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08/09/2021

Retail Labeling Key to Helping Retailers Pivot for Profit

Whether it’s retail labeling for online-to-offline purchases or for ensuring in-store price item and markdown labels are accurate, integrating the right on-demand solution gives retailers a proven Rx to help overcome challenges they’ll face in the new normal.

Whether it’s retail labeling for online-to-offline purchases or for ensuring in-store price item and markdown labels are accurate, integrating the right on-demand solution gives retailers a proven Rx to help overcome challenges they’ll face in the new normal.

From storefront showrooms to curbside deliveries, contactless pickup or in-store returns, adopting smart, fast labeling solutions can help retailers bounce back from pandemic times with improved shopper experiences that keep consumers spending (and boost the bottom line).

Retail Pivots for Survival

No one could have predicted the dramatic changes COVID would deliver to global commerce industry. Nearly every category of retailer had to pivot in order to survive. Prior to spring 2020, consumer shopping was already in a state of transformation — with e-commerce growing at all-time highs. When times changed overnight and many non-essential retail shops either closed or paused, homebound shoppers turned to e-commerce, and sales skyrocketed even further.

[Related: Evolution of Consumers Shop]

With the explosion of online shopping, brick-and-mortar stores were forced to pivot and rushed to implement or improve solutions such buy online-pickup in store (BOPIS). Consumers also demanded curbside and contactless pickup solutions so customers could buy items with minimal direct contact. During this quick pivot, many forward-thinking retailers looked to incorporate retail labeling to ensure BOPIS and curbside orders were marked correctly, not only to satisfy customers but also to ensure speed-to-revenue.

In addition, a recent RIS News article summarizing key findings of their 2021 RIS Retail Technology Study, contained data points that underscore how retailers’ interest in price optimization and markdown optimization have increased post-pandemic. Flexible pricing and markdown strategies will be important to winning back and keeping the post-pandemic shopper.

Back to the Store — With Returns in Hand

Today, as more and more shops reopen and consumers venture back to toward shopping in-store, they’ll often have online returns in-hand and have high expectations that in-store retailers can accept returned items and process them quickly for refunds. While accepting returns keeps shoppers happy, implementing returns-processing solutions presents yet another challenge that requires retailers to pivot.

In-store return of goods requires proper labeling, so that merchandise can either be remarked and put back on shelf, or labeled for the journey back across the reverse supply chain. Without proper labeling, refunding payments or crediting vendors or manufacturers is difficult.

The In-Store Pricing Dilemma

 As stores fully reopen, it will be critical for retailers to turn inventory for survival. That makes it more important than ever for retailers to be ready with an effective pricing strategy that’s built around ensuring there are correct price labels on items and goods located throughout the store. Trouble is, implementing a pricing and markdown strategy isn’t as easy as it might seem.

[Infographic: Turning Data into Retail Dollars]

It’s critical that retailers adopt a smart approach to print and labeling solutions so that price labels are correct up and down the aisle, and discounted prices and markdowns are clearly marked to draw today’s more discerning shoppers.

A Perfect Formula for Flexible Price Management

Innovative barcode print and labeling can help retailers pivot to adapt to new ways of conducting retail commerce in the post-pandemic world. There are a wide range of innovative price labeling solutions in sizes and configurations for any sized retailer — from large chains, to big box, specialty retailer, drug or discount stores, as well as convenience or grocery. An added plus, these solutions integrated with practically any device or operating system.

Retailers can boost efficiency, accuracy across front-of-store retail environment with a variety of labeling options, including product labels and tags; shelf-edge labels and tags; queue-busting receipts; return and markdown labels; and custom labels for items such as paint, materials, and fabrics.

One of the best features of barcode print and labeling solutions for retail is that they’re cost effective and easy to deploy. The payback from barcode printing and labeling systems is clear:

  1. Better Profitability: By quickly generating labels, tags or receipts using handhelds, tablets or smartphones, retailers conduct faster transactions for increased sales and profits.
  2. Enhanced Associate Productivity: Labeling solutions can empower associates to do their jobs more quickly and effectively thanks to an array of connectivity options for  major operating systems, or stand-alone solutions.
  3. Improved Customer Satisfaction: Retailers can serve customers when, where, and how they wish to be served — with virtually “error-free” transactions, and faster, more innovative checkout options.

With retailers moving forward with a positive retail outlook for the coming years, now is the time to take advantage of the benefits retail print and labeling solutions can deliver.

Ravi Panjwani is VP of Brother Mobile Solutions.

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