The POS Software Blog

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

CategorySewing shop software

“I just want to be seen, to be noticed” … how can my local retail business do that, be noticed?

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It can be a struggle in local small business retail to be noticed. You can feel helpless, under-resourced, too small to be heard. The negative self-talk can have you doing less, being heard less, noticed less.

In truth, local small business retailers have the best voices, the most authentic voices, the most valuable voices for the local community.

The best way for any local retail business to be promoted is through word of mount and word of mouth depends on customer service and value appreciation.

The Tower Systems POS software helps nurture word of mount. Better still, it helps support the value appreciation. It does this by demonstrating value consistently, at shopper touch points, in ways we see them appreciate, and talk positively about to others.

Our local small business retail helps retailers systemise and structure these activities so that the value of the business can be felt and understood in ways that support the growth of the business through the attraction of new shoppers, thanks to word of mount commentary.

Local small business retailers can compete against big, well-funded, businesses.

The key is to be yourself in what you do, what you offer and how you communicate. This is where the Tower Systems POS software helps as it comes from an understanding of the challenges of local small business retail and the value these businesses offer their local communities. Our software, which is only used in indie retail (no big business) offers subtle platforms for sharing the massages core to the business and ways the business can add value that are exclusive, unique.

Imagine the delight a shopper feels when they are given something unexpected, something they can use right away, something that appreciates their business in your shop that day … and that they have been given this without having to sign up for anything, without having to fill in a form, without having to give any personal details. This is a measure of trust between the business and the shopper. It has the shopper more engaged, more trusting and moire keen for the opportunity.

This is one way our POS software helps local small business retailers provide appreciation that is talked about, mentioned, raved about. We have seen this help bring new shoppers to local retail businesses.

This is one of plenty of ways the Tower Systems POS software can help local retailers be seen, be noticed, and flourish.

Together, we can do this. We’ve got your back!

The best loyalty solution for local small business retailers

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If your local retail business competes with big businesses and online businesses, you are likely copying them and their approach to loyalty. Points are the common approach. The world is obsessed with points, chasing them, collecting and trying to spend them.

But who knows that they are worth?

Each point is not the same whereas each dollar is a dollar everywhere.

The Tower Systems POS software offers a points based loyalty solution embedded in the POS software – for businesses that like to copy big business. The businesses that like to innovate, be different and stand out, however, use the discount vouchers facilities in our POS software. In these facilities there are no points accrued. rather, loyal shoppers accrue dollars. See how:

With hundreds of local small business retailers using the Tower Systems discount vouchers we have good data to speak to when encouraging local retailers to embrace the opportunity.

For years, retailers, especially independent and small business retailers, have been told to follow retail giants and reward loyal shoppers with points that can be redeemed for gifts and discounts.

Dutifully, many small business retailers acted on this – but without a thought-through strategy to achieve the best outcome for the business.

Without a financially rewarding outcome for a business, a loyalty program is worthless.

This is why retailers, in any retail channel and in any retail situation – high street, shopping mall, rural and or regional – need options in terms of shopper loyalty rewards.

While a points based program is useful, it could be that the business will benefit from a different approach.

Good POS software will offer flexibility. This flexibility can add thousands of dollars to the bottom line performance of a retail business each year.

Change the game: front-end loyalty

By using an approach we at Tower call front-ending loyalty, retailers can achieve more from first-time and infrequent shoppers. Front-ending loyalty brings a reward to the front in an effort to engage shoppers in additional purchases sooner.

Too often loyalty has been all about total spend over a year whereas above average spend in just one visit can be more valuable to a business.

It’s an approach that can encourage those who do not shop with you to purchase something else right away, to get the value of the cash discount offered.

Regular shoppers can spend the cash discount right away or come back within any time limit you set.

We started trialling this front-ending loyalty strategy in February 2013 in several retail businesses. We did it using the Discount Vouchers facilities in the Tower Systems software.

Building the basket

From the first day we saw shoppers changing behaviour.

One chap came in to purchase a specific item. When he was handed the receipt the voucher was pointed out to him – offering $2.00 off his next purchase. He was not a regular and so spent the $2.00, and more, right away on another item. He received another voucher and purchased a third item. In all, he spent three times as much as the original purchase – all because of the Discount Vouchers he received.

Around 33% of all vouchers redeemed are used the day they are received. This shows customers building the basket – adding to their purchase that day as a result of the voucher. This makes each visit more valuable to us.

Bringing shoppers back

Around 33% of redeemed vouchers are used within seven days of issue and the remaining 33% are redeemed up to four weeks after issue.

Here’s another real story: A month after we started trialling this new approach to loyalty, a customer came in and used a voucher she had picked up a couple of weeks earlier. She was happy to get $5.00 off a $45.00 item she wanted. This resulted in another voucher so she bought another item for $29.95.

This customer said she would be back. Two weeks later she was.

You control the business rules covering how vouchers are issued and redeemed. You control your financial exposure at all times.

Like any good loyalty program, you need good levers with which to drive shopper engagement and to deliver the benefits it needs to justify the investment.

The Discount Vouchers facilities in the Tower software have this.

5 ways to make your local retail business more competitive

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Every day can feel like a grind in local small business retail. A grind competing with big businesses, a grind competing with online businesses. It can wear people down if they let it.

The key is to not let it wear you down.

It starts with loving your business, believing in it, respecting it and making it stronger at the core. That’s what this advice from Tower Systems is about today, making your business stronger at the core, by making the business more competitive.

5 ways to make your local retail business more competitive

Now, before we get into them they will feel easy, even lame. The thing is, these are deliberately everyday things you can do without a budget, just with a small time investment.

These are all things your POS software, like the Tower Systems POS software, can help with if you wish.

1. Offer something unique that your competitors don’t. This could be a unique product, service, or even just a specific focus or niche that you cater to. have a point of different. This matters a lot. Create it, embrace it, leverage it. This point of difference is you, it is your reason, your go to, your 7 second pitch.

2. Make sure your prices are competitive. This doesn’t mean always having the lowest prices, but rather offering a good value for what you’re selling. Value is something you create based on how you bundle items, how you source to differentiate, how you make raw price comparisons hard.

3. Offer excellent customer service. This could be something as simple as providing a great experience in your store, or going above and beyond to help your customers. make it personal, different and valuable. At each contact point provide that extra bit that helps people make better use of what you sell.

4. Use marketing and advertising wisely. Make sure you’re targeting your ideal customer, and using the most effective channels to reach them. When you market, market you, your point of difference – always ahead off price as price based shoppers are not loyal.

5. Stay up to date on industry trends. This will help you anticipate changes and stay ahead of your competitors. It will also help your business be a resource, and that will bring people back.

Being more competitive in local retail is all about you and the core of your business. get this right and worries about competitors out there, real or imagined, will fade away.

Tower Systems through its POS software helps with this and more. We have embedded in our software opportunities for you showing your competitive advantages, giving shoppers lived experiences they will love.

Xero connects POS software helps local small business retailers save time and cut mistakes

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The Tower Systems POS software connects directly with Xero and has done for many years. we are grateful to be a development partner of Xero, providing seamless and safe data flow between the POS software and Xero.

Retailers using the Tower POS software can turn on the Xero accounting software connection without additional cost. yes, this Xero POS software link is included with the software, helping to reduce the cost of accurate accounting for local small business retailers.

The development of the POS software Xero link has been overseen by our retail software development experts and our own COPA accountant, taking it beyond the usual software focus – this is a whole of business focus, a whole of business solution, which we use ourselves in the 4 retail businesses we currently own – yes, we have our own practical experience with this PSO software Xero integration.

Save time, eliminate bookkeeping costs, cut mistakes and make better business decisions sooner with the Tower Systems POS software Xero integration. This link cuts keystrokes and every keystroke cut is a possible mistake eliminated.

The Xero integration designed by Tower Systems, working with the folks at Xero, makes it easy for small business retailers to cut accounting paperwork and thereby tap into time and money saving benefits.

This POS software Xero link has been made for local small business retailers like jewellers, garden centres, bike shops, pet shops, toy shops, sewing shops, newsagents, produce businesses, fishing shops and many more. It has been made for them, to help drive efficiency.

PERSONAL SERVICE MATTERS.

Here are areas where the Tower Systems approach shines, where our personal service matters.

Our training is personal, one-on-one. It is delivered by someone with extensive retail experience.

Our help desk is based locally. When people call, the call is answered by a human and not a computerised phone system. We believe in personal service.

This matters especially to retailers using the Xero link in that if they have a query, it is vital it is answered quickly and professionally. This is the Tower Systems difference in action – based on our own personal experience using the POS software Xero link ourselves – we bring that experience to every call, every interaction.

Our POS software connected Shopify websites help more local small business retailers sell online

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If you are thinking of a website, we could develop it for you. In addition to developing and selling POS software, Tower Systems develops and sells POS software connected Shopify websites.
Now, not to brag, here are some of the Tower POS software connected websites our awesome web dev. team has developed:

  1. Avalon Nursery – https://avalonnursery.com.au
  2. Berry Newsagency (Books n Gifts) – https://booksngifts.com.au
  3. Bear Essence – https://bearessence.com.au
  4. Making Spirits Bright – https://makingspiritsbright.com.au
  5. Seaspray Jewellery – https://seasprayjewellery.com.au
  6. Gippy Cycles – https://gippycycles.com.au
  7. IT Warehouse – https://itwarehouse.com.au
  8. Sportfishing Scene – https://sportfishingscene.com.au
  9. Northside Produce Agency – https://northsideproduceagency.com.au
  10. NXP Leven (Serenity Home & Gifts) – https://serenityhomeandgifts.com.au
  11. Reservoir Newsagency (The Shop Nxt Door) – https://shopnxtdoor.com.au
  12. Camping World Dalby – https://campingworlddalby.com.au
  13. Randall’s Newsagency (Back O Bourke Collective) – https://backobourkecollective.com.au
  14. Peppercorn Gifts & Homewares – https://peppercorngifts.com.au
  15. NXP Highlands Market Place (Highlands Gifts & Plush) – https://highlandgiftsandplush.com.au
  16. The Shop, University of Newcastle  – https://shop.newcastle.edu.au
  17. The Petfood Warehouse – https://thepetfoodwarehouse.com.au
  18. H Rehfisch & Co – https://rehfisch.com.au
  19. Sprengers Rural Traders – https://sprengersruraltraders.com.au

There are many more than these. We have also developed websites that connect multiple retail outlets.

To help customers keen for a Shopify website we have just launched a 12 month interest free payment plan for new Shopify website development. This is for new websites ordered from now. Our sales team can explain this to you but essentially it is 12 monthly payments of $550.00. The site goes live as soon as you and your data are ready. The payment plan is designed to help you smooth out your cashflow. To consider a Shopify site developed by us, please email sales@towersystems.com.au.

Our approach to Shopify website development is structured, transparent and certain. We deliver websites based on the brief provided by each customer, using collateral they provide and after gaining their approval at various steps in the process.

With all of our web development work done here in Australia, you can be sure that each website has that Aussie feel and that its development is supporting the local Australian tech industry. There is no better support for a retail; business calling for locals to shop local than the business itself shopping local.

Tower Systems is grateful to serve more than 3,000 local small business retailers. We are not a big business software company. We think small businesses rock!

POS software for local small business sewing shops helps them win and keep customers

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The Tower Systems POS software for sewing shops is proving to deliver wonderful and loved benefits to these vital local businesses.

See this software for yourself. Here is a link to a recent video of a demonstration of the current version: https://youtu.be/Ow1mCf2PqoQ

If you do repairs in your business, this recent video of a demonstration of our repairs software may be of interest: https://youtu.be/KhNtaWbDjXA

Using this locally made software, expect to …

  1. Help customers spend more with rare visit loyalty.   This software can guide infrequent shoppers to be more valuable to you each visit.
  2. Increase sales with easy pre-orders. Easily manage selling products before you have them in-stock.
  3. Increase sales with Buy Now Pay Later and LayBy. Through our software you can have both.
  4. Make shopping easier and price comparison harder with bundles. Bundle items together to create products unique to your business.
  5. Win new customers with club / group marketing and support. Leverage sewing and craft clubs and other groups with offers and pricing.
  6. Save time and hassle with easy special orders.  Save time and cut mistakes with special orders. Also, be paid in advance for these.
  7. Save time with product repairs and servicing. 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. Be certain with serial number tracking. For service records, insurance and more. Tracking serial numbers is good for busines and customer service.

Our Australian made and supported sewing / fabric business 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 you.

We understand the importance and value of local specialty retail …

  • Local matters. Local sewing / fabric businesses contribute to local communities and families. Our software helps you leverage your localness.
  • You are a key asset. Only your business has you and your people. You can leverage you through facilities in our sewing / fabric business software.
  • You can bank on loyalty. Points don’t reward loyalty. What is a point worth anyway? In our software, you have fresh loyalty tools you can bank on.
  • The unseen can reveal opportunities. Data, good data, is evidence on which you can expect to make better business decisions.
  • Not every shopper will walk past your door. A seamless connection between your software and a beautiful website can reach them.

Our sewing / fabric business Software costs $185.00 for each 30 days – for access from as many computers as you have in the business.

Is our POS software right for your retail team members?

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In any local retail businesses, it is the people in the business who really make the business stand out, it is in the people working in the business that valuable differentiation can be found.

The right staff members can make or break a shop.

This is why we ask Is our POS software right for your retail team members? when we are talking with a retail business owner about our POS software. It’s a serious question, an important question, a question that helps local small business retailers in their assessment not only of Tower Systems but of any other POS software company they are considering.

In considering this, Is our POS software right for your retail team members? it is important to understand what your retail; business team members want out of POS software. It could be they have needs beyond what the business owner knows. It could be that they see opportunity beyond what the business does today. Including them in the POS software evaluation and consideration process brings them along, gives them some stake in the ultimate decision that is made.

Here at Tower Systems, when we demonstrate our Pos software, we record it, with your permission. We then share the link too the video so you can share it with your team members, so they can learn about our POS software and consider for themselves whether our Tower Systems POS software is right for them, and through that, right for your business.

We welcome the opportunity to demonstrate our POS software to your team members, so they can see the software in action, touch it and feel it. We often learn from these situations, which we love.

Front line retail team members know a lot about the business in which they work and its customers. Tapping into that knowledge is valuable for us and in our consideration of what we can develop in our POS software as we expand its reach.

So, we care about the question Is our POS software right for your retail team members?, a lot. We ask it ourselves and encourage small business retailers considering partnering with us to ask this too. In doing this we are able to nurture more valuable and appreciated partnerships. And, the businesses we say we are not the right fit to benefit as well.

Tower Systems makes and supports POS software for local specialty retailers.

Tower Systems Sewing / Fabric / Haberdashery POS Shop Software Q&A

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Here are answers to some of the questions we have been asked about our Sewing / Fabric / Haberdashery Shop POS Software over the years

When you are ready, we’d love to show you our Sewing / Fabric / Haberdashery Shop Software and through that show you answers to other questions you have.

Can I sell by measure using the sewing machine POS software? Yes.

Can I sell by fractions? Yes.

Can I offer a special price to members of a club? Yes.

Can I market to members of sewing and crafts clubs using this sewing machine POS software? Yes. You can tag customers as belonging to a club and target market to club members.

Can I track sales to club members to rebate the club as a fundraising opportunity? Yes.

Can I promote local clubs and groups on receipts using this sewing machine POS software? Yes.

Can you pass on patterns, sewing machine manuals and other documentation? Yes, you can load files, images, documents or PDFs for products (information sheets, advice) and have them automatically included in emailed receipts.

Can I use the software to manage repairs? Yes. You can track jobs, parts and labour. Plus, communication with customers is streamlined.

Can I remind customers about sewing machine servicing? Yes.

Can I do this by text or email? Either, we support both.

Can I look-up historical servicing records for a specific customer? Yes.

Can I create a quote for a customer and manage this? Yes.

Can I track / manage quotes? Yes.

Can the software track special or one-off orders for customers? Yes, from the moment the order is placed.

Can I group items together to sell in a pack or bundle? Yes, it’s easy to create packs using the software.

Does the software track product serial numbers? Yes. You have a couple of different ways you can do this.

I sell some items by colour, size and style, can the software handle this? Yes.

Can I integrate the software with my suppliers? Yes. We have many customers importing stock files and invoices. If you want to provide a supplier a data feed of sales of their product, our software can do this too.

Does the software connect with my website? We partner with Shopify, Magento and WooCommerce and offer direct links to these.

Can I email receipts? Yes.

Can I track where my customers come from? Yes.

Do I have to pay for software on additional computers in my business? No.

Does the software handle LayBys? Yes.

Can I connect with my EFTPOS terminal? Yes. We have a direct link to Tyro and through Linkly we connect to all major banks.

Can I use my existing hardware? Yes, as long as your hardware meets our minimum standards.

Can I use my existing data with the software? Yes. We’d like to check your data to be sure. We will advise what can be safely brought across.

Does it integrate with Xero? Yes.

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

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

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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.

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

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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.

Sewing shop POS software helps local sewing shops serve their customers

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Sewing shops are genuinely specialty retail businesses. They offer valuable expertise, products and services for people who love sewing. They are appreciated local businesses.

Tower Systems is grateful to serve local specialty sewing, fabric and haberdashery businesses with our specialty POS software that has been found to serve the needs of sewing shops and the customers they serve.

Several sewing goods retailers have shown us how our POS software is suitable for the needs of these businesses. From handling special orders, to serial number tracking, to repairs management to selling by fractions, it turns out our POS software is good for sewing businesses and sewing machine and goods retailers.

Here is a short video we made recently in which we discuss our POS software for sewing shops and demonstrate some of its facilities.

It is our work in similar specialty retail channels such as bike shops, jewellers and similar that has seen us develop tools and facilities in our POS software that works for sewing shops. We were so happy to discover that our software is useful for sewing shops.

Since we make our own POS software, we are able to evolve the software to serve evolving needs, and we are able to fine-time our support of the software to ensure that it serves the needs of sewing shops and related businesses that decide the software is a good fit for their needs.

Take the selling of items by decimals or fractions. This is how fabric is sold. We make it easy and accurate. We even handle pricing that can vary based on the length of a fabric purchased. In other words, play less per metre the more you buy. This is handled by the software based on the settings created by those running the sewing shop.

Take repairs. This is a service many sewing shops offer. Our repairs management tools are terrific in supporting this service.

We are not saying that our software is perfect for any sewing shop. That decision must 100% be up to those making the POS software decision in the business. We will demonstrate the software and answer questions, so that the necessary assessments can be made, to determine if our Tower Systems POS software is a good fit for the needs of a sewing business.

Our POS software for sewing shops and sewing machine businesses is already in use. We have people to whom we can refer. It is their innovation that set us on this path. Hence, our gratefulness.

To see the Tower Systems software first hand, please contact us direct. Email is good at sales@towersystems.com.au.

We make, sell and support our POS software.

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