Inventory / Merchandising / Supply Chain

Supply chain challenges are mounting for many retailers, especially those operating in multiple regions of the country and abroad. Consumers expect to be able to order and purchase products via any channel, then have them delivered to their channel of choice – and quickly! New technologies are providing the ways and means for merchants to deliver on the promise of omnichannel excellence. Now retailers must find the best ways to implement new solutions to stay competitive.

Aptos Expands Localization Support Capabilities To Japan

aptosAptos, formerly Epicor Retail Solutions, has expanded its global retail localization offering to Japan, providing retailers with support for their globalization initiatives.

The company has expanded its partnership with CyberM Information Technology Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of CyberM Group, to provide international retail services and support to Aptos retail customers in Japan.


Merz Apothecary Succeeds With Curated Goods, New Tech

Small businesses have to build out a unique offering if they want to stand out among their retail peers. While reaching out to consumers through all channels is certainly a step in the right direction, building an exclusive product line and creating a unique selling environment can have a greater impact in the long run.

Merz Apothecary is an example of a retailer that not only has implemented this concept effectively, but has adapted to the constant evolution of the retail industry. The health and body care products retailer, which has been open for business since 1875, operates two store locations, an e-Commerce site, a mobile-optimized site and a catalog. Additionally, the company has served as an Amazon retail merchant partner since 2004.


How Retailers Can Tackle Cross-Border Commerce

The proliferation of omnichannel retailing has empowered consumers to buy from their favorite brands and retailers at any time and use their preferred channels. Thanks to e-Commerce, consumers now have the ability to browse and buy from retailers around the world.

As a result, total cross-border shipping is expected to skyrocket from $80 billion in 2014 to $330 billion by 2020, according to the UPS Global Pulse Of The Online Shopper Study. In fact, global shoppers surveyed in the study said that they made 24% of their purchases with online retailers outside of their own country. These behaviors confirm that more consumers are able to access retailers regardless of location and, in turn, are eager and willing to buy from brands that are not local to them.


Precima Assortment Optimization Helps Retailers Identify Most Valuable Products

AS Precima ImageRetailers have a finite amount of shelf space in their stores, so they need to ensure they have an optimal mix of brands and products. In doing so, retailers can ensure that every product in their assortment is driving sales results and customer loyalty.

The Precima Assortment Management and Optimization solution by LoyaltyOne is designed to enable retailers to enhance their assortment strategy by identifying priority customers and the categories and products that are most important to them.


Orderhive Helps Streamline And Automate Inventory Management

AS Orderhive ImageAs retail businesses grow and expand across channels, their back-end systems become more complex. Because many retailers use a variety of disparate systems, it is sometimes challenging for them to acquire a central view of data and information, whether it’s inventory, price or customer information.

In an effort to help retailers streamline processes, Orderhive offers two multichannel order and inventory management solutions: Orderhive Cloud and Orderhive Solution.


J.C. Penney Introduces Belle + Sky Fast Fashion Line

J.C. Penney is piloting a private label brand of women’s wear, Belle + Sky, on its e-Commerce site and in 50 of its select 1,000 stores. The brand touts a variety of dresses, jackets, blouses, vests and jeans among other fashion items, and prices range from $14.99 to $59.99.

The Belle + Sky launch marks the first time J.C. Penney has created its own private label fast fashion brand. The retailer previously partnered with fashion brand Mango in 2010 to launch fast fashion line MNG by Mango exclusively in J.C. Penney stores.


Bindo Storefront Aims To Connect Inventory Across Channels

In order to survive and thrive in the new era of retail, merchants of all sizes need to be present and accessible across channels. That means even small and mid-size retailers are tasked with the challenge of managing stores and developing quality e-Commerce sites.

Bindo has released Bindo Storefront, an e-Commerce platform designed to enable brick-and-mortar retailers to refine their back-end processes to serve both online and offline customers.


3 Easy Steps To Omnichannel Success

AVP PointInside headshotShoppers are demanding more convenient ways to shop and receive their orders, and more retailers are listening. In Target’s recent earnings call, CEO Brian Cornell listed one of the key priorities as “providing guests with easy access to items from our entire digital assortment through in-store pick-up.” Last spring, Meijer grocery chain piloted their own in-store pickup, with plans to expand into additional locations.

As more shoppers prefer to purchase items online and pick them up in-store, the demand for omnichannel fulfillment has been steadily increasing. According to a recent study by Accenture, 32% of U.S. consumers surveyed said the biggest improvement retailers could make was to integrate all three sales channels — the physical store, online and mobile apps. It’s important in today’s digital age that retailers consider the option of integrated purchasing channels in order to remain competitive or risk falling behind.


Etsy Aims To Strengthen Business With Same-Day Delivery, New Manufacturing Service

Etsy is partnering with on-demand delivery service provider Postmates to test same-day and next-day delivery in New York City, according to a report from Re/code.

The delivery service, titled Etsy ASAP, will launch in fall 2015 and will be available to Etsy sellers based in Manhattan, as well as parts of Brooklyn and Queens. If sellers have enabled the service, shoppers based in these areas will see an express delivery option on Etsy product search pages and checkout pages. Sellers can determine which products in their catalogue are available for Postmates, and they can choose a window for expected delivery times. Express delivery will cost shoppers an additional $20.


RFID Is Gaining Traction!

Retailers and manufacturers are realizing the benefits of radio frequency identification (RFID). For example, both parties can improve shipping/picking accuracy, inventory accuracy and the overall customer experience by reducing out-of-stocks.

Although the retail industry has been discussing RFID for years, adoption has reached an all-time high. This infographic, courtesy of GS1, uncovers new trends in RFID adoption, and the benefits retailers and manufacturers have seen with implementation.


Mobile POS Helps Chocolatier Become A Portable Business

When it comes to managing their overall retail presence, SMB owners sometimes stretch themselves too thin as they try to serve multiple areas of the business at once. Because they often have a plethora of daily tasks to address, they may be forced to use manual processes that are outdated and stall the company’s growth.

As Co-Owners of Georgia-based chocolatier M Chocolat, sisters Maritza Pichon and Marlena Snyder sought a cloud-based system that could help them track sales, vendor relationships and inventory levels without consulting a part-time IT professional.


Is Fast Fashion Moving Too Fast?

Alicia head shotEver since I was a little girl, I have been a fan and follower of fashion. Why? Because I think it’s an effective way for people to convey their personality without saying a word. By wearing a specific color, silhouette or style, I can reveal what I’m thinking and feeling in that moment.

But over the past few years, there has been a significant shift in how a lot of consumers see fashion. Instead of being a representation of themselves and their lifestyles, it's merely a way for them to keep pace with the latest runway and celebrity trends. Hence the growth of fast fashion retailers such as Forever 21, H&M and Zara.


SGS Supply Chain Solution Powered By T Transparency Aims To Improve Supply Chain Visibility

In order to improve supply chain visibility, brands, manufacturers and suppliers must collaborate, communicate and constantly share product data.  

Trace One and SGS partnered to launch SGS Supply Chain Solution powered by T Transparency, a platform designed to improve these processes and provide organizations with visibility throughout the entire supply chain. The solution is built on a social network platform that enables the entire supply chain to communicate, verify data and assess risks in real time.


Orchestro Improves On-Shelf Availability And In-Store Promotion Execution

AS Orchestro ImageIssues related to on-shelf availability (OSA) can cost retailers and CPGs an exorbitant amount of money and hinder in-store inventory management processes. Improving OSA and promotion execution can save retailers and suppliers up to billions of dollars each year, resulting in improved margins and revenue.

Orchestro has released the latest version of its SaaS-based demand analytics platform, including ShelfSense, which enables CPG suppliers to proactively manage on-shelf availability through flexible, user-configurable exception rules.


Charming Charlie Selects Oracle Retail For Merchandising, Expansion

ccWomen’s contemporary jewelry and accessory retailer Charming Charlie has selected Oracle Retail Merchandising solutions to support both its immediate business needs and its international expansion plans.

Over a 13-month period beginning in late 2013, with the help of systems integrator and Oracle PartnerNetwork Gold level member, OLR, Charming Charlie implemented Oracle Retail Merchandising System, Oracle Retail Trade Management, Oracle Retail Price Management, Oracle Retail Invoice Match and Oracle Retail Store Inventory Management. The integrated Oracle Retail systems support best-in-class operations across areas such as inventory management, sales forecasting and pricing/markdown management.

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