Category Archives: Tips and Advice
Just because everyone is programmed to purchase at this time of year, though, doesn’t mean they’re going to purchase from you. Or even if they are, it doesn’t mean you can’t get them to purchase more.
In fact, it’s even more important to do everything possible to increase sales this time of year. Just because you make it to the Olympics doesn’t mean you’ve got the gold medal, so to speak.
To make sure you’re maximizing your resources this time of year, here are five ways your POS can increase your holiday sales.
Want to know more, read Do you need a point of sale system in your retail store? and know more about Magento POS system.
1. It can perfect your inventory strategy
POSs these days are no longer just point-of-sale systems – they’re full-fledged retail management systems. They can run your store from the first moment you come into contact with your inventory, to when you sell that item. They can even manage your customer experience! Basically, your POS should be your best friend.
Given all that, you should check in with your POS and spend some time learning about what items have done really well in sales recently, which ones haven’t moved, and which ones sold out last year. Your POS may even be able to predict which items will sell really well this season.
Once you’ve got that information, you can order your products with a lot more accuracy. You can also use that data to decide how to set your store. You may want to put some of your best-sellers up front to draw people in, and scatter the rest about to encourage people to look through the whole store. You also can put the items that aren’t selling well in more visible locations. Often items can sit on the shelves purely because they’re hidden or in the wrong place. Of course, if it’s a totally hideous, puke-green sweater, that could also be the reason it’s sitting. (If that’s the case, maybe try running it as an ugly Christmas sweater?)
With inventory that’s sitting, you should get a bit creative in how you display it, too. For instance, for clothing items that aren’t selling, you may want to try working them into an outfit on a mannequin so that customers can see the items in their full context. This can liven up basics, and helps people understand how to wear trickier items like statement necklaces.
2. Your POS Can Make Sure You Have the Right Team in Place
Your POS should either have built in employee scheduling software, or should integrate with your existing scheduling software. Either way, you can use software to schedule your employees. (If, for whatever reason, you’re still doing it by hand, please let me convince you that software is soooo worth it – and you can get it for cheap!)
This scheduling software will be able to identify your highest sellers. It will also be able to predict your peak hours this holiday season based on what your peak hours were last holiday season. (If you’ve got software that’s newer than last holiday season, it can still make very good guesses on your future peak hours using data from the past months.)
With all that information, you can easily ensure your peak hours are staffed by your top sellers, while your down-hours are stocked with your best stock people. Heck, plenty of scheduling software options will even autoschedule all that for you to save you time!
3. Your POS Can Probably Ring People Up Anywhere in the Store
Most POS software these days not only operates on giant stationary desktop registers, but it also on mobile devices like iPads and Android smartphones.
If you haven’t gotten in on mobile registers yet, now is the time to do it! Mobile registers are insanely helpful for a number of reasons.
- You can ring customers up anywhere in the store. This means a reduction in boring, slow lines. It also means that customers who love something in the dressing room won’t have to deal with the fateful walk to the register, during which they decide that the item is out of their budget and their husband will hate them for buying it. Better customer experience = better sales, plain and simple.
- You can take your register anywhere there’s Wi-Fi. Many can even do all the basic sales functions you need without Wi-Fi. Which means you can start hitting the road with your merchandise. When your merchandise appears in more locations, you reach more shoppers. Go to farmer’s markets! Go to festivals! Start a fashion truck! Your sales possibilities are limited only by your imagination (and some laws against selling in certain public locations).
- Mobile POS gives your sales people access to your CRM anywhere in the store. Before mobile POS, sales people were only able to access your customer relationship management system at the cash-wrap, which typically meant disengaging with the customer, and fighting Bertha the cashier for the chance to just ‘pleeeease’ pop into the system between customers. Not pleasant. Why is this bad? Well, your CRM holds all your information about customers, like past purchases and sizes. This sort of information can be really helpful to your sales people on the floor. With mobile POS, a sales person can quickly check for these details after naturally disengaging with the customer to help inform their suggestive selling without causing any disruptions to their customer, or to Bertha and all her customers.
4. Your POS can take mobile payments
I know this one kinda sounds like the previous tip, but it’s not, I swear. Mobile payments are services like Apple Pay and Android Pay that allow someone to pay for a purchase by scanning their phone at your register. Many POS software vendors have updated their software to be able to take at least one of these types of payment.
How will it increase your holiday sales this year? Couple things:
- Mobile payments help reduce time spent at the register. Most people already have their phones out, so mobile payments are typically very swift.
- Mobile payments are here to stay, but many stores have yet to take them. By getting ahead of the curve, you’ll encourage shoppers who are already using mobile payments to shop with you.
5. Your POS can boost your marketing
Your POS should integrate with an email marketing or marketing automation provider. If you don’t already have that set up and an email strategy in place, stop reading this post and go do that. Email marketing is one of the most effective ways of nurturing buyers into becoming returning customers.
Once you’ve got your email integration up and running all you have to do is create a holiday campaign, to get customers excited for Christmas shopping with you! Here are a few ideas for emails to send out:
- Send out emails announcing your promotions as they happen throughout the holiday season.
- Have a countdown to Christmas. Send out an email every day with the current countdown number. With the number you can either give pictures and descriptions of products, or you could run a daily promotion relating to that number. (Think: ‘7 days ‘til Christmas, get every 7th item free,’ or something similar.)
The omnichannel solution for Magento retailers
A Definitive Guide to Omnichannel Customer Experience
You’re likely to start e-commerce business? However, you still do not know how you should do it step-by-step. The reason is that there are too many steps and decisions in the process of working that makes you confuse and face a number of difficulties in deciding at the right time. The important tip is that each step will be based on the logical order: researching, building, launching and growing a profitable e-commerce business.
Choosing a Product
Finding A Product To Sell
It is clear that firstly, you need to identify the products which you need to provide for customers. Actually, it is one of the most challenging parts when starting a new online business. Before deciding to choose the product, you should find product opportunities, explore the ten best stores to look for product ideas and then, you will reveal ten trending products which you came up.
Evaluating Your Idea
Don’t make the decision immediately! How do you know whether it’s a bad idea or not? In order to answer this question, you will go through two exhaustive evaluations methods, evaluating both the product itself, as well as the market for your product choice.
Obtaining Your Product
After finding your product idea and evaluating them in the previous section, you must find out where and how you’re going to obtain your products.
Research & Preparation
Research Your Rivals
After applying 3 steps above, you’ve found your product, evaluated the potential and chose your supplier. It’s time to write your business plan. However, before getting into that, you’ll need to research your competitors thoroughly so you know exactly what you’re up against.
Writing Your Business Plan
With your competitive research, it’s now the perfect time for you to write your online business plan. A business plan will be your road map which helps bring your ideas and thoughts together. A business plan is indispensable so that you can determine how to move forward and compete effectively.
Registering Your Business
With a business plan in hand, now it is a good time to consider your options for registering your business.
Setting Up Your Business
Naming Your Business
Aside from finding an actual product to sell online, another difficult decision is determining your business name and choosing an appropriate and domain name. To be more specific, the business name need to include the keyword which involves your products and the domain name has a reputation in long time. By doing that, it helps you to increase the website ranks in search engine.
Creating A Logo
Once you have solidified your name and registered your domain, it’s time to craft a logo. The logo could be simple and easy to remember.
Understanding Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
You’re almost ready to begin building your online store. However, before you jump into it, you should understand the basics of search engine optimization so that you can optimize your site for Google and other search engines like Bing.
Building Your Store
With a better understanding of search engine optimization (SEO), it’s time to build your online store. There are many important factors. You need to write captivating product descriptions, shoot beautiful product photography, and a list of some of the best tools to help you optimize those photos. Your website should be built on Magento platform which is open source content management system for e-commerce websites. It is clear that Magento is the best choice which is chosen by many leading e-commerce brands. It is supported by Magento extensions which helps you develop your strategy and manage your business easily and effectively.
Preparing To Launch
As you prepare for the launch of your new business, there are several necessary factors you need to prepare for. In this step, we have curated some of the most comprehensive posts on helping you determine your shipping strategy.
Moreover, it’s a good idea to define your key performance indicators upfront so once you launch, you know what to measure of success to track.
Now that you’ve launched, the hard work begins. Your first sale is a great start point and overview of a variety of marketing tactics that will help you in your first months.
Marketing Your Store
You’re well on your way and now likely have some sales under your belt. It’s time to get serious and focused. You can choose the suitable marketing methods such as email marketing, driving traffic, optimizing conversions and using analytics ( Google analytics for e-commerce), etc to attract customers and build your brand.
There is no doubt that building your own e-commerce business is no easy task. From choosing a product, evaluating viability and sourcing, to building, launching and growing sales. There’s a lot of puzzle pieces to put together. However, following this resource roundup should provide you with a clear roadmap to help you build a profitable e-commerce business.
Starting an E-commerce business has never been a simple story. We will face many difficulties in the process of running the business, therefore, in order to be successful and overcome these problems, you need to think about 9 things below
1. Don’t rush the launch
One of the most serious mistakes which make e-commerce entrepreneurs unsuccessful is forcing or rushing the launch of a website. You just need to get one shot at launching your website but you can’t mess this up. The important thing is that you should avoid the big reveal about your website until you’ve laid some substantial ground work (social media, paid advertising, SEO, content marketing, etc.). You are allowed to purchase your domain name and throw up some sort of “Coming Soon” page,
2. Put the focus on the user.
The big weakness of e-commerce business is the inability to let their customers touch, feel, smell, and see (firsthand) products before making a decision. As a result, you need to solve it by providing other benefits such as offering appropriate pricing, giving free shipping and making the checkout process easy with simplified shopping carts to attract customers.
3. Test absolutely everything.
You should invest in testing and analytics before and after you launch any e-commerce business. You can figure out what the customers think and how effective your e-commerce business. For example, you can consider the A/B test tool for analysing.
4. Work closely with social.
If you tend to outsource social media or delegate it to other team members, it will be a crazy idea. The reason is that social media is the heartbeat of your business, as it gives you an uninterrupted glance into the lives of your customers. While it’s perfectly fine to have a social-media manager, it’s pertinent that you’re involved with it, too.
5. Incorporate social elements.
Going along with the previous tip, it’s a great idea to include social elements on your ecommerce sites. Things like product reviews and testimonials follow buttons and even social login options all help the conversion funnel.
6. Go mobile.
Bill Siwicki of Internet Retailer said that: “Tablets will play an increasingly important role as worldwide consumer spending via mobile jumps from $204 billion in 2014 to $626 billion in 2018…” If you aren’t building e-commerce businesses with mobile in mind, you may be irrelevant in three to five years.
7. Stay on top of SEO.
As the e-commerce economy tends to increase rapidly, more and more businesses will be entering this increasingly crowded space. It means that it will be more important than ever to stay on top of SEO in order to stand out from the competition. Connecting with a skilled SEO will help you stay competitive in the long run.
8. Collect information.
Unless you plan on launching a single site and stepping away (most entrepreneurs are tempted to keep trying), it’s critical that you collect customer information and build databases to aid future launches.
9. Continue evolving.
The final important thing is that you never stop evolving. Nowadays, technology, trends and customer tastes will change, and so must you if you want to succeed in such a variable market. You need to manage your time and plan carefully to catch your dream.
By using nine tips, your e-commerce business can be successful and overcome every problem.
What is omni channel retailing? Definition and Examples
Omnichannel customer experience: A definitive guide
You are too tired of spending time to update product stock every day? You feel uncontrolled the products in your warehouse? Using inventory management extensions and taking it into the cloud. It will help you to increase automation that makes the running of your business more smoothly. It also saves time for more important business tasks like focusing the core of your business – customers!
Rise the automation
Whether you’re a single or multi-outlet store, cloud is the solution which helps you automate a range of your business processes that legacy systems either simply cannot do, or can’t do with the same speed and precision. Now through the cloud, having inventory across multiple stores – be it eCommerce or brick and mortar – is easier than ever. You can see how much inventory is held at each store at a glance, transfer stock between stores with just a few clicks. In addition also get an idea of what needs to be ordered now and in the future.
There is also no time lapse between what is happening in the store and what you can see in your records. Inventory management is in real-time. Cloud solutions combined with barcode scanning processes especially are making inventory counts a lot quicker, letting you see what your stock levels are at all times. The days of laborious pen and paper counts are out.
Furthermore, with increased visibility over your inventory levels, you will know what you hold in each line, whether it’s selling well or not and whether you need to order more. The ‘sold out’ sign will be a thing of the past.
Be more mobile
These days, you don’t have the time to be stuck behind a computer for long periods. You’re time-poor and you need to access your records on the go, no matter where you are. This is one of the biggest benefits of cloud-based inventory management. You can simply log in wherever you want – on a laptop, tablet or phone, and see all your data right there in front of you.
The flexibility of accessible helps you to know exactly what’s happening with your inventory regardless of the situation. You could be in a meeting with a supplier, selling your products at a pop-up shop, or you could even be on holiday. It’s all there ready to go.
Never lose your data
Cloud solutions host everything online. It means that all your inventory which records and data are stored and backed up no matter what. You don’t have to worry about losing any bits of paper, nor do you have to hit the panic button if your laptop is stolen. You can be assured that you can access your most up-to-date records regardless of the circumstance.
Integrate all your software
With a cloud-based inventory solution, you can also start to integrate it with a host of other SaaS platforms. Everything like accounting software, eCommerce website, the point-of-sale system can all seamlessly talk to one another. And that’s just the beginning. This all helps to reduce the amount of manual and repetitive tasks that may have taken you or your staff hours. And it alleviates the pain when it comes to the end of the financial year, as everything is ready to go for your accountant.
With a cloud inventory management extension, you can also start to integrate it with a host of other SaaS platforms. Your accounting software, eCommerce website, point-of-sale system, they can all seamlessly talk to one another. And that’s just the beginning. This all helps to reduce the amount of manual and repetitive tasks that may have taken you or your staff hours. And of course, it alleviates the pain when it comes to the end of the financial year, as everything is ready to go for your accountant.
Do you know that managing your inventory plays an important role when you tend to run your online store smoothly? Let’s try to imagine that your product is still in your warehouse but they are not listed on your e-commerce website or worse, product is displayed on your website, however, actually, it is not available in your warehouse. The result will be terrible, overselling and annoying customer will happen.
It is the reason why a well-managed is good for both your business and customers. It is easy for the customer to buy the product in stock whenever they place an order. Moreover, your business can also manage and control products quickly and you do not need to waste money on excess stock that you are unable to move.
So, three best ways to help you to manage your Magento inventory will be shown for you!
1. Magento inventory extension:
Nowadays, in E-commerce business, most sale platforms like Amazon, eBay and Shopify offer method for managing inventory which built-in or through addons. It is called Magento inventory extension which is the most useful solution for managing inventory.
Inventory Management extension is the ultimate stock control system for E-commerce website. It helps you keep track of any products in backend easily. This module eliminates common mistakes arising when you handle stock availability, transfer and purchase more items for your warehouses.
The problem with selling on two (or more) platforms is that every time you sell a product on Amazon. For instance, you must log into your Magento store to decrease your stock levels of that product. Likewise, when you make a sale on Magento, you’ve got to log into Amazon to adjust your stock levels.
Using Magento’s inventory management extension to manage your inventory is great if you’re only selling on Magento. When you want to expand your business by selling on other platforms – something that’s often necessary in order to grow – then you need to take a different approach.
2. Manual management:
An alternative tool which helps you to manage your Magento inventory is the old-school way: by taking care of things manually. With this way, you don’t need to worry about managing the precise stock levels on each platform. As far as each platform is concerned, you’re either in stock or out of stock.
You keep track of your precise inventory your own way. This can be with pen and paper (not recommended, unless you’re incredibly organized – and brave), using a spreadsheet, by setting up your own database, or with inventory software.
The benefit of this approach is that if you’re selling on more than one channel, it can be less fiddly than constantly adjusting stock levels across all the platforms you sell on.
Its downside, however, is that it can still take a lot of effort and time. Once you become a high-volume seller, manually jotting down every product that leaves your stock room could become a challenging job which eats up a lot of your time.
Luckily, you have other useful option which saves your time and hassle of manual: Management inventory extension
3. Automate it
The final method to manage your inventory is using inventory management software.
This cloud-based solution means you manage your inventory from one place. When you add products to your stock, they’re added to every platform you sell on, so the moment you sell a product through your Magento store, stock levels are automatically reduced across all your platforms. Managing your inventory across Magento and your other channels becomes hassle free.
You could try each of these methods depending on your circumstance as a seller – what works for one seller might not work for another. As a result, it’s best to try them out and see for yourself.