A small retail business like a mom-and-pop store has a hard time competing because customers have many options to get what they want.
However, with the right processes, it’s possible for a small retail business to thrive even amidst competition. To accomplish this, they will need the right technology in place – for example, EPOS systems.
With so much competition in the marketplace, it’s important for a small retail business to tighten their processes, especially when managing stock levels. Retailers need to take a look at their inventory management and demand forecasting practices, to make sure they are maintaining a perfect balance when ordering stock. Maintaining that balance is crucial – order too much of one good and you will have a large portion of your finances tied up into one asset. If the demand for that product falls, then you will incur a loss. On the other hand, if you do not have sufficient stock of the product, you will lose customers. To prevent this from happening, you need to be precise in managing your stock levels.
Inventory management is much easier to pull off with EPOS systems. Owners of a small retail business use pen-and-paper or Excel sheets for inventory management. However, EPOS software makes the process easier because it offers several functionalities not found in Excel. You can track inventory (even across multiple locations) and will be notified instantly if your stock levels are too low. Moreover, you can use the analytics features in the system to prevent errors in inventory management like excess orders.
Demand forecasting is one of the most important processes a small retail business can perform if they wish to stay competitive. EPOS systems can help tremendously with demand forecasting because many systems come with complex analytics programs that collect and breakdown sales information. As an owner, you can break down your sales data into hundreds of reports such as sales per item, sales per hour and so much more. With accurate demand forecasting, it’s easier to anticipate demand, making it easier to find the perfect balance, when ordering stock.
Communication is the key to success, especially for a small retail business. Businesses should have the means to efficiently communicate with suppliers and customers to compete. Getting the word out to customers is crucial if you want to stay one step ahead of your competition.
The best way to get the word out to customers about discounts, special offers and the latest products on offer via email or SMS. Hence, why an EPOS system is so crucial because the software collects information on customers from previous transactions. The information can be used to better understand your customer base to develop more effective marketing campaigns, making it easier to compete in the long-run.
Communication with suppliers is also made easier due to better demand forecasting and inventory management practices. Some EPOS systems will even send notifications either to you or directly to your vendor when stocks reach a certain level. Thus, you can communicate with your supplier, well before the stock runs out.
Cash management is one of the most important areas for any small retail business. EPOS systems help tremendously because they come with several functionalities that improve cash flow management. Features include cash reports, variance reports and cash lift functionality. With these features, you can store money in a secure area, monitor the flow of cash, know instantly how much money is in the till and even compare available cash against sales reports, to make sure that employees are not stealing your money. Better cash management makes it easier for smaller businesses to compete.
A small retail business faces stiff competition, but with the right assets, they can compete and thrive. To compete, they need to invest in an EPOS system because it provides several functions like better inventory management, easier communication, demand forecasting, cash management and easier marketing. Thus, with the right EPOS software, smaller retailers can attract more customers, while making processes more efficiently, all of which is necessary to be more competitive.
If you wish to learn more about how retail businesses can thrive, visit the eposEX blog.