Read on for Cookie Transfers & Finances, Smart Booth Divider, Helpful Smart Cookies Reports, Cookie Cupboard Updates, Cookie Cupboard Error Reports, Cookie Chat on March 7, Cookie Swap, Cookie Booths at Cub, Council-Secured Cookie Booths, Forward to Families, Cookie Rally Reward Kit Returns, and Assisting Troops with Smart Cookies.
In this edition:
- Cookie Chat on March 7: Cookie Finances
- Cookie Swap
- Cookie Booths at Cub
- Council-Secured Cookie Booths
- Forward to Families
For Service Unit Cookie Managers
Cookie Transfers & Finances
Now that the sale is in full swing, it’s time to transfer cookies to Girl Scouts in Smart Cookies. Girl Scouts only receive credit towards their rewards for cookies that are transferred to them. For detailed instructions on how to transfer cookies to your Girl Scouts, see the Troop to Girl (T2G) transfers instructions in the Smart Cookies Guide. In addition to Troop-to-Girl Transfers, you are also able to do these transfers in Smart Cookies:
- Girl-to-Troop (G2T): If a girl is returning cookies to the troop inventory
- Troop-to-Troop (T2T): If you are transferring cookies to another troop
Girl Scouts and families will start to turn in money to you from their sales. Keep track of money that has been turned in from each girl in Smart Cookies. Go to Finances> Manage Financial Transactions>Girl Transactions, then scroll to the bottom of the page to Add Girl Transaction and follow the prompts.
Refer to the Smart Cookies Guide for step-by-step instructions for the most frequently used features in the system.
Once the families have received their initial cookie order, you must collect at least 50 percent of the money due before releasing more cookies to them. For contactless cookie payment options, we have approved the following payment options for troops to use when collecting money owed from families for sold cookies: Venmo, PayPal Friends & Family, and Cash App.
Our How Cookie Money Works article walks you through a timeline and tips for handling money. Remember to deposit any cookie money weekly in your troop bank account. Use the Troop Finance Tracker, an Excel spreadsheet, or Google Doc to track your cookie deposits. Remember to keep all deposit tickets in your troop files through December 31, 2023.
Troops and families should use ABC Smart Cookies if they wish to accept credit cards as payment for cookies. Credit card payments can be accepted on any laptop or mobile device with internet connectivity. Training videos on taking credit card payments for orders or at cookie booths are available under the Safety and Training section of Smart Cookies. If you do have an issue with a credit card sale at a cookie booth, capture the customer’s name and either a phone number or email address so we have a way to follow up with them regarding the sale.
The benefits of using Smart Cookies for processing credit card payments include:
- River Valleys covers all Smart Cookies credit card processing fees (other payment applications charge a transaction fee and % of the total sales).
- No money handling or depositing money is required.
- The Girl Scout and troop’s financials and packages sold are automatically updated in Smart Cookies.
- This also provides protection to the troop if a transaction is disputed by the customer.
Smart Booth Divider
The Smart Booth Divider is an easy way to distribute credit for booth packages sold to multiple Girl Scouts quickly and evenly. Keep a tally of the packages sold and money collected on your Cookie Booth Tally Sheet. Note: Girl Scouts are not financially responsible for packages sold through the Smart Booth Divider, but they will get credit towards their rewards. The Smart Booth Divider assumes you have collected $5 per package for each cookie sold. The Smart Cookies Guide has step-by-step instructions along with handy videos. Track the deposits of booth money using your preferred tracking option.
Helpful Smart Cookies Reports
The Reports tab in Smart Cookies features a collection of helpful reports. Some of your soon-to-be favorites include:
- Troop On-Hand Inventory Report: This tells you the total amount of cookies that are in your troop’s inventory that have not been allocated to individual Girl Scouts.
- Girl Cookie Totals Summary Report: This tells you how much inventory individual Girl Scouts have been allocated or have sold.
- Troop Balance Summary Report: This tells you how much inventory has been allocated to the troop, how much money has been collected in total by the cookie sellers, and the troop per-girl average (PGA).
- Girl Balance Summary: This tells you how many cookies each Girl Scout sold, both individually and at cookie booths. You can also see how much money each still owes the troop. Girl Scouts are not financially responsible for cookies sold at booths, so this report will only see how much money each Girl Scout owes to the troop from their individual sales.
Cookie Cupboard Updates
As of 5 pm today, February 23, all Council Cupboard locations will be open tomorrow, Friday at 12 pm. Troops that placed planned orders for pick up at the Burnsville and Maplewood Express Cupboards can pick up orders between 10 am-3 pm tomorrow. We anticipate that cupboard activity may be heavier than normal on Friday/Saturday due to today’s closure. Remember that cupboards are typically the busiest when they open. If you are in a hurry, try to arrive at off-peak times, such as after 2 pm on weekdays and 10 am on weekends.
Know before you go! For the latest on inventory at River Valleys Cookie Cupboards, refer to the Cupboard Inventory Alerts on Cookie Central. You can also use the Council Cupboard map to view additional information. Just select your cupboard location’s icon on the map to open the cupboard addresses, operating dates & hours, and drive-up directions.
For Troops that use a Council Express or Regional Cookie Cupboard, don’t forget, planned orders are due by 8 am on Monday, February 27. You can edit your planned order until this deadline. If you no longer need the cookies in your planned order, reach out to Girl Scouts River Valleys and we can delete the order for you before 8 am on Mondays. View the instructions in the Smart Cookies Guide for Volunteers under the planned orders section.
Cookie Cupboard Error Reports
If you picked up cookies from a cupboard and noticed an error between the transaction in Smart Cookies and the number of cases or packages you physically received, you can report the error using the Cookie Cupboard Error Report Form. Please allow up to three business days for the transaction to be corrected in Smart Cookies.
Cookie Chat on March 7: Cookie Finances
Join the River Valleys Product Program Team for another Cookie Chat in Zoom on March 7 starting at 6:30 pm. Our Troop Finance Specialist, Becky Rettler, will chat about cookie finances. Register for the session here.
Once you register, you’ll receive the Zoom link and the option to download a reminder to add to your calendar.
If you have any specific questions or topics you would like covered, please send an email to Becky.Rettler@girlscoutsrv.org.
River Valleys Cookie Swap
The Cookie Swap is open for cookie season. This is a great resource to connect troops that need cookies with troops that have extra cookies, especially on days the cookie cupboards are not open. You’ll need the invitation code COOKIES23 for setting up your account. Check out the Cookie Swap Instructions for more details.
Cookie Booths at Cub
We are so thankful for our continued partnership with Cub for the 2023 cookie season. Cub provides booth space at all locations. Did you know that last year, troops sold over 425,000 packages at Cub? Cub is our #1 cookie booth partner and our #1 location for cookie booth sales. If your troop is holding a booth at Cub, you also get a really neat patch! Next time you’re at Cub, be sure to thank them for their support of the largest girl entrepreneurial program in the world!
Council Secured Cookie Booths
As we enter week two of the Cookie Booth season, we want to remind you to release any Cookie Booths your troop is unable to attend in Smart Cookies as soon as you know you are unable to staff them. We have Troops that are looking for booths and would gladly take the reservation. Plus, customers using the Cookie Finder also are disappointed when they search for a booth, drive to the location, and a Troop is not at the site. To remove the reservation in Smart Cookies, go to Booth>My Reservations. Click on the three dots on the right side of the screen and then click on Remove Reservation. You must release the booth prior to the booth timeslot in order for another Troop to pick up the location.
Forward to Families
Here’s the latest information to copy and paste, then forward to the families in your troop:
- A reminder that all families must be at least 50% paid for your current cookie inventory before we are able to provide additional cookies.
Cookie Rally Reward Kit Returns
This is your friendly reminder to return your cookie reward sample kit if a kit was part of your cookie rally order. Please return the reward kit to a Girl Scouts River Valleys service center or by mail to Girl Scouts River Valleys, 5601 Brooklyn Blvd, Brooklyn Center, MN, 55429. Include a note with your name and your Service Unit name or number. The deadline to return these kits is March 1.
Assisting Troops with Smart Cookies
Now that troops have cookies and are completing transfers in Smart Cookies, the volunteers (especially new volunteers) may need your expert support. Share your tips and tricks for navigating the system and point them towards helpful resources including The Smart Cookies Guide for Families and Volunteers, training videos in the Safety & Training tab, and the just-in-time reminders in The Cookie Press. You can even hold Smart Cookies “office hours” in Zoom where troops can drop in with their questions.