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3 Things I Learned From the 2023 MBS Virtual Fall Forums

Posted by Guest Contributor on 12/4/23 6:30 AM
Topics: College store solutions, benefits of online retail, college bookstore system

As a sales consultant with MBS Store Technology Solutions, I do not get to use the system the way a college store does. Undoubtedly, I learn something new or am reminded about a feature of the system with each encounter — whether through formal training, a store visit, or the implementation process with a new system partner. This year’s virtual fall forums training event was no exception. I want to take a moment to share some of the sessions that stuck with me.

 Things I Learned From the 2023 MBS Virtual Fall Forums

Three things I learned during the fall forum sessions

1. Sales Ranking Report

Whether you want to discover what percent of sales is made-up from used books or identify the top 10 selling items in your merchandise department, the sales ranking report is an invaluable tool. This report offers a variety of selections to tailor the report to your store’s needs. You can choose to report this information at division, department, class or item level, and rank items by sales dollars or units.

To learn more, watch the session Discover Success with ARC Reporting.

2. Cost-Complement

Look, I’ve been in this business awhile and the definition of cost-complement can still trip me up. Cost-complement is, essentially, a cost-to-retail ratio that you get by dividing the total available inventory at cost by the total available inventory at retail. I would highly recommend our session Analyzing Inventory with Stock Ledger. Pause at 20:45 for a great slide on cost-complement calculations.

Cost-complement is calculated “on the fly” for an open sales month. For closed months, cost-complement is created and stored by Store at Class. You can run the Cost-Complement Audit Report for a single month as selected.

3. Email may not be the best way to reach students

According to the Pew Research Center, 100% of 18 to 29-year-olds have a cell phone. Are they checking email on their phone? Perhaps. Are they reading text messages? Most likely. If you’re limiting store communication to email, you’re likely not reaching many of your customers.

During the session Simplify End of Term Rental Procedures, we learned about the available integration with Twilio for sending SMS messages through inSite. This integration allows your customers to opt-in for text message alerts with their number. Use this service to send rental due date reminders or send information on how to access buyback alerts prior to arriving at the buyback window.

If you’re interested in learning more, please contact your MBS Arc or inSite client representative. If you are an MBS system partner and would like to watch or rewatch any of the virtual forum sessions I mentioned, they are accessible through the Resource Center.


Find out how MBS can help you reduce overhead, save students money and  streamline operations with a tailored retail management system. Learn More



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