PROBLEM: Eagle Anime, a cross-channel retailer of licensed, authentic Japanese animation (anime), from apparel to figurines to food and more, sought a point-of-sale (POS) solution that could integrate with its inventory management system.
SOLUTION: Contracted with a provider of web-based POS and inventory management software.
RESULTS: In the year-and-a-half that Eagle Anime has been using cloud-based POS software, costs have decreased dramatically while on-site convention sales have increased.
With nearly 80 percent of its sales occurring at conventions across the country, Eagle Anime needed a POS solution that could connect its front-end sales with its back-end inventory management. The Japanese animation products retailer was using a client-server POS and inventory management solution, but its inability to manage inventory in real time was hampering the growth of the company.
Eagle Anime’s sales were taking place in convention centers across the country, but product ordering was happening at the company’s office in St. Paul, Minn. The retailer couldn’t get purchase orders and new products into its inventory management system in time for the next anime convention. It also couldn’t access reports of what sold and other item metrics until the POS computer returned to its main office.
“It became apparent that we needed a system I could update from the office and have the updates appear in real time at the POS station,” says Joel Smeby, owner of Eagle Anime.
After nearly a year of researching POS vendors, Eagle Anime chose ERPLY and its inventory management, POS and sales management software. The service is paid for an on a month-to-month basis.
Eagle Anime is now running two computers when it sets up shop at a convention: one touch-screen PC running ERPLY’s software that acts as the main checkout station, and another Android tablet in the hands of a salesperson who’s directly interacting with customers. That salesperson can ring up purchases directly via ERPLY’s mobile app.
“The mobile app is really convenient for convention stores,” notes Kris Hiiemaa, founder and CEO of ERPLY. “You have all of your data there in a central location so you can start selling immediately.”
Increased Product Visibility, Decreased Costs
Setting up storefronts at up to 30 anime conventions a year requires a significant amount of prep work for Eagle Anime at its home office. The retailer leans on ERPLY’s central database, inventory management, CRM, and analytics and reporting systems to make sure its sales team is ready to sell when it arrives at a convention.
On the back-office side, ERPLY’s software enables Eagle Anime to access inventory reports, decide what needs to be reordered, create purchase orders and have products shipped to the next convention city.
The items are entered into a central database managed by ERPLY, the purchase order is committed and all the inventory is in order for the convention team when they set up. Eagle Anime creates a “default” customer for each convention via ERPLY’s POS tool. The default sales tax rate for the location of where the convention is being held is entered as well. The convention team then only has to set up its display, pop opens its computer and they’re ready to sell.