Cash Register, Point of Sale & Credit Card Information Central

3 Reasons Why We love Events (and you should too!)

Posted by Bryan Mueller on Wed, Apr 16, 2014 @ 01:34 PM


The Event Experience:

Breaking new ground with Tomorrow World, EAA and iPad POS softwareYou really can’t beat the excitement that is infused in a gathering of people who are all passionate about the same thing. An entire stadium thunders with cheers as their team scores. The dedicated followers who become immersed in a world they could only imagine while at a theme convention. Witnessing a once in a lifetime opportunity like a presidential inauguration. Being caught up in the energy surrounding these events drives us to make them successful. We want the attendees to have a positive experience.

Our Clients:

We love working with our wide variety of clients and assisting in making their many different events a success. We truly appreciate working with all event individuals and making their lives easier. After all, event planning is one of the most stressful jobs out there, so when we can take some of that burden off we are eager and happy to do so.

Technology:

We are involved in an industry and live in a world that revolves around technology. We love it, especially when it works. Technology has made our lives easier and faster than ever. Tasks that once took days now take only minutes, and its right at our finger tips. It can be challenging to keep up with technology as it constantly changes, but we will never take it for granted. It has improved the events industry by a landslide. Plus, our company’s technology assists with some of the most important pieces of an event: finances and data collection.

Tags: Events, Event Planning, Rental

(The Worst) Advice on Event Planning

Posted by Bryan Mueller on Mon, Mar 31, 2014 @ 01:41 PM

planning sessionThere are a lot of opinions out there on how to plan an event. Some insights can be incredibly helpful while others sound good, but fall short. We have heard a few pieces of “advice” that haven’t delivered on their promise to make things easier.

“Always plan for the absolute worst.” This advice may seem sensible, but this viewpoint can have a highly stressful and negative effect on the event planning process. If you focus on everything that can and probably will go wrong throughout an event, chances are you will be blindsided by other issues you couldn’t predict anyway. Event planning is a stressful job, so don’t start there. A better way of thinking about it is “always pay attention to detail.” Instead, start with the details and go from there. Have a plan A, B and even a plan C if necessary, it’s all in the details.

“I’m sure I can figure it out on my own.” This type of statement is usually given to yourself as a little pep talk. It usually comes with the caveat, “if I have enough time or resources.” Even if the statement is true, don’t be afraid to reach out to others who have experience. This is especially true when it comes to event planning. Your time is more valuable than you realize and stretched way to thin. Having access to professional guidance and support can help get the job done right, give you peace of mind and keep you focused on the things for which you are best suited

 “Your memory is sometimes enough.” The key word in this statement is sometimes. Relying on “sometimes” can be pretty detrimental when planning an event. From all of the things that need to get done, problems to be solved, people to meet with, details to look into, and jobs to be delegated don’t rely solely on your brain power, even sometimes. We can easily over look seemingly small details that can often result in a very large impact down the line. Write it down, set a reminder, make a list, or better yet, they most likely have an app for that.

“Expect great things from spur-of-the-moment ideas.” All ideas and plans of action start somewhere. Running with the first idea that pops into your head may not lead down the intended path. Brainstorming can have a tremendously positive impact when planning an event. Brainstorming lends inspiration, creativity and clarity to ideas; helps develop good ones and weeds out unfruitful ones. When there is a big amount of company time and money being spent, spur of the moment ideas can lead to mistakes and disappointment that we didn’t see coming. Think about who your audience is and what they want and need. Often times we are biased and don’t realize it. Share your idea with potential audience members and current clients to see if they find it just as interesting or entertaining. If you want your event ideas to be successful, bring in new clients, and create buzz, then BRAINSTORM!

Tags: Event Planning, Rental

Pop-Up Retail Point of Sale Checklist

Posted by Bryan Mueller on Wed, Nov 13, 2013 @ 09:51 AM

checklistWhen producing a pop-up retail store, no matter the location, there are so many things to do and remember. Including stressful and important things that we can’t afford to forget! Technology is extremely important, especially when your revenue relies on it. This information will help you remember some of the important technological aspects that can determine your pop-up retail stores success or failure.

little checkmarkCash Register/POS System:

The most essential piece of technology that retailers everywhere depend on. So, how do you find a cost effective, reliable, and mobile system? Depending on your needs, the basics should include: either mobile options, all payment acceptance (credit/debit, cash), inventory management, or receipts (paper vs. email).

little checkmarkRouter:

A quality router is necessary for strong security and solid WiFi or cellular connectivity, when processing credit cards. It has the important applications of card swipers, security systems (if needed), WiFi network, printers, etc.

little checkmarkPeripherals: Scanner, Printer, & Cash Drawer:

Laser barcode scanners can be extremely efficient if your products have barcodes. It will make transactions quicker, so customers spend less time waiting in line and more time purchasing your products. External printers compliment a wide range of POS systems and can be important when printing receipts not only for your customer, but for you as well. Printers also have options in displaying logos and coupons that can help promote your business. Cash drawers are a simple but essential item, especially when only accepting cash. Steel drawers with a manager key option can assist with keeping your funds safe and secure.

little checkmarkInventory Reporting:

Not all Pop-Up retail events need inventory reporting, since some events sole purpose is to move product. However, it can be pretty useful when wanting a timely salesreport of the event. Instead of spending hours counting cash and checking receipts, you can receive a financial report in minutes from instant data readings during the event. This feature has become extremely valuable to event organizers everywhere, after all time is money.

Tags: Events, Event Planning, Rental

Accepting Credit Cards: Handheld vs. Integrated

Posted by Bryan Mueller on Mon, Oct 28, 2013 @ 10:48 AM

If you are thinking about accepting credit cards at your next event, consider these points on the differences between using a handheld terminal and integrated credit card options. Hopefully these will be able to assist you in making the right decision and improve the success of your event.

battery icon1)  No-Power (battery) vs. Power:

Handheld credit terminals are great if power sources are limited or unavailable. They have rechargeable batteries that can last up to 6-8 hours. The integrated system MUST have a power source to operate.

cash register icon2)  Register vs. No Register:

Integrated credit card processing takes place directly with the register. If you need or would like a register to assist with handling cash transactions as well, this option is both faster and more accurate. The Handheld is small and portable, so it takes up less room. With this option, you will need to establish a different system to handle your cash.

mobility icon3)  Mobility vs. Fixed Location:

Handheld credit card terminals offer lots of mobility. They can be very useful to trim down long lines by walking though the lines and checking out the individuals who are paying with credit or debit. It also works well for conventions or craft fairs when there are multiple transaction locations happening.

connectivity icon4)  Connectivity Concerns:

If there are potential connectivity issues at your venue, a backup plan is always a great idea. With some handheld credit card terminals, they have a “store and forward” mode. This allows you to accept payments offline that can be processed later. With an integrated system, if connectivity is lost, you are unable to accept electronic payments. Please note however, there are certain risks while in the store and forward mode. You are not getting a true authorization from the processor, so there is a risk some cards might be declined.

reporting icon5) Inventory Reporting:

The integrated credit card option has a higher detailed report of all transactions. If your event needs inventory reporting by instant data readings, then this would be your best option. The handheld credit card terminals only track the credit/debit transactions, not the actual items being sold.

Whether a hand-held terminal is right for you or using a point of sale system with integrated credit card processing is what you are after, American Metro is here to help. For additional information on credit card processing and pricing options, please follow the link below for a free, no obligation quote.

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Tags: Event Planning, Rental, Point Of Sale, Credit Card Equipment

mBox - Wireless Credit Card Processing

Posted by Bryan Mueller on Thu, Oct 17, 2013 @ 11:53 AM

We at American Metro strive to help our customers find the ideal solutions to their cash register, credit card processing and point of sale needs. With over 30 years in business, we have collected a vast knowledge of the workings of the retail world and we look forward to sharing that with you. We hope you will find this blog useful as we post helpful hints on how to get the most out of your cash register, fill you in on the lastest point of sale technology, or share our experiences from some of our on-site locations.

mBox Wireless Credit Card ModemFor instance, let's take a quick look at our newest wireless credit card modem made by Sterling Payment Technologies, simply named the "mBox". Made from military grade components and running on the Verizon network, this modem boasts consistanly fast tranaction speeds. In fact, while at a recent tradeshow held inside a convention center, credit card payments were being processed and completed within 2-3 seconds after being swiped.

This opens up viable wireless solutions even in structures with large amounts of concrete or places where the average cell phone coverage is sketchy at best. In many convention centers or large outdoor venues, getting hard lines or internet drops average $10,000 per access point. 

Online Reporting

The mBox is also equipped another major cost saving option, Online Reporting through Sterling Bridge. Think of all the man-hours it takes to collect reports, balance drawers, enter sales data into an accounting program and calculate final sales totals. With the mBox, running a report on the cash register will also upload all the data to an online web portal for instant access. This makes figuring totals from each register across multiple locations take a fraction of the time. Get a financial summary, or complete breakdown, PLU reports, time reports and more. With all this data available at your fingertips, it can easily be converted into multiple formats for import into your accounting software. 

There is also a real-time component that allows you to see sales as they happen. This information can help you stay ahead of potential changes in staffing needs or inventory levels. The best part is all this information without having to leave your desk.

For more information on whether the mBox is right for your next event, click the button below for a customized assessment of your point of sale need. You'll also get a free quote. 

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Tags: Rental, M-Box, Wireless Credt Card Processing

New Point of Sale Opportunities on the iPad

Posted by Bryan Mueller on Wed, Jul 24, 2013 @ 09:43 AM

Here's a quick look at a couple of key features to consider when thinking about using your tablet as a point of sale terminal.

iPad infographic

To find out if renting an iPad is right for your company's point of sale needs, request a quote today.

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Tags: Rental, Point Of Sale, iPad

Never Too Early for Event Planning

Posted by Bryan Mueller on Thu, May 30, 2013 @ 10:14 AM

Event InfographicThe summer months keep us on our toes and are in the front of our mind as it is our busiest time of year. However, deep down something even bigger is stirring: our participation at the International Festivals and Events Association (IFEA) trade show this September.

We know, we know, June is just a few days away and the start of summer is here. But we want to get people thinking ahead for all the trade shows happening this summer season. More importantly, we want to share with you how to get people talking about YOUR trade show exhibit. It’s never too early to start planning of success.

At American Metro, we are currently in the process of planning our goals that we want to accomplish at the Annual IFEA expo. Setting goals ahead is very important for obtaining desirable end results and is crucial in making these costly tradeshows worthwhile. The best advice we can give is to brainstorm and bounce ideas off of other coworkers. It is a great way to work creatively and bring in fresh ideas. After all the creative juices are flowing, FOCUS FOCUS FOCUS!

Here are some tips to help direct your efforts:

  • Know your target market and nurture those few, rather than trying to tackle the many.
  • Be consistent with your theme, booth, pre-show and after show mailers.
  • Relay a clear and concise message to your target audience which will help bring in business.
  • Don’t forget to have fun and make it a memorable experience for all involved, it can be easier than you think!

Below is a helpful infographic “Planning Your Exhibit’s Success” created by Agung Prabowo on Infographic File. Check it out for some quick tips and important reminders for your next tradeshow event.

1.)    http://www.infographicfile.com/infographics/view/795

 

Tags: Events, Rental

2012 Cash Register Rental Statistics

Posted by Bryan Mueller on Wed, Mar 27, 2013 @ 04:02 PM

With the steady growth we have experienced over the last several years, it's hard to say what an average year looks like at American Metro. Nonetheless, we do like tracking our register rentals each year. Here's some of the stats from 2012.

2012 Register Rental Stats

As you can see, American Metro deals in all types of events spread across the country. To further break down the distribution, we shipped registers to 24 states, plus the District of Columbia, and Brittish Columbia, Canada.

The majority of events (51%) fell under the Pop-up Merchandise category. This type of event averaged 8 registers per rental. 

Sporting events comprised the second most frequent type of event at 20% of our rentals. They tend to use more registers with an average of 36 per event.

The numbers listed only include those events that used registers. When factoring in events that just used credit card equipment, the final event count is over 300 with total equipment reaching over 5,400 units rented.

If you would like to find out how the experienced team at American Metro can help with your event, click the button below. 

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Tags: Events, Cash Registers, Rental

Cash Register Security

Posted by Bryan Mueller on Mon, Nov 05, 2012 @ 03:18 PM

The cash register has always been a great way for merchants to protect themselves from employee theft.  In fact, that is the original purpose of the cash register when it was invented in 1879. Recording each sale allows a store owner or manager to verify that they have what they are supposed to have. Reducing the opportunity for theft is the definition of security.

mounting progressionHow do you reduce the opportunity for outside security threats? In today's rental environment, where cash registers need to be easily transported for quick setup and removal, these benefits for the merchant are also potential opportunites for thieves.  What's to stop someone from coming up to a counter, grabbing the whole register and walking away with a drawer full of cash? How about a custom built, steel case that's mounted to the counter and locks the register in place.

Well, that's the solution we at American Metro develped for Experient who was setting up some seasonal mall kiosks. A metal case was sent with each register. During setup, the metal case was screwed to the counter. Then the register was slid into place from the front of the case. A security arm was then lowered over the front of the registerand locked closed. This provided security for the contents of the register and kept the point of sale equipment safe as well.

As an added precaution against equipment damage, we recommend that any time there is no cash in the register, the drawer be left open. In times where any would-be thieves get access to a register, it's better they see nothing inside and move on rather than breaking into a register that has nothing for them anyway.

For more information about how American Metro can help keep your hard earned money secure from internal and external threats, contact us and we will be happy to answer your questions.

Tags: Cash Registers, Rental

Cash Register Training Made Easy

Posted by Bryan Mueller on Thu, Jun 28, 2012 @ 02:22 PM

Maybe you haven't picked up on it yet, but at American Metro, everything we do is designed to make the point of sale for our customers as easy as possible. We program each piece of equipment to be extremely user friendly while providing the necessary features. We provide training sessions for customers in house. We offer on-site support to take care of all the details regarding equipment running smoothly. With each rental, we send easy to understand cheat sheets out as a reference. We have service technicians available 24 hours a day by phone or email to make it easy to get questions answered.

Getting familiar with setting up and operating your cash register has never been easier, especially now that we have one more tool at our disposal. Introducing the American Metro video training series. Get step by step instructions you can see and follow along with on any computer or smart phone. It's the next best thing to having an American Metro service tech follow you around all day. 

The first set of videos covers operations and programming of our most popular rental register, the Sam4s ER-285. More videos will be posted in the coming weeks and will contain guides for operating other register models. All videos will have links posted on www.americanmetro.com. If you have a specific register for which you would like a video tutorial created, please let us know.

 

 

Tags: Cash Registers, Service, Rental