It can be hard to stay on top of the latest advancements in grocery store data technology.
With recent advancements in CCTV technology and loyalty programs — not to mention the rapidly-changing habits of 21st century consumers — analytics platforms that help inform supermarket business decisions might be pushed to the back burner.
If you need a refresher on a few of the latest technology platforms in the grocery analytics world, read on to learn about the cutting-edge solutions driving decision-making at some of the most successful grocery stores nationwide.
1. Point of sale (POS) tracking software
Approximately 70% of total retail shrink in U.S. stores can be attributed to employee theft and shoplifting. For most stores, video surveillance alone is not enough to plug this enormous revenue drain at the point of sale.
Some grocers have seen a massive improvement by combining modern video surveillance with digital POS systems, strengthening their stores’ current loss prevention procedures by addressing discrepancies as soon as they’re noticed.
This is done by cross-referencing transaction data with surveillance video that can be reviewed to spot employee errors, fraud, and suspected thefts.
SaleGuard enables grocers to immediately identify cashier fraud and incidents that hurt their operations by integrating IP camera systems and POS terminals to collect data from all points across the store. Data can be stored in a central repository on a high performance SQL database for easy long-term access to needed information.
2. Visual merchandising
Visual merchandising is a crucial task for any retail or supermarket space. The combination of engaging displays and intelligently placed products can have a dramatic impact on sales, but gathering that intelligence and using it to better position products throughout a store can be a challenge.
Fortunately for merchandisers, category management and planning tools can step in to do a lot of the heavy lifting. Here are two options to consider based on your particular merchandising needs.
1010data connects disparate data points from various sources to help merchandising professionals better understand the often fuzzy dynamics between categories through a number of reporting applications. Learn more »
Shelf Logic helps retailers and grocers create extremely detailed planograms that are fully customized to each location. Planograms can be created in the desktop version of the software, then refined further through a mobile app inside the store. As a mobile-capable system, merchandisers can quickly make floor plan changes while they’re actually on the floor. Learn more »
3. A perpetual inventory system
Grocers tend to go back and forth on perpetual inventory systems, primarily because they can end up creating more problems than they solve if they’re not used correctly.
In short, these tools automate “on-hand” counts and ordering. However, it can become difficult to prevent out-of-stocks when the system inadvertently pushes inventory levels too low.
Another common complaint is cost efficiency. In many instances, the amount of time saved in labor to order products is simply reinvested in auditing the cycle counts that the program “thinks” are on-hand. In the end, the net effect on cost savings isn’t worth the trouble.
There are, however, more sophisticated inventory systems that solve these problems and o er real value to grocers.
Itasca is one such system finding its way into more and more stores. It takes a smarter approach to automated inventory management, prompting cycle counts only when exceptions to the norm are expected–eliminating the need to conduct regular, often unnecessary checks.
The tool provides real-time perpetual inventory management, advanced consumer demand forecasts, and sophisticated ordering algorithms to improve to service level, inventory turns, and handling costs while remaining labor-neutral. When paired with effective department leaders who keep close control over their inventory, systems like these help ensure shelves are fully stocked on a daily basis. Learn more »