Published On: September 30, 2019

Clover Flex is now in Canada, and this is great news for small businesses across the country. This little device provides a series of features and tools that can help give you an edge, you just need to tap into them!

Small but mighty is undoubtedly something that can be said about small businesses in Canada. Given that these operations with fewer than 100 employees, represent 98% of all Canadian businesses, and create around 100,000 jobs each year, they are truly the backbone of this country’s economy. Dreamers, hardworking and courageous risk-takers, providers for their families and communities; about 95,000 of them on average decide to become new small business owners year-after-year. If you are one of them, we applaud you!

Unfortunately, the stats also report that only half of small businesses survive their fifth year. Because we are rooting for you and commend your passion and devotion to contribute to the benefit of our communities and country, our aim is to inform and equip you with the necessary knowledge to carry you and your entrepreneurial dreams well past five years of business success. According to Statistics Canada and their study about Business Bankruptcy in Canada, the main reason for business failure is “inexperienced management”. Managers of bankrupt companies simply  lacked the “experience, knowledge, or vision to run their businesses”. What is interesting is that even as these companies aged, these deficiencies continued to contribute to their failure. With so much competition blossoming in this era of massive technological advances, small business owners nowadays must find the right tools and valuable information for proper planning and execution to give them the edge they need to succeed. This will also free up time for you to focus on the vision of your business. Clover Flex offers best-in-class tools and features which can provide invaluable insights, reports, targeted marketing, loyalty programs, various convenient management capabilities, and much more. This makes Clover Flex not only a state-of-the-art payment processing terminal, but also an all-in-one management tool every small business owner in Canada can rely on.

Running a Small Business Means Running!

I have to work on menu changes, I have to update our inventory, I have to announce our new business hours on our website, I have to respond to a client with a proposal! I also have to pay the monthly bills, get that sign ready for the trade show, hire more employees, and train those employees! I have to, I have to……oh yes, I have to buy more sticky notes!

Just like that – running. Sound familiar? Being a small business owner usually means doing anything and everything just to stay ahead of the game. And forget Monday to Friday, 9 to 5.  We’re talking about a 7-day-a-week, 12-hour hustle (maybe 14?). You have to make sure your business is compliant with government regulations, take care of taxes, make sure you don’t run out of inventory, ensure consistent cash flow so that all of your employees get paid, and worry about the economy. And who even knows what the economy will bring tomorrow? It’s a lot! And amidst all of this, it is crucial for you to stay passionate; because only when you become truly passionate about your business can you set the right vision for your business and power through these tasks without them becoming too much to handle and lead to you giving up one day. Holding onto the passion you had when you started is what will make you keep fighting. What will set you apart from your rivals is getting educated and finding the right tools. Clover Flex provides you with the valuable knowledge and tools necessary to move ahead of the competition.

Rely on Clover Flex to Process Any Payment

As a payment processing terminal, Clover Flex has all the bells and whistles imaginable. It is your terminal. It is also your cash register. It is your receipt printer. It is your barcode scanner. It is so much more! It can be kept at the countertop, or you can take it quite literally anywhere, without even needing to charge it until the end of your workday. The built-in barcode scanner alone can make a huge difference for small business growth because it immediately creates the essential ability to manage inventory on a large scale. You can scan your UPC and check your SKU inventory in real-time, and when you scan the item during the sale, your inventory levels automatically update in your system. How cool is that? This critical scanning and inventory tracking system allows you to maintain control of your business by never stocking-out again, for example; and well, not being in control of your business is exactly how business dreams get let down.

What would it mean to you if you didn’t need to worry about your payment terminal unexpectedly going offline during the biggest rush at your business? Clover Flex solves that problem with several connectivity options via Ethernet, WiFi, and even cellular LTE (with your separate service plan). It is that reliable! Also, no more paper receipts! Well, for those customers who don’t want them, anyway. This sleek device can send receipts to your customers via email and SMS. This way, you get to reduce your paper waste, do a much better job of keeping track of your transactions (think misplaced receipts), with the added benefit of keeping track of your customers’ purchase history and saving their contacts for 1 to 1 communication. Wouldn’t you agree that direct marketing is priceless for any small business?

And you’ll love the custom configurations. For example, you could add a custom message to your receipt, such as your company logo and attractive promotions to keep your customers coming back, such as 10% off your next in-store purchase this month. But one aspect that gets a lot of rave reviews from business owners who are already relying on Clover POS is that it is so easy to use. It ranks high for being user-friendly which makes it quick and effortless to train your staff.

And if all of this is not enough, there is this amazing, revolutionary, empowering game-changer. We will cover Clover Flex Apps next.

App Marketplace or App Wonderland?

Just as its name suggests, Clover Flex is flexible to serve any business, but the apps that come with it, sure do take it to a whole other level. Clover Flex Apps, which come free with the terminal, will allow you to get your operations running smoothly, and continue to keep that “OPEN” sign up. In addition to these free applications, there are many more sophisticated subscription-based options for you to choose from. This is a true marketplace. In fact, Clover is the only POS system with a custom app market, which is specifically designed around the needs of small business. The fact that the Clover Flex system is cloud-based, means you get 24/7 access from a computer or phone to real-time information about key aspects of your business, such as staffing and sales. This will allow you to be proactive and make smart moves on the go and is a significant time-saver.

One such example of a great app is “Clover Dining.” With this application, a restaurant manager can start with customizing the floor plans by creating visual table setups. That visual element can be a square that represents a table which seats let’s say, 4 guests. Next to it may be a table of 6. Suppose you would like to create another table of 4;  with one tap, drag and drop, that first table of 4 can be cloned. Once the dining room layout is set, it can be saved as a default, or it can be changed as often as you like. You can even create and save custom layouts for special events, such as weddings. The same can be done with the seating at your bar. To serve tables, the server will select their table from the intuitive Clover Flex interface and tick off the menu items each person at that table wishes to order. The order is then fired away instantaneously to the kitchen. When ready to settle the bill, the server can easily split the bill in any way, if necessary, again with a single tap, while accepting any type of payment, including cash. Receipts can then be printed or sent electronically via email or SMS. Smooth communication between the dining room and the Back of House (BOH), smooth customer experience for any size party, management functions and reporting is what any restaurateur is going for because that’s how 5-star reviews on Google are born! This is just one of the Clover Flex Apps that provides such amazing capabilities, and it comes for free with the device. Let’s see what else there is.

Loyalty is Everything!

We are going to go on a whim here and guess that one of your favourite parts of running a small business is your daily interaction with people. Whether we are talking about the people who work with you, for you, or about your guests and customers that your enterprise depends on, you surely value the loyalty of all of these people. We are on the same page, right? And that is why we can’t say enough about the Clover Flex App’s “Rewards” application. You will love this!

It is no longer the rule that loyalty rewards programs are only affordable to big companies; with Clover, small businesses can now offer loyalty programs for their customers too! Forgo high costs of setting up and running such a program; in fact, forgo any costs at all, because this free app lets you create a simple, fully-automated loyalty program within minutes. Clover does everything for you. You can set your own levels and rewards and have it announced to all of your customers with a single tap of a finger! It cannot get easier than this, can it? No, wait, it actually can! All customer usage data and rewards performance get served to you on a silver platter, because it is presented in a very visual format.

And people love rewards; they like to get free stuff. Whether it’s a free drink from a quick-serve restaurant or free hairspray from their salon, they will not only stay and shop at your place exclusively, but will likely be spending more when they know they can get something extra at a certain level, in exchange for their loyalty. According to PwC Canada, a great loyalty experience for customers leads to them spending more per transaction, and more often. With Clover Flex, your customers will download the Clover consumer app for iOS or Android to their phones, have their profiles set up, and check in when they come to your place. Every time they check in, it will be registered by the Bluetooth beacon on the Clover Flex POS system, and their profile will light up your device’s screen. If a customer has set their picture on their profile, you will even be able to recognize and greet them by name right away. It’s a neat touch that allows you to be more intimate with your loyal customers so you can shower them with the extra attention they deserve. This goes a long way. That is how connections with your community are built and strengthened, and that is followed by success. Clover Flex Apps have figured out all aspects of small business challenges and goals, and they have really got you covered.

Does Your Small Business Offer Gift Cards?

No? Well, what are you waiting for?! We clearly cannot contain the excitement about the power of Clover Flex Apps, and how many benefits it pours over an ambitious small business owner; so we can’t miss bringing this one to your attention either. It is as simple as downloading the Clover Gift App onto your Clover device – yes, for free – and within minutes you can start selling your very own company-branded virtual gift cards. You can even order plastic ones for those customers that prefer it! For their vast use, we all know how physical gift cards work; let’s get a better idea of how the digital versions work.

Selling a gift card is as easy as another tap on your Clover screen. Here are the simple steps in this process:

  1. Enter the amount your customer would like to gift
  2. Input your customer’s email address
  3. Choose to send the gift card directly to the gift recipient’s mobile phone or your customer can send it themselves via email or text message

To redeem the digital gift card, the recipient will have the gift code open on their mobile phone, which you can simply scan with your Clover Flex. The details will show up on your screen, which you will review and tap to redeem. And Clover keeps tabs on outstanding balances for you and your customers. Voilà! It just feels so good when your customers share your products and services with others; it is the biggest compliment, and  results in new customers, greater sales, and keeps you on track to living your dreams!

Take Customer Surveys, Manage Payroll, Taxes, Client Appointments, and More! So. Much. More.

In a similar fashion as the app examples above, the unprecedented power of Clover Flex Apps gets unleashed with basically a tap here and a tap there, helping you quickly reach your business goals. You can invite your customers to leave their feedback, this way you can try to make up for negative experiences with a special offer and keep those negative reviews off review sites. You could even turn those potential negative reviews into positive ones!

Everything from scheduling your employees’ hours to setting up payroll, splitting tips, setting up commissions and paying contractors, is just a few clicks away with these apps. You can also manage client appointments with your employees, run schedules, and send appointment reminders to your customers. Do you carry merchandise? Whether you’re in retail, wholesale, or manufacturing, access robust inventory and purchasing platforms with real-time inventory alerts. And what would you say about automated bookkeeping? Would you like to have your sales reviewed and your top-selling products and sales staff identified? How valuable would this information be to you? What about having your sales taxes automatically calculated and set aside daily ? How much time would this save you? How much time would any of these applications save you? Clover Flex Apps undoubtedly give you a strategic edge and make time more manageable for you .

To underline Clover’s value even further, here are just some of the brands Clover integrates with: Yelp, Mailchimp, QuickBooks, Xero, Shopify, Woo, and DocuSign.

Boom! Mic drop.

Plan Away with Superior Reporting

So what are you going to do with all of this free time? You are going to do what you do best – run the business that you are so passionate about with scaling plans ahead, and may we add, with more clarity. If its importance didn’t come across so far, we must emphasize the built-in reporting that comes with Clover Flex Apps, which lets you know at any given moment anything you wish to know about your business and your customers. As mentioned before, having your Clover POS information available online makes it that much easier to access the info you need, when you need it, wherever you are. You can check the results of any promotion you are running, daily sales, who your customers are, what they say about you, and so much more. You can also see where your customers come from, or even how far they travelled to get to your place of business! All of this valuable information can easily translate into small wins for any small business. Let’s say for example that you currently have one business location but would like to open another location not too far away; however, you are not sure if that plan would just end up shifting your current customers to your new location. The Clover system can help you identify whether you would actually be stealing customers from yourself or acquiring new customers at the new location. Perhaps we didn’t say it right the first time – this would not be a small win but a huge one!

The beautiful thing is that there is no need for you to learn how to decode any of these reports. The system can visually map out and concisely sort out the relevant data. And it’s easy to follow, so you can quickly draw conclusions and act. This way, you can plan and execute your next advertising campaign with better results or get started with that new store with greater confidence.

What’s really exciting is that the options in the Clover App market in Canada will only get better; continuously benefiting your business and supporting its growth as you need it, well into the future.

Clover Flex in Canada Allows Small Businesses to Switch to Innovation or Start Things Off Right

With Clover Flex now being available in Canada, you have the opportunity to begin using a POS system that is more innovative than anything else out there. Wherever you are with your dream, you simply have to consider Clover Flex as a versatile tool to get you there faster. It’s a one-stop-shop that can help you grow your existing small business or start that brilliant business idea of yours on the right foot from the get-go. With the Clover Flex POS system and Clover Flex Apps, you are getting that full package which will arm you well against the many challenges entrepreneurs face every day. There are always going to be bumps along the way, we just think that with Clover as a solid partner on your side, you will be able to navigate them better, stay ahead of the game, and make your business dreams a reality.

 As a Canadian company, we are absolutely thrilled to bring this sophisticated, problem-solving POS solution to persevering Canadian small businesses across the country. If you would like to learn more about how Clover Flex can help your business, feel free to get in touch with us; we would love to hear from you.

Ozrenka (Olja) Blagojevic Marketing Communications Specialist