Convenience stores (C-stores) offer extended hours of operation, one-stop shopping, grab and go food service, a variety of merchandise and fast transactions. However, management of these retail operations can be difficult and are often ripe for a major efficiency upgrade. Accounting and inventory software such as the technology provided by Summit Software gives C-stores the opportunity to potentially become a cash generating monster, achieving desired margins and reducing the time spent on laborious data entry and administrative tasks. “The software modules help us maintain tight control on inventory, making it easy to troubleshoot C-store and inventory issues,” states Summit Software customer, Jimmy McDonald, of Quality Oil and Gas. “We went with a software package that had a 100 percent integrated system, and it has made us far more efficient.”
Improving Convenience Store Management and Operation
The following are a few best practices that Summit Software can help with:
Control Inventory: Once scanning is in place, all new stock can be scanned in while all sales are scanned out, allowing for easy tracking of inventory. With inventory controlled electronically, a manager will have the ability to pinpoint problems and find ways to improve sales that can be tracked by item, level and retail/cost by department.
Increase Gross Margins: Most C-stores struggle with the intricacies of price setting. If the item is priced too high, the sale hits a dead end. If a price is too low, so is profit. Automated price setting will allow for quick changes and easy analysis, detecting the highest possible profit margin on each product.
Make Store Managers into Real Managers: Most C-store managers feel like clerical assistants, spending most of the day tallying sales and preparing inventory reports. With these tasks taken care of, managers can react more quickly to any issues and perform other leadership responsibilities, such as guiding store employees.
With software technology provided by Summit, retailers can be certain every penny is present and accounted for, as well as ensure they are making the most of floor space and efficiently setting and managing the margins of every product in the store. By implementing a unifying single-vendor software system, C-stores eliminate many accounting challenges, while opening the door to higher revenues. “Using the Summit iGuide dashboard (a feature of the software), I can tell at a glance what is happening in our stores,” confirms Mike Walker, marketing director for Jumpin Jimmy’s, a chain of 35 C-stores offering Marathon fuels, as well as two liquor stores in central and southern Illinois. “Having a centralized C-store system has helped our managers evaluate their sales and run more efficiently.”
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