My Custom Programs | Pairing with POS Integration

My Custom Programs | Pairing with POS Integration

Are you using an API integration with Astro?
Is your POS system able to import customer purchases to Astro in real time?
Are you using one of the following POS systems; Pinogy, Vend, Springboard, PetShop360, Lightspeed, Celerant, Retail Pro, or possibly another POS system that recently decided to offer real-time integration with Astro?
If you answered yes to these questions, and you have a Custom Program on Astro, then you might also be able to integrate your POS with that program just as you have integrated it with the rest of your Frequent Buyer Programs.

My Custom Programs allows you to design, maintain, and track Buy X Get Y Programs, Pre-Paid Membership Programs, or Cash Back Programs for services and items unique to your store. My Custom Programs were designed for those wanting to create a loyalty program for their Self Service Pet Washes, Grooming Services, Bakery Goods, Doggie Day Care, Pet Boarding, etc.

At this time only standard Buy X Get Y Programs are able to be integrated either fully with fully-integrated POS systems (i.e. Pinogy, PS360), or partially with partially-integrated systems (Vend, Springboard, Lightspeed).

Cash Back Programs are not able to integrate with any POS systems, but they are able to be used with partially-integrated POS systems (Vend, Springboard, Lightspeed) since these systems allow the cashier to access Astro and manually engage program cards when needed. Meaning a cashier will need to manually add a customer's related purchases while they are in a customer's Pet Owner account in Astro during checkout.

Pre-Paid Membership Programs can be used with partially-integrated systems, similarly to Cash Back Programs, but they require the cashier to manually add purchases to the program's cards in Astro during checkout. However, these programs might be able to integrate fully with specific POS systems with some help from the POS company's programming team, so if this is a program style that interests you please make sure to let the Astro Support Agent know when you reach out to design your program.

Program Design

In order to integrate you will need to first need to design your Custom Program. Consider the following questions and Submit a Ticket to our Support Team, or email to get started. 
  1. What POS System are you using?
  2. Are you converting an existing Custom Program that currently lives in another piece of software to Astro? (In some cases we might be able to help you transition from your current program platform to Astro, but this requires review and approval by our programmers.)
  3. What service or product would you like to use this program to promote?
  4. What type of program design interested you?
    1. Buy X Get Y (ex. Buy 10 Washes Get 1 Wash Free/Discounted)
    2. Pre-Paid Membership (ex. Pre-Pay for 6 Doggie Day Care Days Get your 7th Visit Free)
    3. Cash Back Programs (ex. Earn 10% Cash Back on Bakery Purchases, Redeemable after 10 Purchases).
  5. What are the Item Numbers or UPCs associated with the services or items you are promoting in your program? These should be the same Item Numbers or UPCs your POS uses in order to ring up these items in a sale. This is key, and how we will help you to integrate the program. 
The Astro Agent will then review your program request and together you will create a program best suited to your store's unique needs. They may prompt you for additional information if needed, or suggest another design option. The Astro Agent will then build your program. Once this is done you will be able to add any finishing touches that you may want; like your own picture or a better suited program description. You are also able to update the product descriptions if you so choose. This can all be done while under Actions > My Custom Programs

Integrating Your Custom Program with Astro

Again, this is only possible with standard Buy X Get Y Programs. These programs can reward a Free Item or Service. Or in some cases, they can reward a discount to the sale when the card is completed. 

Some options for a fully integrated program. The success of these options depends on the capabilities of your POS System. 
  1. Buy [ Number 2-30 ] Get 1 Free
    1. Visually Astro is only able to generate a card with 30 punches, but we can offer a large number for fully-integrated systems since Astro does not require manipulation from the cashier.
    2. For this program style to integrate we need the Item Numbers for both the qualifying purchase items and the redeemable free items.
  2. Buy [ Number 2-30} Get 1 Discounted
    1. For this design to work you will need to add an item to your POS to represent the discount they are receiving. Ex. If you want to reward 10% Off you could add a non-inventory item that simple states "10% Off Purchase". This will prompt the cashier to apply that discount to the sale.
      1. This option does require participation from your cashier in order to ensure that the discount is applied to the sale correctly. 
    2. Or, if possible, you can link an applied discount to an inventory item so the discount is automatically applied when the "10% Off Purchase" item hits the sale.
    3. Or, if possible, you can add another inventory item to your POS system valued in such as way that the intended discount is already applied to it. Then add this item to your program as the redeemable item.
      1. Ex. If your Pet Washes are typically $15, and you want to offer a $5 Discount to that service when they complete their card, you can add another service item to your POS system named something like, "Self Wash Loyalty Reward" and value it at $10. 
      2. In order to integrate we will need the Item Number associated with both your standard Self Wash service items and the reward item.

Test it Out to Make Sure it Works

You should already have a Sally Pet Owner customer in your POS System that is mapped to the Sally Pet Owner test account in Astro. You should use Sally Pet Owner to test your programs since her redemptions do not report to your distributors. If you do not already have Sally mapped to your POS do that now.

Go to your POS and start checking out Sally Pet Owner as if she is purchasing an item/service that is a part of your new program.

Start will a sale that contains one purchase and complete it. 

Now check her out again and this time fill up the card she started and attempt to redeem it. 

If you have any issues communicate them to the Astro Agent that helped you create the program so they can assist you.

Updating Your Services/Items in Astro if Your POS Inventory Items Change

If the Item Numbers saved in your POS System change, they will also need to be updated in Astro. You can manage this yourself by logging into your account as an Admin User (the primary login on your account). 

Go to Actions > My Custom Programs. Then select the red My Items/Services button. This will take you to the list of items/services housed within your Custom Program/s. 

Locate the SKU you wish to update and click Edit beside it. Now you can type in the new UPC/Item Number. Save when finished. 

Now test it out. 

Go to your POS and start checking out Sally Pet Owner. Check her out for the product/service corresponding to the item you just updated in Astro.

If you get an error, or the sale doesn't record as it should, check your POS system inventory and make sure that you added the item's UPC number to Astro and not the EAN. If you are not sure, check one of the other service items within the program that is still able to be rung up, which of its identifying numbers do you have associated with the service item in Astro?

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