An EPOS Stock System designed specifically to make the management of clothing and footwear easy
Top to Toe enables clothing, sportswear, footwear and school wear retailers to process size and colour stock seconds and to obtain analysis that would otherwise take hours and hours
“For someone using a ‘general (non-size/colour) system’ like we used to, I’d certainly recommend that they move over to Top to Toe”
Mr Cricket (Sportswear)
“5 stars all round, great product and you couldn’t ask to speak to friendlier people.”
Eccleshall Saddlery (Equestrian)
“Even the new sales assistants can adapt to Top to Toe within minutes.”
Pie Clothing (Fashion)
“Top to Toe have greatly helped us manage & develop our stock system over the last few years. Their helpful & knowledgeable staff are always on hand to help.”
“Once the products are on Top to Toe, it’s very easy to then put those products onto a website.”
Angels Uniforms (Schoolwear)
“Friendly EPOS, insightful reporting facilities, seamless website integration and a friendly customer care & training team.”
“Cannot praise the technical team enough, whenever we have issues they are always on hand, efficient, quick and get the problem resolved quickly! Excellent service.”
Sheen Sports (Sportswear)
“We used to do stock management manually. Top to Toe came to make such a big difference to all of our staff.”
Uniform 4 Kids (Schoolwear)
“Top to Toe has a really easy way of spotting trends – I’m able to identify what sizes, colours and styles are selling best. It’s intuitive, anyone can use it”
Claudio Lugli (Fashion)
“Incredibly easy to use, saving me hours upon hours per week. It’s both transformed my business and my day-to-day tasks.”
Michael Leigh Menswear (Fashion)
“Top to Toe was a revelation – we run much more efficiently now. We couldn’t run our business in the current climate without it”
Burrs Shoes (Footwear)
“Within seconds you can find things incredibly quickly using Top to Toe’s filter. Previously, we were trawling through lines and lines of data”
Uniform 4 Kids (Schoolwear)
Benefits of the Top to Toe EPOS
Get your stock onto websites and ecommerce stores automatically
Sector specific, so 300% faster than a general system to understand the figures in your system
Cut staff costs, maximising profitability
Optimise overall trends and pricing
Optimise season by season ordering and web sales
Track, understand and stay in touch with individual customers better
Get your stock onto websites and ecommerce stores automatically
Many times faster to operate for clothing and footwear than a general system
Clearer analysis so that you get to the decisions that grow your bottom line in hours or days, rather than months or seasons
Clothing and Footwear specific screens including instant size/colour matrix’s
Make the right decisions at every level – our EPOS system is vital to manage your stock and finances accurately
Instant switching between style level and its detailed size/colour matrix display
“My business has completely changed and I’m making more money. Now I know what’s working and what’s not – I am managing my business, not chasing after it.”
What is an EPOS Stock System?
The term EPOS has come to mean many things. By itself EPOS (Electronic Point of Sale) could refer to the hardware (ie screen, receipt printer etc) that looks and feels like a modern till. However, for this hardware to function as a till it also needs EPOS software. Sometime the term EPOS might mean any one, or both, of these.
An EPOS till by itself might just control money and provide some high-level departmental reports.
If, however, the EPOS till is linked into stock management software that enables the user to input stock receipts and the system adjust stock positions as sales are made, then the EPOS unit has become part of an EPOS Stock System.
EPOS Stock System, Stock Control, Stock Management: an explanation
These are all terms used to define a computerised system that allows a retailer to input stock on arrival, record sales and see what stock remains. They all contain the word “Stock” but none of them really relate to stock only – it’s a shorthand for everything to do with stock, sales and all related retail transactions. This means that as well as stock and sales a Stock Management System may cover a large range of other functions.
Stock optimisation and sales optimisation:
How does an EPOS system help you?
The short answer to this lies in the management maxim: “If you cannot measure it, you cannot manage it”.
If you want to optimise you need first to measure
Consider all of your products, each with different sizes and colours, each of those with a stock, sales and order number. If you have another shop or web site, this number will double. The sheer volume of these ever-changing numbers is so far beyond what most of us can cope with manually that it is clearly a non-starter. You need an EPOS system to cope with these numbers. And if it’s a good EPOS system it will help you turn these numbers into meaningful information that you can use to optimise what you buy, how you sell it and where you sell it.
Can you increase your optimisation – the tell-tale signs!
Yes almost certainly, you can improve your optimisation – and with it increase your profitability.
“Now we have changed to Top to Toe and our turnover is up, our manpower costs have gone down and our increased turnover has more than doubled our profits.”
Optimise or discount
The ‘invisible’ cost of having poor EPOS stock management for fashion, sports and footwear retailers
Better buying, better pricing, staff incentives, optimising transfers between locations, using multiple web sites, selling poor performers early in the season, using web sites for end of lines etc can only be optimised with a really good EPOS system. A system that as well as allowing speedy and efficient input also delivers accessible and really meaningful data.
Spreadsheets to the rescue – I don’t think so!
Pen, paper and spreadsheets work to a limited degree in allowing you to input numbers, but experience shows again and again that human error undermines their precision. This means that you will not be able to rely on your stock numbers and lose money as a result.
What are SKU’s?
In retail, barcodes are generally just a way of writing a products unique identifying reference number; this is sometimes referred to as an SKU (Stock Keeping Unit) – a number that only that product has. It doesn’t have to be unique per item, so if ten items are all identical then all ten can all have the same SKU. In clothing and footwear, the SKU will be per style/colour/size and possibly fit.
“The mistake we made was that we only understood the differences between systems once we had had one; the differences are far, far more important than we realized.”
What is the Difference Between one EPOS Stock Control System and Another?
Decide what information you need:
Remember, data is not the same as information
The more precisely tuned your information the more you can shape and direct your merchandise and the business overall to make more profit. So yes, you definitely need a system that delivers the correct basic numbers but you need to ensure this is done at a practical cost in terms of man/lady power and that the EPOS system will also give you information – information you can use to force costs down and push profit up.
What should you be looking for in an EPOS system?
In practice there are two approaches to selecting the type of system you want. The first is ‘stock tracking’ and focus’s on actual stock and sales quantities for every product. The second approach is ‘analysis/reporting’ and is built upon the same principles as the first approach (you always have to know the basic numbers) but it goes a lot further.
Just to input the same data takes an average of over 147 minutes longer per day with a non-specialist system.
‘Specialist needs’ change the rules:
General vs Specialist – clothing and footwear has special challenges
A general system treats every size/colour combination as a separate product. Whereas a specialist system (for clothing or footwear retailers) takes one style and then presents it’s sizes and colours in an easy to understand matrix (grid) format.
Features seems real – But they can be very misleading!
Say two systems both claim they have links to a web platform. Both are correct, but in reality, the first only synchronises stock positions and nothing else; even then it only works for products you have manually create on the web site. The other system automatically replicates the product on the site for you, synchronises stock and then tracks the whole sales process. Yes, they both have a web linkage feature but one is only partial and the other is great.
Examples like this can apply to almost every significant system module, the stock management system itself, analysis and reporting, purchase orders, customer relationship management, tills etc – there is a long list of modules and sub modules that potentially need to be evaluated before you can truly compare one system’s features to another.
The User Interface is King
How the user workflow makes or breaks a system
The usability of the User Interface (UI for short) is critical. Having a feature is all well and good but if it is so complicated it is practically un-usable, or can only be used by serious technical users, then much or all of its advantage is lost.
A key goal is to find a system that streamlines everything as much as possible. You may find a less efficient system that also costs less, but it’s not cheaper; in fact its far more expensive. If a system either sucks an extra two hours everyday out of your available time or costs you 2+ hours of salary then that is an extra expense on-top of its purchase cost. A cheap system can be very expensive.
Top to Toe’s specialist data input screens is 700% faster than a non-specialist system.
The day is not infinite – there are only 10 hours in a working day
Just because you need more time to get analysis doesn’t mean that you’ll find that time. There are only so many hours in the day. The more time you spend doing one thing the less you’ll have for another.
In fashion, sports and footwear, with its multiplicity of sizes and colours, it’s very common to encounter retailers whose main task is just getting their stock and sales EPOS numbers correct – analysis is a minor concern, but getting and acting upon the right analysis is what really improves the business.
They have lost sight of the valuable information that is trapped in their stock systems, since they just don’t have the time or the determination to extract it. If the input was easier they would save thousands of pounds in salaries. If their analysis/reporting was better they would increase their sell through and profitability.
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020 3376 5888
Top to Toe, Senator House,
2 Graham Road, Hendon,
London NW4 3HJ