In a new weekend feature slot, Retail Times discovers how Pricer has translated its expertise in electronic shelf labels to poster-sized promotional displays in the fresh food departments at a Norwegian grocery store
Pricer, a leader in providing electronic shelf labelling solutions to retailers, says it is committed to providing products designed to do one thing – make stores smarter.
With Pricer’s Electronic Shelf Labels (ESLs), instead of physically going out to every label on the store floor, Pricer’s solutions allow its customers to change the price of thousands of products within seconds. Prices and updates can all be accessed and reviewed on a computer – from anywhere in the world.
But ease of use is only one of the benefits of Pricer’s ESL solutions, the company claims. They also realise tangible cost savings and can considerably increase profit margins, the company reports. Staff no longer need to be tied-up with changing paper labels, but can instead change prices 500 times faster than when done manually, Pricer claims. Furthermore, this speed enables retailers to practice smarter, flexible pricing – including starting and ending promotions at the exact times that will maximise sales. Likewise, unsold stock can be minimised through easy price updates on seasonal or sale products.
Recently, Pricer asked PricerLab, the company’s research & development division, to look at creating an electronic solution to poster-sized promotional displays.
PricerLab said it is constantly suggesting innovative and forward-thinking ideas on the use of electronic shelf labels (ESLs). The results of this research are regularly presented to Pricer’s customers, and the solutions can be adapted to the bespoke needs of individual customers and implemented in less than six months, Pricer says.
PricerLab’s response to Pricer’s latest request is the ‘Price Poster’, a new product which redefines the meaning of a ‘big’ label. By connecting a Price Poster unit to any high-definition screen, customers can increase the impact of poster-sized promotions.
Product prices can be linked to the Price Poster in the same way they would link each electronic shelf label. The Poster has several modes – including a four-item slideshow, or a detailed one or two-column ‘list’ mode – and customers can create a set of templates that fit their store’s design and feel. With the Price Poster, local staff can immediately modify the items displayed when products go out of stock, or new products are added. Similarly, updates to in-store promotions based on availability or time of day can be made easily and quickly.
This solution is said to be ideal for use where individual product prices are hard to put in place due to a large number of small products. A perfect example of this is Meny Tolvsrød, Norway, which, in addition to installing Pricer’s ESL’s, has also implemented the Price Poster.
“We have been following Pricer’s product offering for 10 years now, and are always impressed by their constant increase of product offering,” said Pål Jacobsen, store manager at Meny Tolvsrød.
“When we opened up our new Meny store in Tolvsrød during spring 2012, Pricer was the clear and obvious choice as vendor for our retail technology solutions – they are innovative and always anticipate the needs of their customers.”
Meny Tolvsrød has linked two HD screens to the Price Poster unit – above the ‘deli’ and ‘fresh fish’ areas. Both screens have the option of featuring a scrolling slideshow of in-store promotions – especially useful as promotions can change daily depending on stock availability and expiry dates, and thus reprinting a paper display each day is not a viable solution. Instead, the promotions can be updated in seconds, and the impact of the display is amplified.
“As the Price Poster is so attention-grabbing, we have noticed many more of our customers ordering products which are on promotion, and our customers’ feedback on this functionality has been very positive,” said Jacobson. “We are now able to better control their purchasing habits – meaning we can also limit unsold stock, which is especially important to us, as most of products do not have a long shelf-life.”
The store also utilises the ‘list’ functionality of the Price Poster, featuring a columned list of all products for sale. “The ‘list’ functionality is great – as our ‘fresh produce’ product offering differs almost weekly, manually removing and changing paper labels would be highly labour-intensive and our staff are simply too busy to be doing this,” said Jacobson.
“However, it would have been difficult to place individual ESL’s on our shelves for each individual product in the deli and fresh fish areas, and the result would have looked crowded. The Price Poster offers the convenience of a Pricer ESL, all in one poster-sized, easy-to-read label,” he said. “Staff have told us they save between two to three hours per week as they don’t need to update signage manually.”
The Price Poster is not limited to retail customers, said Pricer. The solution can be used anywhere a large, frequently updated display is needed. For example, hotels and other venues with meeting and conference rooms can use the Price Poster to display which rooms are occupied at what times.
Similarly, the solution can be beneficial to businesses whose staff work regularly changing shifts, such as hospitals – the doctors and nurses who are ‘on call’ can be easily updated and clearly displayed to the rest of the staff, Pricer said.
With the Price Poster, PricerLab claims it is changing the way stores and other establishments operate – and fulfilling Pricer’s promise to make its customers lives easier, and their businesses ‘smarter’.
Jacobson said: “I am sure Pricer’s Price Poster solution will soon be ‘standard’ in retail – we have already received a lot of feedback from other stores, who have admitted to being envious of our high-tech, easy-to-use Pricer solution.”