After the covid-19 pandemic, retailers are starting to re-imagine the in-store experience. They are looking for digital solutions that improve customer engagement and address operational challenges such as staff shortages. Electronic shelf label systems are the digital answer. With added competition from online markets, retailers are using ESLs to enhance the in-store experience. Converting to ESLs is a small change that retailers can make which will have a huge impact on the bottom line, customer experience and employee morale.
What benefits does the retailer get?
Retailers have benefited from immediate cost savings when switching from paper labels to electronic shelf labels. Reduced costs include reduced material costs from sheets of paper and expensive toner cartridges. Savings in labor costs are also achieved, thanks to employees not needing to update the labels and move through the store removing old price tags. ESLs also decrease, update the labels, and move through the store removing old costs due to interruptions, distractions, and after-hours work.
With ESLs, changes can be made from the back office or a corporate or regional headquarters and rolled out simultaneously across all outlets. Employees now have more time to focus on customer service or other in-store activities. This has a profound impact on customer service as they will have more time to attend them face to face.
What is the customer impact?
If all these changes are successfully implemented, it will have a notable impact on the customer. The cost savings that retailers achieved can be directly passed down to the consumers. They can also be used to enhance customer experience in a number of different ways. The staff can help shoppers find items they need. And the labels will play their part in informing customers to find the things they’re looking for.
Some electronic shelf labels allow retailers to include small graphics or icons that assist shoppers in identifying the products of their preference. ESLs work in tandem with a shopping guide or in-store signage to designate which products are organic, non-organic or something similar. All these small touches can help retailers stand out from the crowd and give customers plenty of reasons to come back.
Customers get the following advantages when shopping at retailers using ESLs.
The biggest process in a store is the replenishment of shelves. Customers do not like it when there are empty or disorganized shelves in retailer store. For instance, a typical supermarket has tens of thousands of products on their shelves every day, which is both a time consuming and error prone task. ESLs can prevent mistakes like products ending up in the wrong place. They can also ensure that the right product is replenished with corresponding sales because of a seamless system. This improves the overall customer in-store experience.
Clicking and collecting
The pandemic caused massive disruptions across the food industry and retailers were affected. This also had an effect of bulk buying and a usually high demand for unrelated items due to the imposition of lockdowns and other restrictions on the transportation of goods and people. ESLs can help retailers in reducing the query response time which helps improve customer service.
For customers, one of the biggest attractions towards ESls is a sense of peace. They know that everything on the shop floor is priced correctly. This has prevented customer complaints about incorrect pricing are eradicated. It also results in an increase in margin and promotion changeovers.
Once retailers have real-time pricing insights thanks to technological advancement. However, the various benefits that dynamic pricing has to offer are limited by how often price changes can be taken. Even without dynamic pricing, replacing manual price tags is a tedious, manual task. ESLs provide considerable cost and labor efficiencies. When used by retailers they can realize a much faster ROI and substantially higher profit potential.
The nature of today’s retail pricing environment
Today’s consumers are demanding, unpredictable, fickle and well informed. Consumers don’t go shopping anymore – they want transparency around what things cost, where to go, and how to get the best deal. The changing nature of today’s consumers cannot be managed by systems built for another age.
ESLs and other dynamic price optimization tools can help retailers leverage real-time market, competitor and demand signals. This can set prices automatically that meet fickle consumer demands, enabling them to get the best returns.
There is no denying that the retail world has changed. Retailers that use technologically advanced systems can transform and invest in a stronger future. Turning to technologies such as ESLs and AI price optimization, retailers will have the necessary tools to stand out from the crowd. To get the best results. ESLs should always be procured from certified dealers and distributors.