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Inventory / Merchandising / Supply Chain

Supply chain challenges are mounting for many retailers, especially those operating in multiple regions of the country and abroad. Consumers expect to be able to order and purchase products via any channel, then have them delivered to their channel of choice – and quickly! New technologies are providing the ways and means for merchants to deliver on the promise of omnichannel excellence. Now retailers must find the best ways to implement new solutions to stay competitive.

Janam XM5 Rugged Scanners Ease Application Migration

SS Janam ImageWith mobile technology in hand, employees can complete and manage tasks in a more streamlined fashion. However, most consumer-grade mobile devices do not have the optimal hardware design for more rugged environments.

Janam Technologies has released the XM5 family of rugged mobile computers, designed to specifically meet the needs of retailers. The devices are optimized for barcode scanning and wireless communication, and help eliminate the stress and cost associated with forced application migration and hardware upgrades.  

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Will Same-Day Delivery Thrive?

With major retail players, such as Amazon and Google, throwing their hats into the same-day delivery fray, it is clear that the industry senses the fulfillment model has a future among consumers. However, thought leaders debate if the model will truly change the delivery game.

Online shoppers in both the U.S. and Canada are willing to sacrifice delivery speed for a lower shipping cost, according to a recent survey conducted by Purolator International. As many as 63% of U.S. shoppers and 76% of Canadian shoppers also rank shipping cost as a very important priority that affects their online purchasing habits. Conversely, only 28% of U.S. shoppers and 22% of Canadians rank delivery speed as a very important part of their decision, although 46% of U.S. shoppers and 51% of Canadian shoppers value delivery speed as “somewhat important.”

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RFID And The Strengthening Retailer-Manufacturer Relationship

VP site only GS1 head shotIn the retail industry today, retailers and their trading partners are struggling to deliver an omnichannel strategy that transcends outdated supply chain processes and truly delivers a seamless experience. While retail industry stakeholders may understand omnichannel, few currently have the operations and infrastructure in place to take advantage of this opportunity.

Those positioned to make serious investments in their omnichannel future are realizing the benefits of radio frequency identification (RFID) and are including it in their strategies to gain more accurate inventory visibility. The recent results of the GS1 US Standards Usage Survey confirmed RFID is gaining traction as the key enabler of omnichannel retailing, as inventory visibility is foundational for both retailer and manufacturer success. The survey measured the usage of EPC-enabled item level RFID by both manufacturers and retailers (including manufacturers who are also retailers).

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Target To Roll Out RFID In All Stores

TargetstoreTarget will roll out RFID-enabled “smart labels” on price tags in an effort to improve inventory accuracy and visibility, as well as optimize in-store stock. Keri Jones, EVP of Global Supply Chain and Operations of Target, made the announcement in a company blog post.

The RFID rollout will start in a small number of stores towards the end of in 2015 and will then expand to all Target stores in 2016. The technology will be implemented across categories, including women’s, baby and kids’ apparel and home décor, according to the blog.

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Are You Always Up To Sell? The Importance Of Resilient Retail Internet Connectivity

VP site only Opengear head shotThe retail industry has seen a slew of advances since the arrival of the Internet, yielding valuable innovations and creating new efficiencies in core industry processes, including POS systems, inventory management, employee management, CRM, customer loyalty programs, and online sales. These advances are responsible for countless improvements to business practices that benefit both retailers and customers, but they also have introduced a vital reliance on online connectivity at store locations.

Where once a retail store could continue to function through Internet outages — by breaking out pen and paper to record transactions or temporarily becoming a cash-only business — the modern point of sale and other connected systems that add so much efficiency when functional become expensive roadblocks when disconnected.

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Century 21 Replaces Legacy Systems With Mi9 Merchant

Century 21Century 21 Department Store has selected Mi9 Retail, a provider of enterprise retail merchandising, business intelligence and store operations software, to replace its legacy systems.

The retailer selected Mi9 Merchant as its merchandising and analytics platform in an effort to streamline business operations. As an integrated merchandising and business intelligence system, Mi9 Merchant is designed to address the high transaction processing needs of retailing and provide quality decision-making tools.

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Monolith Tracks And Measures In-Store Shopper Behaviors

There are myriad of digital tools and technologies that allow retailers to track online shopping behaviors. Now, new solutions are helping organizations gather more insights around consumers’ in-store shopping journeys, which allow them to make better marketing and merchandising decisions.

In-store analytics solution provider Monolith has released a retail optimization tool designed to capture in-store data points and convert them into valuable insights that can be used to drive sales.

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EMV, Fulfillment Among Major Topics At Celerant Client Conference

When it comes to managing the e-Commerce site, CRM, distribution, the POS or any data security measures, SMBs have more of a hurdle to clear than their larger counterparts. In many cases, these smaller organizations have to enlist an all-in-one solution specifically designed to handle the numerous tasks that bigger companies have the resources to handle separately.

To educate these SMB retail clients on relevant industry topics and update them on the current retail management platforms, Celerant Technology held its 11th Annual Client Conference on April 22 to 24, 2015, in New York City. Recurring topics discussed throughout the event included the shift to EMV-enabled cards, store fulfillment, inventory management and mobile POS.

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True Religion Implements Order Management And BI Solutions From Epicor

TrueReligionPremium denim designer and clothier True Religion is expanding its partnership with Epicor by implementing the Epicor QuantiSense Retail Business Intelligence solution and the Epicor ShopVisible cloud retail order management solution.

True Religion initially deployed numerous solutions from the Epicor Retail SaaS engagement model in 2013, including: Epicor Retail Store (POS), Mobile Store, Merchandising, CRM and Enterprise Selling. The retailer benefited from a 40% cycle time reduction in retail technology implementations.

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TradeGecko Helps Improve Wholesale Inventory Management

It can sometimes be challenging for retailers and wholesalers to manage inventory and ensure in-demand items are in stock at all locations.

To simplify these processes, TradeGecko has released a cloud-based inventory management suite built to handle order management, invoicing and reporting, and provide in-depth analytical capabilities. The solution integrates with a wide variety of e-Commerce platforms such as Shopify, WooCommerce and Magento, as well as accounting platforms such as Xero or Shipstation.

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Retail Planning 101: Go With The (Cash) Flow

VP SAS head shotRetail is a cash flow business. Buy merchandise on one side, sell it at a profit on the other. Some retailers make money with higher margins — think jewelry or furniture where the volume is low and the dollar value is higher. Others make money by turning the inventory more often — for example, grocery and mass merchandise where the volume is high and the dollar value is lower.

An important metric retailers consider is the cash conversion cycle. It expresses how quickly a retailer can convert its merchandise into cash. The shorter the cycle, the less time capital is tied up, which is better for a company's bottom line.

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Lids Streamlines Inventory Management Across Channels With Oracle Retail

lidsLids Sports Group has selected several Oracle Retail solutions to improve inventory visibility and availability across all channels.

Since migrating to the Oracle Retail Xstore service and rolling out the Oracle Retail Order Broker Cloud Service, Lids has ensured its entire inventory of team-specific sports apparel and memorabilia retailer is available in-store, online or via mobile device and has nearly doubled the number of product SKUs available for sale online.

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JD.com Announces Addition of UNIQLO Flagship Store to Its Marketplace Platform

JDUNIQLOApparel retailer UNIQLO has partnered with JD.com, a China-based e-Commerce company, to open an online flagship store on its marketplace platform. Through the marketplace, UNIQLO can reach a wider base of active Chinese shoppers.

“We are excited to offer our customers the use of JD.com's amazingly fast and trusted last-mile delivery network, which has proven to be an advantage in China's e-commerce market,” said Pan Ning, CEO of UNIQLO Greater China. “We expect that the secure and seamless shopping experience that JD.com offers will turn many shoppers into new UNIQLO customers in China, which is one of its most important overseas markets.”

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Nordstrom Supports Canadian Expansion With Oracle Upgrade

NordstromLogoNordstrom has implemented Oracle Retail Merchandise Operations Management and Oracle Retail Store Inventory Management solutions to support its expansion in Canada. The retailer plans to roll out the releases throughout its Nordstrom and Nordstrom Rack stores.

The specialty retailer completed the implementation on schedule for the September 2014 opening of its two-story, 140,000-square-foot store at the Chinook Centre shopping mall in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.

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TrueVUE 6.0 Monitors Store-Level Inventory Performance

Inventory management is critical to preventing out-of-stocks and keeping displays accurate and aesthetically pleasing for consumers. However, the process of counting inventory on the store floor traditionally has been a very manual and time-consuming process, which can deplete employee productivity and hinder the customer experience.

To streamline these processes, Tyco Retail Solutions has launched the latest version of its TrueVUE 6.0 software platform, which touts enterprise dashboards for real-time store performance monitoring and reporting. The solution also includes performance scorecards and exception-based reporting, so retailers can make more intelligent decisions and maximize store performance.

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