April 8, 2010, 12:00 AM

For a Mac guy, nothing beats a Mac e-commerce system

At Masc, a multichannel retailer specializing in appearance-enhancing grooming products for men, the look and feel of a Mac-enabled e-commerce and store point-of-sale environment makes all the difference, co-owner Jamie Beuthin says.

At Masc, a multichannel retailer specializing in appearance-enhancing grooming products for men, the look and feel of a Mac-enabled e-commerce and store point-of-sale environment makes all the difference, co-owner Jamie Beuthin says.

“I’m a Mac fan and always have been a Mac fan,” Beuthin says. And when he decided to launch his Masc skin care boutique in Vancouver, British Columbia, in 2007, quickly followed by his ShopMasc.com e-commerce site, he insisted on working only with Apple Inc.’s Mac technology.

Although he doesn’t report sales figures, Beuthin says his business has been growing in both channels but most noticeably on the web, with February online sales at 25% of total sales.

Masc operates both its e-commerce site and its store POS system on Mac-enabled technology from Xsilva Systems Inc. ShopMasc.com runs on Xsilva’s Web Store 2.0 platform, and its store operates with Xsilva’s LightSpeed POS system. Both the Web Store 2.0 and LightSpeed come with integrated back-office systems for inventory management, order processing and billing.

By operating both channels in the Xsilva Mac-enabled environment, Beuthin says, he’s able to manage his operations through Mac computers that offer the kind of user-friendly interface he says he can’t get through Windows-based systems.

For example, he’s able to easily scroll through a slide show of PDF images of new products he’s planning to merchandise on ShopMasc.com and in his store, and he can also use the slide show feature to whisk through files of customer records and purchase orders.

That ease of use facilitates marketing and merchandising efforts. “We host daily things on our Facebook page, such as lists of new products and their benefits, and we may upload a video on YouTube and post it to Facebook and Twitter,” Beuthin says.

He admits he could, of course, also post files to the social media sites in a Windows environment, but notes that it’s simply easier to do through the Xsilva Mac environment. In addition, his ability to more easily manage content on ShopMasc.com has led to better site indexing by Google, he says.

And so far, it has all paid off. “Our web sales have tripled over the last several months, and I think this is a combination of our social media marketing and the benefits of Web Store 2.0,” Beuthin says.

He’s looking forward to further improvements. Masc may eventually migrate its store technology to Xsilva’s recently released Lightspeed 3.0, which features new capabilities in managing things like gift cards and package returns and offers tighter integration with the Web Store 2.0 e-commerce platform.

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