When I was a kid, one of the highlights of the school year was being taken to the World Museum – what 10-year-old wouldn’t be fascinated by a real mummified hand or a room full of sarcophagi? But arguably the highlight would be the 10 minutes we’d get to spend in the gift shop at the end of the day. Oh, how I longed to add another pencil to my collection, or a bright orange rubber (sorry, when I was in school it was a rubber, not an eraser!) Armed with our pocket money, there wasn’t much change left over between me and my friends.
As I grew up, I realised how clever visitor attractions were. Of course, you make the shop the last port of call, you want people to spend money, what retailer doesn’t? Especially those who rely on donations from the public.
Gift shops are part of the experience with visitor attractions, whether it’s a heritage site or a theme park and all that’s in between, people love souvenirs. They love to collect knick-knacks from holidays, day trips or even a visit to a local museum, if you can’t buy a souvenir did it even happen?
In all seriousness, visitor attractions do rely upon visitors to spend money, whether it’s tickets, tea cakes or a tea towel, so its vital that the retail operations have a retail management system that can cope with the varied product offering and add to the visitor experience.
Out of the forecasted 40 million plus visits to the UK in 2018, spending was predicted to be around 7% higher than previous years (The Independent, 2018), highlighting that tourists are prepared to spend their cash. But with the rise in visitor spending, attractions need to make sure that all aspects of their business run as smooth as possible, with full integration into ticketing, retail, member and supporter services, stock control and more, in short, they need an easy to use EPoS system.
How can EPoS help visitor attractions?
Here are eight simple advantages to visitor attractions investing in a complete retail management EPoS solution:
- Integrated payments. “The coach is leaving in 5 minutes!” With a mad dash to the till, offer contactless payment for queue busting along with the ability to securely process cash, card, gift card, multi-currency, loyalty points, and more.What’s more – everything will balance when you cash out!
- Go mobile. mPOS is perfect for assisted sales in the shop, especially if you have tourists wanting to find out more about specialist products. With all the capabilities of a fixed till, you can take payments, orders for delivery and check stock availability.
- E-receipts. By offering e-receipt options to your customers lets you assign sales to specific customer and member accounts. It also makes it easy for visitors from outside the EU claim their tax back without needing to keep a stack of paper receipts.
- Quick keys. Create hotshot buttons on the till for your most popular sellers so you can make speedier sales. This is also great for your cafés, creating one click buttons for refreshments.
- Integrate ticketing. Integrating your ticketing into your retail operation makes it easy to sell tickets as the till in the shop, no need to separate queues. Plus, alongside an mPOS solution, you can move your way down the queue to sell tickets, keeping visitors happy in the process.
- Online integration. If you have an ecommerce site, EPoS software is perfect for letting visitors pre-order tickets and buy merchandise online for delivery or collection on the day, making it easier for them to plan their visit and letting you maximise revenue.
- Custom till themes. If you have your tills on show, then the right EPoS software will let you customise your till skin with your logo and brand colours ensuring your point of sale is aligned with your brand.
- Always connected. Process cash and card purchases at the till even when there is no internet connection, so if you’re halfway through a transaction you can still take payment, which means your customers and till operators won’t become frustrated and you won’t miss out on sales.
Want to find out how you can put the va-va-voom back into your visitor attraction? Download the RetailStore platform brochure here.
Rachel is passionate about retail and the ever-changing retail technology environment, with a keen eye for upcoming retail trends that are set to shake up the sector.