My Day as a Marketer Turned Retailer…
Alright, let me start off by saying that writing an article from a first person point of view feels extremely strange to me. As the primary author of all the CRS articles, I typically don’t refer to myself or my own personal experiences (for obvious professionalism reasons). But this is a special circumstance.
For those who may not already know, Canadian Retail Solutions has a sister retail company called Twig & Barry’s. This retail store is operated out of the same building where our CRS head office is located, so while the two remain separate businesses, they are entwined in one way or another.
During the Christmas shopping season last year, I had the opportunity to assist with Twig & Barry’s while covering some time off, which was something entirely new to me. My role at Canadian Retail Solutions is the Sales & Marketing Coordinator, and while I’ve dabbled in a few different industries in the past, I can honestly say that I never worked in a retail store before.
So why am I telling you this and what could this possibly have to do with being a Retail Operations Partner?
Twig & Barry’s operates on Shopify, both online and in-store, and I felt that my experience with the entire system is something that needs to be shared.
Prior to the days I was going to watch over the store, I had a quick demo from our team on how to complete a transaction on the POS system, while also being shown how to process and fulfill online orders as they come in. I think we spent about 15 minutes in total going over the whole process, and as someone who’s never done this before, that honestly made me kind of nervous.
Was I going to forget how to do this when I had an actual customer in front of me?
Was a quick demo enough?
Should I have done some practice runs on mock transactions?
Day one I had dozens of online orders to fulfill, along with a steady stream of in-store customers for a couple hours straight. I got right down to business.
As my very first in-store customer was ready to check out their items, my stomach fluttered – here comes the nerves! When I get nervous, my mind tends to blank out on me, so I had no doubt that I was about to make a massive fool of myself in front of my first customer. As the POS screen came to life and I was faced with the Shopify dashboard, it was immediately clear what I needed to do, even though I couldn’t remember the demo I was given for the life of me. I clicked on the transactions button and started ringing the customer’s items into the system. Okay, step one – complete.
Feeling slightly more confident, I finished ringing the customer’s items through…and then realized I missed the very first step. I was supposed to select a customer or create a new customer prior to running the items into a new transaction.
Of course, I wasn’t finished with the customer yet so I tried not to let my panic show as I stared at the screen and contemplated my next move. I immediately thought that I would have to start over, delete the items that were rung in and then ask the customer for their information so I can follow the steps in the right order. I was embarrassed thinking about having to make the customer wait for me to ring in everything a second time as I fumbled my way through the system.
That’s when I realized that I didn’t have to do any of that. Right there in front of me was a big green button with the option to attach a customer to the transaction I had already started. Crisis averted!
From there, everything was a cinch! Even though I still couldn’t recall the training demo I was given the week prior due to my nervous brain, everything I needed was right in front of me and a click of the button was all it took – no searching, no clicking through a bunch of prompts or pages. The whole transaction process was clear and to the point, and it really made me realize that literally ANYONE can use Shopify POS!
After my first transaction was complete, I felt extremely confident in my ability to handle being a retailer for the week. All of the online orders that were coming in were easy to navigate, print the labels for, and fulfill within the system. When a brick and mortar customer would ask if we had any of a certain product available that they didn’t see in the store, the POS system would easily give me an inventory count based on transaction histories so I’d know whether or not to go looking for it in the warehouse. When pick up orders were picked up by customers, completing those orders on the POS system was as easy as a click of a button.
My experience with Shopify for the remainder of the week was a breeze, and at the end of it, I just knew that I had to tell our readers just how simple this system was to learn and gain confidence with. As my very first experience in retail, I was very impressed with Shopify POS.