Any small business owner knows that time saved in running the back-end, administrative tasks of their business can be reinvested back into growth, generating more sales and better serving customers. This is where Square’s integration with Xero is valuable. Sellers running Xero and Square can link their accounts in minutes, and once connected each day’s transactions are automatically imported, summarised, and populated to the appropriate account within Xero’s general ledger. A once tedious process—now made simple thanks to Xero and Square.
To launch their local partnership with Square, the team at Xero took a short drive out of Melbourne and spoke with small-business owner Doug Ellinger about his family grove Mason’s Creek, their award-winning olive oil, and how technology is helping to reinvigorate his traditional business.
What is the history of Mason’s Creek?
Our property sits in the middle of the beautiful Bellarine Peninsula. It was drought-stricken grassland when my parents bought the land almost 40 years ago, but they revegetated almost 40 acres with native flora and 20 acres with 1200 olive trees.
After a promising start with national awards, other matters demanded the attention of the family and the olive trees were progressively neglected. Then last year, my father passed away. It was a big driver for me and my wife to take up the business and see how we could use our MBAs to turn our break-even family business into something long-lasting.
Why did you believe the business still had more to give?
We truly believe in the product, and it continues to win awards. It’s dry-grown olive oil, which adds extra depth to one of the purest products you can get. We don’t use water reserves or poison to manage the grove; we run the business as naturally as we can. It means we receive a lower yield of fruit but our oil is pungent and carries the unique characteristics of our deep, loamy soil.
Where did you start modernising your processes?
We could have spent all our time bringing the grove or our website back into shape but we had to start with the numbers. My mum was managing the accounts in a rudimentary way when we joined Xero. It let us track and control our finances from anywhere and, in a small business like ours where every sale counts and time is so rare, that visibility is an incredible asset.
Why did you decide to integrate Square into the mix?
Farmers’ markets will be one of our primary sources of revenue and marketing, and where we meet almost all of our new customers. At a market where people may have used up all their cash, facilitating card transactions is an absolute godsend that can literally prevent loss of business.
Square Reader looks so good that people were asking us about it, and it’s full of additional features, such as being able to track cash payments.
Our product is unique, boutique and sophisticated, and we know every touchpoint has to reflect that. With Xero and Square, we achieve this.
How do you feel about the future of Mason’s Creek?
Honestly, we’re thrilled. We’re excited about the opportunity to reinvigorate the business, access new markets and share a beautiful product. And everything about having technological services that talk to each other makes me feel so much more comfortable about how we’re running the business and what the future holds.
Xero and Square work together, syncing sales and business data seamlessly from point of sale to accounting to make business easier for sellers around Australia. Learn more about how you can integrate your new Square account with Xero, or get started by logging in to your Dashboard today.