fortnightly. By rotate, we mean major change, so the gift department and every gift display looks completely fresh.
  2. Each placement / display ought to tell a story. By this, we mean it ought to appeal to the same shopper. There is no point in putting gifts mixed in with gifts for guys.
  3. Follow a treasure hunt principle: place displays to encourage people further into your shop. Displays themselves should present surprise to shoppers. Do not place gifts in a line on shelves. Be creative with displays that are visually enticing.
  4. The more targeted each display the better chance it will work.
  5. On a daily basis, through a structured (rostered) plan, clean gifts and shelves. Dust blocks sales.
  6. At least weekly, call out a gift on Facebook with a carefully written post about why the gift is useful.
  7. Be disciplined about quitting gifts that are not working for you. The longer you carry an underperforming item in your business the more its costs you.
  8. Manage your gift displays to drive traffic, not to leech off existing traffic.
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POS software helps retailers sell to customers who love particular ranges

IMG_8899Retailers using the Tower Systems POS software can rely on the software to track who purchases what from a single store or many stores in a group.

This information is used by the software when creating a list of shoppers to email or write to about new products in the range or that would appeal to purchasers of the range.

Our specialisation is in managing the data for use externally. The export file can then be used with specialist email and other software, such as MailChimp – to provide you with the best marketing outcome for the business.

Tracking purchases by customer using our POS software is easy thanks to smart setting facilities that enable efficient and accurate data capture at the sales counter.

The facilities enabling creating of a marketing list based on customer purchase history is one of multiple facilities in our Marketing Tools and part of the valued Tower AdvantageTM.

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Sunday retail management tip: leverage a point of difference on loyalty

11800610_722882817857496_9022396491198622984_n (1)More and more retailers are switching from the old school points based loyalty programs to our discount vouchers. They are finding the vouchers are driving more immediate and more valuable outcomes for retailers – they are driving a better bottom line. We are hearing new success stories daily.

It is thrilling hearing success stories of how businesses have switched from points to $$ loyalty offers. It’s exciting and invigorating hearing of small and independent retailers achieving excellent outcomes for their businesses and knowing that we have played a role in this.

This is our retail management tip today – chase a point of difference, leverage new age discount vouchers and stop using the old points based loyalty offers.

Retailers can call the vouchers what they like. They can also choose how the value on a voucher is calculated and what it can be redeemed for.

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Smart POS software takes stock performance measurement and management to a higher level

We are thrilled with the feedback on a new report we are trialling in our POS software. Developed with a senior business consultant for a group of retailers in the high ticket price item space, this report provides an alternative view on inventory performance, a view we think many of our customers will find useful as they look to extract more value from their businesses.

Screen Shot 2015-07-13 at 3.39.36 pm

This latest report reflects further enhancement of the Tower Systems software along a path of continuous improvement and in response to customer requests.

Engaging our development team direct with customers is a most useful exercise for any software company.

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Retailers loving our free POS software training

Screen Shot 2015-06-04 at 12.41.31 pmWe keen addicting additional free live training sessions for our POS software customers and they keep filling up. So, guess what, we are adding more.

These sessions are more about leveraging the software in the business than how to do this or that. They contain considerable retail business management and operational advice.

We are thrilled with the support from ur customers and grateful to be in a position to offer this training by our skilled training team.

This is POS software customer service at its best. This is the Tower AdvantageTM

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Sunday retail management advice: keep your loyalty pitch simple for success

A loyalty program is only as good as the over the counter pitch through which you seek to engage shoppers. Check out this brief video we created to train retail employees on what has to be the easiest to use over the counter shopper loyalty offer.

Tower Systems leads with professional employee training videos which help retail employees leverage more value for the business from our software.

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POS software training video library helps retail employees gain skills

Retailers using the Tower Systems POS software have access to a training library of more than 130 training videos. These videos are professional in production and valuable in the content offered.

The videos can be accessed from any computer, anywhere and at any time.

The video training resources are comprehensive. They are also loved by our customers.

Regularly enhanced, the Tower Systems POS software video training library is a real asset to our business – allowing us to show a point of difference which wins us business.

In addition to POS software training, our library also includes training on business use of the software – covering how to engage on the shop floor. This is an area many POS software companies neglect in their training.

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Tower Systems helps small business retailers benefit from the immediate asset write-off in the federal budget

Screen Shot 2015-05-12 at 8.58.58 pmTower Systems has begun an education campaign for small business retailers in Australia in selected specialist retail channels outlining how they can benefit from the immediate asset write-off opportunity announced in the federal budget last night.

Retail businesses turning over $2 million a year or less can immediately write off the purchase of our Point of Sale solution.

Our software delivers the productivity benefits the federal government is keen to see small businesses access.

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The new approach to stock take using POS software

Demonstrating its commitment to innovation, the latest release of POS software from Tower Systems offers a completely new stock take facility.

Completely re-designed from the ground up, this new stocktaking facility works as well with tablets as it does on your traditional desktop.

Packed with new features, this new stock take facility is available for the end of financial year stock take retailers will undertake over the next two months.

Tower Systems is committed to providing its small business retail partners a continuously improving POS software experience through considerable investment in software development.

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More suppliers join Tower Systems EDI community

Small business retailers are set from more suppliers joining the Tower Systems EDI user community offering access to electronic invoices, stock files and other benefits.

With someone dedicated full-time in our business to help wholesales and others connect with retailers, we are well positioned to be able to help overcome hurdles in suppler organisations. This service is one reason we have more suppliers connected with our customers through our software.

The latest supplier coming on board to offer electronic invoices will be a help to many customers as they trade in the newsagency and gift marketplaces – where we serve over 2,000 small businesses.

The moment they are ready we will announce to our customers.

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POS software helps small business retailers sell more gifts

exchreceiptPeople purchasing gifts want to ensure that the recipient can exchange the gift if it is not quite right.

Retailers using the Tower Systems specialist gift shop POS software have the ability to print a gift exchange receipt detailing the items purchased but not the price paid.

This facility has been in our software for years. It was developed with retailers offering gift exchange services. The receipt printed was recently enhanced to connect with quality gift purchases.

This gift / exchange receipt facility is another point of difference for Tower in several of our retail channels it is am important pert of the Tower AdvantageTM.

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