New Credit Card Enhancement

Most distributors have customers who say something like “Keep my card on file and pay these invoices when I tell you” or “Keep my card on file and pay cylinder rent each month.” If you do this for your customers, then you know how time consuming it can be to process each card individually and then post the payments to their account. An upcoming credit card enhancement will make this part of your payment processing much easier.

The new program will feature an option to identify whether or not a customer wants regular and/or cylinder rent automatically paid with a credit card. When you run the payment program, it will check the customer file and will pay all the open invoices automatically. This includes getting the approval code from the card processor and then creating the cash receipts entry for the paid invoices. The operator doesn't have to request approval on each card nor do they have to create the cash receipt payment.

If your customer wants to pay by credit card, but they want to tell you which invoices to pay, a list of unpaid invoices will display on the screen. You simply check off the invoices they want to pay and then the program does the rest.

Have questions? Let us know by sending us an email


Spyware can take many forms. One of the most obvious are those executable files that come in emails. Of course you never want to open one of those, but what about the ones that aren’t so obvious? What I’m talking about is the banner ads that I refer to as “click bait” or the amazing piece if software that’s going to double your computer’s speed. Is all “click bait” bad or all accessory programs loaded with spyware? No, of course not, but the idea here is to be careful and use common sense. Read the fine print and make sure that there aren’t any boxes checked that you didn’t check yourself (I’ve seen this last one more times that I can remember…). So what do we recommend that you do with this information? Well, there’s a few things that we have recommended in the past and would continue to recommend.

Those are:

  • Don’t open emails or their files unless you know and trust the person or company.
  • Don’t download any software unless you are positive that the source can be trusted (If you need a recommendation, just ask us).
  • If you’re not sure about a particular link, then hover over it with mouse (assuming that you’re on a desktop). The actual location will be shown, in most browsers, in the bottom left-hand corner. This little trick should help you discern whether or not the link is taking you to the location stated.

With all that in mind, don’t be worried about browsing the internet. Use common sense, install spyware/malware protection, and you should be fine.

Top 10 Things To Think About When Migrating To Windows 10

If you haven't heard, Windows 7 is going away. Not today, but in 2020. If you are running Windows 7, you'll definitely want to review the list below for some areas to be thinking about when moving to Windows 10.

  1. Start thinking today about migrating to Windows 10. It's never too soon.
  2. Make a checklist of all the applications that need to be on the new Windows 10 PC. i.e. anti-virus, backup, email, etc.
  3. Determine whether or not the applications can be moved to the new PC or if new versions will need to be purchased.
  4. Make sure that any printers, scanners, etc. are compatible with Windows 10.
  5. Don’t make any assumptions about applications or hardware working with the new Windows 10 PC.
  6. Ensure that there is a verified backup before starting the process.
  7. If you're not using an online (i.e. off-site) backup, consider starting now. They are easy to use, run in the background and are inexpensive.
  8. While making the investment in a new PC, consider adding a second monitor. This makes it possible to move easily between two unrelated or related applications. For example, you could have Billing running on one monitor and Word Processing or email on the other monitor. 
  9. Take some time to familiarize yourself with the new features. 
  10. Lastly, allow plenty of time to move your data, getting everything set up, and learning the features of your new PC.

Surcharges and Product Availability

Do you have an item whose price and/or supply fluctuates? Of course you do, because we all do. Every business has seasons. Supply goes up and down as does demand for a certain product. I was talking to my mechanic recently and he said that he can count on the fact that at the start of the school year and while the fair is in town, business will be slow. Why those times? He doesn't know, but it happens like clock work every year. These are predictable occurrences, but what about the unpredictable occurrences like the US getting hit by multiple major hurricanes? That's why it's good to have systems in place for both the expected and unexpected. Not just a disaster recovery plan, but a plan for the case when, while demand stays the same, supply is dramatically reduced.

Does you current accounting system or the team behind it help to handle these issues?

Are your Profits where they should be?

The economy in many areas of the country is doing pretty good these days. A lot of distributors tell us sales and profits are up year over year. When I hear that, it reminds me of something someone told me years ago, “It's easy to make money when the economy is doing well. It's much more difficult to make money when things are not doing so well.” While business is going well is the perfect time to be examining those critical areas of our businesses that are key to success. One key area is gross profits.

It's easy to look at an Income Statement and see what profits are, but determining why profits are up or down is another story. When profits are not where we want them to be, then we have to ask questions like:

  • Do I have a pricing problem?
  • Do I have a costing problem?
  • Are my sales people discounting too much?  

Where do you go to find this detailed information?

There's a new Login Coming!

There's a new Login coming to the website! Since the launch of the last website we've had the Client Login, but only with the basic one password for everyone. The new setup will make it possible for everyone to have their own username and password. On top of that you'll be able to access a user portal with your information. Since this does happen unfortunately, if you forget your password, then you'll simply go to the login screen and click the button that reads Forgot? underneath the password field. This prompt will then send your password to the email on file (so don't forget which email that you use to login). It's not live just yet, but will be very soon. Look for an email in the near future for further instructions on how to sign up!


Thinking About a SmartLock For Your Door?

The “Internet of Things” is all the rage these days. Everybody wants to be connected to the internet for convenience and having a lock for your door that you can lock and unlock remotely seems like a good idea. However, there's something to consider before you rush to your computer and order that door lock that lets you open it using your smart phone. Think about this, computer manufacturers struggle constantly with malware and viruses that attack and compromise PCs. This continues to happen even though PCs have been around for a long time. If PC manufacturers struggle in making their products safe, do you really want to worry about someone using software to hack your front door lock? We're not telling you not to make the purchase, just to do your research and due diligence before rushing out to buy that new fancy software based door lock. After a little bit of digging into the reviews, that “old fashioned” door key may look more appealing to you.

Are you hoarding files?

Harddrive space is cheap. I don't know how many times I've heard this statement. It's true, but there's something that should be added. Just because it's cheap doesn't mean that it’s wise to hoard every file ever made. Occasionally we should all think about purging some of those old files. I’m not suggesting that you get rid of everything, just the ones that are completely unnecessary and, of course, hold onto the tax and accounting files. Regardless, when a drive gets overrun, it can make files difficult to find and in turn cause the seeker to waste valuable time. In an effort to be more efficient, keep the folders simple and the names strategic. Names with an appropriate title, i.e. date-department-content, can be searched for through the search bar instead of scrolling through endless files hoping that you'll see that one particular file. And, if files are named in this manner, then chances are that you won't even need all those extra folders. As always, if you have any questions or suggestions, please feel welcome to send those our way!

WIFI Issues?

Is your WIFI a little slow? It happens. Sometimes because there's too many people on the network or maybe it's for some unexplainable reason. While we can't stop all the issues, there are things that can be done for some marginal speed gains or even possibly some major speed improvements.

A couple of those things are:

  • Update your router. This could mean actually replacing the router itself or updating the firmware.
  • Look for things that might be interfering with the signal. Believe it or not this includes not just that cordless phone but also the microwave... Put some distance between these devices.
  • Of course, it may be as simple as your internet speed being too slow, which unfortunately means a call to your service provider.

While nothing is full proof, these options are a start and can help to improve the quality of the WIFI within your building.

Emailing Invoices

Recently we wrote about being more efficient. Now we’re back at it with another tip.

Tip: Emailing invoices is a great way to save money and become more efficient.

First off, it saves paper and in this day and age we should all be working toward that mentality.

Secondly, it saves money. No more paper for invoices, people spending time printing those invoices, wear and tear on the printer, which then incurs cost. It also means no more purchasing and stuffing those envelopes, which saves time and materials.

Also, keep in mind while one stamp is relatively inexpensive, the cost of a thousand can add up very quickly.

On the other hand, our accounting software Cyltech can process the invoices for you. With a little bit of setup, daily and rental invoices as well as statements can be automatically sent with out anyone having to lift a finger or even remember to do it for that matter.

Have questions or suggestions? Let us know by sending an email!


Recently I was at a youth camp that has a philosophy of no-debt, a bare-bones crew, and to be as efficient as possible. The no-debt aspect was impressive given that the last building cost over 10 million. The bare-bones crew was in order to be able to offer more amenities, which they did. What this means is that the youth at the camp have to "pull their weight". Instead of having a large kitchen staff, the youth serve each other and they all clean up. At the end of the week, the youth tidy up the cabin and basically take on a philosophy of leave it like you found it. They also did things like automatic lights. They come on when you walk in and after a period of inactivity, they turn off. In talking to one of the leaders, they said that they always try to learn from other camps, listen to the problems that they have experienced, and then try to improve how they operate. This mentality of being more efficient, planned, streamlined, focused, and open-minded could save a company in the long run. As the year progresses on, try to think of ways that you can improve operations and create a better foundation for the company.


We never stop talking about passwords and that’s because they are so important. There’s a couple of things that we would like to review about passwords and how they should be setup.

1. Don’t create a password that is too short or too simple
This should be obvious… password, 123546, your name, your birthday, etc. are not secure passwords. Hackers are going to run the simplest combinations and most obvious words first. The password should be meaningful to you, but, when you create this password, remember to add in things like special characters with your letters and numbers. For example: use the @ symbol instead of the letter A or an exclamation point ( ! ) instead of an L.

2. Never changing passwords or changing them too often
This is a double edged sword. Never changing your password isn’t good, but on the reverse, changing your password too often can also have negative side effects. For example, if you haven’t changed your password in two years, especially if it’s something like your Netflix account, then it’s definitely time. Why? Because, most people don’t type those passwords in, they’re just saved and when they’re saved they tend to be forgotten. On the flip side, changing passwords too often, statistically speaking, will cause most people to use a less secure password. This might be because people don’t want to be creative when the password is created or they’re just tired of changing the password and simply don’t care anymore. With that in mind, just remember that multiple years is too long but every month is probably too often…

Have questions or suggestions? Let us know by sending an email or simply responding to this email!

September Training Class

Whether it's through reading, watching videos, or any other method, we should always be learning. Doing so helps us to keep up to date, to find new ideas, solve problems, and invest in our futures. Something that I've seen repeated time after time, is that many of the most successful people throughout history were avid readers. These leaders didn't just read about one subject either, but instead read a wide assortment of topics. They were always trying to expand their knowledge. If expanding your knowledge is something you are interested in, we still have some seats available for our training class in September. The class is in Dallas, Tx (not a bad place to visit) and it's on September 19th and 20th. Outside of all the great information that you'll learn, there will also be time to talk with other distributors, to brainstorm new ideas and talk about creative solutions for problems that you're currently facing. To see all we have to offer in these sessions, click here: Training Class. If you're already hooked and would like to sign up, contact Andi either by phone or email.

DataWeld’s 35th Anniversary

How many times have you heard or used the expression “How Time Flies”? This year marks DataWeld’s 35th Anniversary. Time has truly flown for us since those first few days when the concept of providing specialized software for the welding supply industry was conceived. There were very few options for the compressed gas distributor in those early days.

For those of you who have never heard the story of our humble beginnings in the welding supply industry I will tell you the short version. We were out making sales calls in Texarkana, Arkansas and happened into Langdon Oxygen Company. Reese Langdon was the owner and one of the nicest people you would ever meet. He needed a software solution to handle cylinder rent. We were a young software company with lots of energy and needed customers. We were a perfect match. Several times a week we would gather in his break room and discuss cylinder rent, special pricing, billing and any other areas unique to the industry. Many of the topics discussed in those meetings 35 years ago formed the foundation for the software you use today.

Reese and his son-in-law, Pete Snow, were two of the best mentors we could have had. Reese and Pete not only taught us the welding supply industry, they also taught us a lot about business. The success we have had as a company is due in large part to these two outstanding men.

Technology has changed dramatically in 35 years. The cell phone you use today is many times more powerful than the first computers we sold that were often the size of a refrigerator and cost more than a new Corvette! Software has also changed a lot. In those early days sitting around the table at Langdon Oxygen, we never dreamed of using cell phones, Wi-Fi, RFID or Blue Tooth technologies to solve problems for the gas distributor.

So on behalf of everyone here at DataWeld we want to say thank you to Reese Langdon, Pete Snow, each of you reading this article and every other gas or chemical distributor that has given us the opportunity to help them through the years. We sincerely appreciate the opportunity that you have given us.

Jim Broughton
DataWeld Incorporated

Do you have a digital junk drawer?

Do you have a digital junk drawer? I sat listening to a webinar looking at a list of social media apps that just seemed absolutely absurd to me. The list literally took over multiple pages. Now, don't get me wrong, I'm on Instagram, I have a Facebook account, and post regularly to Twitter. But as so many of us know or are starting to realize, these platforms, while they can be extremely beneficial both in our personal life and professionally, can become a time vacuum. Does that mean that we should just eliminate the use of these platforms? No, of course not, because these tools can be used to help businesses be more effective, efficient, and simply better at connecting and helping the customers. But maybe, just maybe, we should be a little picky about which ones we use. Making sure to only use the platforms that genuinely help a company better serve the customer and bring in revenue (this can and should be tracked). With that in mind, is it time for you to de-clutter your digital life?

Spring Growth

Given that it's spring time I figured that it was a good time to talk about growth. We all know that we're supposed to work hard and that hard work is supposed to produce results (at least in most cases). Recently I heard someone put that idea into one simple sentence. The person said "growth only occurs in a state of discomfort". Everyone knows that we should and need to work hard, but what does that look like? That's why this stuck out to me. Working hard should challenge and push you out of your comfort zone. It should cause a little discomfort. It's like exercise, if you don't push yourself out of your comfort zone then you'll never improve. So as spring takes off, think about your comfort level, what it would take to get out of it, and then get moving.

AcuTrax Digital Proof of Delivery

If you've ever had a customer ask you to show them who signed for a delivery, then you need DataWeld’s digital proof of delivery. Digital proof of delivery does several things, but the most important is that it makes it possible to prove delivery fast and easy. This can be done, in most cases, in a few seconds which helps in saving time and improving customer service.

The other major benefit is the elimination of paper. Orders and who signed for them are all digital, which eliminates the need for filing the paper and more importantly, trying to find the piece of paper when it's needed.

Want to learn more on how to save time and energy with DataWeld’s digital proof of delivery? Then please give me a call at 318-317-7977 or send me an email to I would love the opportunity to explain how AcuTrax can help with digital proof of delivery.

Don't have time for a phone call or email? We understand, so if you want some more information and have time for a quick 5 minute read, then click the link below to learn more!

Andrea Striegel
AcuTrax Specialist

Lot number headaches?

If you're having issues tracking lot numbers, then DataWeld has the solution. For more information on how we can help solve your lot number problems, just stop by our table top booth (#51) while making the rounds of all the exhibits at the IBDEA meeting in Orlando. We'd be happy to explain how AcuTrax can help track cylinder assets, keep track of lot numbers in individual cylinders and even keep track of lot numbers for bulk gases. 

If you're not attending the IBDEA meeting in Orlando, then please give me a call at 318-317-7977 or send me an email to We would love the opportunity to explain how AcuTrax can help get rid of your lot number headaches.

Don't have time for a phone call or email? We understand, so if you want some more information and have time for a quick 5 minute read, then click the link below to learn more!

Andrea Striegel
AcuTrax Specialist