Do I pick a Local Merchant Service Provider or My Bank?  

Do I pick a Local Merchant Service Provider or My Bank?  

Choosing your Merchant Services Provider should be at the top of the list when opening a business

Banks try to “simplify” the task for you by offering their in-house services. However, is the bank really better for your company than a Local Merchant Service Provider? The answer is no; the bank itself is just a large-scale Merchant Service Provider.

While banks offer some of the same services that a Local Merchant Provider does like their own POS System and credit card readers, your Local Merchant Provider typically carries a larger variety of POS Systems. They make sure you never feel lost in the sea of merchants and almost always provide better service over the phone or in person. It is their core business to service your processing needs.

Bank of America Merchant Services and most Banks are just resellers that outsource customer service, leaving the merchant without immediate help if a problem occurs because the technology doesn’t typically belong to them. They are just reselling merchant processing along with their other bank services.

Technology is Key

The technology doesn’t always belong to the Local Merchant Provider either, but they take the time to learn the products that they are selling. For example, Card Systems has teamed up with business solutions merchants like Clover and Sound Payments, and others to help businesses directly and never leave you without support. In fact, last year they purchased an ownership interest in Edgeserv POS  to help local restaurants provide a better overall dining experience.

Fees can be difficult to determine

In addition to the customer service not reaching the public’s standards, bank reviews reflected that banks can be deceptive in claiming lower rates. They try to say their rates cannot be beaten, but they just waive certain bank fees while raising prices on other services.

Pricing seems to even out or be more favorable from your Local Merchant Service Provider when unexpected fees begin showing up on the bank’s merchant statements.  Businesses also ran into undisclosed contracts and high termination fees when the services were no longer needed.

3 main takeaways:

  1. Do your research before choosing your Merchant Service Provider
  2. Know what your business really needs
  3. Make sure your Merchant Service Provider is available when you need them (not just 9-5)

A 200-seat restaurant and a 7-table coffee shop do not need the same processing services, but they both need quality services. You want your customers to feel safe when making payments while at the same time make maximum profit from the transactions. Don’t overpay for services and technology you don’t need and make sure your provider is always available to help when you need it.

Are you ready for Father’s Day with Gift Cards?

Are you ready for Father’s Day with Gift Cards?

The number one impulse gift is a gift card.  Are you offering gift cards to your customers?

This is an excellent way to promote your business and create additional revenue at the same time. Successful business owners know this and prepare well in advance of every holiday.   But wait….don’t forget birthdays, actually, they are the number one Holiday so keep refreshing your displays

  • Display Gift Cards everywhere. Dress up your store and make sure people see them. This is the easiest and most effective way to market your gift cards
  • Advertise on your table Tents
  • Send an email to your customers via Mailchimp or Constant Contact
  • Have a drawing weekly to collect names and give away
  • Add gift cards or e-gift cards to your website and all your social media sites

Here are ways to promote your Gift Cards for Father’s Day and all year long. Check out our Gift Card tips.

We have the supplies you need for your gift cards: Gift Card holders, presenters, table tents (we will design) gift card signage to help you promote your gift cards, and more.

Gift Cards – You Still Have Time!

Gift Cards – You Still Have Time!

How can you sell more this season?

Gift cards continue to be the #1 gift given and also the #1 gift most people want to receive.  E-gift cards and Mobile Gift cards are becoming more popular than ever and you can begin selling these cards today! Especially with so many people using their mobile devices for everything these days.  Not only e-gift cards are easy to buy and send, but they are also instantly delivered or they can be ordered ahead of time.

3 Quick Tips to sell more gift cards this year

Add Value
Offer an additional bonus gift card with a large purchase or in addition to a $50-$100 gift card purchase. This is another great way to acquire new customers. A mere $10 or $20 free gift card is an inexpensive way to increase your customer base since most people give the free card away to friends or family. There is a reason the big box stores have huge banners up this time of year!
Creating Impulse Gifts
Give your customers a “grab and go” option at check-out with your cards in a basket or simple gift bag.  A bottle of wine and pasta in a basket or maybe some chocolates with a plate on display will appeal to your customers. Get creative, and have fun with it!  You have a captive audience and visualization always sells more gift cards.  Customers love the time savings of not having to wrap it themselves or think of items to add. Your gift cards fly off the shelves and your sales will skyrocket!  Not to mention the new business you will gain from the recipients of these gift cards.
Advertise e-Gift Cards Everywhere
Use banners outside or notices on your doors, and a fun display at your check out counter.  Also, don’t forget social media…with a simple QR code directing them to your website to order e-gift cards, mobile or plastic gift cards online!
We are all pressed for time these days and just by making it easy for your customers to order with gift ideas or different methods of delivery, you will create the “WOW” factor and be remembered!  Last year Statista reported retail sales were projected to amount to $6.03 trillion in 2022!
EdgeServ’s Pay at the Table

EdgeServ’s Pay at the Table

EdgeServ POS Releases Version 2020.5 with Pay at the Table Applications, Utilizing the PAX A920

SARASOTA, FL – EdgeServ POS today announced the release of version 2020.5 – with their exciting new, fully integrated, Pay at the Table solution.

This release utilizes the PAX A920 and an EdgeServ PAX App that is downloaded to the device from the Pax Store.

  • The app interfaces with the POS system to allow a restaurant employee to log in and select a ticket for payment.
  • The employee can accept the card from the guest, process the payment, and print vouchers for tip and signature from the device printer.
  • The employee can also select the ticket and hand the device to the customer for the customer to complete the payment.

In addition, the 2020.5 release includes an Offline Store and Forward feature on the PAX A920, for the times that internet or communications to the processor are lost.

Gyula Lukacs, CEO of EdgeServ POS, said, “We are excited to release EdgeServ 2020.5, with our new Pay at the Table features.  This true Pay at the Table application is something that restauranteurs, customers, and the reseller community alike have wanted and needed in the hospitality marketplace.   Because of our reseller strategy and payment agnostic solutions, we strongly believe EdgeServ is the best product for POS Resellers.

Michael Tash, VP, Customer Relations of Frederick, MD based Essential Systems Solutions, said, “True Pay at the Table will help our local restaurants be more efficient as well as making their guests feel safer”

Chandra Spary-Kontinos, CEO, Card Systems, Inc./EdgeServ SWFL said, “EdgeServ’s Pay at the Table eliminates the need for a waiter or waitress to hand over their iPad and their customer’s card never leaves the table or their hand.”

Yassar Vargas – POS Channel Manager – TechXmart LLC  said, “One more step into the future!”

About EdgeServ POS:

Founded in 2013, EdgeServ (formerly known as Synetouch) is based in Sarasota, FL. In 2019, a group of passionate veteran resellers acquired an ownership interest in the product and rebranded as EdgeServ POS.

EdgeServ 2020.5 is a completely redesigned point of sale restaurant software solution created for resellers by resellers who have decades of point of sale industry experience.

Through the Reseller Collaboration Company, EdgeServ POS offers a reseller program that enables new resellers to earn ownership in the company. “VARs can now earn equity in the product that they sell and support. This provides a great opportunity for resellers to increase the value of their business,” said Hunter Allen, President of Cervion Systems, an EdgeServ POS reseller and a member of the Reseller Collaboration Company.

 

Restaurants Pivoting with Technology

Restaurants Pivoting with Technology

 Chef Adrianne Calvo’s Miami restaurant is thriving during a pandemic and she also opened a new restaurant last summer as well.

See her interview and tips for restaurants of all sizes.

Pivoting

When many restaurants were feeling the pain, and giving up, Adrianne Calvo of Chef Adrianne’s in Miami, morphed her business.  “We were pivoting on a drop of a dime”.   When only takeout was allowed, we only did take out; when seating was only allowed outside, we conformed. They did the best they could to serve their clients by following the guidelines. Given the restrictions in Dade county, a hot spot, they persevered.  The key was following those guidelines, keeping their customers safe, and staying connected through social media.

Her advice is to “stick to it and remember why you opened your restaurant in the first place, it’s not easy and you must act fast”. They shifted their focus and indeed acted fast.  As long as we persevere we will survive, people will always want to socialize and celebrate.

She created 200 new jobs and, in June, opened her new restaurant by defying the odds.  She never thought she would open these restaurants as take-out establishments and now, she is more successful than ever.

What can you learn from Calvo?

  • Stay positive and pivot your business
  • Offer take-out, curbside, or create pre-prepared food for customers to cook at home
  • Stay connected via social media and display your menu online
  • Collect data to offer specials for anniversaries, birthdays, and holidays
  • Make your establishment feel safe and clean
  • Optimize your staff with an efficient POS System

Chef Adrianne reminds us that people will always want to “celebrate birthdays, anniversaries, milestones and just everyday living”. Let’s face it we are social creatures and we will get back to a new normal, whatever that is.

How will you as a restaurant owner pivot?  Will you grow your business or change your business model?  The choice is yours and we are here to help you grow as we navigate these times together, call us or email us.

Six Quick Marketing Tips For Special Occasions

Six Quick Marketing Tips For Special Occasions

Marketing Tips for 2020

Have you started a marketing plan for 2020 yet? Valentine’s Day is already upon us. Why not start with this simple blueprint for success every holiday and special occasion. Each year you will look polished by taking it to the next level. We can help you make all these ideas flow together with one easy-to-use system.

Decorate Your Website, Social Media Sites and Physical Location

Decorate your website, social media, or storefront to draw attention to your business during the holidays and special occasions. It doesn’t take much effort to add a banner, adjust your store window design, or incorporate festive packaging into your sales. Small acts of festivity will make your customers feel they are acting on a time-limited opportunity.

Create a Holiday-Focused Marketing Campaign

Using videos or holiday-themed campaigns can be extremely useful and should not be overlooked during the season. Thanks to modern technology, creating a short video or online poster can be done in no time.

Stock up on Gift Cards and Place Visual Everywhere

Gift card sales in the United States were approximately $160 billion in 2018, and sales continue to increase every year. It’s essential to stock up on gift cards and make them available at your customer’s reach.

Invest in a New Point of Sale System or update your old one

According to the National Retail Federation, Holiday sales during 2019 were expected to increase between 3.8% and 4.2% over 2018. Overall, holiday sales represent approximately 20% of annual sales per year, which means that if you don’t know what your percentages are, its time you invested in a POS System! A Point of Sale System not only tracks your sales, inventory, and employees but also gives you a complete ordering history to make future purchases faster and more intuitive.

Give a Holiday Gift with every order

A great way to inspire customer loyalty is to offer a gift with each purchase. This can be something as small as a coupon, information, product, or even a token of your company. The idea is to make your customers feel included in the celebration.

Offer a Sale

An easy and smart way to encourage company growth is through holiday sales. Days such as Cyber Monday are great opportunities for companies to increase profit through sales. All you need to do is plan what you will put on sale before the holiday is upon us and start doing some Digital Marketing or even some print mailers. Some companies also go the extra mile and offer presales to exclusive club members. Yet another perfect reason to use a POS System to capture valuable customer information. These kinds of loyalty perks inspire potential customers to invest in your company and keep customers coming back for more.

Remember we don’t plan, to fail we fail to plan!