BLOGS AND ARTICLES FROM THE POS SOLUTIONS TEAM

Point of Sale Software

How to make your in demand Products more accessible to customers!

POS SOFTWARE

Now is not the time to keep a “business as usual” approach. COVID-19 has changed the retail scene. Do not count on your experience. You need to look at the data. 

See what items are driving you the most traffic and profits into your shop. Once you know your money-makers, you can move them to prominent places. The current retail theory states that you should put good products in a few places. This is because, in the age of COVID-19, the stress is on giving more space for your high-demand items versus showing many items.

First, let us find your *MONEY EARNERS*. It will only take a second.

Go to register reports and select the top stock report as marked with the red arrow here.

 

For this do this by all the shop sales. 

Put in the past 30 days, then select 40. This will give you your top 40. 

Then you will get a report with all the figures.

Now put these items in a noticeable place. The more places, the better.

This method works, try it! 

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How to add a Purchase Order Number to an order?

POS SOFTWARE

Purchase Order Numbers

Purchase Orders (PO) is how most organisations track and manage orders.  

Today they have another purpose as many formal contracts state that they only are valid when a Purchase Order is issued. 

The other issue is that they pay based on these Purchase Orders. 

Another typical use is when a customer, who has many orders with you, enquires about an order. What the customer always seems to know is their purchase order. 

It is easy to add. If they do not have one, I add *Verbal*.

Go here to Detailed Transaction Entry see red arrow.

Here is where you can add their order number.

It is worth it for you to study this screen. Many other details are worth entering. For example, it is often convenient to know who is dealing with this customer.

 

How to do transaction tracking in your system?

POS SOFTWARE

My recent post on refund caused some people to ask how you mark those sales made with special conditions. This my previous example was a broken item, sold cheaply as an "AS IS."

This we call transaction tracking in our system. It's an incredibly sophisticated system worth going through, but here is a brief look at how to use it.

When you do a transaction, there is an item on the screen. *Change Description*. Press this, and you will see onscreen another option *Attach as Note*.

Here I wrote, "IT WAS BROKEN" see where the red arrow is.

The saved transaction will have full reporting and analysis available. 

To see it, go to find register transactions, look at it. Now after calling up the transaction, click show details. Now examine the items in red circles below, one by one.

Another example of how our POS Solutions software is giving retailers more.

 

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What first to do if a scanner starts to fail?

POS SOFTWARE

 

 

Suppose your scanner plays up a bit and seems to be getting worse.

The first point I would check is, does it have a dirty lens. Retail environments are messy places. On the scanner lens, often fingerprints, smudges, glues from sticky tape, etc. collects. What can happen then is that you have to position your scanner over time. This is to get the laser beam to try to make its way through the dirt.  Soon over time, your scanner rate will slow down. 

So try cleaning the lens before buying a new scanner. 

Be careful as you do not want to do is scratch the lens. 

Unless you have a good reason for cleaning the lens do not clean them. 

If you decide to clean your scanner, do the following.

1) Unplug the scanner from everything. Do not pull out the wires from the computer and power as you will need to use them after the clean.

2) Use a soft, lint-free cloth, like a microfiber cleaning cloth, and give the lens a good wipe. 

3) If you see that the glass has streaks that are not removed, use a reading glass cleaner wipe. 

4) Then dry with a dry microfiber cloth lens.

5) Now plug the scanner in and test it.

A good scanner well treated should last you for many years.

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Warning your ‘No Refund’ Signs can be Illegal

POS SOFTWARE

 

One of my clients got in some trouble recently over a "'No refund on sale items" sign. A lawyer who is one of their customers told them that they were "misrepresenting rights available to consumers." 

So if you wish to put up a no refund sign, use one from your state consumer affairs sign such as this example from VIC above

One worrying point is that many merchants do sometimes unload at significantly reduced prices goods that are defective. They admit that they are flawed and so sell it with an AS IS and NO Return clause.  I doubt legally this is correct.  You may want to check this situation if you do it a lot. If you get an answer, let me know.

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Why use Price off rather then a discount percentage?

POS SOFTWARE


 

Studies have shown that if you are reducing a price, you are better off using a price-off amount rather than a percentage off. 

People are suspicious of the vague statements of discount percentage. Also, many cannot bother or unable to calculate a percentage off discount. 

Instead of announcing a price reduction of 10% on a $10 item, you are better off announcing a price reduction of $1. 

In both cases, the price was reduced from $10.00 to $9.00, but the $1 is real, 10% is not. 

Here is how you can do this at the point of sale. See the diagram above where the red arrow points. This discount can be set up to be preset, so it is one button handling.

Note if in changing the prices you mucked it up and want to start again,  press the F7 button.

 

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Tyro pickup of terminals

POS SOFTWARE

Is Tyro coming to replace one of your terminals? 

Check the address on the email they sent you!

It appears on some that their trading address in the Tyro system is incorrect. 

Also, as some with problems have told us, they have not received a collection email. 

If there are any such problems, please contact Tyro support on 1300 966 639.

Plus

1) Do not remove any of the Ethernet or power cables attached to the unit. You are going to need them for the new unit.

2) Keep track of all the expenses that this has cost you.

Status updates are available here.

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How to create a happy hour for your VIP club

POS SOFTWARE

 

In 2020, one point shown was nothing works to motivate customers to buy as effectively as VIP points.  So if you want to drum up business, pick a slow time and widely announce a period of double or triple points for customers. 

It is easy and quick to set up with our software. 

To get it running 

Go to the Main Menu> System Maintenance> System Setup 


Once the page is open, select the Loyalty tab.


See the value set for the Redemption value per point option. See circled in red.

 

 

When you run your happy hour, set this to a meaningful figure, at the end of the happy hour, put it back. 

Make it easy for people to join your VIP club, the more that join your club, the better for you. We find email addresses for identity works well. 

Correctly done VIP clubs are said to add about 2% value to a shop.

See how you go!

 

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See where the $$ are coming from now?

POS SOFTWARE

Now is an ideal time to see how you are going.

To do this, retailers often measure their performance by the current to last year's figures.  Although many do this by months, working in quarters, here is better. But if you prefer months, work through this example with me now and then once you grasp it, do this analysis by months. 

What this will do is show you how financially COVID hit your business. It will also give you insights into the health of your business. Everyone I have talked to about this has told me that their current financials look weird. 

The report itself is elementary and straightforward to do with our system and will only take you a second to do. 

Go to 

Main Menu > Cash Register > Register Reports > under the Select Report tab, expand the Stock folder > select the report "Dissection Family Class Period Sales Comparison."

Then you will see this screen.

Now put in the left side.

From dates 01/10/2019
To Date 31/12/2019
 

On the right side 

From dates 01/10/2020 
To Date 31/12/2020
Congratulations! You have completed a Q4 analysis.

Now you have much to think about, I am sure.

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Tyro outage

POS SOFTWARE

 

Many of our clients use Tyro. So on their behalf we made enquires what is happening about the current outage. I have been told about 15% approx has been affected by the recent outage for a couple of days. The problem has been found. The fix is taking time to resolve, a few days. If you want to follow the progress of the outage, click here.

There is a statement about it released to the ASX here.

 

Update:  08/01/2021

Please provide us updates on this as it has been few days without fpos; which is making it inconvenience for our business. Thanks
ABN 21633735350

Updates are available here.

https://status.tyro.com/

We suggest that you contact tyro on their 24/7 Support line on 1300 966 639 or email them at cs@tyro.com

 

 

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Here is a checklist on how to select new gift lines

POS SOFTWARE

 

If you are dealing with giftware, you always need to select new products. These products come and go, and also you need to offer your customers new products all the time. Computers can help with the products with a sales history but are of little help here.

So what happened was I was talking to one of our clients about this. He has a gift shop, so we put together a checklist of ideas for selecting gift products. 

Here is what we came up with, and I hope it helps.

1) Good margins, a giftware shop, cannot survive on low margins.

2) The product has to stand out from the other items on the shelves. It needs to have something deserving of your customers' attention. 

3) How hard is it to handle?  For example, anything fragile is a problem, e.g., glass as many insurance policies will not cover it in the shop. 

4) What is the delivery? Last quarter's delivery was a real mess. People had no stock, and customers and the stock was in transit.

5) How easy is it to get more stock?

6) Does it fit into your shop now? Is it the type of product that your customers will buy from you? 

7) Does it live in your price points?

8) Are there any minimum orders required? 

9) Growth, can the product lead to something. A small mobile camera cases buy led one of my clients to introduce a whole new department in his shop.

10) Does it need specialist knowledge? If so, do you have that knowledge? If so, it is a big plus. If not, then will you get that knowledge soon?

11) How many people nearby handle it? This is one advantage of dealing with a supplier far away, as you may have a unique product.

12) Variations can be a problem. A product with five options, four colours blue, green, white, and red, and comes in three designs would be 60 different products.

13) Start small and grow. 

14) Above all, remember it is said, "to sell giftware, one needs a soul." Ask yourself, do you have that soul? If you think YES, then test yourself first on a few small oders.

Giftware is one product where *David can take on Goliath*.

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Dynamic Currency Conversion (DCC) do you need that headache?

POS SOFTWARE

Say an international customer pays using their credit card. If you have activated Dynamic Currency Conversion (DCC), they get a choice of whether to pay in their own or your currency. DCC can be attractive to them. The reason is that generally, they are not interested in your currency. They want to know what it will cost them in their money. Yet, it does open you up to legal issues that I am sure no-one wants. A reasonable discussion on this is here.

These legal problems are severe. Visa was in the Federal Court over it when it attempted to ban DCC.  The courts found that Visa acted anti-competitively and fined them. So they re-instate it.

Well, it appears that the credit card providers are now appearing to transfer or notify some of the legal problems to their merchants, so beware.  

If you decide to do the DCC! 

Our POS Software does all the conversions relevant to local currency. It does not know of the legal information now required to give.  This depending on what country you are in and the country of the customer's card. It looks something like this.

This has to be given to the customer, so what we are recommending is that if you are using DCC that you give the customer the credit card machine receipt as ours will not have this information.

Tyro has put together a checklist that I suggest if you use DCC to follow.

Our advice is that although your customer the DCC maybe sometimes wanted by the customer generally it is costing them more and you now have a legal headache, so maybe it is best now if on to politely turn it off.

If the customer wants to buy they can pay in your currency.

 

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Newspower's ink sale file

POS SOFTWARE

If you are using Newspower to buy ink sales, be aware that there is a problem with the current category file. What it is, is the descriptions have been duplicated. See here.

 

If you try to do a regular import, all the inkjets will become Brother LC38. 

We have notified Newpower and a fix will be released soon. Until then, do not do the import.

 

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Why use a Digital Receipt Solution in your shop?

POS SOFTWARE

Our new DTI system is a digital, paperless receipt. It is a much smarter, more attractive alternative to paper, PDF, or standard email receipts. This is because 80% of customers look at their digital receipt after purchasing. This gives the retailer a terrific marketing tool, a second chance to sell more. 

This video will give you some ideas on how retailers in the US are using it to connect to their customers.  


Best of all, it's free to you as you are our client!

 

 

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How should you position your monitor for your eyes?

POS SOFTWARE

Today in retail software, many people are looking at computers for an extended period.  What can happen here is that after an extended period many start complaining of headaches and eyestrain. 

If so here are some ideas: 

-How far back the chair should be positioned depends, but as a rule, about 55 cm, but that can vary. If you notice that they often swivel their heads to focus on details, they are sitting too close.

-Enforce breaks that away from their work computer. A common mistake here is to let people sit on their work computer at lunchtime. Make them go somewhere. 

-It is better for the person to look down on the computer at about 15% down, do not make them lookup. This is asking for trouble. See the above diagram. If they are too low, the only use for a telephone book today is to raise the monitor.

- People tend to position themselves in a good position for themselves unconsciously. So I would suggest giving them an office chair as it has much flexibility in positioning. 

-Curved screens are better.

Now, this does not work for me, but many do claim that it does work for them. What it is that many feel that their monitor light is not natural. Studies suggest that the problem is in the quantity of blue colour emitted. This is claimed to make people's eyes tired as its light is not natural. This software Flux automatically adjusts the monitor to follow the sun's natural rhythm. 

Give this a shot now and see how you go?

 

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Retail express: Solutions for soft drink category growth

POS SOFTWARE

Retail Express, had an interesting article that is worth looking into on page 12. In our POS Software, it is easy to try.

It is about rearranging products in the fridge into proper categories.  Doing this, they claim you can drive sales up an incredible amount. See the arrow marked in brown.

Click here for more details.

There is no reason why this theory should not work for any department. Try a department, then see what are your top sellers in that department. 

Go to register reports and select the top stock report as marked with the red arrow here.

 

You get this screen

 

Now select your department.

Here I used the stationery department. I put in 99 million in red for illustration. That is overkill - put in 100. I also selected a whole year as short periods can have significant fluctuations. We do not want to do this every week.

Now study the report to see your shop's strengths. See what do you sell. 

Now go to a major retailer's website and see how they categorize their department. Some like Amazon and the supermarkets have spent millions on this categorization, so they know something. Also, check out a few other shops. 

You now know the theory and your strengths, so layout your stock in a logical order.

Why not start now, pick a small department and see how you go?

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2021, there is good hope for a better year

POS SOFTWARE

2020 was the year when we all looked more than ever before to the right and the left. Then while we crossed the road, we got hit by a truck. Well, 2020 is over.

Every New Year brings a new cycle and the promise backed by figures that better days are coming. In fact, there is good reason to believe that it will be better than most think. Currently, the worst of COVID looks behind us. It has been challenging, alright, but we kept our clients going 24x7.  We all did very well.

So let me wish you a happy 2021 and may your wishes come true.

Here are some To-Do tips to start the new year 

- It is New Year's eve. Live the moment

- Review how you went in 2020

- List areas where you can act in 2021. Much has changed.

- Now set goals for 2021

Stay healthy

Regards From the POS Solutions Team

PS I have one question for 2020, what are the people doing with all this toilet paper they purchased now?

 

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How to start on a retail calendar for 2021

POS SOFTWARE

Well, it's time to start planning for 2021, so you can use this list of holidays to help plan your 2021 marketing.

 

For a full list click here.

If you need an explanation of the holiday, click on the holiday link to get a description.

You can fine-tune it to your situation by using the filters.

 

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What Accounting Software are retailers using now?

POS SOFTWARE

Every year we survey our clients to see what they think of our performance. While we do this, we ask a few questions about what software our clients are using. Then what they want to do with this software.  So we asked them about what accounting systems they use? 

It is a good time to look at it as a new year beginning.

As Australian accounting software standards have not changed much in 35 years, all major accounting programs do the same job. The significant difference was that few offer cloud. Now, most do. They all have their devotees. The difference tends to be a user preference. 

This is what we got.

We were quite stunned by this result. 

Running through them in turn.

MYOB has always been the most popular accounting system in our marketplace. It is easy to use. I find it too rigid in use for my taste, but many consider this a positive advantage. 

Xero is expensive.  It does have a bit of a learning curve. It is rapidly growing in popularity.

Quickbooks/Reckon used to be my personal favorite. I find it clumsy to use. I am not keen on their support. It is good, they always seem to answer my questions, but they often leave me unsatisfied. What I do like is its flexibility in reporting.  It does seem to need more training than other software packages.   

The last column, *NONE* is what caused us the most discussion. Today more people are no longer using any accounting system. What is happening is that online bank software has been getting better. Many SMB retailers now find that they can service their accounting needs with our software, and these bank links free. As such, they are dropping the accounting software. I am sure this trend with continue.

Like always let me know your thoughts.

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Managing the queues in a COVID world

POS SOFTWARE

Now we have to manage retail queues in a COVID world. 

These signs were all over a significant shopping centre DFO in Melbourne on Saturday.

What is happening is that shoppers in Melbourne were out in large numbers on Saturday. Yet shops can now, due to government restrictions, only have limited numbers in the shop at any one time, so queue management has become more critical than ever.

So one solution was that, in theory, they introduced maximum queue sizes. It does not look like the public went for it, though. Queues went way beyond the signs.

 


 


 

 

 

Also, what all shops had was a security guard doing queue management.
 

 



Still, I suspect it was a good boxing day in sales there.

 

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