Monthly Archives: September 2014

Tip #213 – Mass Mailings (Exporting Your Top Accounts)


Tip #213
Mass Mailings (Exporting Your Top Accounts)

Suppose you want to do (or have someone do for you) a mass mailing to your top accounts. How would you go about it?

Here is how…

Go to Manager’s menu – Client Operations


  • Select Option #5 – YTD Purchases


  • Select Option F – Same as Above but for Any Period (Option E does only 1 year)


  • Select a period of time to calculate


  • Let flowerSoft run through your accounts and calculate the purchases for the period selected.


  • When flowerSoft finishes calculating the purchases, it will ask you how many you want to print.

    Select the number of records you want to export and print to the screen (unless you want a hard copy).

    You must print either to paper or the screen as this is what actually ranks the customers.


  • flowerSoft will then ask you if you want to export the accounts. Answer “Y”.


  • Tell flowerSoft where you want the exported csv file to be placed and what name to give it.


  • flowerSoft will give you a chance to change your mind or correct a mistake.


  • More than likely, you will not want to print address labels for the top accounts but if you do, answer “Y”

    The label size is the standard 1″ x 2 5/8″ , 3-across.


  • flowerSoft will first print to the screen (unless told otherwise) the accounts in rank # order.

 


 

and export the csv file with the name you gave it to the location you specified.


 

If you had the accounts already ranked as you wanted, you could do the following…

  • Import/Export Menu option of the Manager’s Client Operations menu.

 



  • The select option C – Export Clients to a CSV File.

  • Select the customers by rank (option R)


  • Tell flowerSoft the highest rank to select…


  • Give the csv file a name…


  • Verify the file name…


  • Then tell flowerSoft where you want the file placed…


  • Answer the question about exporting the headings. Accept the default unless you know better…


  • flowerSoft will tell you how many records were exported.

(Notice that is a couple less than what you asked for, but now you know why.)


  • flowerSoft will then ask you if you want to see the information exported…


  • Answer “Y” if you want to see it or send it to someone directly from Excel.


Note that the file is exported in customer name order, not customer rank order.

Probably takes longer to explain this it than to actually do it.

 


Tip #212 – A/P Invoices Paid With Electronic Transfers


Tip #212
A/P Invoices Paid With Electronic Transfers

Sometimes, you will use an electronic transfer from your business checking account to pay for certain invoices.
In those cases, if you have entered the invoices into flowerSoft’s A/P module, you can mark them paid and have the money come off your checking account.

Here is how…

Ring the A/P invoice up and hit “P”


Answer the question

Tell flowerSoft how you paid the invoice. In this case it would be #1 – Un-supported Payment


Tell flowerSoft if you took a discount…


Answer “Y”es to this question

Since you want this payment to come off your checking account, flowerSoft will need to know which account you are using.
Remember that flowerSoft allows you to have up to 99 checking accounts per shop and that the account code is the shop # plus the account number.
So if you are making a payment for shop #2 using account #1, the account code would be 21.
Similarly, if you only have 1 shop but are using account #2 to make the payment, the account code would be 12.

Now enter the date on which the transfer took place.

flowerSoft will then record the payment and re-calculate the checkbook ledger…

Note that the reference number of electronic transfers will start with ET:, the first 3 letter of the vendor code and the last 4 digits of the vendor’s invoice number.

flowerSoft will then inform you that the invoice has been paid and transferred to the paid invoices file.


Above screen shot shows the invoice in the paid invoices file.


 

Tip #211 – Using Your Customer Rankings


Tip #211
Using Your Customer Rankings

So now that you have all your customers ranked, how do you use those rankings?
Well, you can use those rankings several ways mostly from the Marketing menu.

Let’s say that we want to export the email addresses of our top 100 accounts and that we already have calculated the 5-year purchasing history for our accounts.
The first thing we have to do is access the Manage E-Mail Addresses Database menu. Follow this path from the Main menu: M > M > E to get here…

The first question this option will ask you is…

If that is what you want to do, answer “Y” to the question.
Otherwise, the program will ask you if you want to export all the addresses created since a certain date.

Since we want to select by customer rank, we are going to answer “Y” to the question and flowerSoft will then ask us how many addresses we want to export.
Since this supposedly is a mailing for your top accounts, flowerSoft allows you to only export up to 9,999 accounts.
If you want to export more addresses than that amount, you should select a different method to export them.

flowerSoft will the scan the YTD Purchases file and select the accounts that conform to your selection criteria.

Notice that even though we asked for the top 100 accounts, flowerSoft selected 114 records.
Why? Because sometimes accounts, especially large ones, have more than one email address on file.

flowerSoft will then ask you to provide a name for the file about to be created.
In case you don’t know this, file names cannot contain any of the following characters: \ / : * ? ” < > and |

If you attempt to use one of those charaters, flowerSoft will scold you and remove them. For example:

The quotation mark is an invalid character and cannot be used in the file name, so flowerSoft responds with…

And then takes you back for you to confirm the name without the invalid characters…

Once we have a valid file name, flowerSoft will ask you for the PATH to the file. In other words, the location you want this file stored.

This is a very important step. If you don’t know where you placed the file, it may be difficult for you to find it later on.

flowerSoft will provide a “default” path for the file. If you want to accept that path, you do not have to do anything but hit the <Enter> key.

If you do not like the “default” path, you can provide your own, just make sure you remember where you placed it later on.

Similar to the case when you asked for the top 100 accounts and flowerSoft selected 114 records, in this case flowerSoft exported less records than it selected.
Why? Because some of the records selected might have had bad or missing email addresses and flowerSoft will not export those.

So there is one example of how you can use the customer rankings to select records.

Another example might be when selecting records from the client database.

These are some of the uses for customer rankings. More may come in the future.

 

 

 

Tip #210 – Ranking Your Top Accounts


Tip #210
Ranking Your Top Accounts

Recently, I have been asked by several users how to mail, e-mail or just plain export to a csv file their top accounts.

Tip #182 tells you how to extract your top accounts but does not tell you how to market the accounts you extracted.

If you want to read tip #182, follow this link https://flowersoftsilver.com/2014/02/26/tip-182-extracting-top-accounts/

Now let me tell you of another way of ranking your top accounts if you’ve been using flowerSoft for a couple of years.

You can calculate a customer history on 5-year span, and rank them based on that history.

The current year is always calculated, so you do not have to include it in the date range unless you want the figures for the current year to be part of the totals and affect the ranking.

In other words, if you are running this in January, you may not want to include the current year in the calculations and would rather have access to one more year of history.
If you are running it later on in the year, like before the Christmas holidays, you might want to include the current year in the calculations.

Once the calculations complete, you can use one of the other options to view the results.

In the next post, I’ll tell you how to use the rankings to select customers for mailings, e-mailings and other marketing options.

 

 

Tip #209 – Paying A/P Invoices With a Credit Card


Tip #209
Paying A/P Invoices with a Credit Card

Sometimes, you will use a credit card or a bank draft to pay for certain invoices.
In those cases, if you have entered the invoices into flowerSoft’s A/P module, you cannot pay them using an A/P check or a Direct check.

flowerSoft gives you a way to pay those invoices manually. Here is how…

Ring the A/P invoice up and hit “P”


Answer the question


Tell flowerSoft how you paid the invoice.


Keep answering the questions that flowerSoft is asking.






Remember that if you pay the credit card bill with a direct check and part of the bill includes the invoice(s) paid with the credit card to split the expense category and use “none” for the portion of the check paying the A/P invoice(s).

If you do not do this, the expense(s) will be counted twice.


 

Tip # 208 – Accounts Payable, A/P Checks vs. Direct Checks


Tip #208
Accounts Payable, A/P Checks vs. Direct Checks

First off le me say that, in order to use the Accounts Payable module, you have to open a checking account in flowerSoft.
This could be your real checking account or a fictitious one, but you have to have one.

Perhaps first I should explain the difference between A/P checks and Direct checks.

An A/P check is the type of check normally used to pay invoices from vendors who do not require payment on delivery. With this type of check can gather invoices from a vendor and pay all of them with 1 check st the end of the month or whenever they are due.

Direct checks is the type of check most florists use. It is a check that you issue to a vendor on the spot, such as the UPS driver when he or she delivers something cod, or a flower delivery driver when flowers are delivered.

With an A/P check, you need to go through certain procedures before the invoices are paid.

 


 


 

You should go through almost every single step in the Payment Procedures menu.

I say almost, because you obviously do not have to use option E if you do not want to; and you only use option F or option G, not both.

As you can imagine this is a tedious and time-consuming procedure that is only used by larger florist that have lots of bills and probably a bookkeeper as a member of the staff.

 

Most florists, like I previously said, use direct checks for everything.

A direct check is almost like writing a personal check from your checking account. Unlike A/P checks, it does not require that invoices be entered in the A/P module.

 




 

A direct check does not have to be printed but you must give it a check number.

So, if direct checks are so easy to use, why should anyone use A/P checks?

Good question, but I have some good answers.

Direct checks allow you to enter a memo, so you can indicate there which invoices you are paying and it allows you to enter an expense category.

Actually, it will also let you split the invoice into several expense categories but you have to have a vendor code specified. So the check above could not be split into several expense categories.

 


 

Unless, of course, you add a vendor code…


 

After doing, you can then split the expenses…

 


If you do not want to post a certain amount because you paid A/P invoices with a credit card or a bank draft and the check is just paying the credit card bill, you can enter “NONE” as the expense category and flowerSoft will not post that amount. Remember that the A/P invoices are posting those expenses, so if the direct check posts to the same expense categories, you’ll be posting twice.

So that is pretty good for most florists but some of you want to keep track of more than just expenses.

Some want to keep track of how much they paid for an item, who has the lowest price on an item, how much money you will owe vendors at the end of the month, etc. etc.

If you want to be able to do those things, you must use the A/P procedures and checks.

 



 

Like I said, A/P checks and the A/P procedures will take more time and effort on your part but it provides more information on your expenses.

So the bottom line is this, how much time do you have available to spend on the A/P module and do you need the additional information it provides.

The answer is up to you.


 

Tip #207 – Accessing List of Recent Orders Quickly


Tip #207
Accessing List of Recent Orders Quickly

Since 90% of the time your computer is sitting on the New Orders Menu screen


Hit “E” to Edit/View Orders by Invoice number.


To get to the last order in the index, hit F7


At this point, hit “B” to browse.


And then hit “Page Up” to go to earlier orders…


It takes a lot longer to explain it than to do it. J

Reminder: Hit F10 from the New Orders Menu screen to see all the things you can do from that point.

 


 

New feature – Currency Conversion


New Feature
Currency Conversion

Ever get an order going to a foreign country and wonder how much it is in the country’s currency?

flowerSoft will now let you convert the total of an order to a any foreign currency.

Hit F9 from the tax rate field and flowerSoft will display a list of countries for you to select the currency you want to convert the total of the order to…

Select the country from the list (the most used ones are on top and the rest alphabetically) and flowerSoft will process the conversion through Yahoo…

 

This should help you if you are going to be calling the order yourself or placing it online.

You can also calculate the value of the order after you save it by going to Edit/View Orders, bringing the order up and pressing “V”.

flowerSoft will display the “V” options…

Select “C” to get the total of the order converted to any other currency.

 

Another Improvement – Emailing Credit Card Receipts


Another Improvement
Emailing Credit Card Receipts

For those times where your receipt printer is not working or when the customer requests a copy of a lost credit card (or cash) receipt, flowerSoft will now allow you to email a copy to the customer.

How to do it.

  1. Bring up the order with the Edit/View Orders option and hit E for E-Mail Options

     

    The following window will pop up…

     

     

    Select option #7 – Email Credit Card or Cash Sale Small Receipt

     

     

    flowerSoft will ask for confirmation of the email address and the send a copy of the receipt to the customer.