The results are in…

The results are in and your votes have been tallied. Given the number of different ideas developed internally and suggested in our interactions with our faithful outfitters (that would be you), the survey gave us a great way to get everyone’s input to help us focus our ongoing development to ensure new features are as widely useful as possible and we continue our tradition of being a user driven software. Based on the survey results, our priorities for the new features in the coming months will be on the following functionality.

So without further ado here is the 2016 development plan! (And the crowd goes wild… Ok, so that’s overboard, but you should be excited.

  • More accounting reports, including cash flow projections: This was the most requested feature and is something that we will address soon. We have a number of new reports already in the works, including a cash flow report, a minor update to the end of day balance report and new reporting features to more easily access important date ranges. And, although not exactly an accounting report, based on conversations with outfitters at the AO conference, we will be introducing a report akin to the overview report from Version 1.
  • Revamped discount and promotions (easier setup, e-commerce support, more control): The current system for managing discounts and promo codes, although functional, has some key limitations and is not entirely intuitive. We are going to work to improve this process by creating a more streamlined interface, adding support for one-time use codes (like those used by Groupon or LivingSocial), adding support for better per-guest promotions, adding support for per-add-on discounts and expanding discounts to other areas, such as photo sales and e-commerce sales.
  • Up-sell items online, such as recommending additional trips or retail items when reserving a trip: Outfitters have expressed an interest in being able to cross-promote items on the guest-facing site. For day trip operators, this may mean suggesting complimentary trips or camping sites, while for other outfitters, this may mean promoting retail goods that will be useful during the trip. We are planning a cross-promotion feature that allows defining related and recommended items that will be shown after adding an activity or item to the cart.

We are tremendously excited about these new features, as well as some other ones that we have been working on internally, that will be launching over the coming months. We expect some of the features to be available in the very near future and we are aiming to have versions of all of them ready at the beginning of the summer season. We will continue to refine and polish the features as they are deployed.

We’ll call out some of the features in our newsletter and blog, but we recommend following our Twitter feed, as we provide timely notifications of new features and other important updates. (By default, our tweets appear on the Arctic dashboard.) If you have been following our feed recently, we are highlighting a number of updates that were recently deployed. It’s a great way to learn about new features and tools in the system.


Tis the Season to Optimize…

As some of your seasons are slowing down and some of your seasons have yet to kick into high gear, now is the opportune time to look at tweaking your Arctic configurations or incorporating features you haven’t previously been using or refining your use of the features you are already using. Whether you are looking to clean up your account structure for more efficient bookkeeping, implement packages, begin accepting on online waivers or tweak your evaluation forms, we are here to help.

All of these features will help you manage your business and customer relations through Arctic more efficiently and successfully. Most of these optimizations are small tweaks and can be done simply but if you want to throughly clean house and get the most bang for your Arctic buck, then you may want to consider an on-site consultation. With an on-site consultation, one of our staff will visit your office, learning about the specific challenges you face and giving you guidance on the best ways to use Arctic Reservations to help with marketing, sales and operations.

Now is also the time to ask those nagging questions and get advice about things that may not have gone as smoothly as you wanted them to this last season. If you feel like there are gaps in your reservation or rental process, let us know what your challenges are. Most of the time we can provide multiple options for handling the challenges presented from your particular business and then you can choose the one that works best for you and your staff.

Remember the “?” is your friend. Send in your requests and let’s optimize.



The New Improved Create Request Form

So here I am sitting, staring at the computer, waiting for my muse to inspire a witty and fantastic post to tell all of you about the updates on the “Create Request” form. I sit………. and I wait……….. and I wait……….and I sit………………You get the idea. Apparently she has taken an extended vacation because I just am drawing a blank or only coming up with things that are more lame than my usual fare. For instance, I was going to use a sports analogy but got bogged down in the details (The Pitcher throws the puck to the Quarterback who tackles the Goalie who wins the game. Something like that anyway…….)  Then there was the Underwear Gnome knockoff (Step 1. Problem. Step 2. “?” Create Request? Step 3. Solution!). There was also the very un-perky cafe barista scenario; but that got over frothed and foamed all over the place (Incredibly messy, BTW. Have you ever tried to clean milk froth out of a keyboard? Trust me.It isn’t pretty.) I even tried popular TV and movie analogies ranging from the Mentalist and the Big Bang Theory to the Wizard of Oz (If I only had a brain….) and Star Wars (Luke, I am your Tech Support…..). All of which never even made it off the keyboard.

To be honest, I am at a loss to come up with a way to make this post witty and fun. The muse is definitely broken. I guess I don’t pay her enough. Sooo, you will just have to deal with the dry, bland and straight to the point post. It’s going to be like eating brussel sprouts. It’s not pleasant; but you know they’re good for you, so hold your nose, chew quickly and it will all be over before you know it……..

In an effort to increase efficiency in the support process, we have recently updated the “Create Request” form on your installations. The “Create Request” form will help prompt you to provide the details we need to be able to quickly assess the situation or issue you are experiencing so we can get you back up and running as quickly as possible.

The newest addition to the “Create Request” form is a field called “Relevant Entry”.

Relevant Entry

There are two parts to this field. The first part is the drop down portion. Here you can choose a category for the problem you are experiencing or for the question you have. You can choose from Invoice, Person, Rental, Reservation, Trip or Report. These categories communicate the nature of the problem or of your question which is extremely helpful especially if there isn’t a corresponding activity or invoice number for the problem or question you have.

Part two of the “Relevant Entry field is the “#”. If the issue involves a specific activity or invoice and you can provide the activity number or invoice number in the “#” box. These numbers give us an immediate starting place for our investigations into the issue at hand. Having a starting point or an example that we can look at gives us a huge leg up in tracking down glitches and bugs. Now, if you can provide both a category and a reference number, that is even better. 🙂


The “Details” field is an “oldie but a goodie” as they say. (Ever wonder who “they” are? Hmm…topic for another day, I suppose.)  In the “Details” field, providing us with as much information about the issue or problem as possible is extremely helpful. You can use this field to paste the text of any errors you are getting that are preventing you from saving a change or progressing to the next step in any process. Or if you are getting an error about the content of an email template you are creating, you can copy and paste the content of the email template into the “Details” field. This gives us a chance to look at exactly what you have so we can help find the reason for the errors. Especially because small things can be the culprit when it comes to email templates; a missing curly bracket, an extra space, etc. can all wreak havoc. Having the text you have for us to look at really helps track those pesky details down.


Last but certainly not least is the attachments field. As they say (may “they” forever live in infamy), a picture is worth a thousand words. Screenshots are also incredibly helpful again because it allows us to see what you are seeing. You can also attach any other relevant documents like invoices. Again being able to “see” what’s up is key to solving many of the mysteries that are baffling the mind and defying logic or rather just being really annoying when you are already busy. 🙂

Ok. It’s over. Phew, I didn’t think we were going to make it there for a minute. Hopefully, next time I can coax the muse to come back to work and the witticisms will flow freely from the keyboard once again. :p

Trouble Tickets for Support

This weekend brings an upgrade to the support system. Now when you use the contact support page of the site or e-mail, a new trouble ticket will be opened. This helps us organize support requests and keep track of which requests have been handled. With time, you will be able to see open trouble tickets from within Arctic Reservations.

Please make sure you contact support using one of the two methods described above. This will help to expedite your request.

Update: The trouble ticket system just did not work. Most customers found it easier to e-mail their questions in or call. And occasionally, trouble tickets would get deleted or ignored. So the system has been removed. Hopefully we will role out a better trouble ticket system later… but until then, keep calling and e-mailing!

Minor Changes

A new user permission level allows you to hide financial information from a read only user. This is good for guides who want to access reservation and launch details, but do not need to see pricing information.