Tower Blog

A blog about smart POS software for independent small businesses.

Month: August 2012 (page 1 of 3)

Garden centre software helps garden centres embrace the Spring opportunity

Spring is a busy time in garden centres as people work more in their gardens and around their homes, enjoying warmer weather and embracing the many planting opportunities.

Through our work with wholesale and retail garden centres we have learnt plenty about the Spring opportunity.  This dialogue has enabled us to show off some featured in our garden centre software that could help garden centres better service customers through the Spring surge.

From a terrific loyalty facility to marketing tools to inventory management to employee tracking, the tools in our garden centre software are all about managing sales and helping businesses derive the best possible return from their investments in inventory, people and IT.

The next release of our software will deliver even more benefits for garden centres.


Helping Tasmanian newsagents today

We are meeting with Hobart area newsagents today at the ANF / GNS trade day. In addition to speaking at the mini conference we are the only newsagency software company with a stand at the trade say.

Newsagents using our newsagency software can get questions answered and those with other software can see the benefits of Tower.

we appreciate the support of GNA and the ANF for the time and space at this important event.


Inviting bike shop owners to start a conversation about POS software

We have just sent a professionally designed and printed postcard to bike retailers around Australia inviting them to start a conversation about business management, growth, efficiency and enjoyment.

Thanks to years of work with bike retailers in Australia and New Zealand we have developed software tools and management tactics to help bike shop owners and managers to improve business efficiency and performance. With that comes greater business enjoyment.

The idea behind the start a conversation campaign is to show that choosing software, the right software, requires a conversation about business needs. We know that if we serve needs well we are able to genuinely make a difference. This is what we love doing … making a difference to retail businesses and those who work in them.


Meeting Launceston newsagents

Check out our stand at the Launceston newsagent meeting hosted by the ANF and GNS.  As the only software company here we are thrilled to have the opportunity of catching up with our 60+ Tasmanian newsagency software customers and connecting with potential new customers.

We have been able to setup a bid display by projecting our software onto the wall and showing larger than life the Tower Systems difference in action. We are on deck at the trade show until 7pm tonight.


Catalogue enhancements feature in POS software update

The latest release of our Point of Sale software features enhancements in the catalogue management area. The changes respond to customer requests, enhancing what can be achieved with the catalogue management facilities in our software.

The latest update is well advanced in the beta phase with more users added to the group live testing this new software.


Participating in ANF / GNS events in Tasmania

Tower Systems is thrilled to have the opportunity to participate in the Launceston and Hobart newsagent workshop and trade display events organised jointly by the ANfFand GNS today and tomorrow.

We have put together special content for the workshop and have new newsagency software to show off through the trade display.

With more than half all Tasmanian newsagents using our software we already have a strong connection with the state.


Working with other software companies on loyalty integration

With loyalty programs being high on the agenda for retail businesses it is not unexpected that we find ourselves working with several other software companies on loyalty program solutions, connecting our software to external offerings to service the needs of retail groups.

This latest work is for retailers who want to run their loyalty offer through a group-wide solution and not just on a single store basis.

We are very excited for some of the opportunities we are seeing from this.


Loving the free trade show gift

We have been giving away a gift at trade shows to extend the reach of our Point of Sale software brand and reinforce our core pitch to retailers: LIFE IS GOOD WITH TOWER.

The gift is a small screen cleaner, suitable for any screen – especially useful for a touch screen. The back of the cleaner is adhesive and can be stuck to the screen. If the stickiness of the back becomes diminished all that is needed is a quick wash with water and it’s good to go.

Having a gift for trade show visitors reinforces the value we bring to relationships with our customers, the gifts we offer through our software and our customer service.

The gift reinforces the Tower Systems difference and shows that not all software companies are the same.


Prepping for JAA International Jewellery Fair

We are putting the final touches to plans for our participation in the JAA International Jewellery Fair in Sydney at Darling Harbour this coming weekend.

Starting on Sunday, the JAA International Jewellery Fair is the most important and largest trade show on the jeweller calendar in Australia and, for many, New Zealand.

We will have new software on show, software to help jewellers compete in the changing retail landscape online and offline.

We will also have technical experts on our stand and hand to help our jeweller customers with tips and advice on how to get more from their software.

Of particular interest to attendees will be the latest release of our jeweller software –  out in time for the trade show.


Advice on how to cut customer and employee theft in retail

Retailers too often struggle with cutting the cost of employee and customer theft. They ignore opportunities to block theft and turn their backs on understanding the cost in their business.

Here is best practice advice which, if followed, will reduce the cost of theft in any retail business.

  1. Only sell what you arrive, bring into the store, through Point of Sale software. If you track it you can know if it has been stolen or not. If you do not track it who knows if it is stolen.
  2. Track ALL sales – by scanning, touch screen button or PLU (product look up code), a hot key on your computer screen.
  3. Stop all department sales, sales where the employee gets to enter the amount of the item.
  4. Scan out ALL returns, products which are returned to suppliers.
  5. Undertake regular spot stock take throughout the business. The discrepancy between what you have and what the system has reflects theft.
  6. Reorder stock using your retail management software. This stops poor buying decisions. It also identified stock theft and employee fraud around stock.
  7. Use employee initials, codes or bar codes against each sale. Yes, this adds time to each sale. The benefits far outweigh the time cost.
  8. Set an end of shift balance target of $5.00. Many retailers achieve this – it takes discipline.
  9. Change your system passwords regularly. Make it a condition of employment that these passwords are never shared.
  10. Do random, during the day, register balance checks. Check that the cash your computer system thinks should be in the cash drawer is what is actually in the cash drawer.
  11. Use your software to check and report on behavior which could indicate employee theft.
  12. Follow your suspicions regardless. Put your business ahead of friendships..

The cost to any retail business of customer and employee theft can be significantly reduced. The keys are retail owner and management engagement, full use of the software and relentless application of a zero tolerance approach.


Sydney GNS Market Fair wraps up a great two days

The GNS Market Fair in Sydney has just wrapped for another year. We’ve had two good days catching up with our NSW newsagency software customers and talking with users of other software. We do this discretely as we have noticed our stand being watched, again.  We’re thrilled with the event and the results.  Our NSW customers rock!


Training helps retail staff make better use of POS software

Retail employees tell us they love our free training workshops and that they can access these anywhere.  Tower Systems is proud to be offering retailers and retail employees using our Point of Sale software workshops on fresh topics this week. Bookings are open to right before each session.

  • How to market your business 28 Aug 2012, 11:00AM
  • How to use an iPad in your business 28 Aug 2012, 02:00PM
  • How to process seasonal stock orders 30 Aug 2012, 11:00AM
  • How to process seasonal stock orders 30 Aug 2012, 02:00PM

Each workshop will be live and interactive. The sessions are designed for people using our software. This is why we make them accessible from any PC so that employees can access the training from home and in their own time.


Meeting with newsagents in Sydney

With close to 700 newsagents using our software in NSW/ACT, our stand at the GNS Market Fair in Sydney today and tomorrow will be busy.

Already today our team has got to speak with plenty of our newsagency software customers offering free training, talking about business and generally catching up. That’s what we are here for.

We are very happy with the professionalism of the stand and that it represents our brand and what we stand for in the newsagency space.

The photo was taken this morning before the show opened.


Free Samsung Galaxy Tab offer

Retailers purchasing a Point of Sale system package from us between today and the end of September receive a free Samsung Galaxy Tab … a gift from us. This latest model Galaxy Tab can be used for anything including connecting to the business from anywhere in the world. It can also be used at home and on the road.

We have chosen to give away a galaxy tab to share the success we’re having at terrific sales this year and to help our customers tap into new productivity opportunities thanks to their use of our retail management software.

We are committed to delivering bonus value to our customers through the life of the relationship we share with them.  Beyond the Galaxy Tab for new customers, bonus value is delivered through extra training, user meetings, software enhancements, business management help and other deliverables.


Check out the newsagency software experts at GNS Market Fair this weekend

Newsagents visiting the GNS Market fair in Homebush this weekend will be able to compare newsagency software companies. It will be easy to see the software companies investing on behalf of newsagents, building better newsagency software and backing this with friendly and knowledgeable software support.

On the Tower stand you will see our unwavering commitment to delivering good software.  We are not allowing ourselves to be distracted into other sales areas.

We can also put you in touch with newsagents who have switched to Tower recently.

With close to 700 newsagent customers in NSW/ACT, Tower Systems has the market share (more customers than NANA has members) and resources necessary to help newsagents navigate change and build stronger and more valuable businesses.


Coming soon: Tower Systems NZ website

We are excited to be putting the finishing touches to a website dedicated to our presence in New Zealand. This new and separate website will provide access to a range of facilities and provide a home base around which our growing New Zealand customer base can gather.

Developed in hour by our web developer, the NZ site is in the final stages of testing prior to commercial release.

We serve retailers in New Zealand in the gift, homewares, jeweller, bike retailer and garden centre retail channels.


Working with suppliers to understand retail business performance

For several months we have been working with an international supplier to help retailers using our retail management software to understand retail performance in depth.  The result is a slide deck of fifteen slides presenting an analysis of business performance. The visual representation of dat from a high level is providing tremendously valuable insights.

While the results are confidential, we can share one simple insight – transaction volume versus transaction value over the course of a day.  The graph for just one of the participating stores and one of around fifteen for this store, shows the gap between volume and value. It is this type of insight that can help a retailer to better schedule people and resources to maximise opportunity for the business.

Our exclusive work in the newsagency channel with this supplier of international standing is resulting in commercially valuable insights for our customers, the supplier and other key stakeholders.  We are thrilled to be part of such a valuable project.


LayBy enhancements to help Point of Sale software users

The latest release of our Point of Sale software includes a series of enhancements in the LayBys area of the software, enhancements which have developed out of user requests and engagement. The result is better LayBys software … a better solution for our retail customers.

Developed in consultation with some using LayBys, the enhancements have evolved as part of a suite of changes in the next software update.

The update is currently in mid release beta. It will be available to our entire user community once it clears the beta QAQ process.


Helping community groups with POS software

We are pleased to have been able to help several community groups recently to install our Point of Sale software and hardware solution.  Provided through our community support program, these systems help community groups that provide employment to people who might otherwise not be able to find work.

The latest group we are supporting is ConnectGV.

At ConnectGV we see the possibility, not the disAbility and therefore seek partnerships that allows us to offer many of these options within the local community.

Since its inception in 1954, ConnectGV has continually evolved and now offers day options, supported employment, residential options and outreach services and is now seen as a leading disability provider in the Goulburn Valley.

This community engagement work helps us learn more about community groups and the valuable work they do.

The most recent work for us has been in the nursery and garden centre area.  We have helped a regional organisation in Victoria with a solution for their wholesale nursery business as well as their retail operation.


New supplier stock files for Tower POS software users

retailers using our Point of Sale software have access to the following tested and approved stock files:

  • Hallmark August 2012
  • Henderson Cards 2012
  • Art Wrap 2012

Staying true to our core Point of Sale software mission

We started in 1981 as a software company and remain focused today on being a software company.

Everything we do, all the services we offer, everything we sell all of our capital investment relates back to software development.

We have been asked to take on other products for retailers over the years and have rejected them as they stray too far from our core focus on being retail management software specialists.  While we connect our software to plenty of other products and services, we leave these to the experts in each field to sell and support.

Current and prospective customers can take comfort from our specialisation and our commitment to maintaining this, to enable us to deliver best of breed Point of Sale software … this is at the heart of what we do and a key reason for our market share.



Helping retailers finesse the retail floor plan

There was a time retail shop layout was fixed for years on end. Today, thanks to flexibility in shop fitting units and materials, retailers are able to change their layout to better serve business needs.

Thanks to our Point of Sale software data, retailers can report on product performance by in-store location.  Retailers can also tap into other business performance data to better inform layout and shop floor decisions.

We have seen retailers make significant shop layout changes as a result of reviewing reports and carefully assessing business performance.

We have also seen retailers use reports from our POS software to design new businesses. Being able to report on unit sales, revenue and GP based on product departments, categories and suppliers enables retailers with flexible shop first to make the most of their business opportunities.


POS Software training helps retail employees enjoy their job

Retail employees tell us they love our free training workshops and that they can access these anywhere.  Tower Systems is proud to be offering retailers and retail employees using our Point of Sale software workshops on fresh topics this week. Bookings are open to right before each session.

  • Best practice for OfficeSmart users 21 Aug 2012, 11:00AM
  • Getting started with standard business reports 21 Aug 2012, 02:00PM
  • Setting up unique labels for your business 23 Aug 2012, 11:00AM
  • How to use an iPad in your business 23 Aug 2012, 02:00PM

Each workshop will be live and interactive. The sessions are designed for people using our software. This is why we make them accessible from any PC so that employees can access the training from home and in their own time.


Good first day of GNS Melbourne newsagents trade show

We enjoyed a good first day of the GNS trade show for newsagents in Melbourne. Plenty of customers stopped by as well as some terrific prospects and plenty of suppliers with whom we work.

It’s been a good day of opportunity and networking.  Often it’s the discussions away from the stand that are the most valuable.

Our singular focus on supporting and enhancing them most widely used newsagency software was a key message.  Not cluttering our stand with peripheral offerings kept the message clear.

Tomorrow should see even more of this with more newsagencies closed on a Sunday.


High street retailers can easily leverage online retail opportunities too

Thanks to the flexible bridge between our Point of Sale software used by high street retailers and e-commerce platforms, small and independent retailers are able to straddle bricks and mortar and online worlds.

By being able to have a single stock file for serving the two businesses, retailers are able to more effectively and more easily the two businesses as one.

Our POS software offers access via a bridge that is e-commerce platform agnostic.

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