RFID solutions have so far been increasingly used in the fashion trade. The main objective here is to reduce losses due to retail shrinkage. But there is also great potential in the food retail industry, says Hiddo Hilboezen, Vice President of Sales for Merchandise Availability Solutions Germany / Benelux at Checkpoint Systems.
Today’s consumers are increasingly less forgiving when an article they are looking for is not available. According to a U.S. study, more than 40 percent of customers subsequently purchase the item from a competitor. RFID technology is able to help the retail sector to solve this specific problem by improving inventory management and accuracy. The subsequent improvement in product availability has an immediate effect on sales volumes and customer satisfaction.
What’s more, RFID results in cost reductions: reduced storage costs, fewer markdowns, and faster incoming goods procedures. Order fulfillment time is reduced by 75 percent for omnichannel retailers.
The textile sector is among the pioneers of RFID technology. What other industry sectors might benefit from RFID?
RFID technology and product availability are by no means only subjects important for the fashion industry. We also see great potential in the food retail industry – especially as it pertains to managing fresh produce in self-service counters. Sales, price reductions, and replenishment processes need to be very accurate when it comes to perishable, higher priced foods such as fresh meats or fish for example. Clothing items are clearly far more durable than fresh foods in this case. RFID allows us to automate all of the processes pertaining to self-service counters. Initial tests have already yielded some promising results.
What can EuroShop 2017 visitors expect to see from you?
We will showcase our full portfolio of solutions at the EuroShop – ranging from source tagging solutions to RFID technology in distribution centers all the way to POS applications. In addition to inventory tracking and management, the focus is also on product protection using RF/RFID. After all, losses due to retail shrinkage still remain a multi-billion problem in retail and also have a negative impact on product availability. Checkpoint will present its latest generation of antennas and a number of innovative security elements as well as modern software and analysis tools that provide retailers with real-time insights into the situation in their stores.
Interview: Melanie Günther; EuroShop-tradefair.com