It wasn’t long ago that the Casio register or other “shoebox” type of cash drawers were the norm on pretty much any small business check-out counter. But times and technology are changing. Think of how much different your cell phone is from just a few years ago — the flip phone, that really did nothing but make calls, was in everyone’s pocket, and now the we don’t even call them “phones,” but rather “mobile devices” because making a call is the least of what these must-have hand-held computers can do.
It’s the same with how the computerized point-of-sale system (POS) is replacing the old-fashioned cash register as the current way of transacting business with your customers.
“Can you do without a POS? Sure — but if you want to live in the past, all the new smoke and vape shops, are going to eat your lunch,” says Elie Y. Katz, President and CEO of National Retail Solutions. “You need to be proactive — you need know your customers and give them rewards, you need to have extensive knowledge of your inventory levels and your profits and losses — you need to be educated about your business, and that’s why you need a modern POS system.”
Katz knows first-hand. It started with prepaid long distance phone cards distributed by parent company IDT. Being that independent convenience stores are the major sellers of phone cards, it gave ITD and NRS a unique perspective on the realities of those businesses. What they needed most was a POS specifically tailored to their unique businesses.
The answer NRS came up with is the POS+ , which they call , “The Ultimate All-in-One Point of Sale System.” The state-of-the-art terminal, which includes customer and retailer facing displays, scanner and beacon technologies, enable retailers to offer and accept electronic coupons and special offers from on popular brands of specialty products. These promotions are targeted to the retailers’ existing customers, plus over 3.2 million members of NRS’ popular BR Club nationwide rewards program. The specialty POS software provides merchants with easy-to-use resources to control costs, optimize inventory, and process transactions efficiently. There’s even an app that gives owners the ability to remotely access the terminal to check on sales and inventory, see which products are selling and manage who is using the register.
Knowledge is Power
Having up to date information about profits and losses and inventory levels is a key to small business success. This is one of the more obvious benefits you can get from your point-of-sale system which can automatically reconcile your stock count after each transaction. This immediate info also helps retailers offer top-notch customer service. Access this data to answer on-the-spot products queries from customers.
NRS also offers couponing and loyalty program which provides customer-centric data such as when their last visit was and what was purchased. Its valuable insight that helps retailers to create a very personalized customer experience — say, the POS tells you that it’s been a few visits since they purchased e-juice — well, now you can remind them that it might be about time for a refill.
Because the POS system has a dual facing screen, it has the unique ability to “talk” to both clerk and customer. On the customer side, the active display can promote sales and even play commercials. The person ringing up the sale might be alerted to a SKU which requires ID verification.
One of the newest benefits to tobacco and smoke and vape retailers is that NRS has partnered with Altria in the tobacco company’s Scan Data Reporting Program that offers rebates to those who submit transaction-level scan data from their POS on a daily basis. Enrollment in these programs also entitle retailers to take advantage of other programs such as multi-pack discounts and loyalty incentives.
Service is another area where NRS excels. NRS deploys the majority of their POS systems with in-person setup and training, and then keeps the support going with a very active customer service program. There’s even an online resource, CampNRS.com, with training videos on everything from installation to software updates.
Knowing that credit card processors have been pushing away from retailers that sell CBD products, NRS solved that issue with their own in-house payment processing services. The NRS Pay® credit card payment services accepts all major payment forms and charges a flat rate of 2.49 percent, plus 10 cents per purchase. Businesses that process over $20,000 every month can save even more money on their charges. The POS+ card reader comes free with a three-year agreement.
“The one underlying theme that we’ve created is that we made our system affordable and extremely user-friendly with every tool an independent retailer needs to be successful,” Katz says.
“If you want to thrive, if you want to stay competitive, if you want to treat your customers with a personalized shopping experience, then you need a point of sale system that’s going to keep up with the times.” Katz adds. “There are thousands of POS systems available, but National Retail Solutions offers the only one specifically designed with convenience stores and smoke and vape shops in mind.”