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Study: Changing price labels is a costly business for store retailers

The manual updating of price labels in stores is not only expensive but frought with inconsistencies.

That’s according to a report from Displaydata and Planet Retail RNG, which found that global retailers spent the equivalent $104 billion on manually changing price labels in 2017. The survey of 5,000 consumers and 1,000 retailers revealed that 67% of retailers spend up to 4.99% of average monthly store turnover making price and promotion changes. What’s more, 65% of retailers are unable to make the amount of changes they want to.

The study findings also shows increased consumer desire for a more digital and connected shopping experience—one that meets their expectations around pricing, promotions and availability, and matches the information shoppers can get online. Thirty-three percent of shoppers want promotions sent direct to their mobile devices; 31% want electronic shelf labels to show accurate, real-time prices, promotions, and detailed product information; and 27% want to be identified as a loyal customer.

Other findings from the "Analogue to Automated: Retail in the Connected Age" report include:
Nearly two thirds (65%) of consumers would welcome price changes throughout the day if a product is approaching its sell-by date. However, a quarter of retailers are not convinced of customer acceptance if they were to change prices more frequently, highlighting a barrier to agile pricing that doesn’t exist in consumers’ minds.

The majority of retailers (84%) agree that the ability to price with speed and agility can help improve margins and store efficiencies; 78% of retailers want the ability to make more changes to offer customers better prices and deals.

The desire for digital services correlates with the poor experiences that almost half of shoppers (42%) claim to have had in store due to a lack of Wi-Fi, a lack of information at the shelf edge, and differences in product availability in store and online.

“Consumers today are digitally empowered with access to real time information on products, and they are more price sensitive than ever,” said Sarah Herrlein, senior retail analyst, Planet Retail. “With retailers spending billions on things like manual price changes, the case for deploying digital technologies that optimize efficiencies, deliver the customer a better experience and better value in-store, has never been greater.”


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