Monday, December 24, 2018

Final Thoughts on 2018 and Looking Ahead to 2019

Baring any major news, this will be my final post for 2018.  Some reflections on 2018 and thoughts looking at 2019:
  • No shortage of POS software programs on the market presently with over 200 to choose from
  • 40% of you are looking for on premise solutions and 60% of you are searching for cloud based solutions. You both have options to match what works best for you.
  • You have options to choose from that fit your budget and style of payment preferences. Plus, in 90% of the examples that I have run, the costs are nearly the same over a 5 to 7 year period whether you choose subscription style pricing or "buy it and own it" style pricing.
  • Don't believe the hype that you need all sorts of apps and tools to predict customer purchase habits, send out texts as customers enter the store, and other related analytical data tools. While these are great tools for the right type of retailer, I've been onsite with the owners of over 400 specialty retail stores in 2018 and having a successful retail business is based on the core fundamentals that we all learned ages ago:
    • Know your products
    • Know your top customers
    • Know your financials
    • Know how to use technology but don't let technology use you
    • Don't jump on the latest technology trends but do experiment and measure the results at a low investment point
    • Scale your business to what makes you happy and comfortable (and what you can handle financially and time-wise). 
  • Microsoft Dynamics RMS (and HQ) Users: You only a have another 2-3 years to figure out what to do - whether you invest in upgraded payment processing technology, upgrade to RMH/Cloud Retailer/D365, start from scratch with a new POS system, put in Card Defender, or even do nothing - the clock is ticking. Start making plans now and then have a backup plan in case the original plan falls apart.
  • Be prepared for support to end on Windows 7 and whether you can migrate to Windows 10
  • Be prepared for more changed in the payment processing industry and what hardware can be used (especially for anyone using those USB mag stripe readers)
  • Be prepared for recession in late 2019 or early 2020. All economic indicators are headed that way. Be ready to keep your business right-sized to survive a potential economic downturn. How this effects your investments in retail technology like POS systems, will have to be evaluated on a case by case basis. I've been through many recessions and they have been very busy times for me as retailers make very calculated decisions during economic downturns.  
  • Let me know if I can help in person or via phone - I travel all across the US and can also make dedicated trips when all or part of my travel expenses are covered (which 7 retail chains did in 2018).
  • And most importantly:
The Birth of Jesus Christ
18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ[a] took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been betrothed[b] to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. 19 And her husband Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame, resolved to divorce her quietly. 20 But as he considered these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. 21 She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” 22 All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet:
23 “Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son,
    and they shall call his name Immanuel”
(which means, God with us). 24 When Joseph woke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him: he took his wife, 25 but knew her not until she had given birth to a son. And he called his name Jesus.

No comments:

Post a Comment