Electronic price tagging technology to enable retailers to shift cost on the fly

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The days of paper price tags on shelving may be coming to an end, according to the Telegraph.

Already in use on mainland Europe and having been trialled by M&S in the UK, the system allows the retailer to digitally set their prices on their epos software. The thinking behind doing so within supermarkets is to better managed customer flow, with lunchtime offers in M&S available until 11am, encouraging customers to visit outside of the lunchtime peak.

Within bike retail the usage may differ, but opportunities to adjust pricing higher or lower on the fly will be nonetheless a more attractive proposition that printing new tags.

Experts are predicting the technology will be commonplace within retailers inside five years.

Speaking to the Telegraph, Andrew Drak, chief executive at Displaydata said: “This kind of technology will be dominant in the UK within two years and within five years it will be rare to see a paper price tag. Paper tags often show the wrong prices as they have to be manually replaced by staff when prices move, but electronic labels can be updated in just 20 seconds.”

We asked cycling industry EPoS and eCommerce experts Citrus-Lime for their thoughts on the technology’s potential bike trade impact. Business development manager David Gaule said:

“This all sounds like exciting stuff and there certainly appears to be plenty of opportunity with this technology to play with promotional models that drive footfall in quiet times, or capitalise on or ease footfall during busy times.  However, at this stage, it appears to mainly appeal to supermarkets and the sale of FMCG (Fast Moving Consumer Goods).  It’s no secret that when it comes to retail technology, the majority of the cycle industry is behind the curve, so I’m sure we’ll all get there eventually but I expect it will be years before we see electronic price tags as commonplace in our local bike shops.   A pre-requisite to this kind of technology is accurate stock control and a keen eye on the more important foundations of retail methodology such as stock turn; before you can implement a promotional strategy designed to influence a change, you need to know what you’re trying to change.

“The more relevant and immediately available technology to drive footfall that IBD’s have yet to fully embrace, is a ‘fully-responsive’ website designed for ‘mobile first’, showing live stock availability, with the option to Click & Collect.  Consumers shop with their mobiles first these days and convenience/geography is fast becoming the new area for competition. Add to that, if a consumer can’t see your stock availability online, they’ll assume you don’t have it and go elsewhere online, when there’s actually a good chance they may have favoured having it more immediately with some expert advice, even at a slightly higher price.”

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