25 May 2010

Why Upgrade my Cash Register to POS?

Most of us are familiar with traditional cash registers. A big machine with lots of buttons which you press to enter in a transaction. It's a very manual process and they offer very basic reporting.

So what's the fuss about a Point of Sale system? well, these are the much more modern version of the humble cash register. Most come with touch screens so they are really fast. They're a lot more compact and take up less space in your shop front. They're also built with robust software that is easy to customise, depending on the type of business that you run and puts the control in the business owners hands.

Modern point of sale systems offer a greater benefit to business owners because of their size, flexibility and ability to do more. They can take care of inventory control, offer more detailed reports and are also very easy to work with. When you have a traditional cash register, you have to print out dockets then do your daily tallies and transfer the numbers into a cash book or spreadsheet, all of which takes up a lot of time. Upgrading to a point of sale system makes record keeping much more easier so you can spend more time making sales and take care of your customers and less time number crunching.

More and more businesses are upgrading from regular cash registers to fully customised point of sale systems. From bars to bistros, from restaurants to retail outlets - everyone is moving forward with a point of sale solution that is modern and easier to use.

Upgrade to a modern POS system, you will be giving your business new life. To compete in today's competitive modern world, can you really afford not to?

23 May 2010

Computerising Your Business

According to the 20th Annual Retail Technology Study (April, 2010 produced by Retail Info Systems News), the average retail business spends 2.24% of revenues on computerization.

Actually, the above figures include all IT spending. It does not actually specify what is included in IT spending. Many of the businesses surveyed are larger businesses and may or may not include items such as creating and running web sites.

I'm guessing that the average retailer should be spending about 1.5% of revenues on IT. So, a store doing about $500,000 in business should be spending about $7,500 yearly on computerization (including computers, software, support and maintenance).

I do have a "beef" with many retail store owners who do not treat computerization seriously. Many restaurants check the beef and tomatoes that they sell to customers extremely carefully. They try to give their customers the highest quality foods possible at their price point. I've seen hardware stores that give customers great customer service and keep an impeccably clean and fully stocked store.

These same retail store owners and managers hate to spend money on computers and software. After all, good tomatoes and a well stocked store bring in money. The cash register system just takes up space and is more a hindrance.

Maybe I'm exaggerating a little but I hate to go into a store using 5 year old equipment that is barely working. The computers are old and abused frequently because of the way they are cared for and where they are located. Even worse, people are always posting hand written notes over the front and back of their computer screens.

The point is, you do need an IT budget. You do need to set up a yearly budget for your computerization and upkeep. I think the correct number is somewhere between 1.5% and 2.24% of your revenues.

You need to replace your computers every three, four or five years. You need a method of fixing a computer that malfunctions. Perhaps you need a local computer service person who you can trust or a service contract with your computer manufacturer. EziWorx offers hardware with a 3 year warranty!!

You need some redundancy. If you have 4 checkout stations, you should have an extra one which will allow you to quickly swap cash drawers, printers, computers or other items that may have failed.

You should have a software maintenance agreement, including updates. EziWorx offers support and annual update plans on Cash Register Express and Restaurant Pro Express. But, it doesn't matter which point of sale software you are using. Part of your IT budget should include maintenance in case something goes wrong.

All retail stores need contingency plans. Most businesses are using a server which stores all of your data. If you are doing it right, you should have a second backup server which can take over in case your primary server fails. Your server is going to crash every three or four years. You need a backup plan. Your local computer tech person can make sure that you have a working redundant system that can take over in case of a computer failure.

That's where your IT budget goes. But, it's not all about spending money. Your point of sale system and IT budget can help bring money into your business especially if you are using loyalty cards and capturing names, street addresses, telephone numbers and email addresses that can be used to market to your customers.

05 May 2010

EziWorx blog is created

We will attempt to keep all our software users up to date with new version releases and new features released in our software products via this blog.

We encourage users to join should they wish to stay informed and up to date.

Thank you

EziWorx Team