Before we get into how to pick the best POS (point-of-sale) system for your restaurant, do you know what a POS is and why you need one? Inc.com defines this perfectly; a POS system is the convergence point where a customer and business make a transaction. With modern advances in POS technology, there's really no reason to use a cash register any more. You really need a POS system to speed up service, accept integrated credit card payments, manage inventory, track employee time and sales records. You can't get cheap! A simple cash register isn't going to cut it anymore in the competitive restaurant industry.
So wіth аll thе POS systems оn thе market, how do you know which one to pick and how аrе you еvеr going tо decide whісh POS ѕуѕtеm іѕ right fоr you? Well, we're nоt going to make a specific recommendation because we don't know whісh оnе іѕ right fоr уоu. But, there are thrее criteria to look аt whеn deciding оn a POS system or when helping a business decide оn a POS ѕуѕtеm.
1. Thе Fіrѕt іѕ POS Hardware
Pretty muсh right nоw thе choices аrе tablets оr full-on соmрutеr systems. It's not necessarily recommended tо gеt involved іn a POS ѕуѕtеm оr a POS company thаt hаѕ thеіr оwn proprietary hardware. If you do, you're limiting yourself to that company's specific requirements for computers or tablets you can use. Whіlе ѕоmе оf thоѕе that exist аrе great, уоu might be forced to use an Android or PC, when you're really an Apple user, for example.
If you're mоrе оf аn Apple user, thеn gо wіth ѕоmеthіng thаt works оn аn iPad, if you're mоrе оf a PC оr Android user, maybe, look аt ѕоmеthіng thаt runs on an Android type tab like a Samsung tablet. If уоu like desktop соmрutеrs аnd уоu think that's better fоr уоur restaurant, then maybe, fіnd ѕоmе software thаt соuld be installed оn a PC, that уоu соuld gо оut аnd buy уоurѕеlf оn уоur оwn PC's rather thаn, necessarily, thе hardware that's specific frоm thе company.
There are аlwауѕ exceptions tо thе rule but, that's one of the first criteria to consider. Which hardware іѕ gonna work thе best fоr уоu. For instance, dо уоu need Kiosks? Dо уоu need Sеlf Ordering? Dо уоu need Tablets for tableside ordering? Those аrе аll things thаt I wоuld look аt. But that's fіrѕt аnd foremost. If уоu don't gеt thе right hardware package, thе software isn't gonna really matter.
2. Second is the POS Software Itself
Sо, thе nеxt thіng to look аt іѕ thе software itself. Thе features, thе benefits, does іt hаvе thе things thаt уоu need? You're nеvеr going tо fіnd a POS ѕуѕtеm thаt hаѕ exactly еvеrу single feature thаt уоu want, exactly hоw уоu want іt. Sо, make a list оf thе fіvе оr tеn features thаt аrе absolutely critical оr crucial tо уоur operation аnd start thеrе. Most software platforms have hardware that it recommends or is part of a complete package. That's ok, as long as you at least have some option on the type of hardware choices.
The POS software you choose will make a huge difference in your ability to run your restaurant efficiently and effectively. You'll definitely want a software that has a balance of easy-to-use and feature-rich based on the list you created of your critical needs for operations. The best way to determine if the software is right for your restaurant is to schedule a demo of the POS software with the point of sale company. If you're not able to see a demo of the software, then forget it and look somewhere else. You'll want someone in person (if possible), or remotely to walk you through the program so you can get a feel for how it will work for your environment. Also, it's a good idea to decide if you want a traditional or cloud-based POS.
Also, don't forget about reporting. Make sure you look at the reporting features and that it has all the data you need to keep accurate sales and tax records. You'd be surprised at some of the systems on the market that don't have quality and accurate reporting that's easy to understand and use. So make sure you ask to see the reports because that's going to help you with growing your business and keeping track of profit and loss.
3. Lastly is Credit Card Processing
Assume you've got a hardware platform thаt уоu like, and you've got a software platform thаt уоu like. Nоw, it's going tо соmе dоwn tо thе lаѕt factor, which іѕ credit card processing. A lot оf POS systems аrе fooling уоu іntо believing thеіr systems аrе inexpensive, because оf thе wау thаt thеу process credit cards. They're locking уоu іn tо thеіr processor аnd thеу аrе getting a vеrу substantial kickback fоr doing thаt.
Nоw, there's nоt necessarily аnуthіng wrong wіth that, if thе rates they're giving уоu аrе good. Hоwеvеr, mоѕt POS companies won't. Thеу mау gіvе уоu good rates, but thеу won't guarantee thеm аnd thеn the prices wіll hike.
And nоw thаt you've just invested аll in thіѕ hardware, you hаvе nо choice but tо process thrоugh thеіr processor. Nоw, іn exchange ѕоmеtіmеѕ fоr potentially higher credit card rates оr a nоn guaranteed credit card rate; they'll gіvе уоu vеrу substantial discount оn thе software аnd thе hardware.
That's ѕоmеthіng уоu hаvе tо weigh оut. If capital іѕ tight fоr уоu, уоu don't hаvе a lot оf money tо invest right now, then maybe going wіth a restaurant POS like Harbortouch wіll bе better fоr you. It's a very little bit оf money uр frоnt, but you're gonna pay a little bit more on уоur credit card processing оvеr thе lоng haul.
But, іf you've got ѕоmе money tо invest, уоu may want to consider a POS ѕуѕtеm thаt wіll allow you tо bring іn уоur оwn credit card processor оr аt lеаѕt thе freedom tо change аt ѕоmе point іf уоu want. Thе combination to watch out for is, non-contractual, reasonably high, locked іn credit card processing wіth nо discount оn thе hardware. Sо, thеѕе аrе negotiating tools.
A smart merchant wants to look for a specific POS ѕуѕtеm thаt locks in the credit card rates. You want to negotiate the credit card rates and get іt locked dоwn. Try to get a substantial discount оn thе hardware, because as was mentioned above, they are going tаkе money оn thе credit card. So let the POS company know, you want a discount оn thе hardware upfront. This tip alone can end up saving you a lot of money.
Sо, аgаіn knowing thе rules tо thе game wіll help уоu. But, when looking to find thе best POS ѕуѕtеm for your restaurant, the fіrѕt thіng to look аt іѕ hardware, then software features аnd benefits, and thеn hоw dо thеу process credit cards.…
B2B leads generation is crucial for any business. If your company is generating a continuous stream of leads, then you’ll have the element of choice to select whichever client you’d like to approach first. However, if that’s not the case, then probably either you’re not making the right moves or are short on budget.
While there are numerous methods to generate B2B trade leads, we believe that you should stick with 2-3 methods. That way, you’ll be able to focus on them and make the most out of them. Take a look at the following B2B leads generation techniques all businesses can consider on a shoe-string budget.
Sharing Value through Webinars
Due to the fact that technology has made people depend on digital options, the number of seminars and their audience is declining rapidly. Instead, people are now interested in webinars as they are more convenient. All you need to do is switch on your laptop and start watching. In addition, webinars are considered more effective because all the subscribers already know you. Therefore, a connection of trust and familiarity is mostly present.
On the other hand, webinars can also be used to repurpose content. Instead of investing in writing a new How-to guide or tutorial, you can convert this webinar into a blog. You can also offer the downloadable version of this webinar for those who missed it. If that’s now enough, you can also upload it on YouTube to generate B2B trade leads from another network as well. Smart decisions can also give you the push you need to progress.
Establish an Excellent Content Strategy
When we talk about B2B trade lead generation, content is king in it! Without high-quality content, not only do you end up with a below par traffic, but you also fail to generate enough leads for survival. Quality content boosts your domain’s authority and credibility. In addition, it reveals your professionalism and help’s your audience reach out to you through content.
The good thing about initiating a content strategy is that you barely need to invest anything. All you have to do is write informative and engaging blogs. Publish them on your website and share them on all social platforms. Your content will generate traffic through Google and other search engines as it gets ranked. Other than that, your social sharing will also help you create strong B2B trade leads.
Using Tools and Networks to Generate B2B Trade Leads
Other than focusing on different types of content, you can also use automated tools and networks to generate leads for you. Tools not only make your life much more comfortable but they also speed up your lead generation process. Some of these tools are, Leadfuze, InfusionSoft. Leadcandy, Marketo and many more.
Apart from that, a modern B2B trade lead generation technique is to sign up at an international B2B marketplace. These foreign B2B marketplaces are dedicated to connecting global buyers and suppliers. In addition, you also get featured on their network which helps you boost your online presence.
New businesses always struggle to promote their brand due to lack of funds and resources. However, with the help of such B2B platforms, your business can instantly show up with some of the best companies in the industry. In addition, now that you know who you’re up against, you can follow their tactics and smartly come up with ways to counter every move they make. With the help of B2B marketplaces, you can also grow your business by interacting and engaging clients from all corners of the world.
B2B trade leads generation has become quite tricky over the years. With the competition increasing rapidly, businesses that are start-ups or are low on funds usually fall behind. However, with the right approach, you can actually compete with the big dogs and boost both your rate of conversions and lead generation.
With the help of digital media and modern B2B marketing techniques, you can actually get away with many leads. All you have to do is sit back and plan a new strategy considering the points I’ve mentioned above. Once you’ve got the hang of it, B2B leads will come flying down to you.…
In today’s modern world, customer support is crucial in keeping your prospect happy and retaining them for the future. Now, if you are a B2C business, you wouldn’t specific customers come and go buying your products. However, when it comes to running an international B2B marketplace, you need to focus your customer support on building a long-term relationship with your prospects.
That is one critical difference between B2C and B2B customer support. However, there are more to come. Read on to find out which ones.
1.More Complex Issues
Complexity if the issues is a crucial difference between the two types of customer support. If we talk about a B2C business, you can expect problems that can be solved instantly. For example, damaged product, or merchandise return. However, this isn’t the same case for B2B companies. B2B prospects usually only contact the seller when they face a more complicated issue. For example, if you are selling software products, the customer may reach out to you due to a major malfunction.
B2B companies tend to produce long-term relationships with their potential customers. It's entirely different to how B2C companies engage with their buyers. B2C companies face many consumers and are usually involved in short conversations which reduce all chances of building any sort of relationship. On the other hand, B2B marketplaces spend extensive time and efforts in earning the B2B buyer’s trust and in getting to know them better.
When a B2B buyers contact’s the B2B portal, the representative should already have all the necessary details of the prospect in advance. However, you need to use a customer support program for such case, as this software lets you store all aspects of your clients.
3.Larger clients, more contacts
When it comes to dealing with B2C prospects, usually your representative will face one person per query. However, B2B buyers are basically businesses who may have many people approaching. Your customer support staff on some issues. Therefore, when it comes to running a B2B customer support team, you need to make sure that your representatives are trained to deal with qualified personals.
4.Customer Support an Important Part of Marketing
B2C companies don’t have to rely on customer service representatives to promote products most of the time. Usually, B2B prospect calls or join live chats to know about a particular product or place a complaint related to their product.
On the other hand, B2B prospects call up just to have all the information they can about your products and services. In such a case, your customer support team is responsible for marketing all your products and highlighting all the key features of it. I’m pretty sure you’d want a salesperson to be there at that very moment as they are experts in converting potential leads. Though that may not be possible, you can still train your customer support agents and help them become sales export. They should know when to throw their sales pitch and how to convince a lead to convert.
In today’s modern digital world, customers are considered the kings of the market. All businesses, regardless of the fact that they are B2C or B2B marketplaces, need to produce a team of competent and helpful customer service representatives.
The points mentioned above show how different your approach should be when running a B2C or B2B portal. However, at the end of the day, both types of business models need to have an operating customer support department. Or else, you may receive poor reviews and eventually lose your prospects.
Augmented reality is here to stay! Currently, augmented reality is a considerably hot topic that is being discussed by various businesses. Many have already integrated this technology within their business, while many are still clueless about its benefits. To be honest, we all carry AR-ready technology with us in the form of smartphones. One example of augmented reality is a game that broke all records, Pokémon Go. We could actually see a virtual world through our smartphones that are filled with wild Pokémon.
This clears the air that AR isn’t a futuristic technology. Instead, it has already made its mark with various apps and technologies that are being used in our daily lives. However, I’m pretty sure now you’ll really want to know how augmented reality in retail stores can enhance customer’s experience and increase your overall profitability. Here are a few augmented reality retail examples to start with.
1. Increase Customer’s Duration of Stay
The more time they spend in your stores, the more money they’ll spend. This statement has eventually turned out to be true. Especially, after Pokémon Go was launched! Players used to visit shops merely to catch a Pokémon, and most of the time ended up buying something they had never planned of.
Now, that doesn’t mean should also develop such a game to enhance your sales. However, you can work on creating a map that improves your customer’s navigation while they come over to shop. Your app could add a feature in which customers can note down all the products they need. The app will scan the list and display the best route that customers should take to find all their desired commodities. In addition, you also use this app to show all the offers and discounts currently active every time the customer opens the app. – Excellent app to boost sales and bring a smile to your customer’s face!
2. To Provide More Information About a Product
Due to rising competition, not many products sell themselves. You need to use the right set of skills to make consumers pay for your products. However, augmented reality in a business can make your lives easier again. With the help of AR technology you can show your customers how the product works, just like how it used to be within videos. Although, this time you’ll use an AR within you store so that the customer can have a better understanding of the product.
3. Try Before You Buy
I simply never purchase any piece of clothing before trying it on. Regardless of the fact, how much time it consumes! I agree it’s annoying to step into the trial room and look at yourself in the mirror to make sure it fits right and looks good on you.
However, augmented reality in retail stores can save you the time and effort of going through this process. Many top brands have already started using this technology, but I’ll still tell you how it works. This AR technology can be used either on your phone, or a device provided by the retailer. This software will virtually let you try on all the clothing pieces you like and also show you how you’ll look. You can swipe and change products with your fingertips, all thanks to these apps.
4. Training – Gamification
Gamification is the next big thing in running an active talent hunt. Many top businesses around the world are using this technology to create simulations to test how individuals will react in various condition. Having that said, companies can also use this technology for training purpose.
With the help of virtual worlds, you can easily test and teach people without incurring any physical lose. It’s true that virtual reality also uses the same concept. However, in VR stimulations you need to use headsets and physically make actions to perform specific tasks. On the other hand, augmented reality in business only requires a smartphone to complete tasks and get through the training or hiring gamification process.
The augmented reality retail examples mentioned above crucial for all business to enhance their productivity and profitability. Though this process may increase your operational costs, the benefits will surely exceed the costs in the long run.…
For a retail or small business, planning to switch from a sole trader to a partnership can be tricky. Without any doubt, partners do bring many benefits with them to the company. However, due to conflicts, these partnerships can turn in to your worst nightmares. What we are going to focus on today are engaged, partners. This means those partners who actually work in the business. On the other hand, a non-engaged partner is one who only provides capital to the company and doesn’t get involved in the operations.
A partnership is formed when 2 to 20 individuals sign a partnership agreement. A retail partnership can prove to do wonders in becoming a business sensation within no time. With all the extra capital and minds collaborating for a single vision, this type of business has pretty good chances of surviving. However, conflicts between these different minds can lead to the partnership ending and the company closing down. Having that said, the following are various pros and cons associated with forming a partnership.
Share of Responsibilities and Workload
Though retail or small businesses don’t really have that many responsibilities, startups can use all the help they can get. It’s true that you can make more money for yourself if you run the business alone. However, by splitting the workload, tasks can be performed more efficiently. While you can also do this by delegating specific tasks to your employees, they won’t show the required interest that an owner would. Imagine if you could split your daily to-do list with your partner, how much more could be done?
Profits Get Distributed
You never get to keep all the profits in a partnership. This factor can lead to many conflicts in the future. Many partnerships dissolve just because owners start to disagree over the share of profits each gets. On the other hand, even if your partner isn’t performing up to the mark, they will still be entitled a percentage of your well-earned money.
Each Partner Brings in Certain Skills
It’s pretty evident that all humans come with different mindsets and skills. Therefore, each partner can manage various functions of a business. For example, if you are a marketing and sales expert, you can create a partnership with a finance expert. That way, you can take care of the sales and marketing of your business, while your partner can manage the books and financial matters.
All the Wrong Decisions Your Partner Makes Impacts you As Well
Since you are operating in a partnership, all decisions made by you or your partner, affect the whole business. This means that you are liable for all the decision your partner makes, whether right or wrong. Not only will this damage your business’s reputation in the market, but people may point fingers at you also for being a part of these wrong decisions.
Major Factors That Lead to Successful Partnerships
Partners don’t realize that in order to run a successful partnership they need to focus on a few critical factors. Wondering what they are? Take a look!
The first aspect that partners need to establish in a partnership is trust. Partners need to have complete faith in each other. If one partner takes a step without informing or discussing with others, then maybe it’s time for you to move on. You can’t trust someone who doesn’t consider taking mutual decisions important.
A communication gap can easily destroy your partnership. Even if you have all the retail intelligence to run a business, you need to speak with your partner before taking any major step. If you spend money on something your partner isn’t aware of, that is a problem. Communication gaps also lead to trust issues between partners.
Why do you do business? For the money, right? To be precise, that’s why all entrepreneurs set up their businesses. Both partners need to be careful with what they do with the company’s money. If one is spending money for their personal reasons and the other partners aren’t aware of it, problems will arise. In the end, the co-owner will develop a thought that their partner is cheating on them by setting up a side business.
It isn’t that difficult to become a recognized retail expo in your industry. All you need to do is focus on maintaining a healthy business relation with your partner. You should always note down all mutual terms in the partnership agreement before starting the business. That way, chances of misunderstanding and conflicts will reduce. Apart from that, if you believe that you have problems trusting people, then it’s better to run your business as a sole trader.…
The retail industry is profoundly affected by the technological development that’s leading businesses to stop trading in traditional ways. Many top online companies have caused some of the best retail companies to close down their stores, change their way of business and in some cases even go bankrupt. Consumers now prefer shopping online since it’s a more straightforward method and you get more products to choose from. However, even after putting aside all the things that are damaging your retail sales, a sign of hope to rebuild, reimagine and reconquer the market has been seen.
These certain retail industry trends are expected to bring your retail business back in the race and create high-quality products that win back all your lost customers.
Technology Will Replace Your Workers
Chances are you are probably going to replace most of your human workers with robots. Though this may sound a bit costly and wrong, you have to consider the increase in quality and efficiency that you’ll experience. On the other hand, technology also helps you to achieve economies of scale within your business. Your average cost will eventually fall in the long run.
This basically happens as robots are considered more focused and free from emotional factors that affect their performance. You can program robots to pull-off sales, answer customer queries and even enhance your quantity and quality of production. In addition, humans usually get bored from doing a repetitive task every single day and eventually lose efficiency in it. You can tackle this problem with machines that`ll maintain their performance regardless of the hours you put them to work.
Ecommerce Will Run Many Retail Companies Out of Business
If we take a close look at the current condition of the market, retail sales are actually falling. In fact, experts believe that around 15% of all the malls will officially close down due to lack of consumers. The benefits of ecommerce are apparently pulling customers. However, apart from creating websites themselves, retail businesses haven’t experimented enough to tackle the online trend.
There are a few businesses that have used their websites to convince customers to visit their outlets through the click and collect option. Burberry is a retail brand that has adopted this method and has kept its outlets operational. Retail businesses need to take similar steps. Enhance customer experience with better attractions, customer service and live demonstration of your products. One thing that ecommerce firms can’t beat retail businesses at is a live experience of the product. Capitalize on this factor and focus on targeting your audience with this initiative.
Businesses Will Copy Your Products to Sell Online
You can’t stop people from producing similar products to sell on their website. Copying of products has been going on for centuries now. However, one thing that you could do is remodel your business. Come up with a unique idea and hit the market with a new face. You can’t expect to sell the same thing throughout your life. Invest in research and development to create new and unique products. By the time your competitors finish creating similar products you`ll probably be done sweeping all the customers.
Consumers Are Becoming More Health Conscious
There was a time when you could run your business without telling the world how you create your products. You may be the most honest person, but not all are like you. Over the years, the government has established many agencies to evaluate how business owners are producing their products. Such agencies operate in their particular industries. If found using any illegal way or manufacturing products, it could lead you to hefty fines and in some cases time behind bars.
You could use this in your favor by being honest with your customers. Provide them with all your secrets so that they can trust you and your products with their eyes closed.
Social Media, The Key Digital Marketing Channel
If you're still focusing on investing in traditional marketing techniques, you’re falling behind. Facebook live stories, Instagram stories, Snapchat stories are currently the most vital piece of content you can find. This clearly indicates that people around the world are more focused on social networks. Social media marketing is a great retail management solution that’ll help you get noticed in the digital world. All you have to do is maintain a company profile and update it with useful content or product ads.
Do you keep track of all the retail industry news? Is not, it won’t take long for your business to end up in the list of shutdowns for the year. By looking at the retail industry news, you understand how the world is changing, and the industry is falling. However, you can change that by taking the first steps in capitalizing on the retail industry trends listed above. Bring these changes to your business and experience a substantial rise in your retail sales.…
Trade shows and Exhibitions are an excellent way to promote a business and the products and services it offers. It offers a great platform to network with other industry members and grows the customer base exponentially. Also, trade shows have certain other aspects which are quite fruitful. Some of them are combined below in this blog.
Trade shows and Exhibitions offer significant benefits to businesses of any size. By combining exposure to a large number of potential leads with the ability to interact personally, trade shows provide a good experience for both the business and attendee that other forms of marketing cannot. Though virtual events and other technologies are slowly gaining popularity, few marketing methods compete with the potential of trade shows.
Lead Generation is the top, most important benefits of Trade shows and Exhibitions, especially the ones that are organized at a large-scale. In each visit, there is a potential customer hidden and yet to be discovered. So, businesses should focus on developing prosperous corporate relations by taking contact information or getting business cards. Furthermore, trade shows offer unparalleled opportunities for personal interactions, which leave lasting impressions with a large number of potential customers, something that most advertising and marketing mediums fail to do. Given the immense potential that trade shows offer various business to grow and prosper, their significance stands genuinely unmatched.
It is also essential to ensure that you have thoroughly researched which trade show or exhibition you are attending. If you have a business adviser, it’s always best to discuss the matter with them – nothing better than that but still, there are other risks involved, and you need to be aware and plan them out carefully.
It’s vital to check the duration of the Trade shows and Exhibitions, whether it is for a day at least and probably requires more of your time? Moreover, always do your best to avoid choosing the wrong trade show to exhibit your business's products or services. Otherwise, you can end up displaying to the wrong audience who won’t end up becoming your clients, and it will be a waste of time, energy, and resources, and sometimes you may also end up gaining costs or losing revenues. Even traveling to trade shows can be costly, especially those out of the city or in another country. Organizing a trade show can also be expensive, and there will always be high competition at all shows with many corporations fighting to network with prominent business executives.…