Meeting Bike Shop Software Users in Auckland

We are meeting with bike retailers users using our Bike Shop software in the Auckland in a series of planned store visits planned for next week in and around Auckland.  The visits will extend the sharing of knowledge of how our Bike Shop Software is used in Australia and New Zealand and lay the groundwork for enhancements which leverage the insights gained from the talks.

While there are common areas of operation of bike retailers, we have found that retailers in New Zealand focus more on some facilities in our software than is the experience in Australia.  Working with our bike retail partners in the two countries positions us to better help our customers on both sides of the Tasman to leach from each other.

In addition to Point of Sale, stock management and business management facilities, our Bike Shop Software also assists in the areas of loyalty marketing and management, lay-by, repairs, manufactured goods, business strategy, theft management and supplier relationships.  We work with a range of bike shop suppliers to facilitate time saving EDI facilities.

Many enhancements in our Bike Shop Software have come from suggestions from our New Zealand based customers.

Bike Shop Software Helps Manage Seasonal Change

With bikes and related products changing seasonally, it is easy for bike retailers to find themselves with considerable business data from past seasons which needs to be appropriately managed.  Our Bike Shop software provides bike retailers with the ability to mark past seasonal items as inactive and thereby not clog their Point of Sale systems with data which is not relevant.

By marking items as inactive, our customers can streamline their data – they hide it from several functions where old stock history is not relevant to today’s retail trading.  No data is removed or lost.  It is simply hidden in key functions which are used to look at today’s data rather than historical data.

In fashion and seasonal businesses, being able to hide what data is shown where can significantly improve the productivity at the sales counter.

Our Bike Shop software is the most widely used specialist bike shop management software in Australia and New Zealand.

Bike Shop Software Update Out Now

Bike retailers are set to benefit from the latest Bike Shop Software innovation just released by Tower Systems.  The new Bike Shop Software, released today, delivers to Bike retailers enhanced facilities which leverage sales, marketing and operational opportunities.

Featured in the new Bike Shop software is:

  • Enhanced reporting including reports which will directly benefit bike retailers.
  • Expanded repairs management facilities.
  • New second hand goods facilities.
  • Expanded LayBy facilities.
  • Even more flexible supplier link / EDI facilities.
  • And plenty more.

In developing this latest suite of Bike Shop Software enhancements, we have worked closely with existing customers, Bike suppliers and several prospective customers.  2011 is proving to be a strong year of sales of this software and this latest software update reinforces our position as the industry standard software for bike retailers.

Helping bike shop suppliers embrace electronic invoices

We are working with between twenty and thirty suppliers to bike retailers to help them deliver electronic invoices to their retail partners.

Bike retailers using our bike shop software are being held back by old invoicing techniques.  Eliminating manual processes for receiving goods and placing orders will benefit bike retailers and their suppliers as we have see in other retail channels where we have played a key role in such developments.

We are talking directly with many bike shop suppliers, offering practical technical advice, to help them take the step to automating the invoicing and ordering functions.

As the largest supplier of software to the bike retail channel, we are pleased to be taking a lead on this initiative.

Point of Sale software for bike shops popular overseas

With more than 130 specialist bike shops now using Tower Systems’ Point of sale software for bike shops, we are established as a leader in serving bike shops internationally.

Bike shops we focus on are those which sell specialist bikes, clothing and services, not the mass market.

Our market position was brought home to us earlier this week when we were approached to offer our Bike Shop software for resale in the United States and again yesterday when we were approached.  This is an opportunity we are considering for next year once further research into the needs of the marketplace have been completed.

Bike shop owners use our bike shop software to serve in a range of key business areas, in addition to traditional point of sale areas, including:

  • Serial number tracking.
  • Warranty management.
  • Repairs (on site and off site) management.
  • Manufactured goods.
  • Customer loyalty management.
  • Bike supplier EDI interface.
  • Customer follow up.

Bike shop owners and managers who switch from a generic POS or accounting system to our specialist software tell us that the time saving more than pays for the investment.  Our purpose built processes integrate better with bike shop workflow than the bending necessary of generic software.

How Specialist Bike Shop Software is Better than Retail Manager from MYOB

Our specialist bike shop software plays in a completely different field to MYOB’s Retail Manager software.  While both software packages offer Point of Sale facilities, only our software offers facilities which serve the needs of today’s specialist bike retailer. 

MYOB’s Retail Manager is a successful mass market package and therefore remains generic in the services it provides.  This is how they keep their price down, by not offering specialist facilities.  It is a business model which has served them well.

We have gone the other way and created specialist bike shop software because we understand that this will help bike retailers make more money from their businesses.  Bike retailers can leverage our specialist facilities to drive revenue and build businesses of greater value for when they decide to sell.

Specialist bike retailers see themselves and quite different to mass merchant bike retailers.  One way of leveraging their specialist focus and services is through specialist bike shop software.  Those who don’t see their business as different opt for mass merchant software and miss an opportunity to drive their unique selling proposition at every opportunity.

Here are some of the bike shop specialist areas where our software is quite different to the generic MYOB and other software:

Loyalty marketing.  Bike customers are more valuable than the first tracking.  By tracking purchases through a robust loyalty management and marketing system, bike retailers using our Tower Systems software are able to extract greater value from each customer.

Text message customer communication.  Letting customers know when repairs are ready to be collected, special orders have arrived in-store and special offers are available helps better connect specialist bike retailers and their customers.  MYOB does not have these facilities.

Multi store facilities.  Centralised internet based multi store facilities.  What we offer beats the current MYOB offer hands down.

Supplier connection.  By connecting with key bike shop suppliers, processing electronic invoices and creating electronic orders, we are helping bike retailers cut labour costs.  This makes our software considerably more valuable than generic software when it comes to managing business payroll.

Theft management.  By connecting the bike shop software with a sophisticated security camera system, bike shop owners are able to leverage better management of the employee and customer theft risks.  This is another difference between generic POS software and our specialist bike shop software.

Serial number tracking.  A full service bike shop wants to provide a more professional and complete service to the mass merchants.  Serial number tracking is one such example.  This can help with insurance claims.  It can also ease the registering of the purchase with the manufacturer.

Repairs management.  Tracking a repair from when it is presented to when it is collected can be a real time saver for a bike shop.  Doing this work manually costs time and leads to mistakes.  MYOB offers no such facility.

Managing custom built products.  Being able to track the assembling of a number of items and labour into a saleable product is important for a specialist bike retailer.  MYOB cannot handle this.

Bike retailers who see their business as different to that of a mass merchant selling bikes prefer software which respects and supports their difference.  This is the Tower Systems difference.

Bike shop owners drive good software outcomes

Bike shop owners are among the best retailers for embracing technology based on our own experience.  They dive into the facilities in our software and engage in business building opportunities. 

Bike shop owners tell us that they are more focused on driving commercial outcomes from our Point of Sale software because of the highly specialist and competitive nature of their marketplace.

This deeper focus leads to excellent value software enhancement suggestions which benefit not only our bike retailers but also other retailers using our software.

We support their business focus through quality business management tools covering business performance, bike supplier performance, warranty and repairs management, lay-bys, loyalty marketing, theft management and handling second-hand goods.

Inventory management is also vitally important in a successful bike shop with the value of stock high and changes in movement rates essential to track.

Thanks to key supplier relationships we are in a strong position serving bike retailers here in Australia as well as New Zealand.

Our Ausbike trade show stand

ausbike.jpgThis is our stand at the Ausbike Trade Show, on this weekend in Melbourne.  We are are just about all setup and ready to go -we only have to load the stand with our technology, brochures and people.

Like many retail channel trade shows now, we expect to see more than pure bike retailers at the show.  There was a time when a channel specific trade show would attract retailers only from that channel.  Now you see all sorts visit as retailers are expanding beyond the traditional product range for their shingle.  We like this because it suits the diversity of pur software offer.

Our software for bike shops is the most widely used specialist bike shop software in Australia.

Bike Shop software on the main stage this weekend

Our specialist bike shop software will be the feature of a public presentation at the AUSBIKE trade show this weekend in Melbourne.  Live on stage, one of our product experts will demonstrate the software live and show how it can help bike retailers increase sales from customers, reduce the cost of underperforming inventory, better manage repairs and service, reduce sales counter mistakes and pursue better quality business decisions.

We appreciate being invited to deliver this presentation as part of the seminar program at the important industry trade event.

Bike retailers have been instrumental in guiding enhancements to our software which are now used and appreciated by other retailers using our software.  Their retail sales management requirements in particular have led to significant enhancements which have broadened the scope of the traditional POS software function.  This makes our software more use for all of our customers.

Ausbike trade show in Melbourne next weekend

We are participating in the Ausbike trade show in Melbourne next weekend showing off our bike shop software in a couple of ways.  We have a stand at the show plus we will be delivering a presentation on how our software helps bike retailers make more money.

We will show off live our tools which are used by bike retailers to…

  • Cut employee theft.
  • Cut customer theft.
  • Improve the shopper experience.
  • Guide customers to return more frequently.
  • Reward loyal customers.
  • Manage repairs.
  • Handle warranty claims.
  • Manage secondhand goods.
  • Manage inventory.
  • Electronically link with major channel suppliers.

We are going into this major national trade show with some excellent bike retail sales just closed and the numbers showing that we are the largest bike channel specific technology supplier.

We are at Ausbike on August 22 and 23.

Innovation at Avanti bike retail outlets

As the preferred software partner for the prestigious Avanti bike brand in Australia and New Zealand, we get to see some terrific innovation in bike retailing.  We also get to participate in enhancing our software to help drive better outcomes for Avanti retailers.

Through our bike shop software, Avanti bike retailers have access to leading-edge facilities including electronic invoices, repair management, warranty control and customer marketing tools.

Our experience is that bike retailers are among the most innovative retailers in the country, pursuing business efficiency through clever customer engagement and a respect for technology as vital to the core of their success.

Many features in our software used by newsagents, jewellers and convenience stores emerged from our work with smart bike retailers.

Bike shop software to feature at Ausbike Expo in Melbourne

Our Point of Sale software for bike shops is to feature at the Ausbike Expo which is being held in Melbourne – August 23 & 23.

Costing less than $10 a day for hardware and software, our bike shop management system helps bike retailers in many practical ways:

  • Cut theft.  By understanding what is being stolen you can take action to cut this.
  • Save time.  Eliminate manual processes and replace these with computer based processes.
  • Reduce mistakes.  By replacing manual processes – lay-bys, sales, warranty claims, repairs – with computer processes you benefit from better structure.
  • Sell more.  This is a bold claim.  It is 100% achievable by using the marketing tools in the bike shop software.  Sell more to existing customers through marketing to them.
  • Relax.  Better decisions can be achieved faster thanks to good management reports which are at your fingertips.  From stock turn to stock reordering to trading period comparisons, professional and flexible management reports can drive your business beyond your current goals.

All of this will be on show at the Ausbike Expo in Melbourne next month.

If you own a bike shop, drop by and see the Tower Systems Advantage TM for bike stores in action.

New second hand goods software close to release

Our new second hand goods software is about to move into the next round of testing.  Using this software, retailers will be able to buy and sell second hand goods and meet the latest electronic reporting standards for second hand goods.  The software has been developed in a way to work for all types of businesses in the second hand goods area.

Our plan is to release the second hand goods software for commercial use within the next six weeks.

Point of Sale software showcase in Hobart

We are hosting a Point of Sale showcase in Hobart on Tuesday June 8.  On show will be Point of Sale solutions for newsagents, jewellers, bike retailers, gift shops and homewares retailers.  We will have technical and business management people in attendance.

This session has a dual purpose: sales for us and a new type of face to face contact opportunity for existing customers – we will be as thrilled to meet with existing customers as prospective customers.

We will be contacting retailers in the Hobart region in the next week with details.

New Repairs software moves to beta

We have shipped the latest version of our Repairs software to beta release following the completion of the in-house Quality Assurance process.  Jewellers will particularly benefit from this latest repairs software as it includes suggestions directly from those using it every day.  Further beta test sites will be added next week.

New bike shop software moves to beta release

This week, we have installed our new software for bike shops in several beta test sites where it will be tested live. This is a key next step in the process of delivering our new software to a network of bike retailers nationally.

In development for most of 2009, the new bike shop software is comprehensive replacement of the software currently being used by bike retailers in Australia and New Zealand.

Beyond Point of Sale software, our new bike shop software delivers excellent new facilities in the repairs, lay-by, business management and several other business key areas.

We have worked with bike retailers on enhancing the software to ensure that what we deliver is a genuinely useful solution.

Promoting the federal government’s 50% tax bonus opportunity

tspostcard2009.jpgWe have mailed our final promotion in the countdown to the end of the federal government’s 50% tax bonus opportunity for small businesses.

The glossy postcards target bike shops, jewellers and gift shops with our software for each.  We have sent separate marketing collateral to newsagents with the offer.

On the back of each postcard is a photo of hardware items included as well as a list of software, training and other services included in the offer.

Postcards are an efficient marketing medium, the strike rate is good for us.  Sales prospects like they because they don’t need to open an envelope.

Like all of our marketing collateral, this latest campaign was developed in-house in our marketing department.

The tax bonus has been useful but could have been better had software been an allowable expense.

Well done Avanti Plus Cannington

avanti_canning_vale.jpgOur bike shop software is playing a key role in the running of the stunning new Avanti Plus Cannington store in Western Australia which opened at the weekend.  All four registers we supplied were busy all day when the store opened for business on the weekend.  Reports are that this store has had the highest opening sales of any Avanti Plus store opened anywhere so far – well done!

We are thrilled to be part of the journey not just with Avanti Plus Cannington but other Avanti Plus stores.  It is terrific to see how our software helps in managing the sales of Avanti bikes and a range of other merchandise including bike gear.

Our work with the Avanti bike retailers has helped us develop good facilities for other marketplaces in which we serve.

Online Point of Sale software demonstrations

free_pos_demo.jpgWe have made it easier for prospective users of our Point of Sale software to arrange a free online demonstration through new facilities at our website.  Growth in online sales of our Point of Sale software made the move a natural progression for us.

Our online demonstrations are truly live and interactive, they show the full facilities of our software and take prospective users into any function they want.

While a face to face in-store demonstration is the preferred option, we are committed to giving our customers and prospects what they want and feedback tells us that more and more want online demonstrations.

In the online demo situation, we are able to have the business owner, their accountant and other stakeholders all in on it even though they may be in different locations.

An added benefit of an online demo is that it shows off how we can deliver personal and near on site contact for our customers for training or support.  The infrastructure we use for an online demo is the same.  WebEx, the best platform in the world for online meetings, gives us tremendous flexibility and permits live interaction with our participants.

If someone had said that we would sell a $20,000 point of sale system without meeting the sales prospect face to face or visiting their business we would have laughed.  Now that we have done this many times, we know the value of this smart technology and the value of having the right infrastructure in our business to deliver a professional demonstration.

How bike shops use our bike shop software

Close to 150 bike shops use our bike shop software in a diverse range of areas in their businesses.  From the mundane to the sophisticated, our bike shop software is a key factor in helping bike shops shine in a competitive maketplace.  Here is a list of practical areas where bike shop owners and employees use our software in their businesses:

  • Point of Sale
  • Placing orders with suppliers
  • Arriving and pricing new stock from suppliers
  • Printing price and other labels for stock items
  • Stock control
  • Tracking theft of stock
  • Returing stock to suppliers
  • Managing customer accounts
  • Customer loyalty programs
  • Marketing to customers based on purchases – this can be something sexy like giving you a list of mobile phone numbers you cansend a TXT message to inviting recent customers to visit to have their bike serviced
  • Follow up of customers following key purchases
  • Handling LayBys
  • Managing Repairs
  • Manufactured goods – build a bike and track it
  • Warranty tracking
  • Tracking business performance at micro and macro levels
  • Linking sales data to MYOB

Our bike shop software does plenty more, but this list is a good start for any bike shop keen to grow their business.

Bike shop software offer – October 2009

bikeshopsw.jpgWe have released a new bike shop POS software and hardware special offer.  The details are on our website.  This offer is available from now until the end of this year.  It taps into the Federal Government tax break opportunity.  Included in the package is our latest bike shop management software, a full package of computer hardware, on site installation, on site training and a year of support.

The Bike Shop software included in the package deal covers: point of sale, warranty tracking, repairs, stock control, lay-by, loyalty, theft management, business reporting, eftpos integration, customer accounting, sales tracking and serial tracking  … plus more.

Better bike shop software drives sales

We are achieving excellent sales of our software for bike shops this year. We put this down to better software. The number of sales coming from word of mouth tells us that the software itself is key to its success.

Our bike shop software delivers some excellent facilities tailored to bike retailers:

  • Supplier links with standard EDI facilities.
  • Serial number tracking for sales.
  • Warranty tracking.
  • Repairs / service management.
  • Automated SMS facilities: end of day totals, repairs tracking and theft management.
  • Customer follow up – turning the first service into a sales opportunity.
  • Email marketing.
  • Lay-By.
  • Loyalty management.
  • Point of Sale. Accounting interface.
  • Smart reporting.

Our Bike Shop software has many facilities beyond these, thanks to the use of core technology on which it is built being used in other marketplaces.

The list above represents the items are often talked about as they sit at the core of business growth achievable from use of our software facilities.

Helping jewellers profit from repairs

Our new repairs facilities are helping jewellers (and other businesses undertaking repairs) profit more from repairs.  We are cutting management time, reducing mistakes and making it easier to bill for each task in a repair job and thereby more completely cover the business costs with appropriate margin.

Here are some of the features our development team has built into the facilities:

  • Scan receipts or job card to find a repair in the system.  Alternatively, quickly find repairs based on customer details.
  • Track repairs by customer.
  • Support multiple repairs per customer.
  • Accommodate multiple repairers per job.
  • Easily schedule in-house or outsource repairs.
  • Store quotes for later reference when it converts to a job.
  • Manage partial payments of an account.
  • Track repairs by repairer.
  • Track repairs by courier.
  • Automate pricing for popular repair jobs.
  • Allocate staff and repair instructions.
  • Allocate existing stock used for a repair job.
  • Print barcoded job cards and receipts automatically.

The sophistication we have developed in our repairs facilities plays out in other parts of our software.  It’s like the NASA mission to the moon – there are many side benefits along the way for all of our customers.

New repairs software now in beta

Our new repairs software is up and running in beta test sites. This new software, specifically developed for businesses undertaking repairs – jewellers and bike retailers – is comprehensive, a complete replacement for what we had previously.

The development project has taken much longer than forecast because of technical challenges we encountered in executing to the requirements put to us by customers.

From the moment a customer hands over a watch or ring to a jeweller for repair, we track the job and all elements which go into costing the work – regardless of whether the work is done in-house or externally.

The new software is a testament to the patience and help of our customer base.