In many stores and restaurants, a few minutes wait at the point of sale is a regular occurrence and an impediment to maximizing profitability. But at Harney & Sons SoHo, a retail tea shop and café located in the popular SoHo district of New York City, a hardware and software configuration that includes four Star Micronics TSP143GT glossy high speed thermal receipt printers complements this store’s high end environment and helps to eliminate customer “bottlenecks” and, in many cases, personalize the shopping experience—resulting in increased sales.
Harney & Sons SoHo sells a wide variety of teas from around the world, as well as tea-related gifts and accessories. The shop also features a tea lounge where guests can sit and enjoy a cup of tea and nibble on scones or other small treats. The operator had previously deployed a point of sale system that ran on both Mac and PC platforms, but management concluded that it was neither sufficiently comprehensive nor easy enough to use, and could not truly support anticipated future growth. A decision was made to migrate to a more “modernized” technology configuration that would, among other features, incorporate a mobile component for enhanced flexibility and customer service.
Digital Reality, Inc., a Star Micronics reseller partner also headquartered in New York City stepped up to the plate with a solution comprised, in addition to the receipt printers, of LightSpeed POS and LightSpeed Mobile for Mac and iOS (including the LightSpeed mobile hardware sled for iPod touch); Apple iMac, Mac Pro, Airport Extreme, and Airport Express hardware; three Metrologic Ms9540 VoyagerCG bar code scanners; four IDTech MiniMag credit card readers; four Vasario Series USB cash drawers from APG Cash Drawer; two Zebra Technologies LP2824 Plus label printers; and three Logic Controls TD3000 tabletop displays.
This investment has paid off handsomely, says Eric Catania, Digital Reality’s president. The LightSpeed Mobile component, used with iPod Touch devices, increase profitability by allowing staff to process transactions anywhere in the store and to initiate receipt generation directly to the Star Micronics printers from the hand-held units. “Customers enjoy the convenience and personal attention of ‘skipping the line’ at the register and, if they would like, having an employee look through the inventory with them, help them to make a selection and close out the sale,” Catania notes.
“Staff can also take the mobile solution anywhere in the world with a WiFi connection, present products to customers, and sell from the inventory they have with them.”
Certain features of the hardware and software alike enhance these benefits, Catania adds. Specifically, the TSP143GT boasts a print speed of up to 4.9 inches per second, eliminating virtually any wait for receipts once transactions have been closed out. The LightSpeed system is very intuitive, which also speeds up sales.
Other features simplified the installation and training processes, which took 12 and eight hours, respectively. For example, the TSP143GT—the point of sale industry’s first all-in-one receipt printer—comes with all standard operating system drivers—among them the Mac drivers needed for the Harney & Sons SoHo implementation as well as Windows and Linux. All parts and software—including an internal power supply, interface cable, power cable, complete mounting kits and a paper roll—are provided in one box.
“Since LightSpeed is easier to train on and use than competing solutions, Harney & Sons staff quickly adopted it and enjoy using it,” Catania concludes. “The entire solution offers quick, error-free transactions at the LightSpeed POS screen, combined with hand-held sales anywhere in the world with a WiFi connection. They’re capturing more customer sales in a shorter time—in more places.”