Since opening in 2011, TheSuperCool, a small business that prides itself on being “an emporium of everyday objects … from around the globe”, has sought to embrace technology as part of its MO.
“We've tried quite a few POS systems, and as our business has become more sophisticated, we certainly required more sophisticated technology,” says TheSuperCool co-founder Kate Vandermeer.
“We were using a software program that wasn't cloud-based before, and it did cause problems for us in the sense that we had multiple stores at Christmas time, I think we had three, and that actually caused quite a few problems for us ... I had just had a baby at the time and I wanted to log in and see how the stores were performing, and I wasn't able to,” she explains.
“We desired more analytics on the back-end.”
TheSuperCool, with its pop-up business model, strongly believes in the “nomadic lifestyle … where people would take their wares on their little peddler cycle-mobiles”, with a strong emphasis on allowing employees to move easily throughout the store to help customers with their needs.
Approximately two and a half years ago, Ms Vandermeer implemented Vend, a cloud-based POS system, into the store, which she believes has enhanced the customer experience of TheSuperCool.
“The flexibility of having [the cloud-based POS system] means we can walk around,” says Kate.
“So we use iPads and Bluetooth scanners that are tiny, like almost half of a mobile phone size, [and] we use that when we're looking for pricing or trying to give more details on each brand or product that we stock within the store.
“I think people really relate to it in-store, being that it's mobile, and they like how quickly we can move them through the transaction.”
Kate is a strong advocate of cloud-based POS systems, and suggests other small businesses follow suit.
“If you are a one-stop shop and a small business, and … if you're looking at having multiple sites and doing pop-ups as well as permanent [stores], I think it's a must,” she says.
“Moving forward, there's just never going to be enough USBs and external data [storage] ... we just have to hold on to so much information and so much data, so the cloud just makes so much sense.
“If you want to be progressive and you want to move forward and expand within your business, you definitely need to think cloud is where we're going.”
My Business also interviewed Ms Vandermeer about TheSuperCool and its success as a retail business.