• Shaun Bateman

NEC XON Retail and Pricer are creating the stores of the future

Brick and mortar retailers must offer new experiences and innovations if they are to survive against e-commerce disruptors and that means they must digitalise.

They need reliable and capable platforms that direct customers and employees in real-time, driving operational efficiencies and enhanced customer engagements.

NEC XON Retail with Pricer electronic shelf labels (ESL) helps customers create advanced modern stores. Pricer is among the top ESL vendors globally. Together with Accenture, the company recently designed a solution for a customer called Coop Lombardia in Italy that creates a new experience for customers.

It provides real-time customer interaction, shelf management and optimised in-store customer journeys. Real-time flashing locators on graphic price displays at the shelf edge help product positioning. They indicate special offers, signal low or out of stock, and even expiring products.

It allows employees to quickly and easily scan products, locate them in-store, act on the correct products, and give them other visual cues. It has improved efficiencies by up to 80% and it has allowed the retailer to use less experienced employees. They’re also able to provide Click & Collect 74% quicker than manual processes and quick search functionality means employees can handle unscheduled customer interactions quickly and efficiently.

They’re able to offer customers and employees in-store maps on their smartphones, PDAs or kiosks in the store.

NEC XON Retail with Pricer electronic shelf labels (ESL) helps customers create advanced modern stores and provides real-time customer interaction, shelf management and optimised in-store customer journey

Of course, a store like Coop and many South African equivalents get all the base functionality that means they can accurately update 10 000 SKUs in a matter of minutes, about the time of a coffee break. But they are also able to offer customers access to additional product information such as nutritional data.

Crucial to managing physical operations in ways that facilitate customer loyalty and maximised value, retailers use the solution to delist products, manage negative stocks, new arrivals, shelf implementations, shelf talkers and interrogate the supply chain right at the shelf edge.

Crucial to this foundational capability is the bi-directional infrared (IR) communications the Pricer ESLs use. It is a highly reliable technology that doesn’t suffer interference, nor does it interfere with other devices. It is capable of up to 200 000 information changes per hour, which is faster than any other ESL technology. It uses less energy for the shelf edge units so batteries are only replaced on average every decade.

The two-way communication also means retailers can confirm that labels have actually been updated as intended and enables real-time alerts.

Pricer has been an innovator and global leader for nearly three decades and NEC XON Retail is among its premiere worldwide partners, boasting its own local remanufacturing facility that provides additional cost-effectiveness options.

NEC XON Retail has enabled more than 320 stores of most major retailers in nine Southern African countries using 4.2 million ESLs to deal with the growing online retail challenges and opportunities using indoor GPS and SmartFlash to encourage multiple engagement opportunities with customers.

Nearfield communication (NFC) capabilities empower customers to access content directly at the shelf edge and interact in real-time. They help retailers create compelling consumer functionality in their smartphone apps.



Lyme Park



South Africa

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