4 Indicators That It’s Time to Upgrade Your Salon POS System

Salons and spas require special point of sale (POS) features like walk-in management, appointment schedulers, customer relationship management (CRM), loyalty functions, reminders, online booking, payment processing and more. It doesn’t matter if you own a hair or nail salon, blow-out bar or a full-service spa, salon POS systems aren’t a “one and done” investment—they require upgrades to keep up with your industry and new client demands and expectations.

Do you have a fast salon POS system that engages clients at checkout, tracks clients via CRM, accepts any form of payment, facilitates loyalty programs and accepts appointments online? If they can’t do these things and extra seconds are adding up to longer wait times, then it’s time for an upgrade. Here are four signs it’s time for a refresh:

  1. Hardware is outdated and no longer compatible with new software

New functionalities designed to enhance customer service become available regularly, so your hardware needs to support these platforms. Watch for the signs that a hardware failure is imminent:  crashing, inexplicable component malfunctions, or software running slowly. Don’t wait until the system is offline, which means work slowdowns, data loss and longer wait times. Obviously, if your hardware is so old it can’t run new software, it’s time for a replacement. Set a regular schedule for evaluating salon POS system hardware to make sure all components are running well.

  1. Your existing system is not scalable

If growth and additional locations is your goal, it’s important to have a scalable system that allows you to easily add terminals and locations to your network. Scalability is also important if you need more checkouts temporarily, because once the terminal is added to the network, the device will be running the same solution with the same data accessibility. If your current solution isn’t scalable or you’ve been putting it off because it’s a hassle, it’s time for an upgrade.

  1. Your POS system doesn’t provide actionable data and analytics

A salon POS system should be a workhorse that makes your life easier. A few clicks should give you comprehensive reports that allow you to view sales, customer information, appointments and inventory data in real time. These systems also include a variety of reporting options that give you comprehensive intelligence by the shift, hour, day, week, month or year. Without this information, it’s impossible to optimize employee scheduling, see what products are in stock, what’s selling out and what’s ready for markdown. Without actionable data and analytics, you can’t make changes that will improve your business or maximize efficiency.

  1. Customer service is less than stellar

Constantly apologizing to customers because “the system is slow today” or making them wait to checkout is a poor finish to a relaxing massage, exciting new haircut or a fresh manicure. Your salon POS system should empower you to give each client personalized attention by tracking customer purchases and preferences and offering coupons, based on their buying habits. It should also facilitate loyalty programs, marketing initiatives and engage the customer during their final moments in the salon. However, if a fast (or slow, depending on your hardware) checkout is all you have to offer before your clients leave, then it’s time for an upgrade.

Even though there are other business changes you’d probably prefer to finance, your salon POS system needs regular TLC. In fact, not keeping your POS system current will cost you money and time and customer service will suffer. Don’t get caught off guard—monitor your salon POS system for signs of failure and address them right away.

Everything Grocery Retailers Need to Know About Scale Integration

Grocery retailers sell a variety of items by weight, including fruit, vegetables, meat, fish, cold cuts, bulk bin dry goods, and more. Whether people are buying a bag of sweet treats or a pound of sliced cheese, you rely on grocery scales to measure the weight of items and calculate the prices. Although it seems easy to lay products on the scale and print the tags, there’s a battery of scientific tests and several government agencies dedicated to calculating weights and prices correctly.

Proper scale integration for your point of sale (POS) system can take some research. First, grocery retailers should check to see if the scale is NTEP certified for legal use.

What is NTEP? How does it work?

The National Type Evaluation Program (NTEP) is facilitated by the National Conference on Weights and Measures. NTEP standards cover every aspect of a scale’s use, including:

  • Capacity
  • Accuracy
  • Appearance
  • Effects of temperature and humidity changes

The standards are developed by a division of the U.S. Department of Commerce called the National Institute of Standards and Technology or NIST. Every device is tested in a lab setting to ensure compliance with federal laws and regulations.

An NTEP Certificate of Conformance (CoC) means the scale is legal for trade and can be used in a commercial setting to sell products by weight. Every NTEP-approved scale will have a CoC number that an inspector can use to verify that the scale meets the agency’s rigorous testing standards and is legal for use.

Why is NTEP important?

Grocery retailers that buy, sell, or determine prices by weight are required by law to use a NTEP certified scale. NTEP scale certification isn’t optional — never purchase a scale that doesn’t have a CoC. Only NTEP-certified devices, when properly inspected and calibrated, can legally determine the weight of products. A grocery retailer with a non-NTEP-certified scale integration may be subject to civil penalties, seizure of the illegal device, or stop-work orders.

Does it matter if my scale is off by a little?

Simply put — yes, it matters. Every state has its own agencies and departments that monitor scales and inspect them for accuracy. Customers trust that their grocery retailer is charging them accurately for the products they buy, so imagine the public relations nightmare if it was reported that your store was caught overcharging customers for items sold by weight. The bad publicity alone isn’t worth the risk to your business, even if it was unintentional. Don’t be cavalier about following the calibration and compliance laws, which help prevent fraud at the scale.

In addition, choose a scale that’s the correct accuracy class. A grocery retailer needs a scale that’s accurate, but doesn’t need the same type of scale used for medicinal or pharmaceutical purposes.

I’ve chosen a NTEP-certified scale, now what?

NTEP-certification doesn’t mean you can plug in the scale and start using it right away. Before using the scale, contact your local regulatory authority to find out what you need to do before processing any sales by weight. You’ll likely have to register the device for inspection prior to scale integration and participate in regular inspections.  A local weights and measures official will use NIST standards when inspecting your scale and certifying it for use.

Grocery retailers who charge for items by weight need a scale to conduct business legally. Look for a scale that is NTEP certified, and legal for use or trade, and be sure to consult your local laws and regulatory agency regarding its set up and use. Always maintain properly calibrated devices, to avoid overcharging customers or shorting your business.

The Future of Blockchain in Retail

Written by: Michael K. Spencer

According to leading retail news publication, Retail Dive, blockchain will drive $164 billion in efficiencies for retail by 2030. The press release by IHS Markit defines business value as the cost savings and efficiencies resulting from incorporating blockchain into business strategies.

According to a Spring 2018 report by Deloitte, blockchain’s adoption in retail will also be at a tipping-point in the next five years. Deloitte sees this occurring especially in three main pillars of adoption:

  • Consumer — Improving and protecting the consumer experience
  • Supply chain — Improving process efficiencies across the supply chain
  • Payments and contracts — Improving transaction processes and ensuring the validity and implementation of contracts

While this provides a nice overview of mainstream adoption, it doesn’t take into consideration all the specialized blockchain startups that are seeking to impact a particular niche.

Recently, a corporate startup called Bakkt was announced where the likes of even Starbucks is a major partner. This has the retail and crypto community buzzing over if we’ll be able to pay for a Starbucks drink with cryptocurrencies such as ETH (Ethereum), XLM (Stellar), XRP (Ripple) or another crypto.

What makes this news noteworthy is since Bakkt is being formed by Intercontinental Exchange — the trading colossus that owns the New York Stock Exchange and other global marketplaces, namely Jeffrey Sprecher and his partner Kelly Loeffler. With the likes of Microsoft and Boston Consulting Group involved, the retail applications here could be enormous.

This could be a “Bakkt to the future” story for crypto in retail, where Starbucks on ICE (Intercontinental Exchange) combine forces. However, for blockchain in retail, the patents are where the real action is occurring, where the likes of Alibaba (the e-commerce giant) is a leader for blockchain patents with long-term implications in retail.

Deloitte’s report suggests that for blockchain’s future in retail, before 2020 many large retailers and businesses are quickly determining what value blockchain might hold for them, and have —or will begin—testing it soon, to benefit greatly while others will surely miss out and fall behind. Major retail chains now need not only to think about e-commerce, but the next layer of the internet, blockchain.

According to the forecast by IHS Markit, in the worst “downside” case scenario for the future of blockchain in retail, still sees this value increasing to $49 billion by 2030. To put this figure in perspective, the business value of blockchain in 2017 for retail and e-commerce was only $38 million.

Bakkt’s CEO describes it as the following:

“Bakkt is designed to serve as a scalable on-ramp for institutional, merchant, and consumer participation in digital assets by promoting greater efficiency, security, and utility.”

Merchant and consumer participation definitely sounds like retail. Many analysts believe Bakkt is an example of—and which the ICE can offer— something the crypto world currently lacks and that many crypto enthusiasts steadfastly reject: a trusted third party. How cryptocurrencies might integrate into retail will require these trusted and centralized businesses to get involved to help spur innovation in the space.

This signals Wall St. and larger investors that are starting to enter the cryptocurrency and blockchain landscape and while retail has been slow to follow; in the 2020s this movement could accelerate considerably as more use cases come into being including IBM’s private blockchain consortium. In 2018 a rapid rise of crypto funds and Wall St.’s more active involvement means it will spur on the retail sector to integrate with blockchain solutions that ultimately won’t just decrease costs and improve efficiencies, but improve customer experiences.

 

 

Star Micronics and CardFlight Team Up to Offer A Simple, Bring Your Own Tablet Countertop Point of Sale Solution

NEWS RELEASE   

 

                                                  

SwipeSimple Register, the new simple countertop POS solution from CardFlight featuring the Star Micronics mPOP, will be demoed for the first time at ETA TRANSACT in Las Vegas

 

SOMERSET, NJ — April 13 2018 — Star Micronics, the global industry leader in POS printing solutions, announces it has teamed up with CardFlight, the leader in payment technology and mobile POS solutions, to deliver a bundled cash register and payment terminal solution for the modern merchant’s needs, combining SwipeSimple hardware and software with Star Micronics’ mPOP and the portable receipt printer SM-L200.

SwipeSimple Register works on virtually any iOS or Android tablet, and lets merchant acquirers provide merchants with a modern and intuitive hardware and software setup for their payment needs. The SwipeSimple solution supports payments with EMV Quick Chip  and NFC contactless for all types of mobile wallets, and cash. By partnering with Star Micronics, CardFlight can now offer merchants the convenience of issuing paper receipts for both countertop and mobile needs.

“We are excited to partner with Star Micronics,” said Derek Webster, Founder and CEO of CardFlight. “As our company continues to build payment acceptance solutions for a broad range of small businesses, the partnership helps us expand the SwipeSimple product suite to serve even more merchants.”

SwipeSimple Register for countertop merchants features Star Micronics mPOP that combines cash drawer and receipt printer in a sleek and compact design, making it easy to fit into even the smallest retail spaces. Bluetooth connectivity and smart cable management keep the counter clutter free. Mobile merchants also have the option to use SwipeSimple Register on a smartphone or tablet and print receipts on Star Micronics’ portable receipt printer SM-L200. The SM-L200 is the first portable printer with the ability to connect to any Apple iOS BLE-compatible device without having to pair with it.

“Our mPOP and mobile printing solution paired with SwipeSimple are both easy to set up and use, which is perfect for the modern small merchant,” said Jon Levin, Star Micronics’ product integration manager. “We look forward to working with CardFlight to expand into new markets.”

Star Micronics will be exhibiting at booth # 838 and SwipeSimple Register paired with Star Micronics’s mPOP will be demonstrated at CardFlight’s booth #618 at ETA TRANSACT, April 17-19 in Las Vegas.

Media Contacts

Star Micronics America Inc.

Letica Arce, marketing manager

larce@starmicronics.com

848-216-3283

CardFlight, Inc.

Meytal Burstein, director of marketing

meytal@cardflight.com

607-821-8886

About Star Micronics

Star Micronics, one of the world’s largest POS providers, has designated a portfolio of printing, secure cash management, and customer solutions for any retail or hospitality establishment in POS and mPOS environments. Embracing the mobility wave, Star’s complementary SDKs allow users to utilize Star printers in tandem with Android™, and iOS iPad® and iPhone® devices to generate receipts for all of its printers. Always leading – always innovating, Star Micronics enables web-based printing solutions including remote cloud printing, wireless cash drawer solutions, proximity-based printing, and secure cash management. For more information, please visit www.starmicronics.com or follow us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, or LinkedIn.

About CardFlight

CardFlight is the leader in payment technology and mobile point-of-sale solutions for merchant service providers, banks, and independent sales organizations, including 15 of the top 50 merchant acquirers in the US. CardFlight’s SwipeSimple product suite provides easy-to-use SasS solutions for tens of thousands of merchants across all 50 states.

CardFlight takes pride in building and maintaining solutions that are a step ahead of the curve in technology, reliability, and user experience. As the US leader in EMV Quick Chip enablement, CardFlight makes it easy, accessible, and secure for partners and merchants to accept payments. For more information, please visit www.cardflight.com.

Star Micronics’ ETA TRANSACT 2017 Recap

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Star Micronics recently exhibited new mPOS technology at the ETA TRANSACT show in Las Vegas from May 10th through the 12th, and would like to thank all of those who visited our booth. For those who couldn’t make it to the show this year, we want to provide a brief recap of what you missed and where to find more information on Star Micronics’ peripherals.

New mPOP™ peripheral options!

Star Micronics showcased our popular all-in-one mPOP™ peripheral for mobile point of sale that combines a cash drawer and 2-inch receipt printer. This year, Star has decided to make our mPOP even better with more functionality for mobile point of sale. We’ve added optional peripheral support for a customer-facing line display, 2D bar code reader, three scale options, and an extra cash drawer to our mPOP. This allows users to transform their mPOP into a complete point of sale hub, making it a more versatile option for mobile POS.

Faster, Easier, Better!

Throughout 2016, Star Micronics began rolling out our TSP100III series of thermal printers – the faster, easier, and better solution for POS receipt printing. At this year’s TRANSACT show, Star Micronics debuted our TSP100IIIU! The TSP100IIIU is Star’s intuitive “plug and play” USB printer for iOS, Android, and Windows. With faster print speed, easier connectivity, and better features, the TSP100IIIU is guaranteed to make a splash in the point of sale world. Learn more: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y40VyDkFPLc

SM-L300: Receipt, Label, & MAXStick® Portable Printer

Star’s new SM-L300 Bluetooth low energy (BLE) portable printer offers ultimate versatility for any mPOS application! The SM-L300 portable printer allows users to connect to any Apple iPad®, iPhone®, or iPod touch® BLE compatible device without having to pair to it, making it the perfect solution for any BYOD (bring your own device) environment. Learn more: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NJdLcSYOgGE

Booth Partners

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Star Micronics is always happy to feature a number of our software partners in our tradeshow booths. At this year’s TRANSACT show, Star hosted Biztracker, who demoed their solution with a Star TSP650II receipt printer. Doublebeam showcased their solution on Elo’s I-Series and Wallaby flip-stand along with a Star TSP700II receipt and label printer. We also provided demos of Star Cloud Services’ free digital receipt and customer engagement solution through Vend’s retail software and a Star TSP100IIIBi receipt printer.

Star Cloud Services is offered for free with any Star Micronics receipt printer and allows users to offer digital receipts to their shoppers through the AllReceipts™ app. Learn more: https://www.starcloudservices.com

Star Sightings

Star Micronics spotted several of our printers around the show floor! Thank you to Paradise POS, Pioneer Solutions, MS-Cash Drawer, USAePay, and POS Portal who showcased Star technology in their ETA TRANSACT 2017 booth!

Star thanks everyone again for taking the time to visit us and learn more about our point of sale peripherals at ETA TRANSACT 2017. We look forward to seeing you all next year!

Why Bluetooth Low Energy is the Best Option for Mobile Printing

People most commonly think of Bluetooth as the wireless technology that allows them to connect a mobile device to a car or an earpiece. Bluetooth has given rise, however, to a newer generation of wireless technology – Bluetooth low energy (BLE) – which was first introduced in 2011. Today, BLE is the best option for mobile printing and other devices that require short bursts of connectivity.

In order to understand why BLE is perfect for all mobile printing needs, it’s important to know the difference between Bluetooth and BLE. Bluetooth connectivity is designed for devices like wireless headsets and speakers, mobile phones, and is ideal for streaming applications such as Pandora or Netflix. In comparison, Bluetooth low energy (also known as Bluetooth 4.0) is exactly what its name says: low power consumption wireless technology.

BLE for mobile 2

How does BLE work?

Bluetooth and BLE both operate on the same 2.4 GHz ISM band. Unlike regular Bluetooth that uses a lot of power, BLE stays in sleep mode until a connection is initiated with a mobile device. The connections are short bursts because the data is traded quickly. Bluetooth low energy devices’ energy consumption levels are so low; one device can run on the same battery for years. Obviously, Bluetooth low energy isn’t going to work for Netflix, but its’ perfect for devices that only need to exchange data quickly and intermittently, like a mobile printer.

Who can use BLE devices?

BLE is perfect for devices that don’t need to stream large amounts of data continuously. This universal-low power wireless standard makes it easy to connect any product to a smartphone or tablet. BLE is the wireless technology used for personal fitness devices (like Fit Bits), as well as for monitoring sensors and mobile printers in taxi, rideshare, and delivery applications.

Where can you use them?

Bluetooth low energy mobile printers are small and light, and can easily be carried by servers in restaurants, delivery drivers, and workers in intermodal facilities and warehouses. They can be used to print invoices, labels, receipts, and other documents.

Star Micronics has several BLE-enabled printers ranging from compact models that measure only a few inches and fit into a pocket or apron, to more robust options all at affordable price points. Star’s mobile printers are perfect for indoor/outdoor use, field service and restaurant environments where they could get wet or dropped. These devices also come with an external power cable so they can be charged anytime, anywhere, even on the road.

Easy to use, even for BYOD workplaces

BLE printers are compatible with a large installed base of mobile phones, tablets, and computers. Star’s line of mobile printers is easy to use with any Apple iPad® or iPhone® BLE device and doesn’t require pairing. There’s no limit on the number of devices that can be connected to the mobile printers, making it the ideal solution for a BYOD (bring your own device) workplace. Employees don’t need to hunt for “their” tablet or mobile device; they can grab any equipment to complete the task at hand. Star’s mobile printers are also compatible with other operating systems, including Windows and Android.

BLE connectivity is the perfect option for mobile printing. These compact mobile printers are energy efficient and cost-effective for restaurants, rail yards, airports, and delivery services that need to print on-the-go receipts, labels, and create invoices. Learn more about Star Micronics’ SM-L200 and SM-L300 BLE portable printers.

Vittorio Menswear and Tuxedo Increases Customer Satisfaction with Star Micronics and AllReceipts™

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Vittorio Menswear and Tuxedo, located in Rochester, NY, provides ready to wear full custom options, to personalized looks that helps to express individuality. For over 45 years, Vittorio Menswear and Tuxedo has been helping Rochester look good, one tuxedo at a time. The formerly family-owned business was passed along to Matthew McDermott who has been working to grow the business by increasing customer loyalty and creating a more seamless sale.

After acquiring Vittorio Menswear and Tuxedo about five years ago, Matthew decided that it was time for a technology upgrade in the point of sale system. Vittorio was in need of a better system to track customer data and analytics, and customer-facing technology that allowed them to engage with and provide value-added services to their shoppers. Lightspeed POS solution with Thirdshelf and Star Cloud Services loyalty, along with Star Micronics peripherals provided the perfect system for Vittorio Menswear and Tuxedo.

Star Micronics’ TSP100 receipt printer with Lightspeed POS allowed Vittorio to improve the daily workflow of their business and keep their customers more satisfied with their service than  ever. These technologies provided detailed analytics and customer data that allowed them to compete with large retailers. Vittorio was now able to give every one of their customers a personalized experience, and offer suggestions and promotions based on the customer’s previous purchases and rentals. With Lightspeed’s inventory management, Vittorio could easily see what sizes were readily available versus what needed to be special ordered for customers.

As a result, Vittorio Menswear and Tuxedo improved their overall customer engagement strategy with Thirdshelf and Lightspeed POS. They are now able to access customer data and purchase histories almost instantly, which helps to tailor special promotions and increase customer satisfaction.

Star Cloud Services’ Receipt Flip feature allows Vittorio to easily summarize their return policy and add marketing touches right on the back of the digital receipt without any additional promotional costs to print. The Instant Customer Survey allowed Vittorio to better understand what their customers enjoyed about their experience versus where they needed to improve.

“Star MiSCS certifiedcronics and Lightspeed’s point of sale solution was well worth our initial investment. Since we installed the system, we’ve continued to add layers such as Thirdshelf loyalty features and Star Cloud Services digital receipts to improve our store functionality and to keep our customers satisfied. By having customer data and feedback readily available through Star Cloud Services, we can make adjustments to ensure that our customers are getting the most out of their experience with us.”

– Matthew McDermott, Owner, Vittorio Menswear and Tuxedo

Download the full success story here: Vittorio Case Study

Star Spotlight with Auto-Star

What does Auto-Star do?

Auto-Star began developing point of sale and retail management technology in 1982 and has worked to provide a top-of-the-line solution for grocery, pharmacy, and natural health markets. Auto-Star’s POS solution is designed to help increase operational efficiency along with customer service levels. They strive to put the customer at the forefront of every transaction, while making an intuitive solution for end-users. They currently have thousands of happy customers all over North America and the Caribbean.

How is Auto-Star working with Star Micronics?

Auto-Star has been working with Star Micronics for a number of years with both their end-user customers and their reseller partners. They chose to add support for Star Micronics printers because they are fast and reliable for end-users and are easy to operate. In addition, Auto-Star has added support for Star Cloud Services’ free digital receipt solution using the AllReceipts™ app. Auto-Star customers already using Star Micronics’ TSP100ECO printers can now experience the added benefit of providing a digital receipt solution to their shoppers.

What key benefits is Star Cloud Services bringing to Auto-Star customers?

Auto-Star customers were looking for a digital receipt solution for a number of years. With Star Cloud Services and AllReceipts, Auto-Star found a solution that was quick and easy to integrate with no need to update or change hardware. Star Cloud Services’ digital receipt and customer engagement tools are available to use on any Star receipt printer for free. This gave users the ability to add the digital receipts functionality to their current solution for no additional cost.

“The Star Cloud Services’ digital receipt solution with AllReceipts offered a very simple set up for both Auto-Star and our end-user customers. Our customers were able to see the benefit of it right away.” – Josh Wintoniak, Sales Manager, Auto-Star

Solutions for Printing from Web Browser-Based Applications: WebPRNT

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Receipt technology has advanced dramatically in the last several years. Previously, in every transaction, a customer would pay for their purchases at the POS terminal and accept a printed sales receipt as a proof of purchase in case they needed to make a return or exchange. Mobility, however, has revolutionized POS and changed the process of providing a customer with a receipt.

Star Micronics has developed a variety of printing solutions for mPOS, including two that facilitate receipt printing from Web-based applications via HTTP(s) and from a project on an Android device or iOS hardware such as iPad®, iPhone®, or iPod touch®. These solutions, WebPRNT and PassPRNT solve common problems merchant often encounter with mobile printing.

Print from a Web Browser-Based Application with WebPRNT

WebPRNT, which enables device-agnostic receipt printing technology, supports HTTP(s) requests used in Wed-based applications. It facilitates printing on any Star Micronics WebPRNT-enabled printer – including receipt, label, and kitchen printers – from any local device running a Web-based application.

This low cost, versatile solution to printing from Web browser-based applications allows users to print high-quality POS receipts with professional, crisp graphics on Star’s line of WebPRNT – compatible printers.

How it works:

You can use any device you want when you download WebPRNT, so businesses can eliminate the need to spend money on upgrading their current hardware. This solution enables local printing from a device with a browser to a compatible WebPRNT printer (desktop or mobile) on the same network.

WebPRNT is easy to read, maintain, and modify for developers. It works with XML tags or a JavaScript software development kit (SDK) that is integrated into the Web application’s code. This functionality can be extended to Bluetooth printers by using the WebPRNT Browser with no changes to the Web code. In addition to Web-based applications, Star’s WebPRNT also supports HTTP(s) requests from native applications.

One advantage of integrating WebPRNT is that the application the engineer or developer creates can give a retailer more complete control of printing, such as the ability to adjust the formatting, operate the cash drawer, or check the status of the printer. It also enables additional, innovative features to be added to the print application including digital receipts and other cloud services.

WebPRNT technology is available with several of Star Micronics’ printers including the TSP650II WebPRNT, SP700 WebPRNT, TSP700II WebPRNT, TSP800II WebPRNT, as well as any of Star’s Bluetooth printers using WebPRNT Browser.

Why choose WebPRNT: 

  • Easy to use. WebPRNT eliminates time spent downloading software and installing drivers. The app enables printing from any local device hosting a Web-based application (e.g., Explorer, Chrome, Firefox, and Safari) to a Star WebPRNT-enabled receipt printer.
  • Affordable. WebPRNT enables printing from any application or operating platform without the need for expensive, multi-platform development costs.
  • Compatible. WebPRNT allows users to print from their application to a WebPRNT-enabled receipt printer from any device, regardless of its operating platform.

To learn more about WebPRNT and find out if your Star Micronics receipt printer supports WebPRNT, please visit http://starmicronics.com/pages/WebPRNT.

Download our eBook: Solutions for Printing from Web Browser-Based Applications on iOS, Android, and Windows

What’s Next for Cannabis Retail?

blog - cannabis retail

Cannabis legalization is not just creating more business opportunities for recreational dispensaries, but for the point of sale industry as well. Star Micronics has found ourselves rapidly gaining popularity among the cannabis point of sale market and are looking forward to what lies ahead.

First, it’s important to consider the fact that the legal cannabis market is growing quickly with no intention to slow down. The legal cannabis market was worth an estimated $7.2 billion in 2016 and is projected to grow at a compound annual rate of 17%. This is more than 8 times the growth rate of the beer and liquor store market in the U.S.

While the cannabis market is growing, there are still issues with marijuana businesses and traditional banking, which means it has mostly been a cash-only industry. While this can serve as an inconvenience for those who frequent recreational cannabis dispensaries, it helps us point of sale folk to keep in the market by providing receipts printers and cash drawers for these businesses. With more states beginning to legalize recreational marijuana use, we can predict that more people will begin to heavily invest in this market, and smaller dispensary businesses will soon be able to fold into larger companies.

In addition to the issues that cannabis businesses face with banking and financial services, recreational marijuana dispensaries are required to practice “seed to sale” tracking compliance. For those unfamiliar with this term, the “seed to sale law” requires every marijuana producing plant to be tracked through each stage of its life, from cultivation to the point of sale.

With this in mind, software developers are working to create point of sale systems that help dispensaries to easily manage their seed to sale tracking, as well as perform other daily functions that your average retailer would need. For this detailed and complicated task, there is simply too much risk of human error for dispensaries to not use a retail management solution. This is where we begin to see the cannabis market booming in the point of sale industry.

So, what can we predict for the future of cannabis retail?

In the recent U.S. election, California, Massachusetts, Maine, and Nevada all passed measures legalizing recreational marijuana. While there are still tax and licensing provisions that will not take effect until January 2018, we can expect a major growth in legal marijuana sales, with California forecast to dominate the market. California, being the oldest medical cannabis state and the largest cannabis consumer population, is predicted to reach $7.6 billion in annual marijuana sales by 2020.

Similar to the online ordering trend among restaurant take-out and delivery services, we may be looking at the future of remote ordering for cannabis sales. California delivery startup, Eaze, has procured more than $25 million in multiple rounds of funding in the hopes of being the largest provider of on-demand cannabis delivery.

With the advances of technology and innovation in legal cannabis sales, Star Micronics is very excited to continue to provide support for this emerging market and see our partners grow along the way.