Retail Accounting

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PRESS RELEASE: CounterBooks Launches Newly Redesigned Interface

CounterBooks' Redesigned Interface

CounterBooks, a leading Online Retail Accounting Management Suite for the fuel, convenience and general retail industry, is pleased to announce today, the launch of the redesigned graphical interface of CounterBooks.

The focus of the redesign has been to improve the user experience from daily reconciliation through to real time reporting. This follows a series of exciting developments at CounterBooks including the introduction of the Retail Management Information System and the Billing Control System.

The same great features and benefits of CounterBooks have been maintained but navigation has improved with fewer clicks, easy to follow navigation (breadcrumbs), dynamic menus and enhanced drill down. The redesign is currently being rolled out to all CounterBooks’ fuel, convenience and general retail clients in the UK and across Europe.

John Roberts, Managing Director, CounterBooks said “Having launched the first cloud based version of CounterBooks in 2003 we started on a redesign in 2013 and I am delighted to be able to roll out the new system to all of our customers this autumn. With over 1000 files and 150 pages to modify, our IT team had their hands full and I’m pleased to say, they did a great job. Enjoyment and accounting systems use probably don’t go hand in hand, but I am sure our customers will love the improvements.”

To learn more about CounterBooks please visit

About CounterBooks
CounterBooks was developed in 2001 – 2002 and launched on 1st January 2003 as the world’s first on-line full ledger accounting system designed specifically for retailers. CounterBooks was originally developed as a Pro-Retail MS DOS system by a frustrated computer-programmer-turned-retailer who struggled with traditional accounting systems which were not developed for retail businesses. His aim was to provide an easy to use system suitable for a retailer with no accountancy experience while still providing full easily understandable data reporting.

For further information about CounterBooks, including case studies, images or interviews, please contact, Laura Shafer – Marketing Assistant:-

Telephone: +44 207 099 1050

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Fuel Retailers: How to save money on your accounting

Save MoneyEveryone wants to save money on their accounting but it sounds complex and you don’t know the right way to go about it. So what can you do? Many fuel retailers have been faced with the same problems but have found that the cloud has really helped them to save some money. But what is the cloud? What does it have to do with accounting and how can it save you money? This post will tell you everything you need to know about cloud accounting and will explain how you can save money without losing control of your finances.

Let’s start at the beginning.

The Cloud. What is it?

You probably already use the cloud on a regular basis but you might not realise it. Do you use Gmail or Hotmail for your emails? What about Facebook to stay connected to friends and family? Or perhaps you do online banking? All these services are in the cloud. It’s a secure way of accessing services online and cloud accounting works the same way.

It’s great being able to log on to your online banking whenever you want and you can do the same with your accounting. This means you can securely log on and easily monitor the performance of your business. As cloud accounting is online, you don’t need to buy a software package or pay for updates nor do you need any additional hardware. You just need your laptop or tablet and a browser and you’re ready – no additional costs. Plus you don’t need to be in the office to do this. You can do your accounts at home or, if you have a number of fuel stations, you can do them whilst on the road.

So, now you know that you can do your accounting online and that’s one way to reduce your costs.

But doing your own accounting online sounds like too much trouble doesn’t it?

Actually, it’s not that difficult because some accounting systems have been designed specifically for fuel retailers. That means the programme is written in an easy to understand format and there’s no complex accounting jargon. All the sales categories will match you POS system making it really easy to use.

But how else can it save you money?

At the moment you are probably paying someone to do your bookkeeping. However, some cloud accounting systems can import lots of your data including daily reconciliation and wholesaler invoices. That means at the end of a day you only have to click a button to upload your data. Simple. You could be saving somewhere between 80% – 90% on your bookkeeping fees a year, because you won’t have to pay someone to do it.

There’s more….

In addition to being online and easy to use, certain online accounting systems can help you to work out your VAT. That means you can save even more on your accounting fees. You might also have access to a range of real time reports. That means that at the click of a button you can look at your Profit and Loss and Gross Profit per Category without having to wait for the information to come through. You can use these reports (and more like them) to work out where you could be saving money but also where you can make more. And if you want to discuss these reports with your accountant just pick up the phone and they can view the data online at the same time.

Now you know that it’s easy to save money on your accounting.

You also know what you should look for in an accounting system i.e. something that’s:

  • Online
  • Designed for you
  • Easy to use
  • Allows you to import data
  • Provides real time reports

If you have any suggestions regarding how fuel retailers can save money on their accounting then let us know in the comments section.

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CounterBooks launches Billing Control System at 2014 NACS Insight Convenience Summit – Europe

CounterBooks' retail accounting management suiteCounterBooks, a leading retail accounting management suite for oil companies and convenience retailers, launched the Billing Control System as a new module of the CounterBooks suite at the 2014 NACS Insight Convenience Summit – Europe in London, UK.

The Billing Control System has been developed after working closely with leading brand owners such as major oil companies and convenience retailers, which operate distribution channels such as franchises, dealers and other partnership variations.

John Roberts, managing director, said: “Many brand owners operate complicated and highly multifaceted financial models with their channel partners, which involve thousands of transactions throughout the year. It is business critical for both the brand owners and the channel partners to ensure that all necessary transactions have been executed, on time, to the correct party, for the correct amount, for the correct items under the correct terms. One small error can become highly material if replicated over a large retail network.

“Due to the nature of the deployment of CounterBooks, the database holds both sides of the transaction, which allows CounterBooks to reconcile and match each transaction so that exceptions can be reported for further investigation. We have been working with several brand owners and already identified numerous areas which require enhanced controls within their billing processes and procedures – these initial trials already demonstrate scope for substantial cost savings which would deliver a high return on investment.”

The Billing Control System is an extension of the powerful CounterBooks’ Retail Management Information System, which provides in-depth and accurate management reporting for brand owners across their channel partners to improve performance and manage risk.

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How does the forecourt market operate?

Over the last 50 years several business models have emerged for the downstream retail sale of fuel by the major oil companies. There are a mixture of ownership and branding structures but in essence there are five categories:-

  • Dealer Owned Dealer Operated (DODO) – The forecourt is owned by an independent business, acting as a distributor for an oil company. The oil company supplies fuel and a branding package.
  • Company Owned Dealer Operated (CODO) – The forecourt is owned by an oil company who also provide the fuel however the operation of the site and convenience store is by an independent dealer under a franchise or similar agreement.
  • Company Owned Company Operated (COCO) – The forecourt is owned by an oil company and operated by a manager and staff employed directly by the oil company as with any other multiple outlet retail business.
  • Dealer Owned Company Operated (DOCO) – Similarly, the dealer may ask an oil company to run the operations of its assets.
  • Company Owned Group Operated (COGOP) – This is a variation on the CODO model, the main difference is that a group of sites is operated as a single business.

In addition to the above there are also independents trading under their own brand and buying fuel on the spot market from different suppliers depending on price. In many cases they may form small local networks of forecourt sites, typically 10 to 20.