We’re in the midst of one of the warmest summers on record, yet for business owners, it’s already time to start planning ahead for the festive season.
Christmas spending topped £78 billion in the UK last year, up to 1.4% on 2016. It was a similar story in the US, where spends rose 2.1% to $658 billion. 2018 looks set to be even bigger still, and the most successful retail and hospitality businesses will be those that take the right steps to prepare.
Events like Black Friday and Cyber Monday mean consumers are starting their Christmas shopping earlier than ever, so it’s vital to think about upgrading your point of sale system in plenty of time. Here are just a few reasons it’s worth investing in EPOS ahead of the Christmas rush.
Train seasonal staff
Longer opening hours and increased footfall see many businesses hiring extra in the run up to Christmas. While they may be temporary, it’s pivotal that every employee is able to deliver the very best customer experience. Our EPOS system boasts a remarkably simple interface, with employee training taking no time at all. Innovative features further streamline the process which gives staff access to key product details at the touch of a button.
Our systems also allow you to set up individual staff permissions to prevent unauthorised refunds or discounts. Limit the features that are available to certain staff members while ensuring long-standing employees maintain access to the full system.
Speed up transactions
Long queues are a bugbear for consumers at any time of the year but can be a particularly big problem during the Christmas rush. EPOS technology is just one way to speed up transactions and reduce the amount of time it takes to serve each customer.
Not only will staff be able to generate more revenue in a short space of time, but you’ll satisfy 89% of UK consumers who have previously turned away from a purchase as a result of excessive queueing.
Keep track of stock
More customers means you’ll be needing more stock, so maintaining a clear view of your inventory is crucial. Routinely conducting manual stocktakes isn’t always feasible for busy business owners however, particularly those that operate in multiple locations or have an ecommerce store.
Our system facilitates automatic stock tracking in real-time, so you’ll always have an accurate view of what you have and which products need reordering. Integrate your system with your existing ecommerce store and stock levels will be synced across both channels, benefiting customers instore and online.
Encourage customer loyalty
Getting customers through the door is one thing, but the end goal is to keep them coming back once the festive season is over. Digital loyalty chemes are rapidly gaining popularity within the UK and can be integrated directly with your EPOS system, giving SMEs access to customisable loyalty programs at an affordable price.
74% of UK consumers regularly collect loyalty points, so there’s real value in being able to implement something like this in your own business. Unlike traditional loyalty schemes, going digital also opens the door to a whole host of additional features, such as the potential to send customers push notifications and email alerts around promotional offers.
Understanding what is and isn’t working for your business is the first step towards making changes that boost your bottom line. Our system boasts a range of advanced reporting features, the likes of which allow you to track sales and accurately forecast footfall.
There’s also the ability to generate reports based on employee performance. This can really help to incentivise staff during busy sales periods, especially if you take the time to reward employees that deliver exceptional service.
Christmas may feel like a lifetime away, but it’s vital businesses are prepared for a potential surge in footfall and ready to convert new visitors into loyal customers. Now is the time to set the wheels in motion if you hope to get your new point of sale system up and running in time for the festive rush.
Still feel like you need more persuasion to invest in a new EPOS?
EPOS systems are designed to enhance customer experience and streamline your sales transactions. Although EPOS systems are considerably more expensive than your traditional cash register it is this very reason that justifies investing in one.
Below are five reasons why EPOS systems are worth the investment regardless of the nature of your retail or hospitality business.
Tracking your inventory is essential to optimising sales and monitoring theft. Unlike traditional cash register systems that require you to manually adjust your stock levels, EPOS software provides a real-time representation from the sale of a product to its adjustment in your inventory system. Furthermore, EPOS solutions allow you to accurately monitor any theft and removes the element of human error.
The manual labour associated with traditional cash registers only allows you to analyse which employees are top performers once this lengthy process is completed. Real-time sales management allows you to analyse a specific employees performance. EPOS software allows you to monitor all aspects of your staff with easy access to employee records which include attendance, sales stats and more.
Advanced EPOS business reports give you the power to analyse your KPIs and other business data in real-time. These systems provide you with 24/7 access to your reports which are accessible via a web browser, tablet or mobile phone. In addition to sales reports, EPOS systems give you detailed reports of all business operations including finances, inventory, HR, security and marketing reports.
Traditional cash register systems limit businesses in their ability to understand client behaviour due to the lag produced by manual stock take and human error. EPOS systems have an intuitive customer relationship manager built into them. This allows you to capture vital customer information and behaviour in real-time. These systems can store contact details, personas, delivery addresses, accounts, preferences and purchase history.
The future of EPOS software provides a unique advantage that traditional cash registers do not – the cloud. Cloud-based technology allows businesses to effectively manage sales, inventory and customers across multiple platforms and channels. EPOS systems can be updated as consumer behaviour changes thanks to the nature of the cloud. This technology allows retailers to access all information about the business at any time independent of location.
Many small retailers think that upgrading their EPOS mechanism is unnecessary and still utilise the most rudimentary forms of these devices. However, every business owner has one objective in mind and that is growth. To effectively grow you need a system to keep up with your rate of growth.
Although investing in EPOS software may seem too expensive to justify in the beginning,it will benefit your business in the long-run and will allow you to optimise your operations to grow faster. The aforementioned reasons should be enough to convince you to bite the bullet for a tactical business stance in the very beginning.
At Monpellier we work very hard to identify the needs and obstacles our customers face in the day-to-day running of their business. We provide mission critical solutions by listening to our customers requirements, observing their operations and drawing on our technical know-how. Our unique consultation process ensures your investment in technology is an extension of your business rather than just another tool.
To find out more about how we can help you, contact us here, or speak to one of our friendly Business Software Consultants by calling 0191 500 8150.
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