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Intelligent display


15


The same powerful technology improving consumers’ experience and one of the main driving forces making this possible for the retail industry can be summed up with four simple letters – RFID.


Where I relate to other shoppers is in feeling


the frustration of finding that the item I want is out of stock, or simply not where it should be. This is particularly true during the busy sales periods. This January, I lost count of the number of shops I went into where I found something I liked, but there was no opportunity to purchase it – unless I wanted to wear a skin tight shirt. What’s clear is that if it’s happening to


me, it must be happening to hundreds, if not thousands, of other shoppers across the country. It’s no surprise that click and collect has become so popular, at least the customer is guaranteed the item that they want, but this lacks the personal touch. With some higher than normal return rates being experienced by retailers, customers are clearly missing out on interacting with products before they take them home, and it is also putting more pressure on retailer’s infrastructure. What excites me, having the inside track on


technology developments, is that I have seen the next answer to these consumer and retailer pain points. Imagine a store having real time information


available, not only knowing precisely what they have in stock on a daily basis, but knowing exactly where it is on the shop floor of each store – effectively reducing those frustrating out-of-stock scenarios. At the end of each busy day, staff could use the location-based data to spot and return misplaced items to the correct rail/shelf, so customers will find it easily


the next day. By having the ability to manage individual SKUs that make up their entire inventory, retailers would be able to react quicker to popular lines, increasing sales, while cutting down on over stocking. With the growth of the app market, it’s not


hard to imagine a consumer app that could tap into the same retailer information of their available inventory. By building personal profiles, when a customer enters the store, the app would recognise them and direct them to the precise location on the shop floor to find the specific item they came in for, while also making recommendations of other items that will go with their potential purchase, all in their size and in stock. Given the relevant permissions, it’s entirely possible that profiles could be shared, with the app making suggestions and guiding the customer to suitable items, but this time, for whomever they are shopping for. As more online retailers are realising


the importance of a physical store for their customers to interact with merchandise, bricks and mortar stores are realising their customers need real time visibility of merchandise to fulfil their heightened shopping expectations. The same powerful technology improving


consumers experience and one of the main driving forces making this possible for the retail industry can be summed up with four simple letters – RFID (radio frequency identification) some know it as Merchandise Availability. www.checkpointsystems.com


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