First POS

I just purchased the Point of Success software today after a year of deciding which route to go with a POS. I am excited about not having to use the old pen and pad anymore to take orders when we are slammed. I am wondering if anyone has any stories of immediate improvements that they saw when they switched from paper to POS.Thanks guys.

Sales Jumped 10% off the bat.
No more running around giving paper tickets, No math errors,

You will be more efficient.

Start database mailers from day 1. On January 1 (or there abouts), print up mailing labels for you entire database. Should be 200-400. Send out Thank You post cards, with a note that you hope to hear from them more in 2011.

The first week of Feb, print labels for all new orders in Jan, and send a thank you post card. Then print off labels for customers who didn’t order in January, this should be 30-40% less than the first mailer you sent out. Make their mailer a $3 off coupon or a free bread sticks. Nothing big, just an incentive to call

First week of March, Print new customer labels for the new customers from Feb. Then Print out labels for your 30 day no orders (the customers who ordered in January, but not in feb). Then print out labels for the customers you haven’t heard from in 60 days (the ones who ordered in December, but not since). For the 30 day mailer, use the same special as you did in Feb, for the 60 day mailer, up the stakes. $4 off or some free wings.

April: Do the same thing as March, but add in a new mailer. A killer deal for the 90 day no orders. I did free small pizzas or $10 off some times.

At this point, you will have a serious marketing machine going if you keep it up. Your first months should see a 25-30% return on your mailers, and that will pay for your POS very quickly. After a bit, customers will get used to your marketing, and the response will drop back to sub-20%, but it is much better to keep it up and keep your customers from ordering from another pizza place.

we started using Point Of Success 5 months ago and we have notice increases and also the amount of time being on the phone is quicker and they can answer and help more customers within seconds it gets them in and out fast. it will take all your staff a while to learn the system and orders that are being taken might take longer at first but days and weeks later you will notice how quick you and your staff can take on order and quickly jump to the next call

What size postcards are you using for your database mailings? Are you using an old fashioned post stamp or having somone sort the list for you and using an indicia? Any other details/ideas you can suggest would be great.

I did just about everything you can imagine. Since you are just starting out, you can do it the hard way and design and print your own (What I did), or pay someone to do it. Draw up a sketch of what you want and they will help you out at any Kinko’s (or print shop) with cheap design work. The price goes up from there. One thing I didn’t have access to is Craig’s List. Put up an ad on there, ads there are always freelance designers who look for projects like this. The top end here is just hiring a designer. One benefit of doing it yourself is learning Adobe Illustrator. It is also a huge time sink, so if you are a perfectionist (like a lot of pizza guys are), it might just be something to stay away from.

For printing, I started out buying stamped post cards and a printer. I was printing 2000 at a time on two printers before I gave that up and paid a copy place to do it (Fuji/Xerox). They ran about 5 cents each, and that saved me a ton of hassle in stuffing 50 post cards into a printer 40 times. Small lots are fine, but once you start printing up 1-2k of them it becomes a pain in the rear.

I applied for a bulk mailing permit after about a year. It didn’t make much of a difference when sending out 1000 at a time, but when I got up near 4000 pieces a month, that discount did help. For your first few mailers, don’t complicate things. Just print your stuff and send it off. That is the most important part, getting started. You will make money off them anyway.

One thing that I eventually figured out to do was to print addresses directly on my post cards. That saved the step of printing labels, and sticking them on the mailers. Either way is fine though. There are a ton of tutorials for the “Mail Merge” function of MS word, and if you don’t have that works just as well.

As a foot note, I hear good things about Taradel. I haven’t ever bought anything from them, but there is a lot to be said for having easy access to pre-printed and well designed pieces.

It is a process. You will find ways to shave a few cents there, or speed up things here. Doing your first few runs the manual way will give you a great idea of what you will need though, but again, getting started is the most important part. The monthly sales kick when your mailers hit is a nice feeling.