Gift Cards Are the Perfect Gift

Gift Cards Are the Perfect Gift

Regardless of what the reason or for any season; gift cards are the perfect gift.

On the off chance that your business doesn’t offer gift cards, it might be the ideal opportunity for you to think about it.  Retail and restaurants alike benefit immensely.

With Mother’s Day just around the corner, what better way to show your appreciation than with a gift card?

Have you ever at any point received a gift that just didn’t fit?  So what do you do with it?  Do you set it aside someplace where it will never be used again?  Do you re-gift?  We have all been there.  Be a trendsetter.

Gift cards are also the perfect marketing tool to get people into your business. Get creative, if someone spends $25.00 in your establishment give them a $5 gift card to come back and shop. If you’re a restaurant, consider discounting a $50 gift card to $45 that really makes the purchaser feel as if though they are getting more bang for their buck.

As a business owner another thing to consider is what is known as breakage. Breakage is when the business sells a gift card that doesn’t get redeemed Talk about, “FREE MONEY”!  This happens more than you think.

Gift cards are no longer just your standard plastic cards. Of course that is one way to sell them, but now businesses can take advantage of technology and sell them on their website, Facebook and even via text.

Even more reasons to offer gift cards:

  • Customers shopping with gift cards are less price–sensitive and often pay full price
  • Compete with national brands
  • Create new business and increase sales today
  • Reward your current customer with a gift card. Visible gift cards can increase sales by 35%-50%

In addition to Mother’s Day coming up, you’ve got Graduations, weddings, baby showers and birthdays, etc. Consider offering gift cards in your business.

No matter who your target market is from Baby Boomers, Gen X or Millenials gift cards are the most sought after gift.

With that in mind, give us a call and we can help with a simple, economical solution for your business to carry gift cards or even a loyalty program……Look for yourself.

A Year to Remember

A Year to Remember

Some people say the past 12 months has reminded them of the apocalypse. Wild fires in the west, an earth quake in Mexico and Oklahoma, Hurricane Harvey and Irma leaving a wide path of destruction throughout Texas and Florida, Hurricane Maria totally devastating Puerto Rico, flooding in the west and Hawaii, mudslides in California, blizzards and multiple nor’easters, just to name a few. All this leaves desperate people in the wake of these catastrophic disasters to pick up the pieces and rebuild their lives. Property owners will more than likely have to rely on out-sourcing the rebuilding and repairs.

We want to make sure you’re aware that in most states, and especially the State of Florida, there are building and compliance codes that contractors need to follow. Make sure the company you hire is licensed and bonded before they start any type of repair so as not to negate your insurance claims.

ARE YOU HIRING ADDITIONAL STAFF TO HANDLE THE INCREASED WORKLOAD?   

Do your due diligence and background the influx of new hires you plan on recruiting for the busy months ahead.

Our sister company, eGuarded can help by not only offering license verifications but also background screening for new and existing employees. Simply click on this link to get started.  No Monthly Fees, No on Going Fees you just pay for when you use it.

CONTRACTORS, ARE YOUR PROSPECTS HAVING A HARD TIME MEETING THEIR DEDUCTIBLE?

Have you considered offering a finance program? These programs can bridge the gap between insurance claims and out-of- pocket expenses. They also allow your “credit challenged” customers to finance your products and services at no risk to you. This can dramatically increase your sales by giving your customers an alternate means of payment, especially in the case of an emergency.

Finance programs give your customer a completely unsecured loan option. By offering multiple financing sources, you will increase the chance of your customers getting approved for financing the first time. This will reduce how often you have those awkward decline conversations!

Consumer Finance Benefits to your Customers: 

  • Quick loan amounts up to $60,000
  • Approvals when others say no
  • A second chance while rebuilding credit

Consumer Finance Benefits to your Business: 

  • Low merchant rates
  • Full payment made directly to your office
  • No Setup Fee, No Minimums and No Monthly Usage Fee
  • Average 6 out of 10 declines approved
  • No Collection Headaches
  • Simple website integration

Look for a program that allows for instant decisions that fund quickly to increase your bottom line.  Do what your competitors aren’t doing in your market area and see the results. Simply click here for more financing information.

Financing helps your business grow by turning your prospects into customers!

Is your Company’s E-Commerce Evolving?

Is your Company’s E-Commerce Evolving?

E-commerce sales comprised 9.1% of all U. S. retail sales in the third quarter of 2017, according to the Census Bureau of the Department of Commerce. Up from 8.2% in the same quarter of 2016. In the next three years e-commerce sales are expected to total $708 billion, according to Javelin Strategy & Research.

The big box retailers are consolidating and closing their brick and mortar stores in record numbers. They are putting their resources into their e-commerce sites to try and capture a market dominated by Amazon and primarily directed by Google. Will you follow their lead?

What can you do today to enhance your e-commerce site?

6 simple steps to boost and optimize your e-commerce site:

  1. Create a Mobile Friendly website.  First and foremost even if you are not selling your products or services online, you need to be found online today and in a mobile friendly way. 77% of American’s have a smart phone and are looking for your product or service right now. Is your site mobile friendly?  If not, stop everything you are doing and call someone who can help you create a mobile friendly e-commerce site today.
  2. Collect Customer Data.  Make sure you collect as much data as you can through your Point of Sale (POS) or on your site. It’s never been easier to collect your customer’s email or phone number at the POS. There are so many systems to choose from today that do this with ease at the cashier or checkout level. With more and more people using smart phones and going green, you can email receipts, notify of upcoming sales, and simply market your service to them with this collected information.
  3. Use a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) program to collect the basic data of your clients and prospects (company name, contact, address, email and phone number). It’s time to drill down to interests, birthdays, colleagues, spouses, children, education, how and why the customer started the business or anything you can discuss. In fact, every time you talk with your customer, note their file. People love to be remembered and this is your powerful insight into your customers needs and wants. Listening to these needs not only builds a strong loyal relationship, it saves everyone time and money by not discussing or pushing out topics that have little or no interest to them or their business.
  4. Develop a strategy to engage your customers.  How do you get your message out to your valued customers.  Email, blog post, mail, phone or social media? Quite frankly, you should use all of these to connect and on a regular basis. Use the same information on all platforms as it is unlikely your client will visit all.  If they do, great because it takes 5-7 touches before you sell an item. Just begin with one and take baby steps. Remember…”A good plan … now is better than a perfect plan … next week” – General George C. Patton.
  5. Reward your Customers.  Do you have a rewards program? If not start one today.  If you have one in store, great.  If it isn’t online then talk to someone who specializes in gift cards and rewards programs that will work with your e-commerce site. It doesn’t matter what type of business you own, there is something you can do to reward your clients. Even if it is just a cup of coffee, a $5 gift certificate or maybe a discount on a future purchase.  Birthdays, Christmas, Hanukkah, are all great, but what about something more original like an anniversary with you or just to thank them for their business? Think out of the box and send an e-certificate. If they don’t use it, it’s no loss to you.
  6. Optimize your payment process. Accept Apple Pay and the many new digital wallets to speed up the check out process. Shopping abandonment is a constant battle for e-commerce clients. Make it easy and fast for your clients to buy. Check into the many credit card software systems that not only reach out to clients to pay, for example, Electronic Bill Presentment and Payments (EBPP) but give your customers the ability to finance their purchases.

All in all, e-commerce has evolved and will continue to do so in the coming years. Take advantage of the many tools available to grow your business.

What are you waiting for? Like Nike says Just do it” and do it today!

Surcharge… pass it on or not?

Surcharge… pass it on or not?

Zero Cost processing to keep 100% of the sale and surcharge

Accepting credit cards is a necessity in today’s world.  As a business owner, you want to offer every means of payment you can to your customers, but the cost of processing high ticket transactions on a credit card could be putting a serious dent in your profits.

The practice of charging a small convenience fee for the privilege of using credit cards is already commonly used in many countries, and in 2013 surcharging became legal in the U.S.  Until recently, some states, including Florida, have prohibited surcharging.  Although Florida statutes currently prohibit surcharging, the US Supreme Court has determined that the Florida law is unconstitutional based on the Freedom of Speech protection.  Surcharging is growing in popularity among many different industries and will continue to grow as more business owners realize the savings this solution can bring them.  By switching to a zero-cost credit solution, many merchants have seen an enormous savings to their bottom line.

Businesses offering specialty products and services are often hit the hardest because the majority of their transactions are high ticket amounts.  A zero cost credit processing solution is perfect for these business types.  Making sure that your surcharge rate is fair and transparent isn’t always as easy as it may sound.  We’ve seen surcharge rates as high as 4%, and we can help guide you with lower options.  Fortunately, it is possible to ensure your business is charging a fair surcharge that covers the entire cost of accepting credit cards.

You have to ask yourself, is it good for you?  And, will your customers give you push back?  Passing credit card fees to your customers allows you to increase your income, which could amount to thousands of dollars every year!  Acceptance will continue to grow with consumers as more industries begin to implement surcharging.  Click here for common frequently asked questions.  If you would like more information about this solution for your business, contact us today!

2018 is Geared up to be the Year of Technology

2018 is Geared up to be the Year of Technology

As you reflect on 2017, so much has changed in the payment space.  Are you planning a new image for 2018?  How about even a minor adjustment?

Isn’t it time you harness the power of technology?  Yes, it can be easy and fun!

With new wallets, crypto currency, kiosks, biometrics, and more, people are now using their fingerprints for more than accessing their phone.  They can pay with a touch or wave of a cell phone, skip the line at a busy takeout and even bypass security at major airports.  What does this all mean for your business? Time savings, profitability and happy customers.

It’s time for your business to embrace technology to enhance the customer experience.  

Unless you have been living under a rock, you know today it’s all about engaging your customers, making payments faster and easier along with creating a great experience for them.  How do you achieve this in your business?  First, by knowing who your customers are, what they like and why they buy from you.  How quickly can you get this all done?  These all work in tandem really.

Reward your customers with a loyalty system.  This will help you understand and collect data from your customers and track what they buy.  Then you reward them when they come back again.  Next, implement an easy to use NFC (Near Frequency Communication) technology system to make checkout a breeze, saving you, your staff and your customer time.  The new friction-less payments work by allowing clients to pay with their phone through Apple Pay, Android Pay, Google Wallet…maybe even bitcoin someday.  Another method some merchants use is the QR code scan to checkout.  This wonderful technology works through NFC which keeps their card safe in their wallet.  No more handing over their credit card to a shop clerk or server.  The newer systems even allow a Kiosk to order and check out faster, which can save you a tremendous amount in labor costs.

Not only do these systems help with collecting data from your customers about their favorite drink or pizza, they help you stay connected with them by sending out loyalty points or pings (beacon technology) when they pass by your store.  It’s all about engaging your clients and customers with what you have to offer.

Be informed with how your business keeps your clients data secure.  Learn about the many payment options for online and face-to-face sales.  Nothing in America is happening faster than technology.  It is time to embrace the new technology so that running your business is easier and more profitable all while creating happy, satisfied customers.  What are you waiting for?

By the way, if you travel to Miami, Seattle, NY, LA or any big city in addition to the TSA pre-check, look for Clear, a biometrics security check that will save you pulling out your ID for TSA.  You just look into a screen or use your fingerprint for validation, saving you hours while traveling.

TLS Security Is Important!

TLS Security Is Important!

With all the recent stories about security breaches, you may be wondering what you can do to help secure your data and communications. Transport Layer Security, also known as TLS, is a procedure that provides privacy and data integrity between multiple applications in your systems. TLS is used to create a secure environment for web browsing, emailing, or other applications. Websites are able to use TLS to keep all communication between their servers and web browsers secure. For organizations that store or process payment information, using TLS version 1.2 is a requirement of the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard. This standard was created by the PCI Security Standards Council to protect cardholder data. No single security measure will fully protect your organization from unauthorized data breaches, but implementing security protocols like TLS can reduce the chance of such threats.

How does your security impact your daily work day?

When it comes to your computer, your web browser may need to be updated. Whether you have Internet Explorer, Chrome, Firefox, etc, check to make sure your computer is installing these updates automatically. When it comes to your payment software, if it stops working, you may need to do an update or even upgrade your software. Contacting your software provider with any issues can be a big help.  Some businesses run a standalone credit card terminal. If this stops working, you are going to want to contact your local sales office or merchant service provider as you may need a new file to be downloaded into the terminal.

The goal of TLS procedures are security and efficiency. Are you wondering if your browser is supported? This link will show you a list of supported browsers:

https://www.ssllabs.com/ssltest/viewMyClient.html