Merryhatton Garden Centre is East Lothian’s longest established garden centre and a favourite for all generations of customer. It is open 7 days a week and conveniently located minutes from the A1. It is the perfect destination for a day trip, to meet friends, grab some lunch at the Merryhatton Café, or just a quick pop in for some essentials. RetailVista has been operating the shop and café tills since January 2019.
NedFox (NF): Hi Helen, Can you tell me a little bit about yourself and the garden centre?
Helen (H): Hi NedFox! I took the garden centre on in 1997 and it was a little run down. I have been building it up now for 21 years and continue to modernise. We took on our first EPoS system in 2010 but we realised soon after that we were going to out-grow it quickly. In particular I found that I was unable to pass on certain responsibilities to my staff so a lot of the day to day processes were on my shoulders.
NF: So how did you hear about NedFox?
H: NedFox are one of the recommended EPoS suppliers from the HTA. I investigated and spoke to several of the recommended suppliers but either found them to be quite pushy with their sales process or too expensive. Which led me to pop on to the NedFox stand at the GLEE 2018 tradeshow. And I am glad I did! I genuinely found NedFox approachable and easy to talk to. They understood the problems I was having and made sure I understood just how they could help and their softer sales pitches resonated with me. Their software impressed me and it felt good.
NF: What happened next?
H: NedFox suggested I speak to some of their other customers which I did. I contacted Thirsk Garden Centre and found that they were really happy with the system which gave me further confidence in how they could help me. It was very shortly after my conversation with Thirsk Garden Centre that I decided I was going to choose NedFox as my supplier.
NF: How did you find the installation process?
H: I needed something quickly as I had failures occurring with my existing till hardware. From speaking with NedFox at GLEE it took just 6 weeks to get up and running as they responded really fast to my enquiry. That included a conversion of my data from the older system. One of the things that stopped me changing EPoS sooner was that I was convinced it would be a lot of hassle to switch systems. But it was nowhere near as daunting as I thought it would be, NedFox changed my perceptions and I was delighted with it. It really wasn’t so much work.
NF: How are you finding the day to day operations now with RetailVista?
H: It has really helped me as a business owner. Previously, as I said, many responsibilities were on my shoulders. Now, I can delegate job responsibility to a member of staff and trust that RetailVista is user friendly enough for my staff to do the job independently of me. The PDA (RetailVista mobile) is great as I have a member of staff on the shop floor using it to print labels, take responsibility for goods in and carry out rotational stock checks. All data, information and changes on the PDA is immediately on the screen, and in the back office. My staff and I have found the system really easy to use and work with. It was important to me that I chose a system that was capable of performing the jobs I need it to, but also be straight forward to use. And I am happy to say I found this with NedFox!
NF: So what could be next for the NedFox and Merryhatton partnership?
H: I like the idea of customers registering their loyalty cards online and being able to view loyalty balances and sales history, I think that could make our loyalty registration smoother and save a little time. I would also like to have RetailVista Mobile on one of our phones for just a few £ per month to give us a little more EPoS power on the shop floor.
NF: Thanks Helen. Good luck with everything and we wish you a great season!