Help your garden centre through turbulent times with an EPoS system
Garden retail in the UK has an estimated market value of £5 billion, because garden centres today are more than just a place to buy plants. Today a visit to the garden centre is a day out for our nation of garden lovers and the chance to create an out doors life style. Plants and plant care products, garden furniture and appliances, bbqs and luxury gifts as well as farm shop foods and a restaurant, are just some of the services enjoyed across the 2,500 garden retailers operating in the UK right now.
As well as the challenges faced with selling a lifestyle, garden centres are also dealing with the issues of being a seasonal business, and the need to stock fast sellers and clear out slow sellers before the season ends. With such demand placed on them, EPoS has become a pressing business need. Whether you are an all singing, all dancing garden centre or just a simple plant merchant, as consumers’ expectations increase, so does the need to provide better delivery of service. A personalised, fast, efficient, ever more sophisticated service is now required and Epos systems offer a way to achieve this.
At their most basic level EPoS systems offer a thorough product inventory that enables the garden retailer to scan items at till point. However, at their best EPoS systems have the capability to save retailers money and time, and increase productivity through intuitive reporting and stock management.
Let’s look at the helpful features you can expect to find in an EPoS system:
- Cash, card or cashless payments
Methods of payment are rapidly becoming more and more advanced creating a very simple way for consumers to shop. EPoS systems are up to date with the multiple methods of payment so you can welcome customers to pay by cash, card or even cashless options like their mobile phone.
- Customer loyalty
Reward your customers with a loyalty card that offers discounts or vouchers, and manage it using your EPoS system. Store a comprehensive database of loyalty offers and customer details and also capture details for targeted email marketing.
Automatic promotional campaigns are so much easier to manage, than trying to run and track them yourself. EPoS systems can hold information for happy hours, bogofs, 2 for 1s or mix ‘n’ match; you simply enter the promotion details and the system administers the campaign form start to finish. Potential errors and confusion at the till are a thing of the past.
- Garden gift vouchers
Garden gift vouchers are a must have for many garden centres and therefore the ability to both sell and accept them is needed. EPoS systems can manage vouchers as if they are stock and tender, making it easy for staff to order more in for sales and to also accept them as payment.
- Product labels
Gone are the days where you manually have to look up items to check for pricing. Now you can simply create bespoke labels with key information and a barcode for all your products which can be scanned at the till point. The system will automatically bring up the correct price for your product and apply any discounts or promotions.
- Stock searches
Do you have any white geraniums in stock and what time of year do I plant them? Erm. Not all your staff will be able to answer every customer scenario, but don’t worry with an EPoS system it’s easy to search and view stock information so that they can give an informative and helpful response.
- Mobile, hand held devices
You can count the pallets, rummage through the green house or walk the shelves with mobile hand held devices and enter your stock, delivery or order data in the way that works best for the set up of your garden centre.
- Ordering and processing
Forget counting how many plants, seeds, pots and the like, that you have left in stock. Just ask your EPoS system. Through the power of a sea of product sales data, it knows how many of each item is left in stock. It can automatically place an order for items that are low in stock, so that you’ll never fall short.
- Short date tracking
Products with short shelf lives like foods and seasonal plants can be tracked and flagged so that you can reduce the price before the product before it goes out of date and is unable to be sold.
- Sales data
With so many new product introductions into the garden centre today, managers need to regularly review sales data to see which items are performing, and to strategise sales for the future. Epos systems can tell you which products and product groups are the best and worst sellers at given times of the year. They can also relate this information to measures such as the amount of floor space so you can work out where best to place something in store and how much room to allow.
- Management reports
You can stay on top of your business through real time reporting that covers your stock, supplier and sales data across plant, gift, restaurant and furniture areas. Run reports by, hour, day, week or month, and know your top selling products, live stock levels, product wastage and how to best manage it across the seasons.
With so many features found in an EPoS system, it won’t take long for your garden centre to benefit from these great advantages:
- Faster service
Scanning items via an Epos system significantly speeds up customer service, and speed of service is a basic customer expectation. In effect your staff will have more time to deliver a higher level of service and go out of their way to answer a customers needs.
- Growing revenue
The combination of improved processes and intuitive sales techniques can maximise your garden centre’s revenue. Sales promotions, automated procedures, accurate reports and more customer satisfaction all help to line your pocket.
- Reduced shrinkage
With the use of reports managers can see exactly where they are losing time, stock and space. An EPoS system can help to reduce waste and find results.
- Seasonal planning
You can use the EPoS reporting tool to extract seasonal sales data to help you make predictions and plan for future seasons. Making the right decisions is crucial during turbulent times in the garden retail market; you can’t predict the weather, but getting as much right as possible will ease the strain.
- Improved customer service
The ability to offer multiple services within your garden centre and run loyalty schemes will certainly increase customer satisfaction and make your environment a popular place to visit.
Talk to our EPoS system providers today about your garden centre business needs.
Click here to get a free quote for your EPoS system.