Books-A-Million implements Checkpoint’s RF EAS solution to reduce shrink
Philadelphia — Checkpoint Systems, a leading global supplier of shrink management, merchandise visibility and apparel labeling solutions for the retail industry, announced that it is partnering with Books-A-Million to improve the retailer’s loss prevention program and enhance its customers’ shopping experiences through its electronic article surveillance (EAS) solution.
“Our mix of legacy loss prevention systems wasn’t well suited for books and didn’t enable us to utilize source tagging for greater efficiencies and a better customer experience,” said Chad Tice, VP loss prevention at Books-A-Million, which operates 230 stores nationwide. “We made a capital investment with Checkpoint because it provided a superior plug and play solution, has a national footprint and offers dedicated in-house experts who provide quality implementation results on a consistent basis. In fact, we’ve already seen an immediate impact by generating merchandise recoveries and expect a positive impact on shrink.”
Checkpoint’s antennas are advanced EAS solutions for retailers that want a reliable RF-based (radio frequency) system. By combining RF technology with ECO electronics (offering reduced energy consumption), robust communications and remote alarm data-capture capabilities, these antennas maximize loss-prevention effectiveness in any store environment. In addition, by reducing losses, retailers also provide customers with a better shopping experience, because the products they seek are more often on shelves.
Checkpoint is currently implementing its EAS antennas in about 90 Books-A-Million stores (including 40 newly opened stores) and will begin a second phase in an additional 50 stores in first quarter 2012.
“We are excited to partner with Books-A-Million and we are delighted that it has already begun realizing immediate benefits in shrink reduction,” said Farrokh Abadi, president shrink management solutions, Checkpoint Systems. “In addition, we admire Books-A-Million’s forward-looking strategy of source tagging, which can now be deployed to reduce tagging costs and provide a less intrusive protection method – and better shopping experience for its valued customers.”
Dollar General accepting MasterCard credit cards
Purchase, N.Y. — Dollar General is now accepting MasterCard credit cards at all of the nearly 10,000 Dollar General locations across the country, expanding on previous acceptance of MasterCard debit and prepaid cards.
“Dollar General was the first among small-box value discounters to roll out readers for electronic benefits cards and bank debit and credit cards, making transactions even more convenient for customers.
“We are committed to collaborating with our merchant partners to provide an easier, more secure and more efficient payment choice,” said Craig Vosburg, group executive, U.S. Market Development, MasterCard Worldwide. “We believe that the expanded convenience and enhanced customer experience that MasterCard delivers will help support Dollar General’s efforts to drive greater sales and loyalty.”
Over the next year, Dollar General will also begin distributing MasterCard general purpose reloadable prepaid cards in all of its locations.
Survey: Empty shelves, long checkout lines among top threats to keeping customers
Chicago — Nearly 70% of U.S. adults would avoid shopping at a retail store if they encountered empty shelves, according to a nationwide survey commissioned by Galleria Retail Technology Solutions, a leading provider of retail and category optimization solutions. Long checkout lines are another big turnoff (64%).
The study, conducted by telephone by Harris Interactive on behalf of Galleria, also found that women are more likely than men to avoid shopping at a particular retail store if they encounter empty shelves during their visit.
“As we approach Black Friday and the holiday shopping season, retailers need to note that making sure their shelves are fully stocked is critical when it comes to retaining loyal customers,” said Bryan Eckhoff, executive VP sales and account management for North America, Galleria. "The cost of empty shelves can be extremely high. Out-of-stocks can force consumers to migrate from a particular store, risking the loss of the value of an entire shopper’s basket, not just one product. Consistent out-of-stocks may force the permanent loss of that customer.”
Key survey findings include:
- More than two out of three (68%) U.S. adults would avoid shopping at a particular retail store if they encountered empty shelves;
- Women are more likely than men to say empty shelves would cause them to avoid shopping at a given store (73% versus 62% respectively); and
- Nearly two out of three U.S. adults would shun a retail store due to:
- Long check-out lines (64%)
- Desired items out of stock (63%)
- Difficulty finding desired items (62%).
“Statistics have shown that it costs five times more to obtain a new customer than to retain an existing customer,” Eckhoff said. “In the current U.S. economic climate when consumers are more cost conscious than ever, retailers should make every effort to ensure they have the right products, in the right place at the right time to keep their customers happy … and coming back.”
Galleria’s suite of retail optimization software can be utilized by retailers to determine the correct products and quantity of those products to stock in store based on actual consumer demand. This approach minimizes the chances of an item being out of stock, increasing customer satisfaction and loyalty. The retailer benefits from this with increased sales, minimizing unnecessary inventory and reducing wastage.