Retail Intelligence Blog

October 13th, 2016

No More Bulky RFID Tags in Retail

small rfid tagsHistorically speaking, one of the roadblocks that retailers have run into when considering adopting an RFID inventory management system involves the size and form factor of the RFID tags themselves. Despite the numerous benefits that retailers can gain after implementing RFID, including unprecedented inventory accuracy, reduced out-of-stocks, shrink reduction, sales increases and much more, RFID systems have sometimes been rejected by retailers for aesthetic reasons. Simply put, RFID tags have been too bulky for some retailers to implement them in an aesthetically pleasing and unobtrusive way. Clothing and accessory designers spend huge amounts of time and money creating tags, labels and packaging that optimally represent and enhance a company’s branding, and the last thing they want is to negate their hard work or be limited in their design by bulky, unflattering RFID tags.

Luckily for apparel designers, however, RFID tags now have various forms while performance has also advanced. RFID chip and tag developers are now creating technologies that are small and discrete enough to be implemented in inconspicuous ways that do not interfere with branding or tarnish the appeal of a product. These advancements have also allowed retailers to track previously difficult-to-tag items such as jewelry and perfumes, as well as enabling longer read ranges. (more…)

September 22nd, 2016

The Importance of an RFID Pilot in Retail Applications

rfid pilotToday a growing number of brand owners and retailers are well aware of the proven benefits of implementing a radio frequency identification (RFID) system in retail: increased inventory accuracy, supply chain visibility, increased sales by reducing out-of-stocks, reduced shrink, omnichannel enablement and more. Before in-store deployment begins, however, it’s important to pilot an RFID system to get a clear picture of how exactly it will benefit you, as well as work through the processes so that you can get the most out of it with your unique retail environment. An RFID pilot may also reveal unexpected benefits that you hadn’t considered in the first place.

RFID providers that do not pilot solutions prior to deployment are preventing their customers from utilizing the system to its full potential. With the right piloting, an RFID system can be deployed seamlessly and will more quickly begin to provide a great ROI. (more…)

September 1st, 2016

The Business Case for RFID in Retail Inventory Management

retail inventory managementAccording to a research report conducted by supply chain management consulting firm ChainLink, about half of the RFID market will be comprised of retail apparel and footwear by 2020. Also, the GS1 US Usage Survey reports that more than 57 percent of retailers are implementing RFID. Today, retail and apparel already account for one-third of the RFID market. Clearly, retail is adopting RFID at a greater frequency than any other industry. Why? Because retail businesses stand to gain the most unprecedented benefits from item-level RFID. (more…)

August 8th, 2016

Retail 3.0 Transformation

retail 3.0by Dean Frew, SML Group, CTO & SVP RFID Solutions

RFID represents a significant transformation for retailers as they move from sku based to item-level inventory management. We call this new state “Retail 3.0.” In the 1980s (Retail 1.0), retailers adopted bar codes and point of sale technology. In the 1990s (Retail 2.0), retailers adopted Electronic Article Surveillance (EAS), supply chain systems and web-based ecommerce systems. In the 2010s (Retail 3.0), retailers started adopting RFID item-level technology, omnichannel, customer experience and customer behavior analytics. RFID solutions are the foundation for this disruptive Retail 3.0 transformation, and it is likely the only transformation of the retail industry that we and our customers will likely go through in our career. (more…)

August 4th, 2016

What Does it Take to Deploy RFID in the Retail Supply Chain?

rfid inventory management

Nowadays with “Click and Collect” online purchasing, inventory management is one of the biggest variables when it comes to running an efficient retail operation. Poor inventory management can lead to wasted employee time, increased shrink, restricted sales and of course, unhappy customers. Fortunately, SML’s Clarity™ RFID inventory management solution enables inventory accountability at every step of the retail supply chain, increasing inventory accuracy to over 98%, reducing shrink by up to 50 percent, and cutting out-of-stocks by up to 70 percent. Our system allows you to follow items through their entire life cycle, from the factory to the sales floor and everywhere in between, while also driving accurate and targeted inventory management tasks to create value. (more…)

July 13th, 2016

SML Introduces Three New RFID Solution Purchasing Models

SML is proud to announce three new flexible purchasing models to help retailers accelerate adoption of RFID technology, reduce upfront costs and realize a faster return on investment (ROI). The addition of the new RFID purchasing models is a natural extension of SML’s commitment to bringing to market flexible offerings that are focused on better servicing customers. They are: (more…)

June 2nd, 2016

Webinar Listen: What to Expect When Adding RFID to Retail

Dozens of retailers, brands and technology companies from around the world tuned in to the live webinar, on Thursday 26 May, to hear Essential Retail editor Ben Sillitoe and SML CTO and SVP for RFID solutions, Dean Frew, discuss the pain points that RFID solves for real use cases the retail industry.

If you missed it, click on the image below to watch for yourself:

Essential Retail Webinar

May 24th, 2016

Connect with SML at GS1 Connect Conference

gs1 connect conference 2016

Standardization is one of the key reasons why RFID technology adoption has seen significant growth in the past decade. When distruptive products and solutions for the retail industry are conforming to universal standards, retailers can unlock the power of RFID technology and recoop real business value and powerful ROI’s  — increasing sales, more effective omnichannel models and improving customer service. (more…)

May 16th, 2016

RFID Journal LIVE! 2016


rfid journal live 2016

We want to thank the large number of retailers and brand owners that visited the SML booth at  RFID Journal LIVE! 2016 in Orlando.

It’s hard to believe that last year at RFID Journal LIVE, Richard Haig, VP of operations and global brand owner for Herman Kay, was completely new to RFID. This year he was able to share a great success story of implementing RFID from SML at his primary distribution site. Haig stated, “It was a real eye opener because we have been distributing our products to retailers for three generations and thought we were pretty good. However, we’re now going from 85% to 99% correct shipments. We will be recouping our investment in a short number of months by eliminating chargebacks.” (more…)

May 9th, 2016

Dean Frew to Present “What to Expect When Adding RFID to Retail” Webinar

adding rfid to retail

  • Date: Thursday, May 26, 2016
  • Time: 10:00 AM – 10:30 AM CDT

Today’s leading retailers and brand owners are well-aware of the proven benefits of adding RFID to retail: greater inventory accuracy, reduced shrink, higher sales by reducing out-of-stocks, efficient omnichannel enablement and elimination of third-party audits – just to name a few. However, the unexpected benefits come from driving new execution processes based on the new level of data accuracy that RFID creates. This new level of accuracy revolutionizes how stock is managed from warehouse to shop floor and how retailers can service customers. (more…)