Tower Blog

A blog about smart POS software for independent small businesses.

Tag: POS Software

Website / Point of Sale Software Integration Innovation Passes QA Process

The innovative integration between e-commerce sites and our Point of Sale software has passed our stringent QA process. Developed to serve multiple platforms and retail channel requirements, our website / POS software bridge is ready for live in-field testing. This is currently being organised.

As with any software innovation, there is the easy way and the hard way to deliver this vital bridge between two retail operations. We have taken the hard round as it delivers a better outcome to our retail partners.

We will be communicating with our trial site partners in the coming days.

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Excellent pool of POS software help desk candidates

We have received applications from many candidates interested in our new help desk role and our advertisement has not even been running for a week.  We triage all applications and only keep those from the very best candidates.  We then put these through a pre-interview screening process designed to further cull the candidate pool.

While time consuming, our pre-interview process results in the best quality candidates presenting for interview.  Our goal is to commence interviews late next week.  We anticipate interviewing up to ten candidates for this role.

By taking time in selecting candidates we are able to find those with the most commitment to customer service and affinity with small business retailers.

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Initial review of applicants for POS Software Help Desk role completed

With so many applications coming through we have completed our first cut of applicants for the new Help Desk role we are creating at our Head Office.

While is is unpleasant delivering bad news, try and do this in a constructive way, explaining why we are saying no to them and yes to others.

The first cut involved a circular process which saw each applicant considered twice.  In this phase we are considering communication in advance of IT skills.  So much of success in any Help Desk role is about communication.  Applicants who read our advertisement and demonstrated this in their application were more likely to get to the next round.

While we have left the ad running on Seek and are still welcoming applications, we are moving forward with those now on our short list.

Since this is a new role for the company, there is no urgency.  That said, we’d like the successful candidate in and settled in advance of Christmas.

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Greeting card performance reporting in Point of Sale software drives sales

Months ago we released a new quite of reporting on greeting card performance, the first of its kind for newsagents and other independent retailers in Australia and New Zealand.  Developed over several years in close and confidential association with Australia’s best known (and loved) card company, Hallmark, our new greeting card performance reporting is now well established.  Others are following our leadership innovation.

A feature of this reporting is the MAT or Moving Annual Total metric. This is used in several suppliers and big businesses – we have found it tremendously useful in tracing year on year to date business performance.

Retailers using the new reporting are loving the immediate and easy access to category level sales reporting.  For example, being able to report on Father’s Day sales the day after the big day is terrific.  Being able to break down overall Father’s Day card sales into categories within the season is even more valuable.  that retailers can do this faster than any card company is where our software really shines.

This new greeting card performance reporting suite has been delivered to our users at no additional cost, adding tremendous value to what our Point of Sale software customers can extract from theirs software.

Watch for more innovation around greeting card sales and performance tracking.

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Free training for retailers using Point of Sale software

Retailers using our Point of Sale software software have access to four free online (and live) training sessions this week. Each training session is timely and will add genuine value to what participants can get out of our POS software – there is plenty of time for questions too. Here are the four workshops on offer:

  • Understanding the End of Shift 4 Oct 2011, 11:00AM This is vital training for any employee responsible for balancing cash at the end of shift.
  • Getting started with Gift Vouchers 4 Oct 2011, 02:00PM This is an excellent starting point for retailers who have not used gift cards before.
  • Getting started with Retailer for new staff members 6 Oct 2011, 11:00AM This is the perfect entry point training session for people who have never used our software.
  • Getting started with Point of Sale 6 Oct 2011, 02:00PM  This is a good starting point for people who have not used any point of sale software.

Online training is a wonderful way to learn more about our software. The result is improved productivity and better business outcomes. Bookings can be made at our online training portal.

Our continuing and consistent online training program is in addition to an excellent range of advice sheets and other training opportunities provided to users of our Point of Sale software.

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Wonderful customer service feedback

We were thrilled to receive an email from a customer a few days ago passing on feedback for one of our team members.  The thanks included…

I just wanted to drop you a quick email regarding the exceptional service of one of your guys.

He was informative, down to earth and really knew his product, and was happy to help us non-tech heads with the installation.

We went ahead the next day and ordered the hardware, and upon its arrival I emailed to see if he was available to help us transition from St George to Tyro. Amazingly within hours he turned up, set up Tyro, and made the transition a smooth one.

Nothing was too much trouble for Paul, he is a rarity and I just wanted to let you know how appreciative we are.

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Selling a $10,000 item is different to selling a $1.00 item

We have a diverse portfolio of retailers using our Point of Sale software.  From newsagencies selling a newspaper for a dollar through to high-end jewellers selling beautiful designer pieces with a ticket price of well in excess of ten thousand dollars.  Our help desk team can take a call from each of these businesses in a row.  They seamlessly switch between retail situations.  It is a challenge which is embraced by our committed help desk team.

This diversity of customers broadens our perspective and this assists us to create software which is more diverse and useful for all of our customers.

The one dollar sale is all about fast and accurate selling.  The ten thousand dollar sale is all about the sales experience.  Combine the two and you have business facilities which serve the retailer with good shopper throughput and accurate sales tracking while providing the shopper with a professional, well documented and enjoyable experience.

Good Point of Sale software enhances shopper and retailer experiences. We are grateful of the help from our customers which has enabled up to create software which makes them shine.

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Helping retailers avoid the over used SALE sign and drive retail sales

Retailers who regularly discount as their point of difference are not offering much of a point of difference.

By using the smart catalogue facilities in our Point of Sale software, retailers are able to avoid the discount trap and demonstrate value in more creative ways.

Offering, say, three for two or buy this with that offers enable retailers to create package deals which are exclusive to their business.  It is these types of deals which can be unique and exclusive to a retailer.  A SALE sing is far from unique and never exclusive.

We will happily help retailers using our Point of Sale software to be smart in how they demonstrate price based value in their retail businesses.  There are many options and our help desk team can help retailers leverage these.

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How to choose Point of Sale software for your retail business

Choosing Point of Sale software can be daunting for any retailer.  Tower Systems makes choosing Point of Sale software easier thanks to easy access to live, in-store, face to face demonstrations as well as online live demonstrations.  We provide those looking at our software with the ability to play with the software, to ensure that it meets their needs.

We also happily share reference site details along with sample reports and other tools and facilities with which to assess our suitability.

The most important step in considering any Point of Sale software is to know your needs.  To guide retailers to determine their needs we have developed a guide to choosing a Point of Sale system.  This helps retailers work out what they want and then to prioritise these wants into some orde5 – to facilitate the selection of the right software for their business.

With more than 2,500 retail outlets as customers, Tower Systems is well prepared to serve retailers with Point of Sale software and to back this up with quality customer support services.

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Great Customer Service Helps Point of Sale Software Customers Understand Why

why.jpgToo often Point of Sale software help desks take callers through a script designed to explain how to do something with the software. Such a rigid script-based approach often fails to achieve the potential of the support contact.

Here at Tower Systems we do not use scripts on the help desk where we support users of our Point of Sale software. We rely on real conversation, driven by two way discussion with our customers about any issue, question or topic relating to our software.

By eschewing the use of a script we can often find ourselves getting to why: why something is done in the software in a certain way, why the results are the results, why we follow a certain process, why we have a certain standard.

By explaining why we can build understanding and through this deliver better outcomes for our customers when they call our help desk.

Explaining why leads to a deeper and more valuable customer experience.

The more our customers know about our software, the better use they can make of it.

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Preparing for software update beta release

Our development team is planning for the beta release of our next major Point of Sale software update.  In-house quality assurance is expected to be completed in the next week.  This will be followed by live use in several of our own retail stores.  Once we are happy with this, we will commence delivery of the update to a pool of beta test sites.

All software updates go through this process.  While is takes time, the result is stable software – a vital goal for business critical software like Point of Sale software.

With more than 2,500 retail outlets relying on our software, a cautious and professional approach to updates is essential.

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The Christmas installation rush is on

Bookings for our Point of Sale software installation teams up to Christmas are filling fast as retailers lock in installing our system this side of Christmas.

While we are happy to schedule installations in January or February, we are finding little resistance to December installations. This is especially true where we are replacing an existing system.

By getting the system installed this side of Christmas, the retail business benefits from gathering valuable business performance data for the busiest time of the year.  Comparative business performance reporting is vital to the growth of any retail business.  It takes at least six months of use of a system before it has sufficient data to be able to commence this type of reporting.

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Software enhancements for Metcash retailers

Point of Sale software enhancements which go into the field next month deliver enhanced facilities for our retail customers who are supplied by Metcash.  The Metcash Link facilities easier order and invoice processing.

Metcash is a major supplier to many of our retail customers and we are committed to delivering quality time saving facilities to these retail businesses.

Continued enhancement of our Point of Sale software is a key commitment here at Tower Systems.  Our software enhancements are why so many retailers remain Tower Systems customers for many many years.

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Gift store software boosts the gift shop bottom line

Smart gift store software is vital to the profitability of a gift shop.  Indeed, it can be the different between a good year and a great year.

Here are five ways our gift shop software helps our gift retail customers practically and measurably improve their business bottom line.

Customer loyalty.  Our loyalty marketing tools help independent small gift shops compete with bigger businesses by offering a professionally managed loyalty program.

Customer service.  Professional receipts, professional LayBy (Lay Away), faster attention to queries, easier backorders and fewer mistakes all combine to provide a customer experience which shoppers love.

Customer return.  Clever low cost marketing tools like coupons on receipts, email marketing, text message marketing, direct mail marketing, sale counter upsell and customer statement marketing all offer touch points for attracting customer back into the business.

Faster and better value business decisions.  Gift shop owners with access to accurate business performance information are more likely to make better quality business decisions.  Our Gift store software delivers such access and through this guides better quality business decisions.

Elimination of manual processes.  Every manual process in a gift shop is a potential mistake and a user of time.  Our gift shop software helps eliminate manual processes such as product pricing, ordering stock, managing Lay Bys, managing customer accounts and tracking business performance.

In 2010 we have seen some excellent growth achieved by some gift shops.  Typically, the managers and owners of these stores have fully embraced our technology and actively sought out business decisions they can make by using the facilities in the software.

The difference between retailers enjoying growth and those not often lies in their level of engagement with their Point of Sale software.  Here at Tower Systems we guide and encourage our customers to use and embrace all that our technology offers.  We do this through training, documentation and business building workshops.

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Suppliers support Point of Sale initiative

Retailers using our Point of Sale software now have access to electronic invoices from more suppliers thanks to initiatives we have taken in recent months.

Earlier this year we embarked on an education program for retail suppliers to help them understand the payoff for their businesses when they engage with retailers electronically.

While it has been a slow field to plough with some suppliers, once they get it they jump on board.  Retailers and their suppliers soon unlock tremendous benefits thanks to the supplier support facilities embedded in our Point of Sale software.

We see retail as a partnership between a many stakeholders.  Two of the most important stakeholders are the retailers and their suppliers.  Bringing them together electronically as we do enables them to better support each other and this is reflected in the bottom line performance of the respective businesses.  Further, a better relationship between suppliers and retailers supports all other stakeholders.

We are grateful for the excellent facilities we have for easily connecting with suppliers.  Our line online video conferencing tools have been especially useful in this project.

The pay off for this supplier-focussed work is more sales.  The word of mouth from suppliers and customers is welcome and wonderful.

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5 ways jewellers are improving sales and profits

The jeweller software from Tower Systems is helping jewellery businesses to grow sales and improve profits in five measureable ways. This is not sale hype, it is what our customers tell us. They are thrilled at the benefits they are achieving. They are banking the results and enjoying the experience.

Here are five of the many ways our software helps jewellers:

  1. Reduced mistakes. Through workflow planning and management from the counter to the back room, our software cuts double and triple handling of information. Take an eftpos transaction – our software eliminates the need for using a separate bank terminal.
  2. More sales. Thanks to our marketing tools, our retail partners are able to target marketing to customers based on past purchases. Smart jewellers are using this for carefully targeted campaigns – with success.
  3. Greater sales efficiency. Getting existing customers to spend more is achievable thanks to facilities which drive structure around managing this in the store.
  4. Better return on investment from stock. By ordering based on real sales data and to stock levels set by the business owner or manager, the jewellery business is less like to find itself carrying too much stock. In some jewellery businesses, the saving can be as high as $30,000 in a year.
  5. Reduced theft. Thanks to robust theft prevention and theft tracking tools, jewellers can expect to lose less money as a result of theft.

Each of these ways puts money in the pocket of the business owner, easily paying for the technology investment. This is what we do – make retail businesses stronger, healthier and more profitable. The owners benefit as do employees as well a customers.

Tower Systems has been serving jewellers since 2000. Its jeweller point of sale software is being used in hundreds of jewellery businesses in Australia and pacific rim countries.

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