Big retailers are struggling to implement self-checkout. To that point, 67% of consumers report they’ve had a self-checkout machine fail on them when using it, according to one survey. Meanwhile, other customers worry that self-checkout machines could be costing the jobs of retail employees.
On the flip-side, customers often come to small businesses to get personal, thoughtful in-store experiences that they can’t get at big box retailers. The checkout process is vital to this experience—and one that’s starting to become a competitive differentiator for smaller merchants.
Clover provides technology that empowers business owners to deepen relationships with their clients. The Clover Mini, for instance, is a small yet powerful retail POS system designed to fit into any space. Retailers can use the Mini for everything from payments to inventory and payroll to customer engagement.
Learn how these merchants are using the Clover Mini to set up and run their retail establishments and how the Mini could be a good fit for your retail store.
The Smoke and Oak is a whisky and cigar lounge owned by Courtney Crowson. Opening in September 2021, the idea originated from Crowson’s personal experience–he and his friends found relief from their pandemic isolation by gathering outdoors with cigars and drinks. Crowson set out to recreate that relaxed communal vibe for others by opening a bourbon and cigar lounge in Lexington, North Carolina.
Today, the Smoke & Oak team uses Clover Mini devices to run everything from sales to inventory and employee management, including payroll. He ensures that every member of his team is trained to take on as many tasks as possible through Clover devices.
“My bookkeeper loves it,” says Crowson. “It’s easy to pull up information, which helps my team stay focused on our revenues. All of them have access to Clover so they can pull up our sales reports. Everybody can be on the same page, and there are no hidden surprises or secrets.”
Plus, the Mini offers real-time sales reports, empowering your team to monitor transactions as they happen with info like hourly sales and top-selling items or refund and discount volume.
ChoZen 4 U Boutique is a women’s boutique in Cincinnati, Ohio, owned by Corless Berry. Creating a personalized, thoughtful shopping experience is Berry’s bread and butter. She builds client relationships by offering stylish, quality clothing in an inclusive range of sizes and price points. But, when she first opened her storefront in 2019, Berry faced the challenge of bringing in foot traffic. Then she added Clover’s customer loyalty program.
“I set it up through my Clover Mini,” Berry says. “I show customers how the app works and how they can earn points from purchases. And I always suggest they let the points accumulate a bit. I’ve got a program where you can use 100 points and get $5 off and maybe 200 points and get $10 off.”
As she explains, Berry has built strong relationships with other women through the program and her “ability to extend this gift of an eye for fashion and passing it on to my customers. And also giving them something of value, so they feel like they’re getting incentives to continue shopping with me.”
READ: A fashionably functional boutique POS system
Pet grooming salon Chateau 4 Paws was started by Janelle Russell in 2010. It offers everything from basic baths and nail trims to nail painting, blueberry facials, and fur coloring for all dog breeds. When Russell first started, she processed credit card payments on a dial-up line. It would take minutes for a receipt to print–that meant irritated customers.
On the advice of a client, she switched to a Clover Mini–much, much faster than dial-up. Plus, customers can choose to receive their receipts via text message or paper.
Her old system “took longer for us to run the credit cards, but with Clover, it was just so easy,” Janelle says. “I was like, ‘Where has Clover been?’ My customers love it.” She adds that customers feel comfortable running their credit card information through Clover, because they know and trust the brand.
Clover Mini devices are equipped to accept payments via swipe, dip, or tap, credit or debit, and contactless payments like Apple Pay®, Google Pay™, and PayPal/Venmo®. You can also accept card-not-present payments with Virtual Terminal or request payment by invoice, and set up recurring payments for repeat business.
Seattle-based brand The Bellflower Chocolate Company specializes in artisanal, single-origin chocolate milk and other single-origin chocolate products. Until recently, the brand was selling mostly at farmer’s markets around the city. Co-owners Callie Neylan and Will Dixon have been renovating their kitchen space to offer retail at a permanent location, too. And, with Clover Mini’s inventory management, making the transition from market to market each week has been pretty smooth.
Thanks to the flexibility of the Clover Mini, they’ve been able to set up their Clover Mini to capture the types of products they sell–and all the varieties of those products they sell–to make inventory management even easier.
“We have confections, we have bars, we have our beverages. ‘What kind of beverage was it? Was it one of our plant-based or was it dairy-based? OK, among those, was it one with a botanical infusion?’ Because we do that, too. And Clover’s inventory mechanisms for setting all that up work really well,” explains Dixon.
As the two owners look forward to opening their new space, Clover’s inventory tools can enable them to track what items are available and only order the amounts needed to meet customer demands.
Clover Mini is a flexible, stylish POS system that packs a punch. With inventory management solutions, the ability to start a loyalty program, and many ways to pay, Mini is a good fit for growing retailers.
To learn more about Clover Mini, contact a Clover Business Consultant today. And, be sure to read our Meet the Merchant series for more on how other business owners are building and growing their businesses with Clover.CONTACT SALES