Top Tools to Succeed at the Farmer’s Market

The local foods movement has made farmer’s markets very popular right now. If you sell organic produce and grass-fed or pasture-raised meats, you are positioned to attract even more customers and make even more sales.

While your products are your most important commodities, you’ll need more if you want to be successful. You’ll also need the right tools to market your business and make your operations more profitable. Here are a few of the top tools to help you succeed at the farmer’s market:

iPad POS

Your iPad can do a whole lot more than download apps and stream movies. It can also operate as a powerful point-of-sale system. The iPad POS is especially well suited for vendors at farmer’s markets because it provides the mobility they need. Vendors don’t need to plug in the iPad. They can make sales anywhere at the market.

Having the iPad POS will also increase sales because it gives you the option to accept credit cards, not just cash or checks.

Apps

The right apps can help any business meet its goals. Farmers can create apps that showcase what produce is in season or what they will have at the next market. They can also create apps that allow customers to order from their CSA, that share recipe ideas based on produce that’s in season, and more.

Apps that are both creative and practical will have the most success. Think of how you can provide solutions for your customers, and you will land on a great idea to promote your farm.

E-mail List

Most farmer’s markets will do their own marketing and promotion, which will benefit all their vendors. However, savvy farmers who really want to drive traffic to their booths will start an e-mail list. You can do this the old-fashioned way with a clipboard and sheet of paper, or you can use your iPad POS to generate the leads. Send out notices about when you’ll be at the market, what you’ll have, and what specials you are offering. Give list members special deals to keep them subscribed.

Farmer’s markets may seem simple and low-key, but they are a business venture, just like a brick-and-mortar store. Use these tools to increase your chances of success at the farmer’s market and beyond. You’ll soon have one of the biggest booths at the market.

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How an iPad POS can Save Your Business Money

The tools you buy for your business aren’t just functional. The right tools don’t just get the job done – they also offer you a number of other benefits, including saving you money. From your restaurant dishwasher to your office computer, the equipment you choose should help you meet your goals while also saving you money.

The iPad POS system is one of the best investments to help you lower your bottom line. Here are a few ways that an iPad POS can save your business money:

Lower Initial Cost

Compared to a traditional point-of-sale system, the iPad POS system costs far less money. A clunky cash register can cost thousands of dollars, while an iPad can cost a few hundred dollars on its own. You will have to pay for the POS service, but the overall cost will still be far less than a traditional system. This is especially useful when you are a small business just starting out, but choosing the iPad POS can save any business a lot of money.

Maintain Appropriate Inventory Levels

Keeping the right inventory levels is key to maintaining your finances, especially when you work in a restaurant or other food business. An iPad POS can monitor your inventory to keep it at the appropriate levels. You can set rules so that the system automatically orders inventory when it falls below a certain level or won’t order any more if a certain amount is already on hand. You’ll be able to minimize waste, especially from items that spoil, like food.

Improve Your ROI

Marketing is key to promoting the success of your business. Many iPad POS systems include tools to enhance your marketing campaign and increase your overall ROI. For example, you might be able to collect customer e-mail addresses during a sale, which you can use to create an effective e-mail marketing campaign. You’ll save money because you won’t have to invest hundreds in marketing to get those e-mail addresses, and you’ll increase your ROI by getting the information you need to tailor your advertising campaigns.

The simple choice of what system to use for processing payments can have a big impact on your business. By switching to an iPad POS, you can save your business a lot of money while also promoting your success and increasing your ROI.

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Top Reasons to Use an iPad POS

The iPad is no longer just a novelty for personal entertainment. As the technology has advanced, so have its applications, and it can now be used as a powerful tool for businesses. One of the top uses of the iPad is as a point-of-sale system. You may have noticed these at businesses from diners to drive-in movie theaters. (Yes, those still exist.)

No matter what kind of business you own or how large your business, using an iPad POS can benefit you. Here are just some of the top reasons to start using an iPad POS system if you aren’t already:

Affordability

A traditional point-of-sale system can cost you thousands of dollars. However, a single iPad costs just a few hundred dollars, not counting the price of the software. When you’re just starting out, that’s a savings that can protect your business. Even if you have been in business for years, that’s a savings that can help you lower your overhead costs and protect your bottom line.

Mobility

Large, bulky cash registers can’t go anywhere without some serious grunt work or special equipment. On the other hand, an iPad POS is lightweight and portable. You can take it anywhere you go. That means that you can ring up sales at festivals, trade shows, farmer’s markets and more. It also means that you can move about your restaurant or boutique, ringing up customers quickly and reducing their wait times. The more iPads you can afford to buy, the faster you can make the checkout process for your customers.

Versatility

The iPad POS system can do much more than process credit cards. Some systems can monitor inventory levels, create invoices, collect customer information, send e-mail campaigns and more. Instead of getting just a payment system, you get a business assistant that can help you manage your sales and market your brand. It delivers a powerful return on your investment month after month and year after year.

Advances in technology are only making it easier for you to succeed with your business. The iPad may have started out as a personal entertainment device, but it has quickly become an essential tool for businesses. Consider investing in an iPad POS system to get the functionality and versatility you need on the budget you set. You’ll soon start getting the sales you need to make your business a success.

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Top Things to Look for in a Restaurant POS

Your point-of-sale system is much more than a simple machine for processing payments. The right POS system can help you increase sales, streamline your business operations and improve your overall marketing strategy. Therefore, it is of critical importance that you take the time to research your options to find the right system for your restaurant.

A lot of criteria goes into evaluating POS systems. Here are a few of the top things you should look for in a POS system for your restaurant:

Affordability

As a restaurant owner, you have to watch every dollar you spend. Any fat in the budget could end up making a big cut in your profits. Many traditional POS systems cost thousands of dollars. An iPad POS system can cost a fraction of that amount. Explore the options to find a POS system that provides the features you need while also staying in your budget.

Flexibility

Some point-of-sale systems just process payments and much else. Some have a wide variety of features that can help you grow your business. For example, an iPad POS can include functionality to track your sales, automatically reorder inventory, collect customer information for lead generation, and much more. The system can provide many useful tools to help you grow your business, helping you to reduce overhead expenses, get more traffic and increase your overall sales.

Mobility

Traditional cash registers are big, bulky things that sit at the bar, on the hostess stand or at a designated podium. You can’t move them, and your employees can quickly get backlogged while waiting in line to use them. With an iPad POS system, your employees can enter orders or check customers out anywhere in the restaurant. They’ll reduce waiting times for the customer, which will improve your overall sales.

Ultimately, determining the right point-of-sale system will depend on your budget, what kind of restaurant you run, and what your goals are for the business. You may find that a simple cash register is all you need. However, the majority of restaurant owners will find that they need more advanced technology that can offer them more features and flexibility for a fraction of the price. The iPad POS system can be a major benefits to most restaurants, no matter what kind of cuisine they serve or how large their business is.

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Innovative Ways to Use Your Restaurant POS

When you choose the right point-of-sale system, it becomes much more than just a simple cash register. New technology like the iPad POS provides an array of features that can help restaurants improve their marketing, improve their business operations and improve their sales.

Having the right technology is only the first step. You also need to know how to use that technology to get the results you want. Here are a few innovative ways that you can use your restaurant POS to help you meet your goals:

Create a Digital Menu

A simple paper menu is pretty standard. If you want to really stand out, you’ll create a digital menu for your customers. You’ll need to create an app for the menu, which can be interactive to display nutritional information or provide an ingredients list. Customers can create meals to suit their tastes by substituting sides or taking out certain ingredients.

If you have the infrastructure to support it, you can also design your menu so that customers can order their food right from the app, as well. Customers could order their food ahead of time or do it right from their tables. Providing this option will cut wait times and improve sales.

Send Coupons

With an iPad POS, you also have the option to track customer sales and to create marketing materials. For example, if you know that your customer always orders dinner for two, you can send a coupon that provides half off the second meal. Other possibilities include sending coupons for a free appetizer or dessert or giving a discount off the total purchase. If you have the information, you can even send special discounts or freebies when a customer is celebrating a birthday or an anniversary.

Manage Your Inventory

The right point-of-sale system can also help you manage your inventory. You can monitor how much you are selling so you know what quantities of ingredients and other supplies to keep on hand. Some systems will even allow you to set up automatic ordering when inventory levels fall below a certain quantity.

Don’t settle for a simple system for payment processing. Explore all the possibilities so that you use all the features available to help you grow your restaurant. You will expand your customer base and increase your sales, helping to protect your long-term success.

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POS Solutions for Festival Vendors

Attending local festivals is a great way to reach more customers and to increase your sales. Even if you’re not ringing up more sales, you can at least create more exposure for your business, which can turn into increased sales in the future.

Whether you are the kind of vendor who only shows at festivals or you are a brick-and-mortar company that occasionally attends festivals for the marketing boosts they provide, you will need to use the right tools to be successful. Your point-of-sale system is a key consideration.

Here are a top POS solutions you should consider using as a festival vendor:

iPad POS

The iPad POS is an ideal point-of-sale system for festival vendors. It is mobile, so you don’t have to worry about lugging around and plugging in a huge, boxy piece of equipment. You can move freely about your booth, checking out customers whenever they are ready to purchase. You can eliminate lines and reduce wait times, both of which will help to increase sales. Best of all, the iPad POS gives you the freedom to accept credit cards, which can distinguish you from many other vendors who may only be able to take cash.

Smart Phone

If you can’t afford an iPad POS, you can still get some of the functionality you need from your smart phone. You’ll have to invest in a credit card reader for the phone, which plugs into the headphone jack. You’ll be able to take credit cards easily, but you may have to pay higher transaction fees, and you won’t get many of the other features that the iPad POS offers, such as inventory management or custom marketing.

Apps

Serious businesses have apps to promote their products and services. With a little innovation, you can create any number of apps that will help your customers while also promoting your business. One of the best apps for your festival attendance is one that allows customers to shop with their mobile devices. That allows them to shop even if you have a line or they are in a hurry. They can talk with you to get the information they need, then make the purchase later. With the right app and the right marketing, you can easily increase your sales.

Attending festivals is a great way to grow your business. Just make sure you have the right tools on hand to make your attendance a success.

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Why You Should Trade Your Cash Register for an iPad POS

When you are just starting out as a business owner, you are on a limited budget. You likely don’t have the capital to buy all the latest equipment or the most sophisticated technology.

One of the most expensive items you may need to buy is a point-of-sale system. When you are on a limited budget, you may have thought that your best option was a simple cash register – just enough to process payments and not much else. However, a plain cash register is very limiting for your business.

Here are just a few reasons why you should trade your cash register for an iPad POS:

More Affordable

Even a simple cash register can cost several thousand dollars. An iPad costs just a few hundred. The more units you need to buy, the more you will save. Trading out your old cash register can help you downsize your expenses while increasing the functionality you get. Plus, you’ll be able to get rid of that bulky unit and show your customers that you are a company that embraces the future.

More Mobility

When business is booming and you are trying to check out customers, they may have to push their way through crowds to get to you, or they may have to wait in long lines to pay. With an iPad POS, you can move about your business freely, checking out customers wherever they are.

The increased mobility not only means that you can improve service times (and, therefore, sales), but it also means that you can take your business on the road. You can make sales at trade shows, festivals and other community events. The more places you can meet your customers, the more opportunities you have to make sales.

More Features

With a plain cash register, you can do a very limited number of things: Punch in an order and process a payment. Some cash registers are no more than glorified adding machines. They let you only add up an order and open the drawer for cash. An iPad POS is a sophisticated piece of machinery that does far more than just process payments. It can monitor your inventory levels, collect customer information and even provide tools for creating marketing materials.

Stop being limited by the old POS system your business is using. Check out the iPad POS and find out how it can help you grow your business.

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Apps You Can Use to Grow Your Restaurant

There’s an app for everything now. Not only can you use apps to manage and promote your restaurant, but you can also create your own apps for your customers, helping to grow your business that way, as well. Using and developing apps is an important way to take advantage of technology to grow your restaurant.

Here are a few key apps you should consider using or developing to grow your business:

Digital Menu

Simply listing your menu on your website is no longer enough in today’s digital age. If you really want to impress customers, you should create an app that allows them to interact with your menu. That may mean that they can quickly call up nutritional information or get a list of ingredients, or you may offer them the option to order ahead or from their table. The more features you include, the more impressive and convenient it will be for customers. You can even encourage sales by highlighting certain items or offering discounts in app.

Coupon App

Offering your customers exclusive discounts and promotions is a great way to encourage sales. You can sign up to promote your restaurant on a number of coupon apps. You can offer a straight discount or a special like a free appetizer with an entrée or meal for two for a set price. Try out several options to see which deals are the most effective.

Social Media Management

Social media is a great way to attract more attention for your restaurant and get more customers. You can host contests on social media, promote new menu items and share exclusive discounts, all of which will build buzz around your restaurant and get more customers in the door. Many apps are available to help you manage your social media presence, including allowing you to publish posts, monitor your interactions, host contests and more.

Apps aren’t just fun little games you can play while you’re waiting to see the doctor. They can be powerful tools that you can use to promote your business. Consider developing some of your own apps, like a digital menu, or use some of the available apps to promote your restaurant and increase your sales. Though they have a simple interface, apps can play a big role in your overall marketing strategy and in securing the success of your restaurant.

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Benefits of Using an iPad POS for Your Restaurant

You need a point-of-sale system for your restaurant in order to process payments and get orders out as efficiently as possible. You can choose from simple systems that are no more than glorified adding machines to sophisticated machines that can do everything from process credit cards to automatically reorder your inventory. You can also choose from clunky machines that are stuck to one location, or you can opt for a mobile system like the iPad POS.

If you aren’t already using an iPad POS for your restaurant, you should be. Here are just a few of the benefits of using an iPad POS for your restaurant:

Provide Better Service

When your servers are slammed and you’ve got a two-hour wait, every minute counts. You can’t have servers backed up at the cash register while customers are getting impatient because they want to leave (and your customers at the door are becoming irate that they aren’t being seated).

By using the iPad POS system, your servers can quickly process payments right at the table. There won’t be a long line, and your customers won’t have to wait. You will also be able to turn tables more quickly, which will minimize your wait time.

Improve Marketing

The iPad POS system also includes features that allow you to capture customer information, such as their e-mail addresses and their purchasing history. You can use that information to enhance your marketing campaign. For example, if you see that a customer typically orders a cocktail with dinner, you can send out promotions for happy hour. If you see that a customer usually orders dessert, you can send out a coupon for a free dessert with an entrée purchase.

The data you collect can help you to create a more effective marketing campaign to increase your ROI.

Streamline Inventory Management

When you’re taking orders on a busy Friday night, you don’t want to run out of bread or your signature house wine. The iPad POS system can help you streamline your inventory management and ensure that nothing like that ever happens. The system can automatically reorder inventory when it falls below certain levels. The system can also give you insights into what is selling and what is not so you can eliminate items and cut unnecessary costs.

The iPad POS is a powerful system that offers you many benefits no matter the type of restaurant you run. Consider replacing your old system with the iPad POS.

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Best Tech Tools for Your Food Truck

Food trucks have become uber trendy in the last few years as more people have embraced the local foods movement and turned to supporting small business. People want a more authentic experience instead of sitting in yet another chain restaurant.

Of course, you’ll need a good concept and great food to make your food truck a success. However, the right tech tools can also help you grow your business. Here are a few of the best tech tools you should be using for your food truck:

iPad POS System

When you are operating out of a truck, you don’t have a lot of space. A traditional point-of-sale system can take up a huge chunk of counter space. Instead of dealing with the clunky equipment, you can use an iPad POS system and process payments easily. You can also move around outside the truck, allowing you to reach more customers or to serve them more quickly.

Smart Reader

If you can’t afford a whole point-of-sale system, you can at least offer more payment options for your customers by using a credit card reader on your smart phone. The reader typically plugs into the headphone jack, and you can swipe a credit card just the same as you would with a credit card machine. Offering customers more options for payment will help to increase sales, which can help you grow your food truck business.

Digital Menu App

A lot of customers don’t want to wait in a long line to order their food, nor do they want to wedge into a crowd and crane their necks to look up at a menu. You can save them the hassle of both by creating a digital menu app. They can pull up your menu on their smart phones or tablets and get the information they need. You can even create the app to allow them to order and pay for food right from their device. The convenience will encourage ordering, which will increase your sales.

You may not have a big gourmet establishment when you are running a food truck, but that doesn’t have to mean that you can’t use the same sophisticated tools as larger brands use to promote your company. These tech tools can help you grow your food truck and ensure your success. You may even be able to open up another truck or even a brick-and-mortar location.

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