Small Business Can Compete

Small Business Can Compete

Most small business owners ask themselves is ” will I be able to compete against my big box store and online competition?” When we hear the name Ace Hardware we may not always think about them being a small local business. In fact, each location is owned and operated by members of our local communities. You will notice that each Ace store has varying selections because the owners are empowered to make their own purchasing decisions. Inventory is not dictated by a corporate office, allowing each location to offer the right products and prices for their local community.

Ace Wins Big!

Locally owned and operated Ace Hardware stores throughout the country, have out-ranked Lowe’s, Home Depot and Menards as the favorite home improvement retailer. The small town hardware store achieved an incredible composite loyalty score of 63% in a Market Force Information study.  They beat the Big Box stores!

Of the four companies selected Ace Hardware’s score was 63%. The remaining competitors were  Menards 60%, Lowes 55% and Home Depot 51%. A poll of more than 7800 consumers was used to determine the home improvement rankings.  Ace Hardware was strong in most categories, especially ease in finding merchandise, knowledgeable and service-driven staff, and speedy checkouts.

Small Business Works For The D.I.Y. Consumer

The study also shows that 60% of the consumers polled consider themselves “DIY enthusiasts. Those are the consumers who make their own purchases and complete their own home improvement projects.  As for the “do-it-for-me” group, 22% purchase the material and outsource the work.

Home improvement could be a bright light in the retail sector with remodeling  projects on the rise and consumers more confident about investing in their homes,”  says Ray Walsh, CEO of Market Force Information,  “…retailers must continue to focus on the customer experience to differentiate their offer and capture a greater share of this growing market, excelling  in areas such as value, store cleanliness and merchandise variety and availability.”

Card Systems understands the challenges of small to medium-sized businesses. One of the most complicated tasks is to determine what system is right for me? Whether you’re in need of a basic credit card terminal, the point of sale system, integrated solution, or need to take payments online, we can help you choose the right solution for your business.  Call today 866.207.3298 or email for more information how we can increase your business efficiency and workflow.

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Reference:
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HBS Dealer

Did your PCI scan fail?

Did your PCI scan fail?

 

Have you failed your PCI scan?  Here’s a quick tip that may be helpful.  If your ISP (Internet Service Provider) is Comcast or CenturyLink, they have an app you can download to your phone instead of making a phone call to them.

Has your modem been updated?  If not, contact your ISP by the app on your phone and ask them to update your modem to the latest version.  If it has, ask them to refresh it.  This can all be done remotely and may help upgrade your SSL (Secure Socket Layer).  As always, don’t hesitate to contact us if you have questions regarding your PCI DSS.

Prevent Business Loss with Employee Background Screening and Accountability

Prevent Business Loss with Employee Background Screening and Accountability

Businesses who sell gift cards must have “checks and balances” in place whether they are selling them by cash or credit card. Business owners should always  ensure their employees are giving a receipt for gift cards, especially if the customer is making a purchase in cash. Here’s a local news story where an employee pocketed cash for gift cards she “ran” through the system as $0.00. She gave the customers the cards telling them the card was loaded  rather than giving the customers a receipt. The employee – who is now in jail – would pocket the cash.

By doing your due diligence, having all employees background screened, and proper checks and balances in place, this loss for over $3,000 could have been prevented.  Check out this article. http://www.winknews.com/2016/02/11/professional-thief-costs-naples-restaurant-thousands/

Could your business survive this kind of setback and brand damage? With a minimal investment in background screening and proper procedures in place, you can walk away from your business knowing your employees can be trusted and accountable.

Wouldn’t you want to know what’s going on in your business sooner than later? The first thing you want to know is, “who am I hiring?” A background check will help  business owners answer that question.  Remember, your gift cards will become a billboard carried in your customers wallet.  Make sure you are receiving the revenue.

Don’t be the next victim

Don’t be the next victim

 

 

Here we are at the end of December and all we have been talking about since August is EMV (European Master Card and Visa).  The news has been chocked full of situations where credit cards are still being skimmed and fraudulently used. Here is an NBC2 News Report where a local Cape Coral woman watched her email and text alerts as her Pay Pal Debit card was racking up transactions at a Toys R Us, Best Buy and local merchants. There wasn’t a thing she could do about it. Crooks aren’t stupid.   They pounce and prey when they know the time is right.  In this case it was Christmas, so she was unable to stop these fraudulent charges.  It’s a shame this woman had to spend her Christmas worrying about these transactions. Fortunately she heard back from Pay Pal and will not be responsible for these charges.

Who will be responsible?  The merchants in Lee County without a chip reader will bear the loss here.  What a perfect time to upgrade and protect your business and clients.  Also, help your year-end tax bill with your Section 179 expenditure.

This white collar crime is on the rise and it’s more profitable and less risky than dealing drugs. We encourage not only our customers but all merchants to process their transactions securely on an EMV terminal.  Don’t let your business or your customers suffer. It’s no way to bring in the New Year.

Call us today at (239) 549-5055.

Penny Wise and Dollar Foolish

 

I’m realizing that merchants are not taking EMV aka European Master Card and Visa very seriously. CSI along with our sister company eGuarded, had the pleasure of displaying our wares at the Tampa Boat Show this past weekend. I determined in conversations with merchants that they really don’t care and are not the least bit concerned about the impact EMV can have on their business. Paddleboard, Jelly, Coolie, and Retail Clothing vendors at this show all think that these systems the Square, Pay Pal, and Intuit meet their needs just fine. GUESS WHAT, this is a whole new ball game!

EMV needs to be understood more clearly. Merchants are delusional to think that since they haven’t received charge backs before they won’t see any now. Here’s an example of an EMV repercussion: Say a customer purchases goods and/or services from your establishment that’s just swiping pin and chip cards, those customers can easily say, “That wasn’t me who made that purchase.” The bank is then going to pass that charge back through you (the merchant) by taking back those funds immediately and asking questions later. Can your business survive?

Each vendor I spoke with said they are supposed to have a chip reader by the end of the year. I said, “Really? You’re going to go through the busiest shopping season of the year and put your business at risk?” Maybe the Jelly and Coolie vendor won’t take that big a hit because their average ticket is lower, but what about the Paddleboard vendor who’s selling $1500.00 Paddleboards? We all know businesses never have any fraud over the Holidays.

I encourage you to think twice. Protect your business investment. The ROI on an EMV system like the Clover™ Mobile would pay for itself in a heartbeat. Whether you contact us or your current processor demand that your business be protected with EMV supported devices immediately. Don’t be Penny Wise and Dollar Foolish?