Bernard Zimmermann's blog

How to quickly change your sale price

POS SOFTWARE

When ringing up items in your point of sale software, what you can do is modify quickly the amounts being charged up or down by using the discounts and surcharge buttons. 

Note that the discounts can be set up to be preset so its one button handling.

 

If in the process of changing the prices you much it up and just want to start again, a quick way of changing the prices back is to press F7 button here or click the spot marked by the red arrow here and it zeroes off all the discounts instantly and does let you try again.
 

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Why is my cloud backup taking so long?

POS SOFTWARE

 

One question, I get asked a lot is why does a cloud backup take so long?

The big problem is that the initial point of sale data is so big and there is a lot of data to back up.

There does not seem to be a pattern as sometimes it goes quickly and sometimes it takes forever. Part of the problem is that few SMB have commercial grade internet. So in my experience, the backup times are at least double the times quoted by the salesmen for cloud backups.

This seems to be what others report too.

https://www.cloudwards.net/how-long-should-my-backup-take/

So if you the most backup software says it's six hours for the initial backup. I would suggest you budget 12 hours.

After that many of the cloud backup software can take advantage that it has a copy and so only requires a smaller amount of time to send down, this is what we call sending the changes. How big are these changes depends on many factors including your software, whether you use encryption on your database (note you should not do this if you intend to use cloud backup which is a security issue to many people in itself), how much work you do and your cloud backup software?  Still, I would budget about double the quoted figure times quoted as a first level approximation.

All this is often not the problem in itself as the computer is just left on till its done what the problem usually is, is that while it is doing the backup the internet in the shop runs very slow. People complain that they cannot get an email, they cannot order and that if they are using EFTPOS, it does not work.

One option I do suggest is that you set your cloud backup to only work when the shop is closed say your shop runs from 6 am to 9 pm, have your cloud backup only operate between 10 pm and 5 am. This also has advantages as far as ransomware is concerned too.

Note most of our clients that use cloud backup software use it as an emergency backup to their regular backup. 

 

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The future of cashdraws, SmartTill

POS SOFTWARE

A new range of cash draws are coming on the market, with some very neat functions in them. This is the SmartTill.   

One functions that they have that I particularly liked is that this one has a weight scale inside of them if any unauthorised cash is taken out of the till, the till instantly sends an alarm. 

Check out this video at 2 minutes 50 seconds to see it in action.

I expect in about a year we will have an Australian version available for our clients.

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Researchers Identify a 2-Minute Trick That Stops You Craving Fatty Foods

POS SOFTWARE

I have often wondered why our clients in cake shops, restaurants and pizza parlour are rarely fat. If you put me in such places, I am sure I would get into real trouble. 

Well, researchers may have found the answer. It seems that the body is fooled after a long period (2 minutes) of smelling the fatty foods to eat something else. Here is the article have a read.

I am going to try it out to see if breathing in fatty food smells for more than two minutes is enough to put me off some high-calorie foods. See how you go.

 

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Stop dead stock coming in

POS SOFTWARE

Often dead stock comes into the shop because someone has accidentally ordered it. If it gets in, what it will do is take up space, hurt your cash flow and not pay any of the rent. This is how you can mark stock so that you and others do not accidentally order it.

In your point of sale software go to the stock maintenance, and/or stock received.

Now edit the item, see image below.

How to censure  a magazine

 

See where the red arrow is pointing too, mark it as discontinued.

From now on it will show it as NOT WANTED. If by some chance it does come into the shop, our point of sale software will put it on a list to be instantly returned.

 

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Allpay

POS SOFTWARE

Alipay

Alipay is the preferred payment method for Chinese people visiting Australia. About 1.2 million Chinese tourists come to Australia each year and they spend an average of $8,000 per visit making them in dollar terms our number one tourist trade. Also, there are many Chinese nationals and students living in Australia that would like to use it,  so giving many of our clients' a good reason to offer this preferred Chinese method of payment. 

So we are pleased that sometime about February be offering a direct integration of Alipay. It will work through Tyro EFTPOS which as Tyro has no fees or contracts so it is easy for any of our clients to add this payment type if they want it. If you are interested let me know.

 

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new i9 computers

POS SOFTWARE

i9 intel

Point of sale software has to be fast, so people are switching over their old processors to the new i9 processors because of the speed increase. In retail speed is everything and the i9 is a fantastic piece of hardware.

So even though our system is the fastest point of sale system, I know, check out the transaction speeds in yellow below 

Transaction speed raw data

the big issue in business is that old computers run slow and employees are paid for in time. A shop assistant costs you $19 hour, once you include holiday, sick pay and superannuation, that comes to about $24 an hour and that is the cheapest you can get. Currently, if an old computer say with slow processors, without a touch screen or an SSD drive costs an employee about 10 minutes more a day. Over a year that works out to costing you over a $1000 for that employee just in salary! Now add in that many people will work on overtime rates. Then there are senior staff members costs on the computer! Now add in the cost of your customer service being 10 minutes per employee worse a day, your own time etc. With probably even the cheapest employees from a business point of view, a computer upgrade can be justified as it's false economy to hang on to old computers in business.

If you are looking to upgrade let us know. 

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Lottoland Australia still kicking

POS SOFTWARE

  The government outlawed betting on "synthetic lotteries" which are now in effect which we were told would effectively sign the death warrant for gambling companies like Lottoland in Australia, but Lottoland isn't going. I doubted they would as there is too much money involved.

Check out the lottoland site. Currently the US power at $571 million looks interesting, plus they have a new product "Jackpot betting." 

In April 2018, I wrote my personal views

-The medium to long-term for many of my clients on Lotto is worrying, and for point of sale suppliers like us, this is alarming. 

-The existing commissions from TABCORP are not enough?

-TABCORP continuing strategy is growing its digital business, and it is affecting my clients.

-The reality is that the Australian lotteries products in the days of the internet are now being outclassed.  My clients do not have access to many products that the internet offers, e.g.  $A571 million US Mega Millions jackpot here that the internet consumer does. 

-My clients have been hit by huge and unreasonable demands for shop fits. To support these shopfitting demands many have been presented with estimates of its benefits that I question.

Today I do not see despite what some claimed would happen once Lottoland was stopped from selling synthetic lotteries that my clients would be getting a share of the online sales, much better commisions and there would be a reduction in the demands for shop fits. 

Finally, I do not see that those of my clients that supported the move to ban Lottoland got much in exchange for their support. 

Note I am happy to take back all or any of these comments if someone can show that any are wrong.

 

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