Laundromat Resource Forums Laundromats Comparing different brand’s proprietary machine software for retool – Insights? Reply To: Comparing different brand’s proprietary machine software for retool – Insights?

Brent Hendricks

    Newbie here, but I come out of the tech field. I’m working through an acquisition now on my first store, with my goal to be that it’s mostly passive income in the next year. We like to take pretty long vacations, so pulling coins out and moving to a card system is very high on my list of things to do. The store has old Dexter’s and is coin-only with a couple of coin changers.

    Things I’m considering and thoughts for you as well:

    • What capabilities do each of them offer around loyalty? If the other stores in your area can offer the same, aren’t you a “me-too”? As I’m looking at options for the store I’m trying to acquire, I’m driven by how I can pull in the people and “own” them going forward so they don’t want to go to my competitor. Offering different pricing tiers (silver/gold/platinum), and group discounts (religious, social, or sports) are two things I want to do. This is my #1 reason to go to a third party like CCI or LaundroWorks.
    • The investment in any of these solutions is non-trivial (unless you have a tiny store, but even then it means a lot of dirty socks to pay for it). There is significant customer-driven switching costs, so moving from one app to another will take re-training, and if you’re allowing any pre-payment/top-up on account, you’ll have to figure out how to get out from under that liability. More importantly, getting your customers to switch apps without leaving you will take work.
    • What if you find after your re-tool that you want to buy a different brand? Maybe your distributor really doesn’t do right by you and you need to switch to meet market demand. Those two new 80lb machines in the back? Probably going to need a different app.
    • Bank and credit are another thing to consider. I don’t know enough about the manufacturer’s payment options and flexibility, but being able to change your processor and bank are important. It gives you the ability to “shop around” for a better deal on credit. And, because there’s another person (the manufacturer) in the middle, you might be paying higher fees than if you can negotiate with a processor directly.
    • What will they do with that data? I’m told some manufacturers use your data…potentially to justify another facility just across the street. I don’t want to enable a competitor to come into my market using my own data.
    • One of the things I like the most about the CCI/LaundroWorks options is to remove the coins but keep the notes. I believe both of them have a “this is what the value of the cash box is” function, so you might even be able to have someone you trust to pull the cash box if you’re unable to do so. The amount they deposit should equal the amount the machine thinks is in the box. If it’s not, you might need to figure out why…and if that person was as trustworthy as you thought. This enables me to go on vacation with less worry about someone having to pull a bunch of coins out of boxes.

    As I said, I’m a newbie here…but work in the POS space. The marketing/loyalty functionality is huge in my mind. I want to remove the coins so I can raise prices $0.08 if I need to in order to keep my margins where I want them due to utility costs going up. Kind of hard to do that if you still have coins. Simplifying the collection, removing the coin changer mechanical components…those are all HUGE for me. YMMV, but I hope this gave you some things to consider.

    If you find some other use cases or things I didn’t consider, please, please…shoot holes through my current thought process.

    • This reply was modified 6 months, 1 week ago by Brent Hendricks. Reason: Fixed some typos and cleaned up verbiage