3 Things Cannabis Retailers Need to Know About Cannabis Receipt Regulations

Running a marijuana dispensary requires in-depth knowledge of the local laws and meticulous recordkeeping including retaining copies of each cannabis receipt.

Running a medical or retail marijuana dispensary requires in-depth knowledge of the local laws and meticulous recordkeeping including retaining copies of each cannabis receipt. As of April 2017, 29 states have legalized medical marijuana, which can be used to treat several illnesses, including multiple sclerosis, HIV/AIDS, inflammation, pain, mental disorders and substance abuse, among others. In addition, 9 states have legalized recreational use. That means cannabis retailers are legally operating in more than half of the U.S.

Their businesses can be very different, however, depending on the states in which they are located.  One difference is startup costs. For example, annual licensing fees range from $3,000 in Colorado to $75,000 Connecticut. States may also require a minimum of liquid capital, some places as high as $250,000, so it’s imperative you protect your investment with perfect recordkeeping of every transaction. Retaining a copy of every cannabis receipt ensures your dispensary follows state and local laws and protects your business in the event of an audit.

What should the receipt include? How can you prove your business is operating in compliance with state and local laws? The cannabis receipt provided to the customer proves you are collecting all the relevant taxes and dispensing marijuana legally.

If you are considering opening a marijuana dispensary or you want to make sure your business is operating in compliance with your state’s laws and make sure you are correctly formatting and recording cannabis receipts, your point of sale (POS) system is the perfect tool to manage this requirement.

1. Check the Specific Requirements in Your State

Understand your state’s tax laws to ensure you are charging the correct amount. For example, in California, retailers charge a consumer-excise and sales tax, while in Colorado, cannabis is subject to different taxation, whether it’s classified as medical or retail marijuana. It’s important to stay up to date on changing tax laws to ensure you are collecting the correct percentage. Failure to comply could subject your business to fines and added scrutiny.

 2. Manage Copies of Cannabis Receipts

Use your POS system to send a backup copy of each cannabis receipt to the cloud or store the backup offsite. If you are issuing receipts with carbon copy paper, staple or clip the receipts together. It’s also a good idea to keep important financial records, licensing information and other sensitive financial paperwork in a secure place outside of the dispensary. Retain all records for a minimum of three years in case of an audit.

 3. Include All Required Information on the Cannabis Receipt

Although the exact information you include will depend on your state’s laws, most receipts will include store name and address, the category of taxable products or product category name/product name. Receipts should also include a code or other identifier for the product’s taxes. There may be additional requirements, however. In Oregon, it’s required to list the sale subtotal before tax, amount of state tax, local tax, total sale amount and identifying receipt number. A disclaimer stating that receipts are required for customer tax disputes is also required.

The cannabis industry is promising for dispensaries, but it is tightly regulated by the states where marijuana has been legalized. Give your business the best chance for compliance and success with a POS system equipped with state-of-the-art printers to meet regulatory requirements while providing convenient customer experiences at the checkout.

Contact the experts at Star to learn more about ideal solutions for the cannabis industry.

Star Micronics Offers First Look at New, Innovative Solutions

 

 

 

NRF 2018: Star Micronics Offers First Look at New, Innovative Solutions

Somerset, NJ – January 26, 2017Star Micronics, a leading global manufacturer of mobile, point of sale (POS) and customer engagement technologies, showcased its newest innovations at NRF 2018 Retail’s Big Show.

NRF 2018 was held in New York in the Jacob K. Javits Center from January 14-16 and Star Micronics exhibited its latest POS innovations in booth #2745, including:

 

1st AirPrint® receipt printer

The TSP650II is the first receipt printer on the market with Apple AirPrint® Certification.  This printer will work seamlessly with all Apple® devices, ensuring quick set up and high-quality receipt printing. The TSP650II AirPrint will enable Apple users to continue with the familiar AirPrint experience while using their Apple iOS® POS system.

 

mCollection

mC-Print: Chic, Compact, Complete printer collection

Star Micronics new mC-Print receipt printers were designed specifically to expand Star Micronics’ Mobile POS solutions. This mPOS printer is stylish, chic, and compact. With multi-interface support and peripheral connectivity, this Cloud Service-ready receipt printer is equipped to handle retailers’ needs with style.

mPOP + Peripherals:

Now, the mPOP has additional optional peripherals for merchants to choose from, such as 2D barcode scanner, scale, customer display, and port to external cash drawer. With these added peripherals, retailers and restaurateurs can transform their mPOP into a complete, versatile point of sale hub in order to accept a wider variety of transactions in higher volume.

 

 

PromoPRNT

PromoPRNT is a new service available to Star Cloud Services members that empowers retailers to create printed promotions in addition to receipts. PromoPRNT delivers two services through the Star Cloud Services Dashboard, Promo Maker and Promo Manager. Promo Maker is a simple way to create and design receipt promotions. Promo Manager allows retailers to schedule the length of a promotional campaign and to view insights from their campaigns.  Ultimately, with these PromoPRNT tools, retailers will be able to deliver incentives directly to shopper’s hands.

Sophatar® POS Signage™

Sophatar® POS Signage is another new service available to all Star Cloud Services members for a low monthly cost. This innovative digital signage solution analyzes retailers’ POS sales data through the Star Micronics printer and Star Cloud to display popular sales items.  If the retailer doesn’t have images of best-selling items on hand, Sophatar® POS Signage will automatically search for images using UPC codes and textual descriptions of the products.

 

This year’s booth partners:

  • Vend
  • SuiteRetail
  • BizTracker
  • nClose

If you spent some time at our booth at NRF 2018, thank you,” Said Christophe Naasz, Director of Business Development at Star Micronics America, Inc. “We have so many innovative and groundbreaking solutions scheduled for release in 2018. It was fantastic to have the opportunity to give the industry a sneak peek.”

 

About Star Micronics

Star Micronics, one of the world’s largest POS providers, has designated a portfolio of printing, secure cash management, and customer engagement 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™, iOS iPad®, and iPhone® devices to generate receipts for all of its printers. Always leading, and 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, visit www.starmicronics.com or follow us on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, or LinkedIn.

 

# # #

Media Contact:

Leticia Arce

Star Micronics America, Inc.

larce@starmicronics.com

848-216-3283

 

Melissa McGaughey

SkyRocket Group

Melissa@skyrocketgroup.com

814-833-5026 x106

 

 

 

 

How Cloud-based Software is Changing the POS Game

Cloud-based software solutions are affordable, powerful platforms that reduce downtime and increase mobility. Discover more.

Cloud-based point of sale (POS) packages are comprehensive solutions that are easy on your wallet. These affordable, powerful platforms reduce downtime and increase mobility, provide in-depth reports and securely store your important data. “Software as a Service” (SaaS) solutions are easy to install and update automatically, so you are always running the most recent version of the software. But how can a cloud-based POS solution help your restaurant up its game?

  1. Reduced downtime: Today’s cloud-based POS solutions keep functioning, even in the event of an internet outage. Solutions are available that secure your data in the cloud but that store data locally on restaurant hardware. When connectivity returns, data is synced to the cloud automatically. This allows your restaurant to operate without disruption.

A cloud-based solution also provides the benefit of keeping your data secure in the event of a power outage, theft or accident, so you are assured of business continuity and nothing is at risk for permanent loss.

 

  1. Cost-effective: Cloud-based software providers charge a budget-friendly monthly fee for software and data storage. This service is perfect for businesses that don’t have thousands of dollars in upfront fees to make an outright software purchase. There are no upgrade costs or unexpected charges — the monthly fee includes everything you need.

Using cloud-based software, there is also less of a burden on your IT staff. Updating POS terminals can be done quickly and easily. You are no longer required to update each terminal individually and restart the computer several times. Instead, owners of multiple restaurants or small chains can manage all their locations from one computer or mobile device saving you time and resources.

 

  1. Mobility: Cloud-based software makes it easy to add more terminals, mobile POS or additional checkouts — you just configure new sites and equipment for the software, sync them and you’re good to go. They automatically run the same solution, with the same data accessibility, as the other terminals in your restaurant. And once your network is established, you can manage every location from one computer or mobile device, whether it’s an on-site terminal in a back office or your home computer.

 

  1. Remote data access: With cloud-based POS, you can login in from any location at any time to view sales and inventory information, allowing you to keep track of your business throughout the day. Cloud-based POS systems include a variety of reporting options that give you an in-depth look into every shift, hour, day, week, month or year. Running sales reports also help restaurant owners and managers identify the most popular menu items so they can make sure top-selling selections are always available, maximizing profitability and increasing customer satisfaction.

If you are considering upgrading a legacy POS system for your restaurant, learn more about the features of cloud-based software and how these solutions could benefit your business. With their business continuity, mobility, and scalability features — as well as anytime, anywhere access to your POS system and data — cloud-based software can be a smart choice for your next POS system.

Why Retailers Should Select a Receipt Printer that Doubles as a Label Printer

If you’ve been using a printer only for receipts, it’s time to consider using a receipt printer that also doubles as a label printer.If you’ve been using a printer only for receipts, it’s time to consider using a receipt printer that also doubles as a label printer. Label printers give SMB retailers the ability to print price tags, labels for online orders, shelf tags and even labels with your logo that help brand your business.

If you’re in the market for a new printer, choose one that can work double duty for labels and receipts. Not convinced? Here are three reasons why you should be:

Improved customer service

The holiday shopping season is upon us, and according to a survey conducted by the National Retail Federation, people will spend an average of $967.13 this year. Buy online pickup in store is hugely popular, with more than 49% of the people surveyed saying they would take advantage of this option. The pickup counter is going to be busy, so using printed labels instead of a receipt taped onto a bag or box helps speed up customer service by cutting down the time it takes an employee to locate an order.

Stores using a label/receipt printer combination can produce proof-of-purchase labels for bag-free shopping as well as labels for returns that help store associates return products to inventory more easily and accurately — something they’ll especially appreciate after the holidays.

Better Branding

Labels and receipts take the guesswork out of determining where your customers purchased something. These small take-aways should be a consistent extension of your brand.

 

Custom labels: Your store’s logo, address, phone number and website can be added to the label template, so each label is easily identifiable. A customized label is an advertising opportunity that helps drive new and repeat business to your store. Using Star Cloud Services you can easily customize your receipts and get the most out of your printer.

 

Receipts: Label printers also have templates for customized receipt printing, so your store’s branding is cohesive. Every receipt should be customized with your store’s logo, brand messaging, website and tag line so people can easily see where it came from.

 

Increased operational efficiency

Mobile label printers can be used anywhere on the sales floor to print product labels, shelf tags and price tags for new products or markdowns. A mobile printer eliminates added back and forth to the point of sale terminal to print labels, so restocking and display changes can be done quickly.

An example is the Star Micronics’ SM-L300 portable receipt printer, which doubles as a fully integrated label printer for retail store, restaurant, delivery and warehouse applications. The SM-L300 supports thermal receipt paper and lined or linerless MAXstick label paper, making it the perfect mobile label printing solution for any business setting.

Protect your profit margin and inventory by labeling your items properly and displaying the prices. Proper labeling helps maintain accurate inventory counts in the POS system and protects you from pricing errors that can eat away at the bottom line. Many stores are subject to laws pertaining to pricing conflicts. For example, if a full-priced item is accidentally marked 50% off, the retailer to sell the item at the lowest marked price, even if it’s a mistake.

Get the most out of your printer investment with a model that can provide both labels and receipts to increase efficiency and accuracy, enhance customer service and ensure that online orders can be picked up easily.

 

Star Micronics Teams Up with eMobilePOS to Offer Cloud Printing With Its Mobile ‘Order-Ahead’ Solution

Tupyx mobile ‘Order-Ahead’ application enables restaurants and venue operators to grow sales and tap into a hot market while streamlining food preparation with cloud printing of mobile order tickets on certified Star printers

SOMERSET, NJ. —Nov. 6, 2017 — Star Micronics, a leading manufacturer of mobile, Point of Sale (POS), and a customer engagement technologies, today announced it has teamed up with e-Nabler Corp., developer of the award-winning eMobilePOS® suite of point-of-sale solutions to offer intelligent cloud printing for orders submitted via e-Nabler’s mobile ‘Order-Ahead’ and stored value app TupyxSM. The solution will be premiering at IAAPA Attractions Expo (booth #3157) in Orlando, November 14-17.

The innovative cloud printing service enables Tupyx mobile orders to be printed directly on dedicated Star Micronics kitchen printers at various food and beverage prep stations, etc. The technology frees up counter space, as there is no need for additional tablets or computers in order to manage the notification and flow of orders. Additionally, Tupyx can be interfaced with eMobilePOS or virtually any POS thus eliminating the need for double data entry resulting in seamless integration of mobile orders with the regular order flow.

“Tupyx paired with the simplicity of the Star Micronics’ cloud printing technology is a powerful yet affordable solution that enables restaurants to offer the convenience of mobile ordering while streamlining the order process and staying organized in the kitchen,” says Christophe Naasz of Star Micronics. “Staff can simply just fulfill and stage the next printed order for delivery or pickup instead of trying to figure out and prioritize between different order flows.

“By partnering with Star Micronics, we can now offer a completely seamless order process for pick-up or delivery at home, office, or in-seat at a venue, and the order process is fully integrated with all the other order flows,” says Joel Vazquez, president of e-Nabler.  “The Tupyx mobile “Order-Ahead” App enables restaurants and venue operators to tap into the quickly growing mobile commerce market and customers spend much less time waiting in line or, no time at all, as the orders may also be queued up for delivery.”

e-Nabler has to date certified Star TSP650/700/800 and SP700 for cloud printing of mobile orders with Tupyx.

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 e-Nabler Corp.

Founded in 2001, e-Nabler Corp., the company behind the award-winning eMobilePOS software, is one of the pioneers in mobile POS solutions and cloud-based software-as-a-service. eMobilePOS was the first full-featured POS app on iTunes and has, to date, processed more than 3 billion transactions. The company was recognized with the “Best New Mobile App” by AT&T during CTIA in 2008 and was awarded RSPA’s Innovative Solution Award at RetailNOW 2011. eMobilePOS is available for Android, Apple iOS and Windows. For more information, please visit www.tupyx.biz, www.eMobilePOS.com or follow us on Twitter at @eMobilePOS and on Facebook.

Contact details

Matthew Inan, Director Business Development & Channel Sales, e-Nabler
Tel: 305-968-6472 | mginan@e-nablercorp.com

Joel Vázquez, CEO, e-Nabler
Tel: 787-763-5959 | mailto:jvazquez@e-nablercorp.com

 

Media Contacts

Star Micronics America Inc.

Letica Arce, marketing manager

larce@starmicronics.com

848-216-3283

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

Customer Experience Trends for the Future of Retail

VR

Technology in retail has reached an all time high and is continuing to grow in 2017. The Internet of Things (IoT), Virtual Reality (VR), and Augmented Reality (AR) have all began to make their breakthrough into retail technology. It’s needless to say that this technology is changing the customer experience.

IoT in Retail

The Internet of Things simply defined is the “internet working of physical devices, vehicles (also referred to as ‘connected devices’ and ‘smart devices’), buildings, and other items – embedded with electronics, software, sensors, actuators, and network connectivity that enable these object to collect and exchange data.”

IoT is everywhere! If you own a smart phone, then you are using IoT on a daily basis. With the new trend of mobile wallets and near field communication (NFC) payments, retailers are beginning to use IoT in their stores to enhance the customer experience. With wearable technology and NFC payments, retailers can provide more payment options for the customer and a smoother transaction process by allowing the customer to pay via smartphone or wearable device such as an Apple Watch.

Moving toward an age of paperless transactions, it’s crucial for retailers to accept mobile payments and offer digital interaction with their shoppers via IoT. Virtual and digital communication and transactions are something that shoppers are going to be looking for in 2017, and it will have a huge impact on the overall customer experience.

VR and AR in Retail

2016 has proved to us that virtual reality and augmented reality will change the way people shop and in turn, transform the customer experience in retail. Shoppers will no longer need to physically travel to a store to experience the way something looks and feels. While VR and AR are definitely related, the two are used very differently in retail technology.

If you are active on Facebook or another social media platform, you may have notices that many people have received a pair of virtual reality goggles during the holiday season (seriously… a lot of people). Overall, these goggles are used to play video games or experience virtual realities like riding a virtual roller coaster or exploring a virtual jungle. In terms of retail technology, virtual reality could possibly be the new way people do their shopping.

How will this change the customer experience? How will this change omnichannel retail?

Think about when you are shopping online, but hesitant to make the purchase because you’re not sure if the pants you are purchasing will fit you, or because you don’t know if the lamp you’re looking at will go well in the living room. With the rise of VR, ecommerce retailers will be able to create a virtual store and connect the shopper with the physical product, without the shopping ever needing to leave their home. Sounds crazy, right?

Now let’s talk about AR. In 2016, Pokémon Go! took the world by storm by introducing one of the first successful augmented reality games for smartphones. We quickly learned how the game could affect retailers, and retailers quickly learned how to take advantage of the game by offering discounts and special promotions to their customers who were playing.

As technology continues to advance and VR and AR becomes ‘the norm’, shoppers will expect a more technologically advanced customer experience. We can already see this trend with the growing adoption of online retailers and mobile payments. Now the question is: what can SMB retailers do to keep up with this advance in technology? How can they continue to keep the customer satisfied?

SMB Retail Technology

While the rise in retail technology will have a huge impact on the overall customer experience, there are ways SMB retailers will be able to better the customer experience for their shoppers in 2017 that won’t require a virtual reality store.

One very simple way SMB retailers can use technology already available to them to ehance the customer experience, is to create an omnichannel shopping experience for their customers. Engaging customers beyond the transaction is key when creating the ultimate shopping experience. This can be done through the retailer’s website, mobile app, etc. According to nChannel, two-thirds of shoppers will check prices on their phone before making a purchase in a brick and mortar retail store. For this reason, SMB retailers need to make sure that they are engaging customers both in-store and online in order to keep their shoppers satisfied.

Enhancing the Customer Experience

In this age of new technology, omnichannel retail, and being able to basically purchase anything you need online or on your smartphone at your convenience, there is an increased pressure being put on SMB retailers to keep their customers satisfied in-store. The important thing to note is that shopping is no longer just about making the purchase, but it is about the entire shopping experience, whether that is a virtual reality store, or superior customer service.

In order for SMB retailers to keep their customers satisfied, they must first understand their audience and their needs. If a retailer’s target audience is a middle or older-aged crowd, creating an app for a virtual store may not be appealing. For this same audience, increasing customer service reps in store or sending mailing coupons might be more efficient. With every audience comes a new strategy for providing the best customer experience.

 

Star Spotlight with Vend

Vend with Star

What does Vend do?

Vend is America’s leading retail POS software, inventory management, ecommerce & customer loyalty platform for iPad®, Mac, and PC. Vend has customers in over 150 countries and prides itself on providing seamless point of sale solutions for retail, food and beverage, coffee shops, and more. Vend’s ecommerce and sales operations features make it easy for retailers to provide the perfect shopping experience for any customer whether in-store or online.

How is Vend working with Star Micronics?

Vend works with Star Micronics’ printer peripherals to bundle a sleek, yet reliable point of sale solution for any retailer. With certified support for Star’s TSP100 and TSP650IIBTi desktop printers, SM-S220i portable printer, and all-in-one mPOP™ peripheral, Vend offers solutions for large or small retail environments. Vend has also recently added support for Star Cloud Services’ free digital receipt solution and customer engagement tools. Star Cloud Services, along with Star’s AllReceipts™ digital receipt app, allows retailers to offer their shoppers the option to claim a digital copy of their receipt and gives them the ability to later engage with their customers through the app.

How is Vend working with the new Micro Receipt?

Star Cloud Services recently released a new feature called the Micro Receipt. The Micro Receipt allows retailers to print only the AllReceipts QR code on the paper receipt, saving up to 80% on paper compared to the original. While only the QR code and optional store name and time stamp will appear on the paper receipt, once scanned within the AllReceipts app, the customer will have gained access to the full, itemized receipt in the app. Vend is the first to integrate the new Micro Receipt, allowing their retailers to get a longer lifecycle out of every Star Micronics printer.

“We think there is great potential to introduce this new solution, specifically the Micro Receipt, to our customers,” says PE Perruchot de la Bussiere, General Manager of Channel and Business Development for Vend. “With this innovative solution, we will be able to work with resellers and find new customers together.”

The Rise of Experiential, Discount, and Specialty Retail

FashionBanner

In 2016, we have seen major shifts in the retail industry and consumer buying patterns. We’ve seen the largest Internet-based retailer in the world (Amazon) open brick-and-mortar stores, and we have seen “big-box” retailers closing stores. Clark has named just a few:

  • Macy’s plans to close about 15% of its locations amid challenging retail environment.
  • According to the Dallas Morning News, JCPenny CEO Marvin Ellison said the department store chain plans to close some of its roughly 1,000 stores soon.
  • CVS, America’s leading retail pharmacy, plans to close 70 stores early this year.
  • Mall-based retailer, The Limited, closed all of its nearly 250 stores across the country on January 8, but will continue to have an online presence.

Shift in Consumer Buying Patterns

With the closing of many department stores and “big-box” retail stores, we see that discount retailers such as T.J. Maxx, Marshalls, and Ross are thriving. Consumers are now realizing that many of the products or goods that they typically shop for in department stores can be found for a cheaper price either online or in discount stores. This shift is being largely influenced by the millennial generation. For retailers who do not fall into the “discount retailer” category, the key to competing is improved store data. This means creating a way to better track customer data in order to provide unique and authentic shopping experiences for each customer.

The Millennial Consumerscan_shop_featured

According to Forbes, there are eighty million millennials in America alone, and they represent about a fourth of the entire population, with $200 billion in annual buying power. This means that the buying patterns of millennials are having a direct impact on the retail industry and brick and mortar stores.

While millennials are commonly targeted as the “self-entitled” and “lazy” generation, it has been found that they are extremely price sensitive. Meaning, millennials will take the time to search for more affordable options (usually online or by using their smartphone) before making a purchase. Based on a survey performed by Accenture, 41% of respondents said they have practiced “showrooming” – the act of examining merchandise at a nearby retail store and then shopping for it online to find the lowest price.

It’s no question that the millennial generation is very unique. Retailers have struggled to understand the buying patterns and the interests of this generation for quite some time now. Unlike the Baby Boomer or Gen X generations, millennials tend to be less influenced by advertising and promotional content, and care more about the authenticity of a brand. Millennials best connect with people over logos. The fact that millennials are less likely to go for the “brand name” over a cheaper option, is largely impacting the way retailers must market themselves and their brand. The recent closing of Macy’s and JCPenny stores speaks volumes when compared to the popularity these stores held with previous generations.

Specialty Retail Steps Up

Specialty retailers are businesses that focus on specific product categories. It isn’t the product they sell that determines if a company is a specialty store, but rather the breadth of their product offering.

As we see more and more large retail stores closing, we see specialty retail continue to thrive. Brick and mortar retail is becoming less about shopping and more about the customer experience. With the rise of retail technology such as IoT, virtual reality and augmented reality in retail, consumers are entering brick and mortar stores with the expectation that they will walk away with more than just their purchase, but with a valuable and unique shopping experience.

With the generation that values experiences over items now holding such high buying power, retailers have to make an adjustment to their previous selling strategy. Retailers are beginning to take advantage of IoT and artificial intelligence to create a more personalized shopping experience. Specialty retail is thriving because it has been much easier for SMB and specialty retailers to create these personalized experiences, because they are more likely to have repeat customers, making it possible to establish a certain level of customer loyalty. “Big-box” retail stores have a more difficult time creating a unique customer experience, simply because their audience is too large, and too diverse to maintain a valuable relationship with the customer.

For retailers to survive in this age of discount and digital shopping, it is essential that retailers do not just sell goods, but that they sell an experience.

Star Cloud Services Introduces the Micro Receipt

Micro Receipt - Website 2

Star Cloud Services (SCS) is proud to introduce the Micro Receipt service, available to use with the AllReceipts™ or Itemize app.

What is the Micro Receipt?

The Micro Receipt is a printed 2D barcode (QR code) paper receipt. This QR code can be scanned by any smart phone using the AllReceipts or Itemize app to claim a digital copy of the full length, itemized receipt. The Micro Receipt allows retailers to create a reduced paper receipt, printing only the store name, time stamp, and the AllReceipts QR code.

Who can use the Micro Receipt?

The Micro Receipt is an additional service offered by Star Cloud Services. Star Cloud Services is free to install for any retailer using a Star Micronics thermal receSCS certifiedipt printer. SCS can either be easily downloaded with the Star futurePRNT Windows driver or integrated with the StarPRNT SDK for iOS and Android. In addition to the Micro Receipt, Star Cloud Services offers a full suite of digital receipting and customer engagement tools.

Star has made it easy for retailers to know which point of sale software has certified Star Cloud Services. Simply look for the “Star Cloud Services Certified” logo on any POS software page or on the Star Micronics Software Partners page.

Benefits for the retailer

Retailers are now looking for an eco-friendly and simple alternative to offering lengthy paper receipts. The Micro Receipt allows retailers to reduce the paper size of the receipt up to 80% from its original length. With the Micro Receipt, retailers can actually include more information on the receipt while saving on paper! In addition to the transaction information, SCS allows retailers to utilize the back of the digital receipt with its Receipt Flip service. Receipt Flip enables users to include coupons, promotions, terms and conditions, and more on the back side of the digital receipt. Once the receipt is scanned in the AllReceipts app, the shopper can use the Flip feature to access these promotions or conditions.

Retailers can now include store information, coupons, promotions, terms and conditions, bar codes, and more, all while saving on paper!

Benefits for the shopper

People are beginning to be less accepting of lengthy paper receipts. It’s no secret that long paper receipts can be obnoxious and inconvenient for the shoppers. Often times, shoppers are opting to received email receipts as opposed to the standard paper receipt. The only problem with email receipts is that they are not anonymous. Once a retailer has your email address to send a paper receipt, they can then access more of your personal information, or spam your inbox with unwanted emails.

Star Cloud Services digital receipts are 100% anonymous for the shopper, and the AllReceipts digital receipt app doesn’t require users to give any personal information upon download. With the customer engagement tools such as Receipt Flip and Engage Now, customers can choose when they want to engage with the retailer, rather than being bombarded with emails.

In addition, users only need to scan their receipt once in the AllReceipts app, and the receipt is kept as a digital copy forever. You never have to worry about misplacing or accidentally throwing away a receipt! On the flip side, if the shopper does need to hold on to the paper receipt, the Micro Receipt takes up significantly less space in they shopper’s purse or wallet due to its vastly reduced paper size.

Learn more about the benefits of the Micro Receipt at www.starmicronics.com/star-micronics-cloud/micro_receipt or www.starcloudservices.com.