Cloud computing is revolutionizing the business world on several levels. Cloud technology allows companies and individuals to easily access computer programs and other information that is based at a remote site. Companies and individuals can reduce their overall costs and get by with less computing power by storing the programs and information on remote servers.

However, there are also disadvantages with cloud computing as well. Certain technical requirements have to be met to take full advantage of the platform. The technology can also limit your access to vital information and programs during unforeseen problems with the remote servers. This technology has not been perfected yet, so users will have to decide if using the platform is worth the effort and the risk.

Advantages to cloud computing -There is no need to have an expensive, high power computer
-No need to load your hard drive with several programs
-Several programs stored on the cloud are free to use
-Almost unlimited storage
-Access documents almost anywhere

Cloud computing can be a very economical solution for a number of users, from businesses to individuals. Because the programs are stored on a remote server, users don’t need expensive powerful computers or to spend hundreds of dollars on individual programs. The cloud lets you have free access to many useful programs.

 

It’s important to note, though, that your profit margin isn’t just something you should measure; it’s a metric that you should continuously improve. As author Doug Hall said, “If your profit margins aren’t rising, chances are your company isn’t thriving.”

To help you do just that, we’ve put together some pointers on how to widen your profit margins. Check them and see if you can apply them to your business:

 

1.     Streamline your operations and reduce operating expenses

 

 According to: https://fitsmallbusiness.com/

” cut overtime and excess staffing as much as possibleconsider making a switch to a low-cost system. This makes your entire store and staff run more efficiently.”

Take, for instance kiva han café a fine dining coffe shop in Riyadh.

To save time and operating expenses, the owner decided to automate the task of transferring sales data to his accounting software. Rather than manually plugging the numbers into the program, he integrated his point-of-sale system (Revel) with his accounting software (Quickbooks). He got the two tools talking to each other so that information is automatically transferred from one program to the next.

 

 

2. Implement savvier purchasing practices

 

Whether you’re at a trade show looking at new products or at the negotiating table with your suppliers, make sure you’re always finding ways to lower costs.

THINK ABOUT THE FINAL COST

ASK FOR VENDOR DISCOUNTS OR OFFERS

INCREASE ORDER QUANTITIES

 

 

3. Increase your prices

 

BE smart WITH YOUR PRICE INCREASES

&discount your products but BE SENSIBLE ABOUT YOUR DISCOUNTS

 

 

4. Optimize vendor relationships

 

It helps to have a discussion with your vendors to see if there’s anything you can do to make things easier or more cost-effective.

 

 

 

Buying a point-of-sale (POS) system may seem like a hassle and an unnecessary expense, but if you look closer, you’ll find clear gains.

 

There are two main types of systems: for retail stores; and for restaurants and hotels, also known as the hospitality category. To understand the different requirements for the hospitality industry, read Tips on Buying POS for Restaurants.

 

The benefits of point-of-sale systems are:

 

  • Accuracy: Scanning is more accurate than punching in numbers from a sticker, or expecting the cashier to remember what each item costs.
  • Analysis: POS systems let you manage inventory, flag items for reorder, and analyze sales patterns.

 

A point-of-sale system is, at heart, a cash register — but because it’s based on a PC, it opens up a new world of data about your business.

 

A point-of-sale (POS) terminal can be networked to other terminals, and to a server in the back room or at another location. It can be expanded with handheld devices wirelessly linked to the main system. You can use it to can track a number of operations in useful ways and customize it as your needs change over time.

 

The main advantage of a computerized POS system over a cash box or a cash register is the sophisticated and detailed sales reports it provides. The software lets you analyze sales in different ways, such as by SKU (item sold), time periods, promotions, by store if you have more than one, or even by sales clerk. It will help your inventory manager buy in the right number of cartons of tissue paper with improved timing, and help your chef calculate how much cheese to order for the coming week, taking into account an upcoming holiday. It can also help reduce employee shrinkage.

 

But that’s only the start. Once your sales are computerized, you can plug that computer into a network, and the network into a back-office computer system that downloads results from all your registers, consolidating and monitoring the information in a variety of ways. If you bite the bullet and pay the costs, you can integrate all this into your accounting and inventory software systems.

 

Expect to pay anywhere from $3000 to $6000 per station, including software, scanners, printers, installation, training, and support, plus costs for integrating into your back-end system. (For an explanation of the hardware and software components of a POS system, read Understanding POS Components. But once you grow in size — as you approach a million dollars in annual sales, and especially as you add retail outlets or restaurant locations — computerized POS will not only pay for itself in improved efficiencies, it will become critical just to know what is going on.

 

The added and more immediate flow of detailed information about your sales will help you come up with better competitive ideas and then evaluate their effectiveness.

 


 

 

By NCR

 

It is clear that the use of mobile technology in retail is not a passing fad, but is an important tool that can help retailers run their business more effectively. 

 

Mobile technology connects retailers with customers in new and different ways and provides an opportunity to sell anywhere. 

 

While the mobile point of sale (POS) won’t replace the traditional POS in the near-term, it will provide options that simply weren’t feasible in the past. 

 

Some of the key benefits and new opportunities offered by mobile solutions such as CPMobile include:

 

  • Line-busting 

    The need to get customers through the check-out line as efficiently as possible has always been a top priority for retailers. 

    Using mobile POS, you can now easily manage long lines during the busiest parts of your sales day, avoiding any potential customer’s satisfaction issues, or even lost sales, due to long waits.

 

  • Consultative selling 

    Turn cashiers into sales consultants with mobile POS and differentiate your store with exceptional customer service.  

    During their decision-making process, help customers to make a purchase, close the sale on the spot, and even provide up-sell and complimentary item options for them to consider to drive even higher revenues.

 

  • Special sales anywhere in the store

    With mobile POS, you can now consider new ways to drive sales in different parts of your store. 

    Maybe you want to hold a demo or a class in your store to promote a product or category. 

    Now that you have mobile POS, when you get the customers excited and they are ready to buy, you can sell to them on the spot.

 

  • Return station 

    Every retailer deals with some level of returns from their customers, especially during certain times of the year.

    Use mobile POS to avoid back-ups at the sales registers due to returns, and work with the customer on a more personal level to ensure their satisfaction.

 

  • Price & inventory lookup 

    Customers get frustrated when there is a question about a price or availability of an item and a store employee doesn’t have the tools to provide a quick answer from. 

    Armed with mobile devices tied back to the POS and inventory management system, those store employees can immediately help customers without ever leaving their side and provide information needed to ensure the sale is made.

 

  • Email receipts 

    Whether it is to support green initiatives or to simply try to get more organized, consumers are increasingly asking for receipts to be provided digitally.

    While paper receipts can be offered, mobile POS easily offers emailed receipt capabilities as well to meet your customer’s needs.

 

  • Add customers to customer file 

    Providing email receipt options also provides another opportunity to ask for the customer’s email address and build your database for future email marketing opportunities. 

    If you are just starting your customer information gathering initiative, you can even use mobile POS and have your sales associates get the customers details before, during or after the sale, from anywhere in the store.

 

  • Sell Anywhere 

    Mobile POS now offers the opportunity to truly sell anywhere that has an online connection back to the store POS and inventory system, allowing you to grow your business in a variety of ways.

    Whether it is setting up the sidewalk and parking lot tent sales just outside your store or taking your products wherever your customers gather, there are no longer restrictions on selling within the four walls of your store.

 

  • Use mobile POS when needed

    By providing an optional seasonal subscription for mobile POS, you can manage your overall POS investment to make sure you have optimized your retail systems deployment to meet your needs during the busiest times of the year.

 

  • Use mobile POS where needed 

    If you have multiple stores, share the mobile POS devices across your locations so they can be used where and when it makes the most sense. 

    Perhaps there is a special weekend sale or event at one location that will drive increased traffic for several days there. Bring the mobile POS from the other stores to manage the crowds, and then move them back to their original locations when done. No need to worry about software licensing at individual locations.

 

By blending a traditional POS strategy with a mobile POS strategy, retailers have more flexibility to leverage the power of a sophisticated retail management system while taking advantage of the capabilities offered by mobile devices to run their business, connect with customers, and sell anywhere!

 

 

By Charlie Youakim, Founder and CEO at Sezzle

 

E-commerce is still in its infancy. Currently, it only makes up 8.3% of sales in the USA. But I believe that’s about to make a radical change.

 

We’re on the cusp of dramatic change because point-of-sale commerce is about to hit the accelerator towards e-commerce.

 

In 5 years time, I predict that e-commerce payments will make up over 50% of payments in the USA.

 

An example of the speed at which point-of-sale solutions can change to e-commerce: My first company was part of this change in the parking industry.

 

In 2010 I paid for parking with cash. Shocked at this archaic method, I started a company that used mobile technology to pay for parking instead.  

 

Over the next five years, I saw a dramatic shift from point-of-sale payments in the parking industry to e-commerce payments.

 

Most large cities that installed mobile payment systems found that more than 50% of people chose to pay via their mobile phones.

 

Industries Making The Shift

 

Parking was one of the early sectors to adopt e-commerce. Other transportation sectors were also in-line with this transition.

 

The taxi industry changed from a cash and card industry to a mobile payments industry in dramatic fashion with the rise of Lyft and Uber.

 

While transportation payments are only a small part of payments as a whole, their shift towards e-commerce exemplifies my prediction.

 

Larger sectors are coming soon. Retail and grocery are huge industries for payments, and I believe that they will be the next sectors to adopt e-commerce.

 

Whether it’s Instacart, Amazon Prime Now or Blue Apron, grocery is changing and moving online in the process.

 

Recent data shows that 28% of millennials have shopped online for groceries, a percentage that is growing rapidly. I think retail will follow along shortly.

 

Many would argue that Amazon is the only successful major retailer in the U.S. right now if you look at the stock charts of the major retailers over the last five years.

 

Shopify is another successful stock on the market. They were led to their success by building systems to enable e-commerce for small brick and mortars. 

 

Shopify and Amazon have spent the last 5 years dominating some major brick-and-mortar retailers.

 

Changing The Point-of-Sale Game

 

Amazon might be winning, but it isn’t sitting on its haunches; it’s also changing what point-of-sale means.

 

Amazon recently developed Amazon Go, which allows consumers to enter a store using their mobile phone as their ID and payment system.

 

The system lets you pick up goods and walk out of the store without going to a checkout counter.

 

If Amazon Go works, and I believe it will, I think we will see a point-of-sale retail revolution.

 

Consumers will love it because it’s easy for them, and every retailer will start investing in similar tech.

 

This migration to Amazon-Go-like stores would mean that most point-of-sale purchases in retail would migrate to e-commerce.

 

You’d be buying with your phone instead of swiping or inserting a card.

 

Dramatic changes to industry verticals are in the works everywhere. 

 

At my company, we’re even counting on it. We designed our digital payment platform for this migration to mobile, and I’ve spoken with merchants and businesses in different verticals who feel similarly that this move to e-commerce is coming. 

 

Brick and mortar as we know it will continue to fade away, and the last bricks standing will become digitized.

 

Pretty soon you’ll have a harder time paying in cash than you do with your phone. Or has that already happened?

 

 

By Lori Fairbanks, B2B Editor

 

The best POS systems are affordable and easy to use, and do more than just process sales and accept payments, as they include time-saving features that help you analyze your sales data and manage your inventory, staff, and customers.

 

The best systems also include or have integrations for email marketing, loyalty programs, and other capabilities that make it easier to run and grow your business.

 

The best vendors also provide reliable customer support. 

 

All our top picks are cloud-based systems that you can access from any browser, so you can check your sales data and run back-office tasks from wherever you are, and they have apps for tablets, which are often less expensive than touchscreen systems.

 

Here’s a roundup of our 2017 best picks for POS systems: 

 

Best All-in-One POS System for Small Business: Vend

 

 

Vend has everything you need to run and grow a brick-and-mortar store.

 

Beyond processing transactions, Vend has reporting and inventory management features and provides access to a variety of integrations that can help you run your business, save time and boost sales.

 

This vendor is suitable for many different types of stores across a wide variety of industries.

 

Whether you run a clothing store, a sporting goods store, or a specialty service-based business such as a car wash or computer shop, Vend has the features you need. [Go here for a full review of the Vend POS system.]

 

Best Mobile POS System for iPad: Bindo

 

 

Bindo is a cloud-based POS system built especially for the iPad.

 

It offers an intuitive user interface, is packed with business management tools, and comes with advanced capabilities like its product database that simplifies inventory input and its time-clock technology that photographs your employees when they clock in and out, ensuring accurate timekeeping.

 

It also integrates with QuickBooks and has an API that you can use to create custom integrations.

 

Bindo provides 24/7 customer support via email and in-app chat and is competitively priced. [Go here for a full review of the Bindo POS system.]

 

Best POS System for Retail: ShopKeep

 

 

ShopKeep is a budget-friendly, cloud-based iPad POS system packed with all the time-saving features retailers need to run and grow their businesses.

 

It comes with a wide range of advanced yet easy-to-use tools to help you save time and boost sales, without any long-term contracts required, though signing a contract may qualify you for discounted rates.

 

The company provides free 24/7 phone and email support and also has live chat, a searchable knowledgebase, small business resources and more. [Go here for a full review of the ShopKeep POS system.]

 

Best POS System for Restaurants: TouchBistro

TouchBistro is a simple and affordable POS system that focuses on the unique needs of restaurant owners, such as table, reservation, and delivery management features.

 

It’s suitable for all types of food establishments – fine dining, casual eateries, cafes, pubs, food trucks and more.

 

It works with the iPad, iPad Pro, and iPad Mini, giving you flexibility and mobility, no matter which type of restaurant you own.

 

TouchBistro offers 24/7 phone and email support, video tutorials, and setup guides. [Go here for a full review of the TouchBistro POS system.]

 

BY LIGHTSPEED

 

Whether you’re a retailer or a restaurant, a good point of sale marketing strategy can help your bottom line and drive more sales.

 

But space along the counter is limited and the real estate is hotly contested by companies that want to sell their products in your store.

 

You only have about a minute to attract people in line and make them decide whether they needed some gum or a magazine on their way out, so what do you do to maximize your potential earnings?

 

Here are some POS marketing strategies you can use to get more of your customers to buy more of your stuff at the counter.

 

Attractive Signage

 

First, you need to get their attention.

 

You can’t very well have your cashiers wear advertisements and funny chicken costumes now, can you?

 

Chatting up customers seems like a good idea, but it’s a time waster and a purveyor of long checkout lines and angry customers waiting in line.

 

Use the oldest trick in the book of any advertiser – put up an attractive sign.

 

Signs have been around for as long as civilizations prospered.

 

Old papyrus advertisements have been found in ancient Egypt, Greece, and Rome.

 

If it was good enough for an ancient man, it’s good enough for your store.

 

Pick a sign that’s more likely to attract your customers and draw them into making a purchase.

 

A good idea is to use statistics and percentages like if you’re selling whitening gum at the counter, the sign should read “whitens teeth 30% better than brand X” or something similar. Be sure to back it up though.

 

Advertisers usually have their own signs, so choose the one most likely to attract customers.

 

Make your Display Shelves Visually Appealing

 

Visually appealing shelves are more likely to sell items when compared to a dilapidated or bland display shelf that’s in disarray.

 

When a display shelf is colorful and organized, your customers are more likely to pick something up from it because they’re confident that all the products here are new, clean and worth it.

 

Avoid lumping together items that don’t go together, like toothbrushes and candy or batteries.

 

An example would be a spot dedicated for batteries, flashlights, lighters, mosquito repellent and car fresheners.

 

One side could have chocolate, candy, gum and other snacks.

 

Toothbrushes and wet wipes could take up another spot.

 

There should be a method to your point of sale marketing strategy at the counter to entice your customers and convince them that they need the extra stuff.

 

Display shelves

 

Trial and Error with your POS

 

If you’re using POS software that comes with advanced reporting and analytics such as our cloud-based Lightspeed POS for retail, you’ll get a clear picture of what products are moving and what products are clogging up your inventory.  

 

With this information, you can do a little trial and error with items on the counter.

 

Pit gum against candy; candy versus chocolates; flashlights versus lighters – when you see a pattern on what item beats all the others, make it a point to sell more of that.

 

Be sure to check your margins though; just because a cheap product sells like hotcakes during checkout doesn’t mean you’re making more from it as compared to something more expensive that also sells, but not as much.

 

The Best Marketing Strategy

 

Finding a POS marketing strategy that works for everybody isn’t applicable because the business dynamics for each establishment is always going to be different.

 

An auto shop will have a drastically different approach than a coffee shop, and restaurants and retailers can’t really emulate one another.

 

There won’t be a one-size-fits-all strategy when it comes to the point of sale marketing, so it’s going to be up to you to find out what works for your business and what doesn’t.

 

The best strategy, therefore, would be whatever works well for you and your business.

 

Vendors have a lot of experience with this sort of thing, so it would be a big help if you can build a relationship with them and ask for their insights on what you can do for better marketing.

 

 

Your choice of point of sale can bring your store to the next level. With inventory at the very core of your entire operation and at the very core of Lightspeed’s EPOS software, there’s no better match for a retailer concerned with managing their inventory. With item tags, product matrices and work orders, with Lightspeed, you can strengthen that core, ensuring this aspect of your business runs smoothly.

What can it help you do?

 

1. Become more strategic when it comes to inventory

The logic is simple: you need to know what your best-sellers are so you can sell more of them. With Lightspeed, you can identify which items are gathering dust on your shelves so they don’t stay in your back office forever. Tracking your inventory, sales year over year or season over season, unit costs, margins and everything else pertaining to your stock, will help guide your decisions so you don’t waste resources on items that don’t move.

“Lightspeed is making us more productive by allowing us to organise ourselves more effectively. Stock ordering and control is something we didn’t have before, and it’s changed our business.”
Life on a bike

 

2. Take your inventory with you, out of store

As you hit trade shows or get on the road, with a cloud-based EPOS system you can take your inventory data with you. When customers ask you about whether this or that item is in stock, you can reply confidently because the answers to their questions will be in your hands.

“I enjoy being able to log in from wherever I am, on my computer or on my phone. It really helps for inventory management.”
Oliveology

 

3. Build purchase orders and order stock

After you’ve created a PO, you can fax, email, or, if working with a vendor that’s integrated with Lightspeed, submit it directly over the web. You can order stock directly from the system; Lightspeed has integrated catalogs from some of the biggest vendors in your industry. Simply click and receive.

Not only that, but by setting reorder points in the system, you can automatically fill in the items that are running low when building your next purchase order.

Guy on laptop

 

4. Find items quickly for customers in-store

Organize your stock into categories by type and tag items with similar attributes. By using tags and categories to narrow down your inventory search, customers will get the items they’re looking for faster.

 

5. Manage stock across several locations

Whether you run a single store or several locations, the system will connect your inventory across all stores. With Lightspeed, you only need to check in one centralized system to know what’s happening across your entire operation.

 

6. Manage inventory in your online store

Lightspeed’s web store is the only e-commerce inventory management system designed specifically for brick-and-mortar retailers who want to start selling online. Sync inventory and customers between in-store and online for a 360-degree view of your entire business.

“Lightspeed significantly cuts down the time it takes to do a stock count. Previously it would take us a week to count through the shirts. Now it takes us an hour.”
Mr. Start

Woman working on her online store

 


Reference: 6-Ways-Epos-Help-Manage-Inventory

The term Legacy has many definitions: some positive, and some not so much.

 

If you’re trying to get into a college or university, then Legacy is a good thing.

 

If you’re talking about computers or technology, Legacy can be a very negative term.

 

According to technopedia.com, the phrase “Legacy” refers to outdated computers or systems that are used instead of available, upgraded versions.

 

Legacy Systems can also be compared with processes or functions that are no longer compatible with current content.

 

If your POS system is showing signs of aging it might be time to make a change.

 

 

Here are 5 reasons to upgrade your Legacy Point of Sale:

 

  • Outdated OS – A recent Epicor|CRS white paper estimates that over 25 percent of current POS systems run on DOS or other proprietary platforms that severely limit growth for retailers.

 

  • These systems simply can’t grow to meet current demands.

 

 

  • Inability to Incorporate Key Business Functions – Today’s business model calls for the integration of everything from inventory control to merchandising. Staffing, as well as all levels of customer satisfaction from fast check-out to gift card management also present primary challenges.

 

 

  • Compatibility Issues with Other POS Hardware – Proprietary and DOS-based systems are limited in their ability to connect and communicate with other hardware across the enterprise.

 

  • This is especially true with back office servers – a critical component in operational efficiency.

 

 

  • Latest POS Features Unavailable in Legacy Systems – Your Legacy System will restrict basic upgrades like touchscreens because it simply can’t function with newer technology.

 

  • These restrictions to growth will also impact customer service, employee scheduling and prevent sharing data across multiple channels within your organization.

 

 

  • Non-Compliance with CISP Encryption Requirements – The new Cardholder Information Security Program (CISP) from VISA requires a higher level of security when processing or transmitting VISA cardholder data.

 

  • Many Legacy POS Systems aren’t capable of accepting stored data at the new required levels, and fines for non-compliance can be as high as $500,000 per incident.

 

“If it Ain’t Broke, Don’t Fix it” Doesn’t Apply to POS Systems.

 

You may think your Legacy POS System is more than adequate for your business needs, but you’ll never know how much better technology has become until you’ve experienced it firsthand. That’s where Revel comes in.

 

Why not take a look at the latest in POS systems from a cutting-edge industry leader?

 

 


Reference

 

Retail Loss Prevention: 7 Powerful Tools & Technologies to Help You Reduce Shrinkage

 

Loss prevention continues to be a major concern for retailers, and for good reason: losses due to employee theft, admin errors, and shoplifting cost you a lot of money. According to the NRF, the US retail economy lost $45.2 billion in 2015 due to shrinkage.

Clearly, retailers need to be more vigilant about loss prevention. To help you do that, we’ve put together a list of solutions for reducing shrink and improving store security.

From tools that you can install easily to technologies that require a bit of an investment, check out the items below and see if you can use them in your stores:

 

 1. Signage

 

Installing security signs in your store is a low-cost way to deter shoplifters and shady characters. Anti-theft signs should be fitted close to the entrance and near your fitting rooms.

Here’s a tip. Walk into your store and ask yourself: If you were a shoplifter, where would you go? The answer to that should help you determine the best places to install your signs.

 

 

Shoplifters Beware

 

 

As for the content of your signage, you want to remind people that shoplifting isn’t tolerated and that there will be consequences. According to the San Diego Police Department, your anti-theft signs should “emphasize that you will prosecute” and that “the best way to discourage shoplifters and keep your business from being tagged as an easy mark is to take a get-tough attitude and prosecute on the first offense.”

 

2. Cameras

 

If you’re willing to invest a bit more in store security, consider installing surveillance cameras in your stores. Doing so will allow you to monitor store activities 24-7, and it’ll give you recordings that you can revisit if necessary.

Depending on your store and the security system you already have in place, you may be able to integrate your cameras with your POS, foot traffic solutions, and other loss prevention programs.

Consider what American Apparel did. The clothing retailer combined its foot traffic management and loss prevention tools in one system. The company used RetailNext’s searchable video solution to track how people moved around in their stores and combined that with foot traffic insights.

According to RetailNext, “American Apparel was able to interpret streams of digital video and recognize human beings moving through the stores, opening up broad capabilities for measuring shopper behavior inside its environment. This capability enabled American Apparel to measure not only the number of store visitors but also shoppers’ movements within the store — where they walked, where they stopped and how all these behaviors tied to actual sales at the register.”

Using those insights, the retailer was able to beef up its loss prevention efforts and ended up reducing theft by 16%.

 

 3. Mirrors

 

Not too sure about using cameras in-store? Consider mirrors instead, which can serve as inexpensive yet effective tools for spotting shoplifting and other suspicious activities.

Do a quick walk-through of your store to see if there are any blind spots. If you spot some, then you may want to may want to install security mirrors to monitor those areas. Typical blind spots include corners that aren’t too visible from the cashier’s side, as well as areas which are blocked by fixtures or shelves.

16-Feb-2016-Image3

 

And the good news is, it’s quite easy to purchase these mirrors. You’ll find a lot of them online or in the nearest office supplies stores, with price ranging from around $30 to $300.

 

 4. POS system

 

Most modern point-of-sale systems allow you to set user permissions to enable or restrict certain tasks from being carried out. That’s why if you haven’t done so yet, check with your POS solution provider and see how you can update user permissions in your store.

Jordan Lewis, the inventory product manager at Vend, says that these permissions go a long way in preventing shrink.

According to him, it’s best if retailers set user roles based on the individual instead of the job title.

“I see a lot of companies applying the same user permissions for all managers or for all admins. But what merchants should do instead is assign permissions based on the tasks you want each employee to perform and restrict them from doing tasks outside their job description.” 

He adds that retailers should be especially vigilant with voided sales and who can perform them, as this is a very easy way to steal stock.

 

 5. Inventory management tools

 

Staying on top of your inventory is critical to loss prevention. Poor stock control leads to more misplaced products and unchecked discrepancies, which is why it’s important to arm yourself with a robust inventory management system that’ll make it easy for you to track merchandise.

One thing to look for when choosing inventory management tools is the capability to conduct full and partial stock counts.

Tip

Are you a Vend user? Be sure to utilize Vend’s inventory counting features when implementing cycle counting at your store.

“Counting your stock more often allows you to notice discrepancies earlier and keeps your financial records up-to-date,” says Jordan. “Aim to conduct smaller counts regularly with the goal of covering all your inventory through multiple counts.”

Jordan furthers that retailers should “count proactively, not reactively.”

This will give you the best chance of correcting any discrepancies sooner rather than later. If you wait until you have to do a full inventory count, you’ll fail to catch issues early, and the damage would’ve already been done.

Once you’re done counting, you need to actually do something with the information, says Jordan. “Use inventory reports to identify high-risk signs or regions in your store, and make sure your staff understands where these areas are, and how to minimize stock loss.”

“It’s also beneficial to compare multiple completed inventory count reports with the aim of seeing patterns and discovering root causes of the discrepancies,” he adds.

 

Tip

If you want to learn more about using POS permissions and inventory management to reduce shrink, check out our previous webinar, How to Set Up Winning Inventory System for Your Retail Store.

 

 6. Inventory counters

 

Speaking of inventory counts, you’ll want to have a reliable tool for conducting stock-takes. Avoid using a pen and paper when counting inventory. Arm yourself and your staff with a solution that enables you to count your products efficiently and accurately.

A perfect example? Scanner by Vend — a nifty mobile app that lets you conduct physical inventory counts using your iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch.

Just scan an item’s barcode using your phone’s camera and Scanner will automatically record the SKU for you. Scanner also syncs completed counts with your Vend account, so once you’re done counting, you can easily update your stock levels.

Not a Vend user? Scanner will create a CSV file that you can email to yourself or your staff.

 

 7. RFID

 

RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) comes in the form of chips embedded in product tags or packages. These chips contain product information and enable retailers to track items using their stock control system, so merchants can gain real-time inventory visibility and accuracy.

When used correctly, RFID technology can help you prevent losses in various stages of the supply chain as well as combat theft and misplaced products in-store.

Retailers that affix these tags right after manufacturing can track products as they move from one stage of the supply chain to the next. This allows them to prevent losses during the distribution process.

When implemented in-store, RFID enables merchants to locate items and ensure that products are in the right place at the right time. The technology can also help retailers catch shoplifters. If someone attempts to walk out of the shop with RFID tags still attached to the merchandise, your store’s security sensors could go off and alert your staff.

Additionally, RFID makes counting much easier. Rather than handling items one by one, inventory counts with RFID can be done with a handheld reader while items are still in their boxes or shelves. Associates would simply have to walk to the display with their reader, and the software will display the necessary product information.

 

Recommended reading

Need more practical tips on loss prevention? Check out our article on reducing shrink and beefing up security in your store.

 

 Conclusion

 

While the solutions above can definitely help in increasing store security and reducing shrink, don’t forget that the success of your anti-shrink initiatives lies not just in these tools, but in how you use them.

Before you jump into these tools or technologies, be sure to assess your needs and create a plan that you can implement.

Good luck!

What other shrink-prevention solutions are you using in your business? Tell us in the comments.

 


Reference









Latest Tweets

 

 

 

Newsletter