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7 Must-Have Tools For Retail Stores

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Retail is a dynamic and fast-moving industry. Choosing the right systems is crucial in running an efficient retail store. We’ve rounded up seven must-have tools to help with every aspect of running a retail store. 

Count Foot Traffic: Dor 

Dor is an easy-to-install device that counts foot traffic and measures conversion rates. It is a battery-operated thermal-sensing device that’s placed above your store’s entrance. Because it doesn’t require any wiring or complicated setup, it can be installed in minutes. 

From the data collected, you can see how well you are engaging customers by the number of conversions and sales generated. Dor even tracks the weather so you can see how changes in weather affect your retail store foot traffic

Point-of-Sale: Vend 

Vend is a mobile point-of-sale (POS) app that can be used in-store and on-the-go at pop-up stores, trade shows, and events. Vend is designed to be used on an iPad so your sales staff can move around the store and process transactions on the spot. 

Vend POS can be connected to a receipt printer and barcode scanner. You can download it on to a desktop PC to use as a counter register. Vend also features an inventory control system that keeps track of your stock and automatically generates stock orders when supplies are low. 

Internal Communication: Zipline 

If you have a chain of stores, communicating with everyone at the same time can be difficult. Zipline is a tool designed specifically for retail to improve internal communication and boost productivity. Create tasks and checklists, send messages, chat live to other stores, and track the progress of tasks on one app. 

All staff at headquarters and in stores has access to the app, eliminating delays in communication. This means that tasks, such as price markdowns or promotions, planned for the next day can be implemented promptly. Well-known retailer, Gap Inc., reported that the execution of next-day tasks jumped from 30% to 90% after implementing Zipline. 

Staff Management: Tanda 

Your retail store is nothing without your staff. Managing staff is a big part of every store manager’s job. Tanda makes it easier by centralizing all staff management functions like staff onboarding, implementing schedules, time clock management, tracking attendance, and leave management. 

Tanda also integrates with certain payroll software, like Quickbooks, Xero, and ADP. It features a live wage tracker so that you can monitor wage costs in real-time throughout the day and adjust staffing levels for more profitable shifts. Tanda also has a useful resource library with labor law policies to help you meet compliance regulations. 

Marketing Automation: Marsello 

The retail industry is highly competitive. One of the most effective marketing strategies to increase revenue is to target existing customers. Your chances of selling to an existing customer are 60-70% compared to 5-20% with a new customer. Marsello is designed to help retailers with customer retention. 

Building trust and loyalty is the key to bringing customers back. With Marsello, you’ll be able to implement loyalty and rewards programs, VIP programs, and set up email marketing campaigns. If you also sell online, Marsello integrates with e-commerce sites like Shopify and BigCommerce and features conversion tools like abandoned cart reminders. 

Payroll Management: ADP 

If you don’t have a dedicated HR person or department, the onus lies on you, the business owner, to pay staff. Manually inputting time card data, keeping track of overtime, and calculating payroll taxes are all time-consuming tasks that take you away from customers and other profit-generating tasks. 

ADP is a payroll and HR software with features that include direct deposit, automatic payroll tax filing, and W-2 submissions. You can also easily manage the administration of benefits, retirement funds, group health insurance, and worker’s compensation. 

Retail Audit: Repsly 

If you supply products to other retailers, e.g. food products to supermarkets, you rely on field reps to conduct audits at those stores and report on how many items have been sold, at what price, and which items are out of stock. Doing this manually can lead to errors, and relaying this data at the end of a day or week means you lose revenue when shelves are not restocked in a timely fashion. 

Repsly is a retail audit tool designed to help field reps accurately capture where and how products were sold and execute in-store displays and promotions. The app features barcode and UPC scanning for easy data capturing. It provides real-time feedback so that action can be taken quickly to restock shelves at your shop. 

Brick And Mortar Is Still Big Business

Brick-and-mortar stores are not dead. The reports of retail's death is greatly exaggerated. In fact, research shows that 82% of millennials, who are avid online shoppers, still prefer shopping at a physical store. However, the way people shop has changed. Most expect an integrated and seamless experience. Using the above retail tools can help you run your store more efficiently so that customers want to return time after time.

Deevra Norling is a content writer who covers topics such as career, entrepreneurship, small business, e-commerce, retail, software, CRM, human resources, automobiles and driving, HVAC systems, and travel. Visit her website deevranorling.com or connect with her on Twitter @DeevraNorling.