The POS Software Blog

News from Tower Systems about locally made POS software for specialty local retailers.

Latest stories

Every retail business needs a theft policy

E

Every retail business does need a theft policy. A good theft policy outlines what is acceptable and unacceptable. It is clear about your position on theft.

through Nour work with small business retailers across a range of channels we have developed a theft policy that we offer as a starting point for local store development of a theft policy appropriate to their needs.

We don’t hold this out as a perfect or expert document. rather, we suggest it as inspiration or as a starting point. Here it is, for your consideration:

THEFT POLICY

1. Theft, any theft, is a crime against this business, its owners, employees and others who rely on us for their income.

2. If you discover any evidence or have any suspicion of theft, please report it to the business owner or most senior manager possible immediately. Doing so could save a considerable cost to the business.

3. We have a zero tolerance policy on theft. All claims will be reported to law enforcement authorities for their investigation.

4. From time to time we have the business under surveillance in an effort to reduce theft. This may mean that you are photographed or recorded in some other way. By working here you accept this as a condition of employment.

5. New employees may be asked to provide permission for a police check prior to commencement of employment. Undertaking the police check will be at our discretion.

6. Cash is never to be left unattended outside the cash drawer or a safe within the business.

7. Credit and banking card payments are not to be accepted unless the physical card is presented and all required processes are followed for processing these.

8. Employees caught stealing with irrefutable evidence face immediate dismissal to the extent permitted by local labour laws.

9. Employees are not permitted to remove inventory, including unsold, topped, magazines, unsold cards or damaged stock from the store without permission.

10. Employees are not permitted to provide a refund to a customer without appropriate management permission.

11. Employees are not permitted to complete sales to themselves, family members or friends.

12. Every dollar stolen from the business by customers and or employees can cost us up to four dollars to recover. This is why vigilance on theft is mission critical for our retail store.

PLEASE SIGN AND DATE YOUR ACKNOWLEDGEMENT:

Joyful POS software

J

We are grateful to our creative team for sourcing joyful images to represent each of our specialty retail POS software products for local specialty retailers. here’ a quick video we put together focussing on those images.

POS software helps local op. shops serve their local community

P

Our POS software for op. shops, charity shops and community group shops helps these vital community enterprises to be of greater service in their local communities.

We have served in this area of POS software charity shops, community group shops and op. shops for many years. Our portfolio of shops in this space includes church bookshops, community enterprise garden centres, traditional Aussie op. shops, charity run produce businesses and more. It is this diverse charity business engagement that helps us provide software that is commercially useful and community supporting.

Embedded in our op. shop POS software are facilities these community group businesses can use to connect with their members, and through them, connect with the wider local community.

We handle GST requirements for these types of enterprises as well as unusual approaches to pricing. We also make it easy for people to learn the software, to help them deal with the variety of volunteers who often play a key role on the operations of these businesses.

Understanding the varied needs of the charity run businesses and pitching what we offer to those in the business as well as those on a committee in control of the business, Tower Systems is grateful to be of service of these organisations and the mission they pursue here locally and well as overseas, where several charities we serve raise funds for.

We are grateful to serve these community enterprises with POS software made for charity / op. shops that helps in many ways, including:

  1. Easy shopper loyalty. We have found the cash-off approach in our loyalty tools works better in community enterprise retail. People understand money. A receipt showing an amount they can save on their next purchase gets, usually, at least 20% of people spending more that visit.
  2. Manage inventory your way. You can sell by barcode, products code, department, category within department, price point. You can sell, measure and report at the level point appropriate to your needs.
  3. Easy to learn. We have found that in community enterprises easy to learn / easy to use really does matter. Volunteer turnover makes this essential. We can record training specific to your needs and make these videos available for future volunteers.
  4. Secure. You can lock down parts of the software to secure them for management access only.
  5. Checks and balances. This software guides processes. It also provides hidden tracking so you can investigate should the need arise.
  6. Club / group marketing and support. Leverage clubs and community groups with offers and pricing just for them.

While not ideal for every op. shop / charity shop / community group shop situation, our POS software is worth considering. We won’t pressure you. rather, we will show you what the software can do and leave you to make your decision in your own time.

Helping local sewing, fabric and haberdashery shops to compete in retail and online

H

Local sewing, fabric and haberdashery shops fulfil a vital need in local communities across Australia. They provide products, services and knowledge to creative people who make clothes, art and more. They help people help others. These businesses are places of goodness in our community.

We are grateful to serve local sewing, fabric and haberdashery businesses with POS software made for them and supported for them, locally made software for these vital local businesses.

Here are some of the ways our locally made POS software for sewing / haberdashery / fabric businesses leverages the uniqueness of these businesses:

  1. Rare visit loyalty.  The customer visit cycle for a sewing / fabric business is often infrequent. Embedded in this software are loyalty tools that encourage shoppers be more valuable each visit.
  2. Pre-orders. Easily manage selling products before you have them in-stock.
  3. Buy Now Pay Later and LayBy. Through our software you can have both.
  4. Bundle / package. It’s easy to bundle items together to create something unique to your needs, unique for your customers. Putting items together this way can help you guide shoppers to spend more.
  5. Club / group marketing and support. Leverage sewing and craft clubs and other groups with offers and pricing.
  6. Special orders. Being able to manage and track special customer orders helps you save time and cut mistakes. Also, it’s easier for you to be paid in advance for these.
  7. Product repairs and servicing. Using our repairs management facilities, you can track parts and labour used in repairs as well as repairs done outside the business. You can also recall customers based on activity, like last service date.
  8. Serial number tracking. For service records, insurance and much more. Tracking serial numbers of stock items is good for busines and good for customer service.

Our Australian made and supported sewing, fabric, haberdashery POS software does much more than what’s on this list. See it for yourself, live and obligation free, to see if it could serve you and your business.

But, it’s not up to us. Retailers themselves need to choose the software that they think best serves their needs. This is why we are happy to offer personal demonstrations, as many as you would like, to see if our software could be the right software for your business.

It’s possible we don’t do everything you want. we note this as local sewing, fabric and haberdashery businesses tend to have some business processes they have developed themselves. Our software is broad and based on common needs we have seen. It’s why we say look at it and decide for yourself if it is right for you. take your time. We’ll be here when you are ready.

Afterpay Card payment option for small business retail POS software

A

The Afterpay buy now pay later payment option is available through the Tower Systems POS software. This is another of the buy now pay later options that our software supports, like Zip Pay and Humm.

Taking payment via Afterpay through our POS software is easy, secure and business beneficial. We have made sure of this through the work we have done, to ensure that our small business customers are well serves through a frictionless solution. Like so much we have done with our software, our approach to Afterpay is fast, secure and something customers will love. It helps a local small retail business attract more shoppers.

The Afterpay POS software solution we have delivered is the Afterpay Card. Here’s what Afterpay has to say about this new facility for their buy now pay later option:

We’ve made paying a better and easier experience for you when you shop in-store.

Afterpay Card has replaced the barcode system of shopping in-store. It’s a contactless Mastercard stored in your Google Pay or Apple Wallet, and is super easy to set up and use.

With Afterpay Card, you just App it, Add it, and Tap it to pay in 4 interest-free instalments.

We are grateful to be part of the release, to be able to bring this option to thousands of local small business retailers.

For a retail business to be ready for taking payment through the Afterpay Card is easy with our fast-track setup opportunities. Our software guides our customers. In almost no time at all, this new payment method is up and running in the business, offering the business a fresh approach to selling.

Using the Afterpay Card in a Tower Systems POS software connected business is as easy as using any credit card. Tap and go. It’s fast, easy, secure and backed by good business engagement reporting. Offering an additional payment method is something small business retailers embrace as they seek to reduce barriers to business growth. The Afterpay Card does that, it’s a timely solution for small business retailers looking for new revenue streams.

Tower Systems supports the Afterpay Card and welcomes its wider release within retail in Australia.

The value of Australian made bike shop software made for local bike retailers

T

The Tower Systems bike shop software, being locally made, offers facilities that leverage local opportunities for these vital local retailers.

If you own a bike shop and being local matters to you, our locally made and locally supported bike shop software may be of interest. We are grateful that hundreds of bike retailers use our software already, and help it continuously evolve.

Find out more at www.towersystems.com.au/bike.

Take a quick look at: https://vimeo.com/455707389

Watch a one-hour demonstration: https://vimeo.com/571477100

The transparency we offer by publishing the bike shop software preview and then the more complete demonstration speaks to our confidence that our specialty retail bike shop software that is embedded with channel specific tools is something of which we are proud.

From sales to repairs, special orders to pre-orders, serial number tracking to warranty care, from supplier links to customer care … our bike shop software is made for bike retailers, made to help you enjoy your business more.

We launched new bike shop software in March 2020.  It delivered a fresh look and feel, a new database engine, new functions and more connections for things like selling online. Since March 2020 it has been further enhanced, delivering more value, more benefits.

This bike shop software has been built in Australia to serve Aussie bike shop retail, workshop and business management needs. It also helps bike shops leverage club and community group relationships.

Here are five things think matter when considering our bike shop software:

  1. Local matters. Local bike shops make a vital contribution to local cycling communities and families. Our software helps you leverage your localness, to genuinely differentiate your business from big competitors.
  2. You are a key asset. Only your business has you and your people. You can leverage you through our bike shop software, to easily share your knowledge in ways big businesses cannot match.
  3. You can bank on loyalty. Points don’t reward loyalty. What is a point worth anyway? In our bike shop software, you have fresh loyalty tools you can bank on to drive a deeper visit value, bring shoppers back sooner and genuinely leverage their lifetime value opportunity.
  4. Service, service, service. Offering service and managing this for the benefit of your customers and your business can genuinely differentiate thanks to our Bike management tools. You can bank on this difference.
  5. Not every shopper will walk, or rides, past your door. A smart and seamless connection between your software and a beautiful website can help you easily and with low overhead sell to people you will never meet.

Find out more at www.towersystems.com.au/bike.

How we have been helping small business retailers through on-going Covid challenges

H

Tower Systems is grateful to be able to continue to help Australian and New Zealand small business retailers through COVID-19.

Our business is open and our office is open, since we meet the criteria for being essential.

What we introduced in February 2020 when we saw how Covid is playing out around the world and the impact it is having on businesses is still available. This Tower Systems support package is helping local small business retailers to pivot and embrace opportunity found within the Covid situation.

Our customers have access to a range of opportunities and benefits to help them best run their businesses in this situation.

  1. Free POS software licences for home software access.
  2. Free unlimited personal, one-on-one, POS software training.
  3. No surcharge credit card use.
  4. Free access anywhere POS software reporting tools.
  5. Pivot advice, based on your business data – advice on opportunities for new traffic, new revenue.
  6. Capped price low cost Shopify sites, with fast track to going live.
  7. Business performance analysis help based on a professional assessment of what your data reveal.

Here at Tower Systems, it is business as usual and, through this, we are helping our POS software customers achieve a business as usual experience. We know this is comforting to our customers, helpful for their business planning and operations.

We continue to offer a full service POS software help desk service, releasing POS software updates and delivering our much-loves free one-on-one training to our retail business owners and their staff.

In offering business as usual, our customers have continuity of service. This helps them have what they need to work on their businesses … as that is what plenty of small business retailers have been doing through COVID-19, working on their businesses, re-calibrating, adjusting and, for some, pivoting. Indeed, we have helped some exciting pivots and we are grateful to have seen this and been part of it.

We are grateful to our team of software developers, help desk experts, POS software trainers, our back office infrastructure support and our sales team in that it is this group of people that has delivered for our customers through COVID-19 every day.

But back to the pivot opportunity. We see plenty of this in a range of local specialty retail channels in which we serve. By see we mean in real and accurate business data. Data show pivot opportunities and we can help our retail partners to explore these and consider whether they are useful. 2020 is a terrific year for a pivot and having the right software with flexibility can be helpful.

A Covid lockdown To-Do list for local small business retailers

A

Here in Melbourne we are in our fifth Covid lockdown. As well as owning our POS software company and working with local small business retailers every day, I also own three retail businesses and several online businesses.

This Covid lockdown To-Do list for local small business retailers is practical advice you can action without cost, to make the most of the lockdown opportunity.

Whether your shop is closed or open but with less traffic, now is an ideal time to work on your business.

  1. List what’s not sold. Run a report listing all inventory in the business that has not sold at all this year. This list gives you a starting point for action. We did this last week for one customer and identified $15,000 worth of dead stock, stock the owner to that point was not focussed on.
  2. Act on what’s not sold. Dead stock is dead weight. If you have long since paid for it, cents in the dollar for it is better than nothing.
  3. Look at what’s been selling with what. Often the items in the same basket are not seen by retailers as items you can put together. This list, which you should be able to get from your POS software, can guide shop floor placement changes.
  4. Front to back clean. Literally, start at the front of the shop and work your want to the back. Clean every single product. We often find that the act of holding every product leads to decisions about some products, decisions we might otherwise not have made. We have just done this at one of our own Westfield shops and the decisions we made along the way have been liberating.
  5. Work on your roster. Look at what usually sells by day of week and by time. Your POS software should be able to help with this. Take time to review your roster to ensure it is set appropriately. Labour is usually the top or second highest cost in a retail business outside of inventory.
  6. Reset the front third of the store. Look carefully at that front third of your store. Make bold changes simply by moving things, so that when shoppers return they see things they’ve not noticed before.
  7. Prepare social media content that leverages you. Using your phone, film short videos of you or a team member talking about products. Prepare these to load over time on Facebook, Instagram and more. Have fun.
  8. If you have a website for the business, write blog posts as they are absolutely the single best thing you can do to attract traffic to the website. A blog post should be single topic, pitch a consistent keyword at least five times and be over 350 words. We have a lot of experience with this and note, again, this is the single most effective online marketing for a website. The only investment is your time – don’t outsource this.
  9. Learn something new. Ask your POS software company for the best report in the software to reveal what you are unlikely to know about your business. Run that report. Read it. Make a list of things you could do. Act on it.
  10. Be a shopfitter. Shopfitters are expensive. Look at an area of your shop that you want to change that you would usually hire a shoplifter to handle. Think through how you can do it yourself. I know many retailers who have done this and vowed to not use shopfitters for such changes in the future.
  11. If you are online, undertake a data driven review of your website. Look at your traffic and the traffic of your competitors. Review your site and theirs. Look for opportunities to attract more shoppers to your site based on the data. Whoever developed your website should be able to collate this data for you.
  12. Personally: refresh. If you can take a break from business, even for an hour a day, read fiction, listen to music you love, go for a walk outside. These nourishing things can help reset mood and that could help you discover new opportunities for your business.

We are a local Aussie POS software company serving 3,500+ local small business retailers with POS software and beautiful Shopify websites. Beyond this, we also offer retail business management advice and help to our customers every day.

Thanks for reading. have an awesome rest of your weekend …

Mark Fletcher | mark@towersystems.com.au.

Our Aussie made POS software can help local retailers raise funds for local community groups and schools

O

Using our Aussie made POS software, local retailers are able to connect with local community groups including schools to engage in fundraising campaigns. Built into our POS software are facilities that can drive shopping by members of community groups, shopping that can result in donations back to the groups with which they are connected.

These are smart tools that we have seen fundraising for local schools as well as a diverse mix of community groups.

By engaging with the members of groups a local retailer can broaden their shopper appeal. The community group benefits, the members benefit, the business benefits and the community benefits. That is where this community group engagement works well – the breadth of benefits delivered through a retailer leveraging the POS software community group marketing tools.By bringing structure and consistency to this, retailers can let the members of the group drive the benefits for their business.

We are grateful to the retailers and community groups that have helped us over the years to tune these tools, to enable us to make something flexible for a range of situations.

Requests from schools, charities and other community for donations can be a challenge for any size business. If you do not take a structured approach to this you will find yourself giving away plenty for little or no return.

Requests are often loaded with guilt.  People can be passive aggressive in their approach. Often, people requesting help leverage pester power. It can be hard to say no. There are too many stories of retailers giving a gift as a prize, receiving the Thank You poster and achieving no benefit for the business.

The approach we have available through our POS software helps the business be consistent, connecting fundraising back to support for the business from members of the group asking for your support.

EDUCATE GROUPS ABOUT GOOD ENGAGEMENT

Here are things groups you support can do to help your business. You should ask them to do these things:

  1. Tell members to buy from you.
  2. Write about your business on their Facebook page.
  3. Distribute flyers of your offers.
  4. Have you speak at a meeting.

Here at Tower Systems, through our POS software for local retailers, you have access to facilities that help you connect locally, by supporting fundraising for local community groups. We are grateful to be of service in this way.

How our Aussie made POS software helps local retailers serve local tourism opportunities

H

With local retail businesses relying on local tourism while the international border remains closed due to Covid, Australian made POS software from Tower Systems is helping local businesses promote local tourism opportunities.

Embedded in our Australian POS software are facilities through which local tourist locations and opportunities can be pitched without additional labour investment from the business for each pitch. Being able to do this consistently and in an automated way is key to efficiently pitching local in retail.

Our locally made POS software makes it easy for regional and rural businesses to shine a light on nearby and local tourism attractions and situations. here are some marketplace examples that show what can be done:

  • Camping businesses can share local camping opportunities, places off the beaten track people can love.
  • Music shops can share details of local music groups, with which local visitors could connect, especially if they are having events.
  • Fishing  businesses can use these local tourism marketing facilities in the POS software to help people visiting an area to have a more successful fishing experience.
  • Bike shops can use these local tourism marketing facilities in the POS software to promote local riding tracks and cyclist destinations worth visiting.
  • Garden centres can use these local tourism marketing facilities in the POS software to feature local gardens of note and bush trails sure to excite a gardener.
  • Pet shops can use these local tourism marketing facilities in the POS software to highlight local pet locations where they can date the dog for a play or otherwise enjoy what the local area has to offer.
  • Produce and farm supply businesses can use these local tourism marketing facilities in the POS software highlight local crop and related information to encourage a better yield.

Other local businesses can use these local tourism marketing facilities in the POS software to encourage the visiting of local tourist destinations in a structured way to help local tourist operators and thereby more broadly help the local town. The software could serve providing collective loyalty opportunities too.

These facilities in our POS software are loved by our customers as they make it easy for them to pitch their local community engagement and through this to demonstrate community support. They help better integrate the business with the local community and tourism opportunities the local community has to offer.

With so many of our POS software customers in regional and rural Australia, these facilities made sense when we first offered them years ago.

Tower Systems is grateful to help regional and rural retailers to support their local communities.

FREE WORKSHOP: Helping retailers leverage POS software connected websites

F

Today @ 10:30am we are hosting a free workshop (on Zoom) for retailers that have a POS software connected website. We will discuss making the most from the opportunity, looking at SEO, SEM and other activities key to driving success with an online consumer-facing platform.

Today’s live workshop is another in our series offering free education to local small business retailers.

POS software helps retailers handle consignment stock

P

The Tower Systems POS software helps retailers deal with, manage and track consignment stock in their businesses.

Consignment stock is stock supplied to the shop on the basis that it is paid for when sold.

In our years of experience working with retailers across several retail channels, we have seen a variety of approaches to handling consignment stock. There is no standard, no one way that is most common. Our POS software consignment stock solutions have evolved over time, as we have seen a greater variety of situations.

We have built into our POS software several opportunities for managing consignment stock. These include options for tracking the stock when it arrives in the business, all sales and accurate reporting for reconciliation for the supplier when it comes time to settle up with them.

Thanks to our options and in-built flexibility for managing inventory, we are able to report on the sales of items provided to a shop on consignment. We have seen this be useful in a range of retail situations including, gift, jeweller, garden and collectibles.

The consignment stock management options available for use in our POS software have evolved over time and they are sure to evolve further – like you would expect from any advancing POS software that serves a range of retail settings.

The tricky thing with consignment stock is that in most settings it is not an inventory asset of the business yet you want to track its sales. It’s through our tagging, supplier settings and stock settings themselves where the software can help retailers access the level of reporting that is important to them in managing consignment stock.

Consignment stock is loved by retailers as they get to carry inventory for no capital outlay. Suppliers love consignment stock as they get to take floorspace in more retail situations as a result. The key to making this mutually beneficial relationship work is timely access to accurate data.

We don’t claim to be the best at managing consignment stock through our POS software, but we do offer several solutions.it is this flexibility that has been appreciated baby our customers, not only in this area of consignment stock but in other areas where our software has served.

Xero integrated POS software helps small business retailers cut mistakes and reduce accounting fees

X

Xero is the preferred accounting software solution among small business retailers. We are grateful to have been a partner with Xero for years, linking our POS software with Xero, making the connection, easy, seamless, tight and safe – reducing the cost for small business retailers, especially the cost of bookkeeping.

Using our POS software Xero link, retailers are able to rely on the live sharing of data, enabling accurate business financial reporting, and more.

Thanks to the POS software Xero integration, small business retailers can:

  1. Save time. This is time in the business as well as with the accountant or bookkeeper.
  2. Cut mistakes. Every keystroke you eliminate in business is a possible data mistake eliminated. The Xero POS software integration cuts keystrokes.
  3. Make better business decisions. Accurate business data feeds better business decisions.
  4. Reduce accounting and bookkeeping costs. All the data entry work bookkeepers and accounting professionals do can be eliminated thanks to safe and fast data flow between the POS software and Xero.
  5. Drive business value. Data is revealing and this helps you extract more business value.
  6. Enjoy the business more. Data entry is a grind and it can lead to mistakes. Get rid of these challenges and yours enjoyment rises for sure.
  7. Immediate cashflow visibility. With no lag for data, you can see your position immediately.

What is Transferred to Xero through our POS software Xero link?

Sales
End of Shift based department-level sales are transferred to Xero via a sales invoice. Each department can be assigned its own Xero account.
Invoices
Invoices received into Retailer are transferred to Xero at department level. No individual stock items are transferred.

 

Write Offs & No Sales
These are transferred to individual expense accounts depending on the transaction reason chosen.

Cost Of Sales
An option on sales exporting is to export Cost of Sales. While not a full implementation of COGS it does transfer over the cost price of items sold each day to reduce the value of Stock On Hand in Xero. If you use this option you will export Write offs, not as expenses, but as adjustment to your Stock on Hand. This makes processing stock adjustments for the End Of Month much easier.

What is the best POS software for retail?

W

What is the best POS software for retail? This is a good and often asked question. Unfortunately, it is often asked of the wrong people.

Only you can know what good POS software for your business looks like for it is only you who truly knows and understands your needs. This is where the answer starts – with your needs for it is those that must be served if the POS software you select is to be of service to your business. So, if you are wondering What is the best POS software for retail? start with the needs.

Plenty of POS software sales people will tell you that their POS software is the best for retail. Not here at Tower Systems. we think that our POS software is good for the marketplaces in which we serve, but, only those using the software can speak to the question of whether it is the best for the need.

If you ask us, we will say let’s help you find out. We will do that by first wanting to know more about your needs. This can sound like had work, but … it is about reaching the best outcome for your retail business and that starts with your needs. We want you to find the best POS software for your retail business. We’d love to help you on what is a personal journey centred within your business needs.

Whether something is best is subjective. That’s why you won’t read of us saying our POS software is the best. What we think doesn’t matter. What you think, once you have used it, is what matters. This is also why people who have not used our software cannot comment as to whether it is the best software for a situation.

We strive to make and maintain good POS software for specialty retail situations, and to back this with timely and professional customer support. If this is seen by specialty retailers as being the best POS software for their business we are grateful. With so many long term customers, we have a sense that we are doing things right here.

What is the best POS software for retail?  We hope to explore your needs with you.

In Covid lockdown #5, we’re open

I

As a business that meets the criteria for being essential, our office is open. This is being run with around 20% of the usual office based staff, which the majority of our people are working from home, as they have done from the start of 2020.

Having the office open helps us provide better service to customers as we have access to a broader suite of tools than can be provided from a pure home office model.

We are grateful to our customers for their support and we appreciate the new customers we are welcoming every week.

Newsagents switching to $185 a month newsagency software rental.

N

The newsagency software rental option launched by Tower Systems in late 2019 is now the preferred newsagency software access approach in the channel.

Under this model, the capital cost is spread over the years of the use of the software rather than through a bulk up-front cost.

There is no credit check and no long-term contract. Newsagents who sell their business or close can stop paying and that ends the licence. This is one aspect of what newsagents like.

The other aspect newsagents like is that of being part of a large community of newsagents. With more than 1,700 newsagents using this software it is, based on user numbers, the industry standard. Working together, Tower newsagents have been instrumental in setting standards all newsagents benefit from today.

The latest version of the Tower newsagency software was released in the first week of July 2021. This delivered access to new look and feel benefits as well as access to better supplier reporting tools for newsagency specific suppliers. This is key to more useful category and segment level performance reporting.

Included in the $185.00 (inc. GST) a month rental fee of the Tower Systems newsagency software is:

  • Software access.
  • Run in the cloud or on a desktop or tablet computer.
  • Unlimited licences – on an many computers as you want.
  • Help desk access for customer services.
  • Software updates as released.
  • XchangeIT access for magazine invoices.
  • Direct link to Shopify for online selling.
  • Direct link to Xero for easy accounting.

Working with community groups.

Using this software, newsagents are able to work with local schools and community groups to offer fund raising opportunities that benefits people in those communities as well as the groups themselves. The approach in the software has been found to be a useful way for newsagents to address the vexed issue of community groups asking for donations.

Mitigating employee and customer theft.

The Tower newsagency software and the team at Tower have been instrumental in newsagents dealing with theft in their business. Early identification of theft is possible with the software thanks to hidden, owner accessible only, tools. These tools have been key in helping police and prosecutors deal with people who have stolen from newsagencies.

In one newsagency, $35,000 worth of theft was uncovered and recovered for the business thanks to the Theft Check service offered by Tower Systems. In another newsagency, long-term systematic theft by a manager helped remote owners confront theft that had cost the business several hundred thousand dollars.

In addition to software tools, Tower Systems offers newsagents theft mitigation advice, including a suggested Theft Policy for a business, which has been found to be key in reducing the opportunity for theft in a business.

Software rental is the future.

These facilities, theft mitigation, newsagency supplier connectivity and more are core to the $185.00 a month newsagency software rental from Tower Systems.

The rental cost is an immediately deductible expense. There is no credit check. It is easy to setup. Many newsagents have embraced it already this year.

You can find out more at www.towersystems.com.au

Valuable advice from small business retailers: make every day your pay day

V

This advice is something we have shared before. But, it’s been updated for today. We have found, over many years, this to be the most useful, beneficial and appreciated advice for small business retailers.

Make every day tour pay day.

There was a time when small business retailers could rely on selling their business for a handsome increase on the price they paid thereby providing a good pay day, when businesses sold for a good multiple of net earnings.

Today, the best way to extract financial value from our businesses is to make every day your pay day, to not rely on your pay day being the day you sell the business.

If you do this, if you focus on making money every day, you get ahead, in small steps and increments for sure, but you do get ahead, and long before you actually sell your business.

Our advice is that you look at your business differently. This starts with the mindset of every day being your pay day. Each decision needs to be considered in this context.

Focusing on profit today will give you a better result today and make your business more valuable tomorrow.

Here are some suggestions for making every day your pay day:

  1. Make sure the shop feels happy. People will spend more in a happy business.
  2. Buy as best you can. If you better than usual, keep the additional margin for yourself.
  3. Take every discount opportunity. Paying COD or taking settlement discounts. If you have the capacity to do this, the extra margin adds to your pay day.
  4. Run with the leanest roster possible. Note, however, there is a fine balance between too few and too many.
  5. Always have successful impulse offers at high traffic locations. If something is not working, try something else.
  6. Have your best people working the floor, helping customers spend more.
  7. Make sure the shop looks appealing from outside.
  8. Charge more every time you can. Loyalty programs such as discount vouchers, bundling into hampers, multi buys such as 2 for 3 and other opportunities enable you to do this by blocking price comparison.
  9. Promote outside your store using online and social media opportunities.
  10. Leverage adjacency. Chase a deeper basket – people purchasing more each visit.

Be responsible for the profitability of your business. Don’t blame your suppliers, your landlord, your employees or some other external factor … it all comes down to you – the decisions you make and the actions you take.

If you relentlessly pursue profit with a clear focus you are likely to see profit grow. That’s better than waiting to make money when you sell because that’s less likely to happen in this market.

Doing all this relies on your measuring the performance of your business. The Tower Systems POS software helps with this. It is easy.

Helping local Aussie authors get their stories published – book shop POS software

H

We are grateful to serve Shawline Publishing and, in particular, their local retail bookshop, The Independent Bookstore, with our specialty retail POS software.

In our POS software we offer a range of facilities to bookshops, facilities that help them with customer service, sales as well as back of hour management of the business.

From feeding scan sales data to accessing comprehensive title information to loading electronic invoices from suppliers, our POS software made for bookshops has facilities that serve these local businesses and through them serve local Aussie authors seeking to get their writing works out there and into the hands of readers.

Connecting to TitlePage and other book retailing assistance tools, this POS software for bookshops is packed with opportunities, workflow smoothers and revenue drivers, which work well in bookshop situations.

The bookshop POS software from Tower Systems helps local bookshops in myriad ways from the sales counter to the back office to the website driving online sales. There are two ways, however, where the bookstore inventory management software from Tower Systems provide practical and beneficial help to the local book shop.

  • Returns management. Returning unsold books can be time consuming. Using our bookshop software, booksellers can identify titles that can be returned based on arrival in-store, sales and current quantity on hand. We provide the insight and the structured approach for handling the return, in a publisher friendly way. The approach in our software has been tested with booksellers, toe snare it is genuinely useful and in line with what is required from suppliers.
  • Titlepage Integration. Our software has connected to Tiotlepage fore years. Our latest integration is even better and more useful for book retailers. This will evolve further as the Titlepage software itself permits.

We serve local booksellers with POS software made to help them serve their local communities. Our software helps them position their businesses as locally focussed in unique ways and touchpoints from reader loyalty to special interest focus to local club support to bundle offers. We help local bookshops better serve local readers and those who buy for them.

We are grateful to the folks at Shawline publishing for believing in our POS software and using it in their Ballarat business, The Independent Bookstore, to help raise awareness and sales of Australian stories from Australian authors.

Grateful to serve local op. shops with our Australian made and supported op. shop software

G

It is a thrill to see the different ways our op. shop software is able to serve different op. shop situations. From handling corporate level requirements to bringing structure to a single local small op. shop situation, our POS software made for op. shops is helping these vital community groups serve their respective communities in myriad ways.

We are grateful to have made and to serve software that serves their needs.

From presenting to committees to making training more accessible to volunteers to handling the unique pricing arrangements of goods in some op. shops, our op. shop software serves day in, day out. It is flexible, resilient and capable, bringing structure to op. shops where often there was none.

Australian op. shops are unique and loved businesses, providing valuable service to the local community and to those supported by their work. Using our specialty software for op. shops, you can expect to tap into a range of benefits, including:

  1. Easy shopper loyalty.  Yes, loyalty matters in these situations. While the software offers a loyalty points system, we have found the cash-off approach in our loyalty tools works better in local retail. People understand money. A receipt showing an amount they can save on their next purchase gets, usually, at least 20% of people spending more that visit.
  2. Manage inventory your way. yes, everything sold in an op. shop is inventory, to be tracked and managed. You can sell by barcode, products code, department, category within department, price point. You can sell, measure and report at the level point appropriate to your needs.
  3. Easy to learn. We have found that in community enterprises easy to learn / easy to use really does matter. Volunteer turnover makes this essential. We can record training specific to your needs and make these videos available for future volunteers.
  4. Secure. You can lock down parts of the software to secure them for management access only.
  5. Check and balances. This software guides processes. It also provides hidden tracking so you can investigate should the need arise.
  6. Club / group marketing and support. Leverage clubs and community groups with offers and pricing just for them.

Our Australian made and supported  op. shop POS software does much more than what’s on this list. See it for yourself, live and obligation free, to see if it could serve you and your business. We’d be glad to show it to all involved in the operation.

POS software for Australian firearms dealers helps meet regulatory obligations and run more efficient and enjoyable businesses

P

The POS software for firearms dealers developed by Tower Systems for this specialty retail channel is serving the needs of these businesses beyond the traditional for POS software.

Using our firearms dealer POS software, business owners, managers and staff can expect to benefit from workflow, transactional management and operational facilities that are tuned for these specific types of businesses.

Developed with people who work in firearms dealer businesses, our firearms dealer POS software has unique facilities that serve the needs of retailers in the channel.

Here are some of the benefits of our firearms dealer POS software:

  1. Track product sales by serial numbers. From the moment items with serial numbers arrive in-store. Customers love it. It can also help with insurance claims.
  2. Easily and consistently age check. This is instigated from within the software.
  3. Easily handle special customer orders including one-off orders. The software tracks the details, helping guide fewer mistakes.
  4. Easily handle pre-orders.
  5. Track and manage repairs. from the moment an item is Brough in for repair to collection.
  6. Offer club pricing. Set pricing rules to drive business from club members.
  7. Sell accurately by weight or measure – by whole numbers or fractions.
  8. Manage inventory so that you have accurate records on-hand.
  9. Leverage you. Your knowledge is a differentiator, leverage it. By this we mean that you can have your knowledge about products included on receipts and more.
  10. Differentiate your business through smart and unique loyalty. With shoppers visiting less frequently than other retail, use these tools to drive more from each visit.
  11. Maximise the basket with easy to use one-time shopper loyalty tools.
  12. Load electronic invoices from suppliers.
  13. Easily link to Shopify, Magento and Woo including images.

The Tower Systems firearms dealer POS software is in good use in a range of business situations from large to small, in the city to the country, from owner-operator to run under management. We can share advice and insights we have learned from a variety of business situations, to offer you options for your business as you work on its operation.

For the $199 a month to rent this firearms dealer POS software you get:

  1. Australian developed and supported firearms business POS software.
  2. Software updates as we release them.
  3. Unlimited computer licences for your shop. Extra licences are free.
  4. Shopify / Magento / Woo link. Easily sell online from your POS software.
  5. Direct to Xero link. Easing bookkeeping and accounting costs.
  6. Our OzBiz link. This helps you link to MYOB and Quicken through OzBiz.
  7. Tyro link – safe, fast and easy EFTPOS link for streamlined sales.
  8. PC Eftpos link. This offers easy EFTPOS processing for the major banks.
  9. Support – help desk access, unlimited training, updates and more.
  10. User documentation. Access to our searchable knowledge base.

We are grateful to serve professional firearms dealers and to offer them a solution for serving their business needs.

Advice for NSW small business retailers in their 2nd lockdown … from the Victorian experience

A

It was the second Covid lockdown in Victoria that was a defining moment for many small business retailers. Whereas first lockdown was a national experience, the second lockdown was unique to Victoria back then.

While there were many media stories about businesses doing it tough, the reality is that many of us had a good Covid, through all four lockdowns in Victoria. Here’s what worked for us and many of the local small business retailers I have spoken with:

  • Be safe. Have the perspex screens at the counter.  Place your credit card terminal on the customer side.
  • Be frugal. Spend what you must but hang on to as much cash as you can. You don’t know how long this will go on for.
  • Make shopping easier, safer. Bring what people will want the most to the front of the shop, to reduce browsing. In a newsagency where papers have been put to the back of the shop, for example, bring them to the front of the shop.
  • If you’re not online, get online.
  • Be practical. Now is not the time for pretty displays.
  • Preference card payment. The less cash you have to handle, the safer the business.
  • Be flexible. Be available for shoppers where they want to shop: online, on the phone, via social media. Offer delivery or curbsibe pickup.
  • Offer what they want. What people will purchase through a lockdown will be different to other times.
  • Bundle. People who want to send gifts will appreciate you offering bundles ready to be delivered or posted.
  • Co-operate locally. If you are open and a nearby shop is closed, maybe you could sell some of their stock for them.
  • Clean, clean and clean. Showing this being done builds confidence.
  • Be grateful. You will see many good deeds and hear about many too. Share them on social media.
  • Look after your team. Have a good supply of masks and anti-bacterial gel. Given them breaks to refresh and wash their hands.
  • Think about beyond Covid. The experience will help you see your business differently. Lean into that for opportunities on the other side.

Regional, rural and high street newsagents are likely to have a better lockdown than those in shopping centres. many Victorian shopping centres are yet to recover from lockdown 2 and beyond. We mention this as one consequence of extended lockdown for shopping centre businesses is to find opportunities outside the centre.

We have three physical shops in Victoria as well as an office and several online only businesses. What we have suggested in this post we have done in our businesses, and we continue to do them today. For example, as part of the be frugal advice, we made some decisions that we expected to be temporary, decisions we still follow today, decisions that continue to save money.

While things seem grim in NSW right now, at the local small business level you have an opportunity to make your own success, your own good situation out of a bad situation.

If your shop is open and not busy because people are staying at home, use the opportunity to make changes. Be bold, but frugal. Use the time, too, to plan for what’s on the other side – promotions, marketing, re-casting.

Footnote: through our work with newsagents and with the Tower POS software community more broadly, only a very few businesses did not make it through. We think this is because small business retailers are resilient and flexible, doing what is necessary. Good luck everyone!

Categories