Tips

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Tips

Are you prepared? Next month is the biggest retail event ever.

POS SOFTWARE

This Christmas is expected (hoped) will be the biggest retail event in Australia ever,

So here are some tips for this holiday season from a retail expert talks that I attended and from what is being said around the traps. Some of these are very relevant to my clients.

1) Show your trading hours

Many shops have changed their trading hours. If you are not open, the public may not be aware of when you are open. 

Make sure that they know when you are open. 

2) You need signs that you are COVIDsafe

Covid safety is a big focus for many people now. If you look at the majors, you will see that they all have such signs. Not surprising as the public is worried about it and needs reassurance. Check a few majors out and then put up a few similar signs in your shop's window too.

3) Promote gift cards

With so many people, families are separated due to travel restrictions.

Gift cards are the only way for many to share the love.

4) Click and collect

I have clients now doing a large percentage of their trade with a click and collect option. Because this does not have delivery costs, a small business can compete with online here.

After COVID, it will be a significant point in retail. 

5) Count on a lot more local trade 

I doubt many will go to the CBD now. Many will avoid large shopping centres too.

This is your chance to pick up on local traffic. 

6) Marketing

I'm afraid I have to disagree with my competitor about this. Forget loyalty marketing, today the emphases in retail and business, in general, should be the truth. 

We are in this together. We are all part of this journey. We are in this together. 

Remember, it has not been a good year for Aussies with bushfires, job insecurity, and the pandemic.   Interestingly, US election exit polls have shown that job insecurity is more important now to the public than the pandemic. Everyone knows someone that has employment troubles, few that have had a major concern with COVID.

Replace your loyalty marketing with togetherness.

7) Gift wrapping

If you do not know how to gift wrap items - learn.  I am hopeless in this stuff. Yet it took me in grandfather's shop a short time to learn, and do not worry as you will get plenty of practice soon.

Hope this is of help

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Get a Free: St John Ambulance First Aid Course with Certificate

POS SOFTWARE

 

In Australia, every organisation must have a work safe officer.

I have had a client after an employee collapsed and had to be rushed to the hospital. He suddenly found himself this officer and having to show that he knew and had done things.  

If so, a free first aid course like this one here might help. It is informative and is certainly better than nothing.

It took me less than an hour, and that was part-time, as I was doing much in the meantime. 

Pick someone in the shop. Then have them do the course, so you do have someone that knows some first-aid then make them your medical officer. As a bonus, they can always add it to their resume as a qualification.

 

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How to do real-time stock monitoring immediately!

POS SOFTWARE

This is a question that I get a bit. How do you do, I get real-time stock warning monitoring?

The problem: 

With so many different lines in a shop, that it is almost impossible to know which items are starting to run out or have run out. 

No doubt, you will know when a customer asks you, but it's often too late by then. 

Answer:

It is simple, you can check in seconds your stock levels, and here is how! 

Go to reports > stock > Sold Out or Selling Out Stock Lines

 

 


Note if some of the stock comes out with stock on hand figure in negative. It shows you that items that are not probably entered into your system, so it's a check here as well.

So I would recommend running this report regularly. It will alert you to both out of stock situations and errors in invoicing.

 

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Need to review proof of delivery

POS SOFTWARE

Review your proof of delivery. 

A client has now got themselves into an argument with a customer over whether they got the goods. 

My client claims that they dropped the item off while the customer states that he got nothing. Unfortunately, there is no proof of delivery.

It is a tricky one, alright.

What do you do in this situation?

This problem is all too real. 

At the very least, if you leave items on the doorstep,  take a photo of the item on that doorstep. If someone signs for the goods, ask for proof of identity with photo ID. 

The fact is that YOU are the one that has to prove that the goods were DELIVERED or PICKED UP.

 

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More signs to support local businesses

POS SOFTWARE

Last week I showed signs by the local business organisations designed to help the local morale and support local businesses. It got a response and seemed to fill a need, so I decided to put up some more that I took.

I liked this one. It was relevant and straight to the point. Its the crux of our community in this pandemic. 

A disease does not care if a person is smart, educated, stupid, rich, poor, working, unemployed, political views, white, straight,  tall, short, Chinese, Indian, your religion, sex, etc. etc. etc. 

To the disease, what all that matters is your a person.  Try denying someone humanity now? We are all in this together.

 

Many businesses are making a big mistake because although they are open, the public does not know it. If you are open, make sure the public knows this. What they also had on the window was signs showing the services they offered now like curbside pickup, special hours, and phone calls to place an order.

 


 

If your closed, the public needs to be notified that you are coming back. I also noticed in Chapel street that most of the shops had a website and a social media page.

 


i was

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Signs to support the local shops

POS SOFTWARE

In these trying times, many local business organisations are putting together signs. These are to help boost the morale of the locals and to support local businesses. 

Now local traffic matters more than ever. 

These SMB businesses need a fair share of this traffic.

With this in mind, these photoshoots I took are from my local area. It might give you some ideas to suggest for your local business groups. Some of the messages on some of them, resonated with me, see what you think.

 

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The Woolworths receipt hack and the problem loyalty fraud

POS SOFTWARE

 

This highlights the problems with loyalty rewards that do *NOT* have computer auditing to the account.

Yesterday the Woolworths receipt hack received wide coverage.

What it is that a person collects receipts from the bin or trolley in this case. They then claim the benefits of the shop's loyalty program using these receipts. 

Here, the person did not even think she was stealing, nor do many in the public. 

The result is that the retailer pays to the person who may not even shop at the store the benefits. This payout can be very high. For example, on discount vouchers, merchants are advised to set the payout at 50% of the profit. Here you would be giving away half the profits to a person who does not even shop with them.

It goes much deeper than that. 

Loyalty rewards programs do not get much in the way of scrutiny. Security is often very lax as the rewards are not cash. That makes it open for abuse. This lack of oversight attracts thieves.

What you need to do is examine your loyalty programs for any such potential loopholes. 

Then Make Your Reward Loyalty Program Secure

 

 

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Your current surcharge charges to people for EFTPOS?

POS SOFTWARE

Charges are now all over the place. I have noticed looking at some statements from a major bank. It probably not because of a change in bank rates.

People are now using EFTPOS much more for smaller transactions. This is causing more transactions with lower average amounts. I suspect this has resulted in a different item on the EFTPOS rate card coming up. So the fees are now different.

So it is worth reviewing the fees you are getting now.

If they need to be changed, this is the best method for surcharging.

Cash register with credit EFTPOS displayed

If you look at the yellow arrow with the pay types circled on the point-of-sale screen. You set up your pay types with your surcharges to charge the new EFTPOS/Credit card surcharges for each pay type at the appropriate rate.

Note under Consumer Law provisions, you must be transparent about these fees. So it would be best if you displayed the fees prominently.

I recommend making a payment type with no fees under certain conditions and products eg, some EFTPOS transactions over $25 with no fees.

 

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How do we sign and witness documents in a pandemic?

POS SOFTWARE

How can we sign and witness documents in a pandemic? This is getting to be a real problem in this pandemic.

 

Business must go on, and documents must be signed. How do we do this as many of us often now are not near a printer or fax?

 

This is what I do. I convert the electronic document to be signed into a pdf. Then I use a free website, pdfescape

I import the pdf to that site.

 

 

Then I put in the details required by the document electronically and then sign using my mouse instead of a pen.

Then I add under my signature with the following note. 

This document was electronically signed in accordance with the COVID-19 Omnibus (Emergency Measures) (Electronic Signing and Witnessing) Regulations 2020.

Note this is allowed in Victoria, looking at several states, I found that they all I found have something very similar but you need to check for your state the exact wording if you are not like me a Mexican.

So far only one supplier has made a fuss over to this to me, most now from what I can see are aware of the problems and accept this solution. 

Hope this is of help.

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Why do Click and Collect if you have not done it yet

POS SOFTWARE

I have spoken about click and collect a few times here over the past years. 

If you have not already done so, this is why you should look at Click and Collect!

Near me is a small strip shopping centre. I walked down the shopping centre what I discovered that every single shop in my centre had a sign in their window advertising their click and collect service. Looking at the cars coming and going, I could see it was in use. Some of the shops, its the only business they can have. 

Now, this is not a notable centre. Although new it is ordinary with a range of shops having small to large retailers. Clients are not computer savage or sophisticated. 

Let me start by saying that our POS system makes it very easy for you to set up and do click and collect, more about that later. 

Here are some reasons why you should consider doing this if you have not already done so.

-Many people now do not want to come to your shop because of COVID-19. To service these people as a retailer, you now have to look at alternatives or lose these people.

- Here is a costing from the USA costing out the alternatives by options. If you go through the list, you can see significant operational costs savings compared to delivery by click and collect. 

 

-For many small retailers, delivery in Australia is not worth it. You need as a rule orders of about $100, to make it worthwhile delivering. 

-Click and collect is much faster. Your customers can have their goods often in minutes. 

-In the click and collect model, the customers come to the shop to collect their purchases. Many, studies state that between 49% to 61%, make new unplanned purchases. These are often impulsive or forgotten items. You are not going to get much of this business from a delivery model.

-People are comfortable buying on click and collect, as they know you. They know if anything goes wrong with their purchase, they can go to your shop immediately. 

My advice is to try click and collect and see what happens. You can make adjustments as you go on, if it does not work, you can stop it.

If so, you want to do it. 

You need to make a clear strategy for your program! Go out of your shop, see what others are doing, check out the opposition and make a plan. 

- Do you want to introduce a fee? Can you?

-What packaging are you going to use?

-Where is going to be your collection point?

- How will the customer warn you that they are here?

 etc. 

Now once you are on your trial. 

Advertise it boldly in your window! There is a question often raised did "A tree did not fall if no-one heard it!", if you do not advertise "Click and Collect" you do not have it.

This is how I recommend doing it in our software. I would suggest using business invoicing with an A4 receipt in the cash register. It is easy to do. 

Look for the item, to click and collected. 
Click on the "Receipts" button. 
Find the receipt you would like to print.
Then select the "A4 Print" button as here.
 

Out will come an A4 receipt:

As always, please let me know your thoughts and how it goes. 

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