Monthly Archives: September 2015

Mercury Direct 6.0


I am sending this e-mail to all flowerSoft customers whether or not they are FTD members and I am also posting it in the blog.

Do not let FTD upgrade you from Mercury Direct version 5.0 to version 6.0 until you hear it is OK to do so from us!

Upgrading now will stop flowerSoft from interfacing with the current Mercury Direct 5.0, so incoming and outgoing orders would have to be typed twice.

We will have to write a new interface for version 6.0 and that will take time and effort on our part, but will also cost you quite a bit of money each month.

FTD wants to charge us $4,000 each year plus $30 per month for each flowerSoft user that interfaces with them, plus a $100 setup fee for each user.

Needless to say, we would need to pass this cost to the flowerSoft users that want the new interface.

The cost to each flowerSoft user that wants the interface would be based on the number of users that want it.

So far we have not found any willing to pay anything, but should you be willing to pay a minimum of $100/month (by our estimates) to interface with version 6.0 please let us know.

We need to have a count of how many flowerSoft users want this new interface.

Our estimate of $100/month is based on at least 10 flowerSoft users wanting to interface with version 6.0. Honestly, I don’t think we have that many users that are FTD members.

I also do not know what advantages version 6.0 would offer flowerSoft users over version 5.0.
It seems to me that the advantages are mostly for florist who do not have a POS system.
Here is what their website shows, so you can read it yourself.

Mercury Direct Plus

Mercury Direct Plus is an intuitive software solution connecting FTD Members to the Mercury Network using a high-speed internet connection right from your own computer. The newly enhanced dashboard offers immediate access to Mercury Network messaging screens, gives you the ability to print enclosure cards, allows you to confirm deliveries and more, helping you run your florist-to-florist and local business more efficiently. Plus, it automatically checks for incoming orders and prints them out.

Features:

  • Tri-fold enclosure card printing including shop logo and contact information
  • A direct link to the FTD Confirm website for Delivery Confirmations
  • A faster processor for more reliable messaging
  • An updated dashboard with quick links to messages, help and more
  • Notifications on the dashboard when messages are received
  • Automatic software updates
  • Customizable abbreviation codes

Mercury Direct 6.0 also requires that your computer be running Windows 7 or better.
So, if you see something there that you must have and are willing to pay for it please let us know and once we determine how many flowerSoft users want the interface we will let you know how much it will cost you each month and how soon you can have the interface.

PS – This added cost would be in addition to the quarterly support fee that you now pay to flowerSoft for software updates and technical support.

Tip #270 – Sales by Occasion


Tip #270
Sales by Occasion

flowerSoft 2016 has a new report called “Sales by Occasion”.

The “sales by Occasion” report will, as the name implies, show you your sales broken down by the occasion code.
I have always said that it is very important for you to select the correct occasion for your orders but this was mainly geared towards occasion reminders.
Without a correct occasion code, the occasion reminders feature will not be as effective as it can be.
Most card message codes have an associated occasion included in the record.
flowerSoft automatically supplies the correct occasion if you use one of the card message codes when entering the card text.
In other words, if you use the “HB” card message code to generate the words “Happy Birthday”, flowerSoft will know that the occasion is “Birthday”.

However, if instead of using the “HB” code you type “Have a very Happy Birthday Mary!”, flowerSoft will have no idea as to what the occasion should be and then it is up to you to provide the correct occasion.
If you don’t, then flowerSoft will have no idea that the order you just entered is for a birthday and it will not selected when generating occasion reminders.

So let’s assume for the time being that you are entering the correct occasion for most of your orders.
There is one occasion that even if you are selecting correctly, it is not sufficient to provide correct data mining.
That occasion is “Holiday”. Entering an occasion of just “Holiday” just tells flowerSoft that the order was for a holiday but not which holiday.
If you have read tip #269 and the tips it told you to re-read, you should know how to tell flowerSoft which holiday the order was for.
This will help avoiding using the word “holiday” when generation occasion reminders, but now it will also help you report on those holiday sales by the holiday name.
This can be extremely useful in your marketing efforts.

flowerSoft 2016 will now report the holiday occasions in the “Sales by Occasion” report separately for each holiday.

Here is how the report is generated.

Like all reports, you will find this report in the Manager’s menu. The path to the report from the Manager’s menu is: R > C > 9

Once selected the program will start reading your sales…

Once it finished reading your sales data, it will display the following screen…

This report comes in 3 flavors, “detailed”, “summary” and “condensed”. You will select which one you want at this point.

The “detailed” report looks like this…

It will display each order in the time period selected for each occasion and give you a total at the end of each occasion.
If you select a large period of time, this report can be quite large. For example, the one I just generate has 300 pages, so be aware of this if you are not printing to the screen.

The summary report, does not show each sale in the period selected. Instead, it shows the total sales for each customer within the occasion.

Here is what it looks like…

 

The third version of the report is the “condensed” version and it only shows the total sales for each occasion.
It does not show any of the detail for the orders included in the report.

Here is what the “condensed report looks like…

As you can see, this report just give the totals for each occasion it finds in the sales file, even if the occasion is misspelled like “CIRTHDAY”.
You will also notice that if you do provide flowerSoft with the name of the holiday, flowerSoft report each of those holidays separately.

The amounts show are the total of the orders less any sales taxes paid and you will have the option to include or exclude “999.000” orders.

I suggest each and every one of you start using the holidays database and recording the correct holiday for each of your holiday sales.

Keeping up the database takes some time but is fairly easy to do and you only have to do it once a year.

Happy mining!

 

Tip #269 – Re-Read the Following Tips


Tip #269
Re-Read the Following Tips…

If you are not already keeping track of your holiday sales by holiday name, you should start if  you want to take advantage of flowerSoft latest feature.

This new feature is a series of reports called “Sales by Occasion” which will be explained in the next tip.

In order to take full advantage of this new feature, you should re-familiarize yourself with the following tips:

  1. Tip #30 – https://flowersoftsilver.com/2011/12/30/tip-030-2/
  2. Tip #31 – https://flowersoftsilver.com/2011/12/30/tip-031/
  3. Tip #32 – https://flowersoftsilver.com/2011/12/30/tip-032/
  4. Tip #94 – https://flowersoftsilver.com/2012/08/02/tip-094/
  5. Tip #178 – https://flowersoftsilver.com/2014/02/04/tip-178-how-to-update-the-holidays-database/
  6. Tip #263 – https://flowersoftsilver.com/2015/04/22/tip-263-new-feature/

After you read those tips, go ahead and read tip #270

Windows 10 (Update)


Windows 10 (Update)

Recently I wrote…

“Please refrain from upgrading to Windows 10 for the time being.
There seems to be a problem displaying flowerSoft menus with it.
I will keep you posted when I know more.
OK, this problem was solved by changing the font to Lucida Console and increasing the size to 28 points.”

I can now tell you that you can go ahead and get Windows 10 if you wish.
The problem with the menu screens can be resolved easily by not running the shortcut that starts flowerSoft as “maximized.”

If your shortcut reads “Run: Maximized”

Run Maximized

change it to read “Normal WIndow”

Run as Normal Window