Get Your Business Blooming with Garden Center POS

Written by Lauren Valensky

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If you run a garden center, you'll know it takes more than selling shears to be a cut above the rest. Following the pandemic and the resulting closure of their in-store cafes, garden center owners have been seeking new ways to manage their businesses from a more retail-focused perspective. One such method, which has increased in popularity during recent years, is investing in a POS system.

POS systems can help track sales, manage stock, and even improve customer service. But while a variety of systems are available, it's worth knowing what your business needs explicitly before choosing one. 

Below, we explore the fundamental features you should look for in a garden center POS system, so you don't have to do any digging.

What is a POS system?

POS (or point of sale) is a computerized system composed of hardware and software designed to help run your business more efficiently. These systems allow you to manage each element of your business and keep track of your business insights with greater accuracy than manual systems.

Where traditional till systems record sales alone, POS systems record this transactional information and generate detailed reports in response to the data that's put in.  

What features should your garden center POS system include?

The best POS systems provide a variety of valuable features that work to improve productivity levels within your business. While they can differ depending on the size and objectives of your company, there are some staple features you should always consider when choosing a system for your garden center:

Stock management:

Since most garden centers only provide in-store shopping, good stock management is at the root of your business' success. With few options for purchasing online, customers have a higher expectation that their desired item/s will be available in-store.

In addition, opening for longer hours to accommodate this increased footfall leaves more time for your stock to get misplaced or mixed up.

However, when you use a POS system for garden center retail, keeping track of stock couldn't be easier. With features like multi-location inventory management, you can see the exact number of each product you have in every department.

The system should also allow you to view exactly where items are located on the shop floor through the use of handheld devices, such as Epos Now's Pro Wireless & Bluetooth 2D scanner

POS software can also help you keep track of your inventory by alerting you when stocks are running low, as well as providing an option for automated purchasing. The latter is especially useful if you're a garden center owner, as seasonal products will make up a large portion of your stock.

Not having an adequate amount of the right product, as well as having a surplus of unnecessary stock, can significantly wither your profits. These retail solutions can help prevent unnecessary wastage and allow your business to be profitable, in and out of season.   

Taking payments:

Don't pay the price for poor queue management. With customers often purchasing large plants and pots, garden centers are prone to long waiting times at the checkout. To combat this, your POS system should be able to take all major debit and credit cards as well as contactless payments.

This will make it easier for customers to pay and help you avoid a build-up at the till. Typically, complete retail POS systems include a cash drawer, a card reader, and a receipt printer, along with the till itself. 

On the till, you can select the 'card' option to offer chip and pin, eWallet, and contactless payments after the transaction total is calculated automatically. 

Additionally, some POS systems can also show cashiers any up-to-date discounts and special offers that may be available. This minimizes the opportunity for human error and ultimately helps retain your customers by providing an even quicker payment process. 

Customer relationship management (CRM):

Considering garden centres are one of the top sources for customer advice (with 37% of customers choosing to visit to ask questions). as a garden center owner, it's important to cultivate your customer service strategy[1].

POS systems are great for improving customer service, as their handheld components allow staff members to quickly identify items that have been reserved or are on hold. This can speed up the buying process.

Additionally, garden centers tend to get busy with customers attempting to find specific plants. With a POS system, your staff can easily identify the location of each product.

This also allows them to communicate any issues they may have more efficiently so that quick replacements can be made.

Since your staff will have access to the stock levels of each department, they can address customer queries that are outside of their section or direct expertise. You can also include pictures of each product to help with employee training and efficiency. 

Good CRM is key to building long-term relationships with your patrons. The garden center POS system you choose should also offer a customer database, which you can use to record customer data such as name, address, contact details, and purchase history. 

Analytics and reports:

You don't want to find out how your business is performing through the grapevine, so it's important to track your retail KPIs (key performance indicators) to take full advantage of the available data.

A POS system lets you keep up-to-date records of sales, margins, staff performance, and other key metrics that allow you to measure your business' success.

Your system should also have the capability to run accessible and user-friendly reports for these figures whenever necessary, which will allow you to see what's working and what isn't.

This way, you can tailor your business to exactly what customers want, allowing you to budget more accurately and identify problem areas within your retail space before they become an issue.

Business integration apps:

Though having a POS system plants your business at the top in terms of efficiency, it doesn't have to stop there. The system you choose for your garden center should also allow you to integrate external business applications. 

If there's a specific app for an industry-specific task, such as online ordering, invoicing, or stock management, you can use it with your POS system to make your life easier.

Apps like Xero and QuickBooks, for example, are perfect for tallying up your finances and ensuring that all of your data is stored in one place, which is essential for business owners.

Ultimately, integrating apps ensures you have the tools and data available at all times to manage everything from product pricing to customer service in real-time across multiple platforms.

Loyalty functions:

Considering 80% of millennials and almost 75% of baby boomers prefer getting rewards for their engagement with favorite brands, the POS system you choose for your garden center should have loyalty functions [2].

This could be anything from a simple stamp card to a sophisticated system that records customer data and allows you to offer targeted rewards or points each time a customer makes a purchase.

When your patrons feel appreciated, it incentivizes them to give you repeat custom.

Whichever POS system you decide to invest in, make sure it includes these features to maximize your garden center's profitability and see your business blossom.

Don't get your hands dirty - let Epos Now take care of business.

Epos Now offers award-winning POS systems for retail businesses. We provide state-of-the-art software, allowing you to choose the tools and analytics that work best for you.

Designed to assist complete business management, you can control all vital aspects of your company from one cloud-based system. With Epos Now, you can focus on what's important - your business and your customers.

  • Review profitability reports based on individual product performance, trending items, best and worst sellers, and employee sales.
  • Automate stock purchasing, so you never miss a sales opportunity
  • Integrate with the business automation apps that are right for your business
  • Boost retention rates using customer management systems, like loyalty programs and targeted marketing campaigns.

If you'd like to learn more about our industry-leading software, request a free call back from one of our experts today.

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