Tower Systems offers small business retailers POS software rental option

Established small business specialty POS software company Tower Systems offers its software4 on a rental and hosted basis to retailer.

The rental option makes accessing th software easy and fast.

It eliminates the need for purchase.

Rental terms run for thirty days with easy get out for customers.

The company has offered the rental solution since 2015 with retailers able to select what they want when they want.

This approach to acquiring access to POS software is another way Tower Systems makes it easy for small business retailers to connect with its POS software.

We think the important choice for retailer is to find the right software. If we are that right software, and only the retailer will know, then we want it to be easy for the retailers to acquire and install our software. Flexibility is the key here.

In choosing to rent the software there is no delay, no cumbersome sign up process. It is simple and easy, and fast. This is another way Tower Systems demonstrates flexibility to its small business retail customers.

It is another Tower AdvantageTM.

NEXT WEEK: Free software & e-commerce workshop for regional QLD small business retailers.

We are looking forward to briefing small business retailers on the latest POS software / webstore opportunities for finding new customers, even customers 1,000s of kms away from your shop, and driving shopper loyalty that increases per-visit spend.

  1. Cairns. June 26. 2pm. Novotel.
  2. Townsville. June 27. 10am. Mercure.
  3. Mackay. June 28. 10am. Mackay Grande Suites.
  4. Rockhampton. June 29. 10am. Quest.
  5. Gold Coast. July 5. 2pm. Sofitel.

Come and see how small business retailers around the world are using website connected POS software to win online sales.

We will explain how to get to the top of Google search results.

We will demonstrate the connection between social media posts (Facebook, Twitter etc) in-store sales and online sales.

At our FREE workshops near you and find out more about how you can equip your retail business to confront the changes in retail, transact online and compete with big businesses, including Amazon.

There will be no hard sell. Our goal is to share practical information to help you better plan for the future of your regional retail business.

Anyone is welcome including people on whom you rely for advice, such as accountants and mentors.

If you have sales queries prior to these events please talk with Justin Randall. 0434 365 789.

I hope to see you at one of these workshops. I am keen to share with you what I have seen and learnt in this rapidly changing space.

There will be plenty of time for questions on any topic connected with retail.

We have software for: gift shopsjewellersbike shops, pet shops,  toy shopsfishing/outdoorsgarden centres/nurseries, newsagentsproduce stores and firearms retailers.

POS software update feedback

We are thrilled with the feedback we are receiving for our latest POS software update. Here is one message we received this week.

We love the update. Thank you for acting on our suggestion. When I put it on Software Ideas and saw others voting it made me feel good, that other people using the software liked my suggestion. I love that you listen to us.

Software Ideas is a publicly accessible place where our customers can make suggestions for software enhancements and have others vote on these suggestions. This is an exclusive platform of which we are most proud.

More retailers using our POS software integrated websites

We are thrilled to welcome more websites that are integrated with our small business POS software, offering real-time stock on hand data.

Each new site we bring on enhances the portfolio and further demonstrates our capabilities of linking online and offline retail and bringing to life facilities small business retailers look to offer from their websites:

  1. Online LayBy, interest free.
  2. Paypal payments.
  3. Click and collect.
  4. Single stock data feed, showing g real time in-store stock.

Mastering these and other facilities for single store and multi store situations is a powerful solution. Doing it also for multiple businesses to one site is stunning.

This is all part of the Tower Systems web development / POS software integrated solutions package. It is another Tower AdvantageTM.

Note, all our web development is done using e-commerce platforms that are widely used. Indeed, the three we use account for three quarters of retail e-commerce sites in the world.

One POS software user travels twelve hours to attend face to face user meeting

Just about every day recently we hear a story of wonderful customer engagement with our POS software and services we provide.

Today we have a story about a customer who drove for twelve hours for the free training we provided at a recent face to face user meeting. They did this to tap into the training, to learn more about the software, ask questions and help plan the next steps for their business through the software and services we provide.

The commitment of a twelve hour drive is extraordinary. We are grateful for this.

We learnt so much from such a unique and remotely located businesses. Plus we were able to add value by training them in parts of the software they had time to investigate. It was a terrific joint experience.

This story shows the commitment of a good POS software / user relationship, how both parties benefit and respect each other through time and others commitments.

Here at Tower Systems we love the passion of our customers. Our commitment is to serve and help…

The value of one on one training for small business POS software users

This photo shows a group from our Perth POS software user meeting late last week. Like all our sessions we had a good group of retail businesses represented. This works well as people learn from each other.

The latest round of face to face POS software user meetings have provided us excellent feedback on the latest software update and insights into next steps as well as wonderful learning opportunities for customers ho attended.

Offering these face to face user meetings its a genuine point of difference for us.

That we continue to offer the sessions today speaks to us honouring our commitment to our customers as well as our focus on providing personal customer service.

Too many POS software companies hide from their customers and make contact difficult. We don’t. We embrace are real human to human contact. The face to face user meetings are a good example of this and our commitment.

We appreciate the support form our customers and support for face to face training and engagement.

How our POS software company uses Facebook to help small business users

Tower Systems embraces a range of touch points for connecting with small business retailers. One such touch point is Facebook. We have a private group where our users can ask questions and talk through opportunities. We use this platform to share support and other announcements.

The Tower Systems user private Facebook page is proving to be a useful touch point, transparent too.

Customer service today requires change and here at Tower Systems we embrace change happily.

In a cloud environment what happens when the Internet is unavailable? The offering is for an external cloud provider, can we leverage our own cloud provider? How are hosting charges calculated, i.e. data storage charges?

Our Tower Systems POS software system is very configurable. Users have the ability, if they wish, to run without being hosted. This solves any Internet stability questions, particularly for rural/regional Australian where this may be an issue.

The other challenge with cloud is the costs. Our experience is some small business owners are not happy with the monthly hosting cost for a cloud service.

These are the reasons we have configured our software to suit whatever situation a customer prefers.

Alternatively, if users want, we can host the system in the cloud. This can be hosted on our secure dedicated infrastructure (additional costs will apply) or on infrastructure of their choosing. We will provide guidance on the configuration so the ideal environment is created.

If hosted on our infrastructure customers are charged on a per user per month basis.

If the user runs in a hosted environment and the internet drops out the user can switch to a facility we call Outpost Mode.

Outpost mode allows for basic trading, scanning sales, until such time as Internet access is restored.

This is another example of the help we provide to our customers for a broad variety of situations in which they find themselves.

Enhancing the online POS software user manual

Software user manuals are out of date. Years ago Tower Systems switched to a user searchable online knowledge base. This resource is regularly enhanced, along with the software.

In our weekly email we let our customers know about the enhancements.  Here are some of the POS software knowledge base enhancements from a week ago:

  1. List Of Approved / Supported Hardware
  2. Errors When Starting Retailer On MAIN / SERVER Computer
  3. Errors When Starting Retailer On POS / CLIENT Computers
  4. Stopping / Clearing Print Jobs
  5. Refunding a Sale
  6. Adding / Editing Reasons For Refunds
  7. End of Shift Reports
  8. Setting Up Customer Categories and Interests
  9. Using Marketing Tools0
  10. Undo Billing and Statements for Customers / Subagents
  11. How To Stop A Customer’s Order(s)
  12. Creating and Printing a Customer Invoice / Quote
  13. Finalizing & Paying a Customer Invoice / Quote
  14. Entering Additional Details for Customer Invoice Sales Made Through POS Screen

We publish a list like this most weeks in ur weekly customer service email.

How the Tower Systems gift shop software helps small business gift shops attract more shoppers and increase sales

Small locally owned gift shops exist in most high street shopping situations. They are locally owned and run gift shops, the quintessential small business, usually a family business. Competition is tough for these small businesses.

Tower Systems helps small business gift shops through its gift shop software. Using our software, gift shop owners are able to trade more efficiently and successfully. They are able to build a stronger and more valuable business.

Here are some of the ways the Tower Systems gift shop software can help any small indie gift shop:

  1. Easier selling.
  2. Faster selling.
  3. Less mistakes thanks to fewer steps in the sales process.
  4. Automatic handling of EFT processing thanks it integrated EFTPOS.
  5. More accurate selling.
  6. Easy to run LayBys including managing the terms and conditions, collecting payment and locating lay-bys.
  7. Easy handling of sales over a date and time range.
  8. Structure around product returns.
  9. Easy finding previous sales.
  10. Easier management of staff rosters.
  11. Visibility of business performance when you are not in the shop.
  12. Access to a range of shopper loyalty options from points based to a cash amount off the next sale.
  13. Easy bundling of products into a package deal offer – this makes price comparison harder.
  14. Easier selling online through a connected website.
  15. Tracking sales by staff member.
  16. Tracking business performance by supplier – driving suppliers to facilitate your business success.
  17. Tracking business performance by key seasons.
  18. Easy management of special orders for customers.
  19. Creating orders for suppliers.
  20. Easily loading electronic invoices from suppliers.
  21. Comparing trading periods for quick spotting of business performance trends.
  22. Selling by measure.
  23. Selling by weight.
  24. Managing the repairs process if you offer that type of service.
  25. Running customer accounts and managing the collection of these accounts.
  26. managing sopper gift cards including tracking balances.
  27. Managing multiple retail outlets.

The Tower Systems gift shop software helps small and independent gift shops in many ways. This list here is just some of the ways. This software has been developed with and for gift shop owners and their employees. It is already widely used.

As specialty retail software designed and developed in Australia, this is software fit for purpose for small and independent gift shops. 

Tower systems continues to evolve the software to ensure it meets the evolving needs of gift retailers in Australia.

In retail today

IMG_2339Being Christmas Eve it has been crazy busy in the shops today with last minute shopping.

Since we are a POS software company that owns retail shops we have been personally and practically involved in retail today, behind the counter, using our software serving shoppers with last-minute Christmas purchases. This photo is from our shop at Knox City in Melbourne today before we opened for customers. Thankfully it is the only time of the day the shop was empty.

We are grateful for another busy day in retail and another day of retail experience that inform some choices we make in our software.

Small business retailers love our new POS software

The latest version of ur small business POS software is gaining a terrific reaction from our customers.  We are getting calls, emails and messages from customers grateful for the update and that we have introduced enhancements they have suggested.

Here are some of the feedback notes we have received:

  1. I love this update. Thank you Tower Systems.
  2. Thank you for including my suggestion. I know it was a bit weird but I know it will save time if people use it.
  3. I appreciate that you let me choose who to install the update. This is one of the reasons I switched to you guys.
  4. I like that you tell me exactly what is in the update in advance. There is nothing worse than find out out something has changed after the new software has been installed.

Our process of determining the content of software updates is transparent and inclusive. From online forums to calls to emails to face to face user meetings around the country we talk with our customers as we develop each software update.

We are grateful to our customers for their engagement in the crafting of each software update.

40 Christmas marketing ideas for any independent retail business anywhere

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. Make it easy. People often talk about how hard Christmas is. Be the local business that makes it easy. The ways to do this are with easy Lay-By, free wrapping, better shop floor help, guide buying advice or tips on perfect gifts no one else will think of. Consider making Christmas easy as being a key part of your messaging.
  2. Be thrilled people are in your shop. Your personal smile or greeting is something they may not see in a big business where employees are less invested in each shopper and where the owner is usually thousands of kilometers away.
  3. Make the giving easy. If people purchase items from you to send somewhere else. Offer a one-stop shop. Save them the trip to the post office.
  4. Make the shop less about Christmas. Consider pulling back on the Christmas visual noise. Go for something simple, muted, respecting the season but making a calm statement. Consider declaring the shop a Christmas carol free zone – not because you hate carols but because you want to help customers take a break.
  5. Help people rest and recharge. Create a Christmas shopping rest and recovery zone. Offer free tea, coffee, water and something to eat. Encourage people to take a break in your shop – without any obligation for them to spend money with you.
  6. Let your customers help each other. Setup a whiteboard or sheets of butcher’s paper, yes keep it simple. Get customers to write gift suggestions under different age/gender groups. For example: Girls 18 – 25, Boys 55+. Encourage your customers to help each other through their suggestions.
  7. Make price comparison difficult. If you sell items people are likely to price compare with other businesses, package them so price comparison is not easy. Put items into a hamper as a perfect Boy 8 to 12 bundle for example. Or offer the item with pre packages services if appropriate for an item.
  8. Less is more.  The stack em high watch em fly mantra can be wrong. Indeed, it is often wrong in retail. Shoppers can be store blind because a shop is too full or a display is too busy. Consider creating simpler less cluttered displays and window promotions. Draw attention to what you want people to see by promoting that one thing. Every time someone asks if you have something that you think through should be able to find easily – take it as a challenge for you to address rather than a commentary on a facility of the customer.
  9. Change. Christmas season in your shop should evolve. Major change weekly is vital for people to see what you have that they could buy.
  10. Be socially engaged. On Facebook, Instagram, twitter and elsewhere, be the calm voice, the person people enjoy reading or seeing photos from. Provide entertainment this Christmas rather than the usual retailer shrill of come and shop here!
  11. 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.
  12. 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.
  13. 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.
  14. 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.
  15. 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.
  16. 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.
  17. 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.
  18. Make your shop smell like Christmas.
  19. 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.
  20. Host a Christmas party. For shops nearby. You are all in the season together – let your hear down before things get crazy.
  21. 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.
  22. Stocking stuffers. At your counter always have one or two stocking stuffers for impulse purchase.
  23. Offer gift vouchers – for someone to give when they are not sure what to give.
  24. 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.
  25. 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.
  26. 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.
  27. Keep it fresh. Every week make significant change to your Christmas displays and promotions to keep your offer fresh.
  28. 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.
  29. Free wrapping. Sure, many retailers offer this. Make your offer better, more creative and more appreciated.
  30. This is essential in any business. Manage it through your computer system with strict rules.
  31. Work the floor. Increase time on the shop floor. Be present to manage shopper flow and to facilitate purchases.
  32. 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.
  33. 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.
  34. Free assembly. If you sell items that require assembly. Offer to do this for free.
  35. Free delivery. Offer free Christmas Eve delivery for items purchased for kids for Christmas.
  36. Sell training. Leverage the specialist knowledge you have in your business by selling as gifts places at classes you run sharing your expertise.
  37. 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.
  38. 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.
  39. 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.
  40. 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 – Nathan Morrison .. 0417 568 148;
  • SA/WA – Tim Batt .. 0401 833 917;
  • QLD – Justin Randall .. 0434 365 789.

Small businesses winning online sales thanks to Tower Systems POS software webstore integration

Screen Shot 2016-11-07 at 7.58.15 AMTower Systems is thrilled to be helping small business retailers win valuable online sales through its suite of websites across multiple retail categories.

The image shows how far one package purchased through one of our our POS software integrated websites travelled this week. Thanks to site design and marketing by us, the Queensland based business found a valuable new shopper in Victoria, delivering revenue from this sale and establishing a relationship that is certain to benefit in the long term.

Connecting local small business shops with customers located on the other side of the country is helping these local town retailers find new shoppers.

Every day we are seeing excellent sales processed through the sites, valuable sales … and they are growing.

There are multiple layers to this success: the websites we created, the POS software integration enabling genuinely live stock on hand data and the guidance through sales processing to help retailers make sure they leverage the opportunity.

Delivering e-commerce revenue to small business retailers without them needing to have their own websites is an achievement of which we are most proud. We have been doing this for months across multiple website platforms and the result is terrific for our retail partners.

While there is no doubt of the value of a business being online for itself, there is even greater value for a business to be in an online community with like minded retailers, leveraging the group for each of the local stores. This is the unique delivery from Tower Systems.

We love helping small business retailers win new customers.

Free small business training on the Gold Coast today

We are thrilled to be providing free face to face training for small business retailers on the Gold Coast today through another of our social media masterclass sessions.

This training fits well with our POS software and its opportunities for helping retailers to attract new traffic shoppers.

It leverages our experience in starting and running several successful social media presences for small retail businesses we run ourselves. The session draws on that experience and demonstrates live how we are using social media to attract new customers to our own businesses.

This free training is another way we put the Tower Systems message or empowerment for small business retailers out there for more to see and feel.

NZ POS software user meeting series completed

We are grateful to our NZ customers who met with us in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch this week as we presented our latest software as well as our Xero, Shopify and Magento integrations.

We will be back with more NZ user meetings in 2017 as we continue to reach out for more face to face opportunities with our customers.

This year, Tower Systems has delivered more than fifty in-person face to face user meeting opportunities, demonstrating a commitment to personal POS software support that small business retailers appreciate.