Tip of the Week January 3, 2012
Volume: 2 | Issue: 1

Tip: After Holidays Discounting

So we all survived another holiday bookselling season?

For some of you, the fun continues with some extended Boxing Week/New Years "Holiday" sales. This is also a good time to discount those calendars [if you haven't already] or simply just clear our some dead or non-returnable stock. Here are a few efficient ways that you can discount some of your stock for reduced sale.

[Note: If you are having a store-wide sale, you can discount EVERYTHING simply by accessing your F4 Class File, Xtra and enter in the discount given to all products. Also, you can discount all items in certain classes by editing just these classes and entering the sale discount in the % field.]

The first area we should point out, since most likely a lot of you are not aware it even exists - is the Promotional Area [access through #2 Inventory, Xtra and P) Promotional sale items (build/review)] This area is an easy way to compile a list of the sale items, and have the sale prices or discounts applied.  
At this stage of the game, you can enter items here two ways - by either using a text file, or simply by scanning the items in.

1. Using a text file: By using your own, or even a Custom Inventory report of ISBN's  is the most efficient way to enter in a large amount of items. Say you have a list of seasonal items, or even just really old non-returnable ISBNs - this is a good opportunity to clear out that stock and apply discounts fast. 
The text file can be either tab-delimited or comma-separated and should be ISBN's only. From the Promotional area, simply hit Batch and type in the name of this "event" - so lets use the example of seasonal/Xmas books and call this event XMAS. You will need to enter in the default discount you want applied to all items in this "event" and then just type in the name/location of the ISBN text file. Once all the ISBN's are imported you should see them on the screen, with the "event" name and the other information you entered earlier. To apply the desired discount to this "event" hit Update and select option a) Mark inventory items with sale price/disc. If you scroll through, you should now see the //%XX in the notes field of these items, where XX is the discount. You can remove the discount by accessing the same Update screen and selecting the second option, b) Remove sale price/discount from inventory items.

2. Hitting N for New and scanning the ISBNs in: Simply scan in an item and fill in the fields accordingly. Once you add a discount, event name, for the first item, you will notice that BookManager remembers this and fills it in for the next items you scan into this file. Once you've scanned all your items in, hit Update and select a) Mark inventory items with sale price/disc in order for the discounts to be applied. And of course, to remove the discounts, use Update and b) Remove sale price/discount from inventory items.

To delete an item or even an entire "event" from the Promotional area, simply hit Delete and chose either Yes for the one specific ISBN, or ALL_xxx, where xxx is the event name.

Note: The commands Apply and Remove affect only the currently highlighted ISBN. You will need to use the Update command in order to apply/remove discounts en masse.

Note: If you are using the Cognitive Advantage thermal label printer, you can actually print out "SALE" labels for your promotional items, assuming you want to make that extra effort to sticker them. This function is hidden, but can be accessed simply by hitting Xtra when you are on an item belonging to the "event" you want labels for. A red prompt pops up asking, "Xtra Option: Do you want to print thermal sale labels for all items in stock (max 20 per title) on this promotion?" and simply select Yes. This will print out the correct number of labels for all the items you have on hand, in this particular event. Definitely a time saver so you don't have to manually hit L for Label on a bunch of individual items!

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Tip: Profit Margin Visible in Point of Sale

Back in July we made a change to the Point of Sale screen that allowed you to see at a glance the total Profit Margin (PM) you are making on a POS transaction.

When you are viewing the items in a sale, you can also use the right / left arrow to toggle between the class and the PM on the items, letting you do a quick double check on your margin when changing item prices and / or giving item % discounts in a sale.

These changes should allow you to easily catch situations where you are giving a POS discount on a short discount item (i.e. where you are selling for less than or close to your cost - eek!) or where the transaction's overall profit margin is falling below an acceptable limit (perhaps a customer discount on already reduced items?) and change / correct them before the sale is finalized.

*If you do not see these fields in your BookManager POS, you need an update!