Diversity in retail

Here is an article I have recently completed about diversity in retail, as a management approach to help you attract more customers to your business. I have been thinking about diversity because of an inspirational presentation I heard by Aubrey Bergauer, Executive Director of the California Symphony, in which she outlined how a commitment to diversity has helped the Symphony become more successful.

Diversity in retail.

This is not about what you may think it is about.

For years, retailers, especially small business retailers have been told do one thing right, be known for something.

They have been told that a unique selling proposition(USP) is about that one thing and getting it so right that you are known for it.

This singular focus began in an era when people often discovering a business did so by being in front of the business.

While pursuing a USP has worked for many, the world today has changed. Technology has changed us, it has changed how people find retail businesses.

Whereas in the past, there was often one major path delivering traffic to a business, today, thanks to technology, there are usually many paths, often not as obvious to us as the path of years ago.

Technology has also changed what businesses can and do offer.

Most important, technology has changed the ease of reaching customers.

Being local is not as important as it used to be.

While local small business retailers wish being local is all that matters, it is not. Often, the local community is not sufficient to serve the growth needs of a business, often because locals themselves are shopping elsewhere because doing so is easier.

Retailers need to reach more people. This means reaching beyond what has been traditional. For local retailers it means reaching beyond local. It can mean reaching beyond what you are known for.

Thanks to cool personalisation technology and targeted marketing, businesses interstate or overseas can provide a special interest product in a way that locals can love. Big businesses, especially, can leverage technology to reach local shoppers in personal and local ways.

Being local is notas important as it used to be for plenty of specialty retail businesses.

A commitment to diversity could help local retailers in this changed world.

I am not talking here about diversity in the manner in which the term is often used.

To me, diversity in small business retail is about a business, your business, being diversein the customers it pursues and diversein the ways it seeks to connect with potential new customers.

Customer diversityis about being relevant, appealing and of value to different groups of customers to those you pursue today. No, not everyone, because that does not work.

Diversity in customers is about targeting very specific, new, groups that you are certain you can satisfy.

Why do people shop with you?

Think about what brings people through your front door right now. Typically, a majority of shoppers will come through for one reason, one product or service category.

Is there another product or service category not too distant from what you focus on today that you could introduce to broaden the appeal of the business, to help you reach people who are not interested in your prime product category or service today?

This is one example of diversity … making your business appealing to a group of people who do not find your current offer appealing.

It is not about becoming a general store. Rather, it is about making thoughtful moves, based on research, to broaden the pool of people who couldwant to shop with you.

This is about you reaching more customers.

Diversity in ways of connecting with potential new customersis about how you communicate, how you connect.

Multiple touchpoints matter in this connected world.

While we all get sick of emails, text messages, social media ads and the like, they are sent for a reason, by big businesses with strong tech infrastructure to take care of this follow up.

Think about the new shopper journey in your shop today. Think about how they found you. In small business retail, word of mouth remains important as does store location. But what about other new shoppers, how can they be found?

Diversity in how, where and when you promote your business matters as does diversity in your voice.

How you reach out to an older shopper should be different to how you reach out to a young mum.

How you reach out to someone new to your core product category should be different to how you reach out to someone deeply engaged with your core category.

A more diverse pool of shoppers requires a more diverse approach to find them.

Here’s what I mean: use diverse avenues of marketing and through these use diverse marketing pitches, targeted for a more diverse pool of customers.

Marketing avenues can include social media paid and free, Google Ads, with each being thoughtfully created to pursue a specific type of shopper, one that fits a diversity goal.

Just as you expand what you offer to appeal to new consumers, you expand how you appeal to reach new customers.

Local businesses often promote local. It made sense for years. Today, specialty retailers can easily sell outside the local area, making a commitment to diversity also being about reaching beyond local as that in itself is about pursuing diversity.

It’s about more than what you are known for today.

Here is what it comes down to. What you are known for today is not enoughsince that will limit your appeal to customers interested in that. Smart and tech engaged businesses are chipping away at your core, what you are known for.

Thoughtfully, carefully, broaden the appeal of your business through what you sell and how you pitch. Pursuing a more diverse pool of customers will buttress your business, help it weather change.

This is why diversity matters. It is why you have to make your business appealing to more people and why you have to be more diverse in how you try and find them.

Now, an action plan.

Write down your target customer today. Describe them in a concise way.

Now, think about another customer you could target, a different customer you would like to reach but do not reach today. Think about what you need to do in terms of inventory, shop layout, online engagement and other changes to reach this new customer.

Write down how you promote your business today. Now, think about other ways you could promote your business and other voices, styles, tones you could use to appeal to people you do not appeal to today.

New products, new services, pitched through new voices in new mediums, this is how to attract a more diverse customer pool to your business.

Diversity in retail is simple really. It is about expanding your reach through thoughtful planned actions to reach a more diverse group of customers.

The alternative is to keep doing what you have been doing. That will maintain your current business trajectory.

Mark Fletcher is the owner of Tower Systems, newsXpress and several niche retail businesses.

TO FIND OUT MORE ABOUT TOWER SYSTEMS:

NSW / ACT / TAS: Nathan Morrison. 0417 568 148.
QLD / NT: Justin Randall. 0434 365 789.
VIC / SA / WA: Tim Batt. 0401 833 917.

Instant asset write-off benefits for small business retailers

The immediate asset write off benefits that have been further enhanced by the federal government this year present small business retailers investing capital in their businesses tax and other benefits that are worth considering.

The details of what we in small businesses can do are outlined in the simpler depreciation for small businesses information from the Australian Taxation Office:

Right now, the threshold is $30,000. Spend this much on a depreciating asset and you can write it off this financial year. If your business books a profit, the benefit of the write-off can be considerable.

The Tax Office website has excellent details. Your accountant can help too.

The Small Business Development Corporation in Western Australia has an excellent explainer of instant asset write off on their website. Click here to access it.

Click here to access an explainer from Finstro, a business finance company.

POS software lead referral program for Xero Advisors

Tower Systems has a Lead Referral Program to express appreciation to professionals who provide the company with sales leads that convert to bankable business. This is part of our small business partnership program that seeks to help encourage stronger small /indie retail businesses.

Our lead referral program is designed for bookkeepers and accountants who invest their time and knowledge to help introduce Tower Systems to prospective customers. Since our software links directly to Xero and offers third party supported access to MYOB and Quicken, connecting with Xero specialists makes sense.

Our software is also integrated with the Magento, Shopify and WooCommerce e-commerce platforms.

For easy banking and payments, we interface with Tyro directly and the major banks through a third party.

For buy now pay later, we interface with Oxipay (Hmmm) and ZipPay ZipMoney. We are working with AfterPay to bring that platform to our 3,000+ customers.

Our POS software is purpose build for a select range of niche retailers. While our software may work for businesses outside the retail channels listed on our website, it is important to know that being specialist matters to us. We dive deep into the needs of each retail channel we serve.

We are keen to work with bookkeepers and others who also specialise in their service of specific retail channel retailers.

In addition to developing awesome POS software, we also develop websites for our customers in-house, at our Hawthorn, Victoria, head office. This results in websites more finely tuned to the needs of local retailers as we understand local retail.

To maintain standards and ensure transparency, Tower Systems manages the lead referral program out of its head office.

To express interest to be part of the lead referral program, please email sales@towersystems.com.au. This is also the entry point for any queries. We will provide a document that outlines the program, how it works and what we offer.

To those contemplating partnering with us: we say thank you for considering working with Tower Systems to empower small business retailers to run more efficient and successful businesses.

Tower Systems is proud to serve small independent retailers in Australia and New Zealand.

A small business retailer POS software connected website can be a hungry beast

A constant piece of advice we provide to our small business retail POS software customers who whom we have developed POS software connected websites is that websites are a hungry beast.

While the technical process of connecting your Retailer software to a Shopify, magento or Woo Commerce website, developed by us or someone else, is straightforward and the data flow of inventory details and images easy to establish, maintaining the site requires work.

Here are some tips from us designed to help you manage your website(s) for success. These tips are based on our own experience of developing sites for our businesses:

  1. Ensure your website stands for something. It could be that your online presence is through a different name or brand to your retail shop, to help you reach more people. The best websites stand for something clear, easily understood.
  2. Ensure your product photos are good.
  3. Don’t load all your shop stock on the website. Too much stock makes a website challenging to navigate.
  4. Get your shipping right. Like it or not, people want low or no cost shipping from online.
  5. Know your pricing model. You need to decide if you want online to be break even or loss making.
  6. Keep your content up to date, fresh.
  7. Offer multiple forms of payment.
  8. Fulfill orders quickly.
  9. Answer questions quickly, and completely.
  10. Work ion your website regularly … i.e. several times a week.
  11. Promote the website.

If you’d like a quote from us about having a website developed for you, consider completing ourweb questionnaire form.

Tower Systems undertakes web development in Australia, out of our head office based in Hawthorn, Victoria.  This local and easy access serves our customers well in that we can answer questions and bring to the table our own local retail business management and operation experience.

Or POS software connected website solutions cover many different retail channels and offer myriad facilities and experiences on which prospective customers can draw in considering their plans.

We also provide practical advice and help to retailers who are keen to resolve questions on management of their website once they are up and running. This blog post provides some insight into the knowledge and services we provide in this area.

Gift shop POS software, $145 a month – perfect for small business retailers

We have a gift shop software offer that respects the cashflow challenge of small business retail.

For $145.00 (inc. GST) a monthyou can access gift shop software used by many hundreds of small business gift retailers like you.

Our Gift Shop Software helps beyond tracking sales. It helps with marketing, improvingcashflow, encouraging shopper loyalty, competingwith big business, selling online, cuttingbookkeeping costs, improving decision speedandqualityand taking payment in many ways including buy now pay later.

These promises are real. We are real. Tower Systems is a well-established Aussie POS software company with more than 3,500 small business retail customers in nine specific retail niche categories, like gift shops.

Here is what we think really matters about what we do and what we offer Australian gift shops like yours:

  1. This awesome gift shop software is developed in Australia.
  2. It has been designed specifically for gift shops.
  3. Our customer service team is Australian based. If you call, email, text, Facebook message or visit us, a human, with a real name, responds.
  4. Our software is regularly enhanced, based on user suggestions.
  5. You have access to unlimited one-on-one training.
  6. We offer business growth training, providing business context for cool things you can do with the software.
  7. Easy access to a fantastic knowledge base – like a searchable manual.
  8. Easily link with your website to sell online.
  9. Easily link to Xero– save time, cut mistakes and cut accounting costs.

$145.00 (inc. GST) a month is the cost. We guarantee this price for three years.

To get you started, if you agree, we come to your business and provide two days onsite.Included in this time is one-on-one training of you and any staff. This training is jargon free and designed for small business retailers.

  1. There is no additional travel cost.
  2. There is no additional monthly support cost.
  3. There is no extra cost for software updates.
  4. There is no extra cost for extra registers or computers in your shop.
  5. There is no after-hours charge for after-hours support calls.
  6. There is no additional charge based on turnover.

Look at that list of things we will not charge for!

We have tried to make this offer as cost-effective as possible while maintaining the high level of personal professional service for which we are known.

Here’s more good news.Once you have paid the $145.00 a month for three years, the charges stop and you can keep using the software forever, for no extra cost if you don’t want software updates and help desk access. If you do want those things a smalleroptional support fee is available.

Call one of our gift shop software experts today for an obligation-freediscussion about your business needs, or a first-hand look at our software:

  1. VIC/SA/WA– Tim Batt 0401 833 917;
  2. QLD /NT– Justin Randall 0434 365 789;
  3. NSW/ACT/TAS – Nathan Morrison 0417 568 148.

Our goal is to help you enjoy a more successful and valuable business.

POS software co. Tower Systems at Magento developers conference in Las vegas

We have four people at the magento developers conference in Las Vegas this week, networking and learning more about opportunities for further enhancement of the awesome POS software integration to Magento offered by Tower Systems.

Leveraging years of experience with Magento, Tower Systems benefits from experiences like the Imagine conference in Las Vegas through networking with peers, learning about enhancements from experts and from seeing the accomplishments of others in presentations.

We have been attending the Magento developers conference for years and benefiting from each event.

Our POS software integration with magento delivers a wonderful e-commerce solution for small business retailers, providing to them website facilities linked directly to their POS software system, sharing a common pool of inventory – with the retailer having complete control over what is shared to the website and what is not shared.

By bringing management and tech leads to the Magento Imagine conference in Las Vegas we have the right people in the room to soak up tech, marketing and management insights that are being shared here. This multi-disciplinary approach provides best broad based outcomes for our customers. Were think it is good for our business too.

We have development many websites in magento, delivered to retail businesses awesome Magento based POS software connected webstore solutions, helping small business retailers to easily and successfully sell online and thereby reach a broader range of shoppers for their business.

Online is critical today and Tower Systems through its POS software webstore connected POS software leveraging magento helps small business retailers to easily, effectively and successfully compete.

Small business retailers can benefit from the retail management experience at Tower Systems experience that helps deliver a more retail focussed solution.

The Tower web team is also skilled at SEO and SEM services that help raise the website rankings in key search engines, ensuring the site is found ahead of others.

The Tower Systems web development team is Australian based, working out of the company’s head office in Hawthorn. This is important as many web development businesses are overseas. While you might have a locally based contact person development too often is done overseas, leading to challenges with delivery and usefulness.

Loyalty facilities embedded in POS software help small business retailers

Shopper loyalty software needs to drive sales. If it does not do this then it fails the business and is of questionable value. By driving sales, we mean achieving incremental revenue for a retail business – by bringing shoppers back to the business or by getting them to spend more in a visit to the business.

Good loyalty software has the hooks and tools that can be deployed to achieve these outcomes.

This is what the Tower Systems loyalty management facilities in noir smart POS software.

This is where the loyalty software facilities from Tower Systems come into their own. Offering a broad range of loyalty solutions, small business retailers can choose the approach that works best for them, included a blend of multiple approaches.

Most retail businesses using our specialist retail software love its points-based loyalty program that looks and feels as professional as the supermarkets’ programs. However, our software’s Discount Voucher facilities deliver even better results. We say this based on wonderful and helpful feedback from many of our small business retail customers.

Discount vouchers are a very different approach to loyalty. They offer immediate rewards. They help shoppers spend more this visit. This is vital in businesses that see shoppers once, in tourist and similar locations. They genuinely change shopper behaviour in that visit to the business.

One of our own retail businesses reported growth of 10% in the three months. Much of the success comes down to smart use of Discount Vouchers.

Discount Vouchers don’t need a card – they print on sales receipts and offer an amount customers can spend right away. Our experience and the experience of hundreds of our customers is that Discount Vouchers drive faster and deeper engagement with the business – making a shopping visit more valuable right away.

  1. You name the voucher anything you like and can change this at any time.
  2. You set the rules on how the value of the voucher is calculated.
  3. You set the rules on what the voucher can be redeemed for.
  4. You set the rules on expiry dates.

Male shoppers are more likely to spend the voucher immediately and many customers use the voucher to purchase items more expensive than the items in the initial purchase made. Customers see the voucher as cash, often commenting that they like the direct approach better than a points-based system. They like the transparency and simplicity.

In our own retail experience, which sees us competing against major retailers in a Westfield shopping centre, several shoppers have stated they prefer Discount Vouchers over the rewards programs of our competitors.

We are confident that Tower Systems’ Discount Voucher facilities can help you:

  1. Get customers spending more in a visit.
  2. Bring existing customers back sooner.
  3. Attract new shoppers to your business.
  4. Drive impulse purchases at the sales counter.

Here is a video from us about Discount Vouchers:

Adult shop software helps small business retail adult shops

The Tower Systems Adult Shop POS software has been designed and developed in Australia for Australian adult shops. It is respected and well used software that serves this niche retail channel in myriad specialty ways.

Here are ways this POS software developed for adult shop retailers can help with business management:

  1. Remote management. This software has tools to let you easily track and manage the business if you don’t work in the business.
  2. Multiple store management. Multiple stores can be easily managed.
  3. Electronic invoices from suppliers. Import electronic invoices and cut mistakes and the time taken to bring in new inventory.
  4. Bundling product for price deals. How and what you bundle is flexible and easy with this software.
  5. Product care instructions. Include these easily by product for customers and demonstrate a level of customer service people will love.
  6. Cut employee theft.This software makes it harder for people to steal and easier for you to track.
  7. Cut customer theft.This software identifies what is being stolen. This helps you claw back GST paid and it helps you manage theft better.
  8. Easier regulation compliance.The age-check facilities in this software reduce the chance of mistake and give you proof you are managing the business to legal obligations.
  9. Less dead stock.The software helps you buy what sells. It shows you instantly what is not selling. This reduces mistakes in stock purchasing.
  10. Compete with online.This software has facilities you can easily use to show why shopping with you is more valuable and enjoyable than shopping online.
  11. Bring customers back. With no extra work, make a pitch customers see when they get home. We can bring as many as 25% of shoppers back in.
  12. Cut bookkeeping and accounting fees.From GST reporting to having an up to date P&L, we can save time and money by linking to software like Xero.
  13. Connect your online with your shop.Our Web Store facility handles this.
  14. The Tower AdvantageTM. Training long after you first install for no extra cost.

We are adult shop software specialists, serving many in this retail niche field.

Adult shops are retail businesses with unique business management needs. We are grateful for the opportunity to serve these needs, to help create more successful and enjoyable businesses,. This is good for the owners of the businesses as well as the employees. The more we can do to help local retailers stay strong the better in our view.

We discovered that our unique POS software served this niche when a retailer in the channel approached us and told us we were a good match.

POS software for produce and farm supply businesses

Produce businesses come in many shapes and sizes. We hear them referred to as stockfeed businesses, farm supplies businesses, rural stores as well as produce businesses.

There are common needs in these businesses for software beyond what is usual in retail management software. This is what we do – create software for very specific retail business niches, like yours. We do the regular POS stuff you’d expect, and we serve produce requirements, like…

  1. Invoicing and account management – in our specialty software you can manage accounts in a way that is highly tailored to your business. You can produce picking slips, manage accounts, feed data to Xero and MYOB, accounting for freight and more.
  2. Pre-orders – We make it easy for you to pre-sell a delivery so that when the stock arrives you can manage distribution and billing efficiently.
  3. Bagging up feed – Using our software we manage you bagging up a bulk feed delivery into smaller, saleable lots, while keeping accurate stock on hand data.
  4. Making your own feed mix. We help you track managing bulk quantity ingredients and mixing these into saleable packs of your own brand of seed mix. What an awesome point of difference for your business!
  5. Special orders. You can bring product in for a specific customer or customers and have them notified automatically by email or text when the goods are in and ready. The software can even print a label with their details on it, to personalise the package.
  6. Pricing profiles.You can set pricing rules based on types of customers you serve in your business.
  7. Seasonal reordering.You can easily reorder inventory based on seasonal sales data managed by the software.
  8. Staff Tracking – Track all suspicious transactions, cancelled sales, discounted sales, deleted sales, quantity changes and more.
  9. Know Your Customers – Understand your customers’ needs better by viewing all their interactions with the business in one screen.
  10. Marketing– Keep in touch with your customers based on their product purchase history.
  11. Offer Customer Loyalty – Move away from straight discounting (a race to the bottom) and implement a loyalty facility that encourages customers to spend higher amounts, more often with you.
  12. Buy now pay later. In the software, you can give people terms yet be paid right away yourself. We integrate already with Oxipay. Zip Pay is a couple of weeks away and we are working on Afterpay.
  13. Gift Cards & VIP Cards – Branded to your business, helping you guide shopper loyalty.
  14. Website Integration – Our software connects with Shopify, Magento & WooCommerce.  Sell online, easily.
  15. Accounting Integration – Have your sales and purchase information automatically flow into Xero, MYOB & Reckon.

Hey Accountants – if you are asked for POS software advice by your retail business clients…

Accountants are often asked for advice by retail business owners about which software to buy.

Unless an Accountant has experience actually running the type of retail business, they may not know what the business needs in the shop. They will understand the accounting need, but what about the business operational need, the workflow need, the specialty needs unique to that type of business?

Most accountants we meet are accounting experts, not specialty retail operational and management experts.

Unless an accountant has actually used the POS software they suggest how can they know if it is right for the job? Sure they will read about it and often talk to people about software from an accounting perspective, but this does not make them experts. Accountants usually know accounting software well, but not specialty retail POS software.

Good accountants use specialty practice management software too run their practices. Why, therefore, would an accountant suggest a specialty retailer not use specialty software make specifically for they type of retail business? They shouldn’t. That’s right. In fact, they should suggest to their specialty retail clients that they use software for their type ion business.

Bike shops need software made for bike shops.

Jewellers need software made for jewellers.

Firearms retailers need software made for firearms retailers.

Garden centres need software made for garden centres.

Pet shops need software made for pet shops.

Produce and farm supply businesses need software made for produce and farm supply businesses.

Toy shops need software made for toy shops.

Gift shops need software made for gift shops.

Newsagents need software bade for newsagencies.

Adult shops need software made for adult shops.

Accountant need software made for accounting practices.

Specialty software provides opportunities for better workflow management, easier selling, better supplier connection and better service of customers. Bottom line: specialty software is more fit for purpose for specialty retailers.

Tower Systems only developes and sells specialty software in a selected number of niche retail channels. We are experts, selling expert software, to expert retailers.

While we like accountants, and have a couple working full time in our software company, we think sometimes their advice to go with an generic simple POS package could be less than appropriate advice.

The best POS software for fishing and outdoors shops in Australia

Tackle World retailers, Compleat Angler retailers and plenty of independent retailers use the Tower Systems fishing shop software to help run their businesses.

We are grateful to our Tackle World and Compleat Angler customers for their guidance and input as we have developed our software to better serve the fishing and outdoors retail marketplace.

Each software update we release delivers more facilities and enhancements to existing facilities based on suggestions from shop staff, managers, owners and suppliers. We love the suggestions and the voting for the suggestions of others – our approach to determining what is in each software update is transparent and user driven.

Our fishing shop software is highly tailored and finely tuned to the needs of local fishing shops. This is what makes it specialist software for these specialist retailers. We back the specialist software with specialist training for our fishing shop retailers. We do this in their shops, one on one with them and their staff. It is a personal and specialty service that delivers better business outcomes for the. Retail is personal, after all.

HOW DO YOU CHOOSE THE BEST FISHING SHOP SOFTWARE FOR YOUR BUSINESS?

We think we can help with this, based on years of service to this retail channel.

In thinking about the software you want, think about your business. Here are some headline level thoughts and suggestions.

  1. If you see your business as specialist in nature, the software you choose should be specialist.
  2. If part of your business pitch is to shop local, choosing locally made and supported software supports your pitch. Local software is software made and supported in Australia.
  3. If you want to be known as the local specialist, you need software that helps you do this consistently and effectively.
  4. If you do repairs or maintenance of any sort, you need software that can handle this.
  5. If you sell items bundled such as a rod, reel and line pack, you need software that can handle this.
  6. If you are in a tourist area and sell to people once, or once a year, you need software with loyalty facilities to maximise their rare visits to your shop.
  7. If you sell products by weight,you need software that can do this.

Think about these things and think about what you want in software in your business to help you stand out.

Tower Systems is ready to serve independently owned and run fishing and outdoors retail businesses with awesome software backed by awesome service.

How does the Tower Systems POS software for pet shops compare to Vend POS software?

First up, we have never used the Vend POS software. So, we can’t speak to what it does.

What we know is the Tower System s pet shop software, how we train our customers, how we support them and how we work with pet shop suppliers.

We are a full service, personal service, specialty retail POS software company with many customers in the pet shop space.

Our software is not generic, basic, simple. It is comprehensive. Fit for purpose. made for pet retailers. Connecting pet retailers and their suppliers.

Our software is embedded with facilities pet shop owners and managers and retail staff have pitched to us to include. This is part of what makes our software specialist.

We are confident that in any function by function comparison of our software with Vend that anyone working in a specialty pet shop would choose us.

Like all good specialty retail software, our Pet shop POS software continues to evolve. We improve facilities, add new facilities, making it better with each new release … with many of the enhancements coming direct from customer suggestions.

We are close to our customers, accessible to them, available to them – our weekly customer email has all our contact details including the direct contact details of the COO and CEO of our company. This makes us not only accessible but also accountable, and that matters.

But where we think we really differ to Vend, where Tower Systems really shines in in our view in service of pet shop software users is in our personal service. We train our customers and their team members, personally, in their shops, in the use of our software. Personal service matters in retail and it matters in POS software training.

Not over the phone, but in the shop. Picking up local nuances, how things are done, workflow and the like, and showing, live and in person, how to use our software to advantage to serve those observed needs.

We believe in personal service as this is what establishes long-term and valued relationships. This is a good example of the Tower Systems advantage.

You can find out more about our awesome pet shop software at our website.

Jeweller software from Tower Systems

Tower Systems has been in business for more than thirty-five years. We are an Aussie company with development and support based locally.

When people contact us, they are not sent offshore. Better still, our software is developed in Australians and Australian businesses.

We develop, sell and support our jeweller software. Our customers can access the software through rental, lease or purchase. They can choose the payment method that best suits their business needs.

The jeweller software we sell today is different to what we sold ten years ago. It is different to what we sold last year. We actively embrace change and enhancement, helping our hundreds of jeweller customers embrace change, too, through evolving software.

The benefits to jewellers of the Tower Systems software are myriad. They include reduced paperwork, reduced mistakes, efficient workflow, easier customer marketing, easier differentiation of the business to reflect the business unique selling proposition.

The most important benefit to jeweller retailers of the Tower Systems POS software is the provision of a sound base of data on which to base business decisions, better business decisions.

Tower Systems helps its jeweller customers learn and master our software by providing on-site, live training. We visit the store and train all the staff. We back this up with unlimited free training oevr the phone for years as part of our support package.

The Tower software can be used in the cloud or on the desktop. Our customers choose what they prefer. In either case, integrations to accounting solutions such as xero are available.

The most significant advancement that we have seen for jewellers over the last two years is the implementation of jeweller POS software integrated websites. We make selling online easy and consistent.

What makes Tower Systems stand out is that we are the only Jeweller POS software company in Australia offering Australian developed and supported software. We make what we sell. We are not agents for another company.

What is next is the ability to more easily do pop-up retail, to sell anywhere, any time and through this to find new customers. Our online integration with Shopify, Magento and WooCommerce are perfect for jewellers who see online as key to their success in the future.

We are grateful to jewellers for their support, guidance and business for decades. Their advice has helped make our software better, without a doubt.

Jeweller software from Tower Systems for Australian jewellers

Tower Systems has been in business for more than thirty-five years. We are an Aussie company with development and support based locally.

When people contact us, they are not sent offshore. Better still, our software is developed in Australians and Australian businesses.

We develop, sell and support our jeweller software. Our customers can access the software through rental, lease or purchase. They can choose the payment method that best suits their business needs.

The jeweller software we sell today is different to what we sold ten years ago. It is different to what we sold last year. We actively embrace change and enhancement, helping our hundreds of jeweller customers embrace change, too, through evolving software.

The benefits to jewellers of the Tower Systems software are myriad. They include reduced paperwork, reduced mistakes, efficient workflow, easier customer marketing, easier differentiation of the business to reflect the business unique selling proposition.

The most important benefit to jeweller retailers of the Tower Systems POS software is the provision of a sound base of data on which to base business decisions, better business decisions.

Tower Systems helps its jeweller customers learn and master our software by providing on-site, live training. We visit the store and train all the staff. We back this up with unlimited free training oevr the phone for years as part of our support package.

The Tower software can be used in the cloud or on the desktop. Our customers choose what they prefer. In either case, integrations to accounting solutions such as xero are available.

The most significant advancement that we have seen for jewellers over the last two years is the implementation of jeweller POS software integrated websites. We make selling online easy and consistent.

What makes Tower Systems stand out is that we are the only Jeweller POS software company in Australia offering Australian developed and supported software. We make what we sell. We are not agents for another company.

What is next is the ability to more easily do pop-up retail, to sell anywhere, any time and through this to find new customers. Our online integration with Shopify, Magento and WooCommerce are perfect for jewellers who see online as key to their success in the future.

We are grateful to jewellers for their support, guidance and business for decades. Their advice has helped make our software better, without a doubt.

Small business retail advice: making the most of election day

We are getting in early with refreshed election day advice for small business retailers.

Election day in Australia is a terrific opportunity for small business retailers with a spike in the number of people who are out and about. Smart retailers will embrace this opportunity as well as the opportunity of people standing in line waiting to vote and on their phone.

Here are some tips to get you thinking about marketing opportunities for any small retail business this weekend on election day:

  1. Set the front of the shop so it looks completely different – make the most of the extra people out and about. You want people seeing the shop for the first time ages to be surprised at the changes.
  2. Have a party. Plenty of music, activities, drinks and food. Make the day a celebration – to celebrate the end of the dreary campaign.
  3. Have an election sale – but make it fun. Do better than a straight sale. For example, in good Asssie tradition call it keeping the bastards honest sale.
  4. Setup sale tables in the name of local candidates.
  5. Give a discount to any customer who tells you and everyone in the shop a joke about politicians.
  6. Have a game of pin the tail on the politician in the shop.
  7. Declare the shop an election free zone. Maybe have a fine jar for anyone talking about the election on the day – raise money for a local charity.
  8. Promote your business online all Saturday with a series of social media posts so those out and about in lines waiting can see you are engaged.

All these ideas are about having fun on the day and offering a different shopping experience to usual. We hope they get yo8u thinking of what you could do, thinking of ideas of your own.

Here at Tower Systems we are not your usual POS software company. We are engaged with our customers deeply on a range of fronts to help them enjoy their businesses more and to get more from their businesses every day. In addition to excellent POS software for specialty retail businesses, we provide business management advice and support – way beyond the POS software itself.

Whatever you do this election day, have fun.

Gift and homewares online wholesaler for indie retailers

The Online Wholesaler website launched by Tower Systems offers access to a wide variety of unique, fun and engaged gift and homewares products.

Connected to our POS software, this wholesale website has been created solely for retailers, for the sale of goods at wholesale prices to them.

The Online Wholesaler is run by newsXpress Pty Ltd, part of the Tower Systems family. Originally developed for newsXpress members, it has been evolved to offer access to the unique range of quality products to other retailers too.

The website is an excellent showcase for Tower web development tools and processes as the website has been entirely developed in-house by Tower Systems. It offers variable pricing, flexibility on shipping and much more – making it a terrifically advanced wholesale products website of benefit to retailers around Australia keen for easy access to good margin unique products.

The website is a good calling card for Tower systems as well as a commercially valuable wholesale site for small business and indie retailers.

The goal of the website is to offer a new type of wholesale experience. We will not have reps on the road. We don’t do trade shows to show our products. We don’t have sales agents. We will not push product to you. Rather, this site uses leading edge tech to enable you to shop for what you want and what you can use to attract new shoppers to the business.

We are keen to help you find new shopper traffic for your shop through ranging products you might otherwise not have stocked in your business. We do this by categorising products by buying occasion and well as using tags to help you search for what may interest you.

We source products by visiting international trade shows in Atlanta, Birmingham, New York, Hong Kong, Frankfurt, Nuremberg and elsewhere. We seek out products that are not represented by the wholesalers in Australia with whom we already have relationships.

Any retailer can access The Online Wholesaler by singing up for an account. There is no cost for this. The process is simple and easy with product details readily accessible.

In using the site you are also using web technology that is directly connected to the Tower Systems POS software.

POS software Xero integration makes online LayBy and much more easy for small business retailers

newsXpress Southland is a card, gift and collectibles shop in the sprawling Westfield Southland shopping centre in south east Melbourne.

With rent increasing faster than foot traffic to the 300+ store shopping centre, the manager of the business needed to connect with shoppers outside.

Online was the obvious choice but time was limited. The goal was to find a solution that enabled the business to get online without any additional management or accounting time involved.

Xero partner Tower Systems provided an integrated Point of Sale software solution for in-store and well as online. This seamless link, coupled with complete xero integration, provided the time-saving solution the business was looking for.

“In the first six month, online revenue passed A$75,000”, commented Jayden Norton, Manager of the store.“This is a direct bottom line benefit for the business as there is no additional labour cost and no capital expenditure.”

“We could not have done this without the xero link as that enabled us to effectively open a second outlet without what in the past was additional accounting or bookkeeping cost.”

As the business has become more familiar with the Tower Systems and xero solutions it has evolved the online offering to be more comp0etitive against big retailers in the online space.  This has seen click and collect and online LayBy launched.

It is with online LayBy where the business has benefited from the xero integration in that the shopper is able to pay over time, interest free, and the retailer is paid immediately. There is no additional accounting or bookkeeping work involved as the data flows from the website to the POS to xero without being touched by human hands.

A shopper adds items to their shopping cart, they select online LayBy, provide basic instant credit check data and fine the application approved or otherwise in seconds. The retailer is paid less a small handling fee with the finance company taking full responsibility for collecting payment.

With click and collect, the payment is handled online. This works best as to commits the shopper and turns the in-store visit to an easy collection. Experience has shown this is what shoppers prefer rather than having to worry about payment in-store. It also means one person can purchased while another can collect, with appropriate secure authority.

Doing this, flowing data from shopper through to xero in this way eliminates mistakes that can be made when data is re-keyed. It also saves considerable time and this is a tangible business benefit.

“Control and transparency of data at each step in the line is key for our business because like any small business every cent of margin is important” commented Jayden Norton. “The solution needed to be easy and neat for us and for our customers. Xero was a key part of achieving this.”

In addition to the xero integration, Tower Systems POS software integrates with Shopify, magento and WooCommerce – the three leading e-commerce platforms in the world. The web development team at Tower has enhanced these to offer a multi-store solution whereby independent retailers can trade under a single branded website rather than needing their own website.

“The xero integration is the back-office piece where real labour costs are reduced”, commented Gavin Williams, Tower Systems COO. “We only sell to independent small business retailers in selected retail niches such as bike shops, jewellers and garden centres. Having the xero integration is vital as they are all competing with big business and every saving, no matter how small, is loved.”

Tower Systems is an Australian based POS software company currently serving in excess of 3,500 small and independent business retailers. The company can be explo9red at www.towersystems.com.au.

Tower Systems owns newsXpress Southland.

Colour, size and style attributes in POS software help small business retailers

Our POS software is not a destination. Rather, it is an evolving solution, being enhanced to serve evolving needs.

For many years, we resisted introducing support in the software for handling inventory items tracked and sold by colour, size and style. We resisted because this type of inventory was usually found in fashion retail, a retail segment outside the specialty retail channels in which we have been focussed.

That all changed over a year ago, thanks to a major POS software update. We developed, in close consultation with customers, awesome new facilities.

Retail has changed. The lines between retail channels have become blurred. There are businesses in our specialty retail channels today selling inventory items they wish to manage by colour, size and style. To serve this changing need, we have developed support for handling colour, size and style within our Retailer software.

We refer to colour, size and style as variantsas this is a better description for the facilities given that it can handle more than just colour, size and style.

Like any new functionality, how we handle this will evolve over time and based on user feedback.

This new function allows our POS software customers to add Variants to new or existing stock items which identify variables of what are essentially the same stock item. For example – The product Sheridan Adkins 700TC Sheet Setcomes in 5 different colours, with each of those colours coming in Queen, King & Super King sizes. All up, there is 15 variants of what is essentially the same item (15 barcodes, the main description, cost, sell, department and category etc are all the same, the only difference being the Colour and Size. This new feature will give users more flexibility and efficiency in areas such Arriving Stock, Creating Orders and checking Stock Levels.

We see this serving needs in a range of specialty niches including Jewellers, Bike Shops, Gift Shops, Fishing businesses, Outdoors businesses and more.

We are grateful to our customers for their guidance and help as we have walked the path to releasing our colour, size and style facilities.

In summary, using the new variants facilities in our software you can track items by multiple variants, like colour, size and style, at the point of sale, returns and reordering.

You can report on inventory performance in a meaningful way to serve your business needs in this area.

The goal of the variants enhancements is to provide each user business with data necessary to better manage the inventory in the business and the business itself overall.