When business is going well, it might be difficult to consider a change. However, sometimes a simple switch makes business go from good to great. Just ask archery shop owners Jeff Buttolph and Marty Stubstad. Both men recently switched from their previous point-of-sales system to the Archery Trade Association’s ATA ePRO software and haven’t looked back.
“I got a point-of-sales system 20 years ago because I knew it was important to have inventory control,” Stubstad said. “I changed to ATA ePRO because it’s user-friendly, makes you a smarter businessman, tracks your sales and inventory, and helps you communicate with customers.”
ATA ePRO is an all-in-one archery retail operation software program designed for archery retailers by archery retailers to help make pro shops more productive and profitable. Its features help retailers improve customer service, track work orders, integrate all store operations, and make more money from their ranges. Plus, the ATA guarantees the security of all your data stored within ATA ePRO.
ATA members who already made the switch rave about the program. ATA-member retailers Buttolph, owner of Shooters Archery in Beaverdam, Virginia and Stubstad, owner of Archery Headquarters Inc. in Rochester, Minnesota, speak highly of the program’s offerings and solutions. Both shop owners purchased the program at the 2017 ATA Trade Show and have worked with it for nearly a year. Below they provide some honest and helpful feedback about ATA ePRO features.
The work order system tracks the progress of all orders and stores customer information, simplifying future repairs. Photo Credit: Ryan Kirby.
Electronic Work Orders and The Bow Desk
Any equipment brought in for repair or work receives a work order. The work order system tracks the progress of all orders and stores customer information, simplifying future repairs. The Bow Desk shows you all the existing, uncompleted work orders. Both features work together to help you manage your daily tasks and service work.
Stubstad said this feature is easy to use and helped him increase his work orders by 50 percent. Buttolph said Shooters Archery is also doing more repairs now than ever and said he would never go back to the previous system.
Automatic Customer Communication
ATA ePRO keeps customers up to date on the repair and notifies them when their bow is ready for pickup. The software automatically texts or emails customers when the status of their work order changes.
“I used to keep track of everything in my head,” Buttolph said. “Now I can sleep at night because the software does the work for me.” Stubstad agreed and said his shop’s overall communication efforts are up 100 percent and his customers often express their appreciation for regular updates.
Purchase Orders and Inventory
The purchase order tool allows you to order and track all your shipments. The system contains SKU numbers from many manufactures and is updated regularly. You can also quickly and easily add any product to the system. The program allows you to set minimums and maximums on inventory levels to help you avoid empty shelves or over-purchasing products.
These features help you buy smarter because you’ll know what you sold and when you sold it. The following year you’ll know what items to buy and when to stock them. That knowledge helps you program better orders because you can buy in bulk to get discounts and save on freight costs with fewer shipments.
“It’s simple to manage your inventory with ATA ePRO,” Buttolph said. “We place more and more orders through the ATA ePRO PO function. The system lets us do more direct orders, minimizing the number of orders we send to distributors, which means greater profits.”
Stubstad said the system also helps him stay organized and up to date on inventory management.
The ATA ePRO software can connect with your current website to sell lessons, classes and leagues online. It can even process auto-payments by credit cards. The software tells customers when to show up and sends reminders so they don’t forget. Photo Credit: Eden Prairie.
All reports are extremely customizable. Users can generate reports on taxes, inventory, range usage, sales history, employee time sheets and more. The feature also helps determine profit margins because you can produce reports on what you sold, not what you bought.
“We only use a few reports regularly,” Buttolph said. “One is for taxes and the other is for inventory on hand. Both are flawless.”
The range feature allows you to see all active range users, as well as check in and check out participants. The program tracks every minute a customer is on the range to maximize your profits and only charge customers for their usage.
“We have been able to capitalize on range time income through the kiosk,” Buttolph said. “We were previously giving away time. Now we can reward our customers with free range time through product purchases. We offer reward tokens for every large purchase, which gives incentive to buy. The token idea is great!”
Online Bookings for Classes and Events
The ATA ePRO software can connect with your current website to sell lessons, classes and leagues online. It can even process auto-payments by credit cards. The software tells customers when to show up and sends reminders so they don’t forget.
“We use this on a limited basis for our Junior Olympic Archery Development program,” Buttolph said. “Most people still prefer to pay in the store and not book ahead, but everything in the feature works well for our business. We hope to use it for our leagues since we fill up quickly. We may need to go to a ‘first come, first serve’ basis.”
Stubstad said his website is set up for lessons and classes, but hasn’t started using this feature yet. He plans to take advantage of hands-on learning at the 2018 ATA Trade Show to integrate the technologies.
The time system can also track each employee’s sales, how many bows they repaired, how many arrows they made, or how many students they taught. Photo Credit: Ryan Kirby.
Employee Time Tracking System
The time system logs your employee’s start time, break time and finish time. It can continually update their weekly totals, and calculate their paychecks and deductions. It can also track each employee’s sales, how many bows they repaired, how many arrows they made, or how many students they taught.
Targeted Advertising to Customers
Through email and text receipts, ATA ePRO can use information about the sale or work order to suggest in-stock items a customer might want to purchase. Each suggestion is tailored to the customer’s sales history and the equipment they already own, prompting customers to buy more items to complete their setup.
Stubstad likes the idea of promoting merchandise he sells without having to do anything, thanks to ATA ePRO’s algorithms.
Are You Ready For A Change?
Stubstad said he’s not real techie, but has been able to manage ATA ePRO just fine and looks forward to learning more. He encourages others to make the switch and said, “If someone like me can use the program, anyone can.”
To learn more about ATA ePRO, contact Kurt Smith, ATA’s senior manager of retail programs, at (717) 578-0736, or firstname.lastname@example.org. Or, contact Cassie Donnelly, ATA ePRO service technician, at (866) 266-2776, ext. 299, or email@example.com.