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Wireless Printing Delivers Efficiency and Cost Savings in Retail

Posted March 20, 2012

Wireless bar code and radio frequency identification (RFID) label printing is widely recognized by major retailers globally as an essential technology for enhancing store operations. The ability to print real-time information in the aisle, on demand, saves time, effort, and money—creating competitive advantages.

Once a retailer deploys a wireless network, the benefits of in-store wireless printing become self-evident. Employees can generate tagging labels, coupons, receipts, or tickets on demand at the point of need, and place products on promotion at a moment’s notice. Store associates can complete shelf price audits and re-labeling tasks within a short time period. Store managers can be more confident of shelf price integrity, resulting in fewer price checks at the register. Checkout clerks can print receipts as part of a mobile point-of-sale or customer line-busting solution. In addition, item-level RFID tagging enables precise inventory management and improves store efficiency.

Wireless printers, especially handheld mobile printers, can help lower total in-store printing expenses, reduce total cost of ownership (TCO), improve labor productivity, boost return on investment (ROI), and increase customer satisfaction. The pages that follow detail the far-ranging benefits of wireless bar code and RFID printing, and present innovative wireless printing solutions from Zebra.

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A799 Collection Hits High Fashion

Posted March 20, 2012

Challenge

When a high-fashion designer and retailer, best known for its designer handbags and accessories decided to replace its receipt printing laser printers, they needed a thermal receipt printer that was capable of doing justice to their famous designer image. The challenge was finding a thermal printer capable of printing the company logo to their satisfaction.

Scenario

The switch from laser to thermal printing in any environment involves not only a financial decision but also operational considerations. A combined need to reduce printing costs, as well as the desire to reduce printer downtime and increase workspace, drove this high-end retailer to seek an alternate solution to their current laser printer setup. Thermal printers require no toner and have a footprint of up to three times smaller than that of a desktop laser printer.

Once the retailer made the decision to convert to thermal receipt printing technology, the next step was to decide which manufacturer could provide the best solution for their particular application. The overriding factor in their final decision would be the printer’s capability of accurately reproducing the designer’s logo on the receipt. Although simple in design, the thin lines of text and levels of grayscale in the logo required precision manipulation of the logo artwork and customized support to ensure the level of print quality would meet the designer’s standards

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Anti-Counterfeit RFID Labeling

Posted March 19, 2012

Industry Need

Counterfeiting is a global phenomenon affecting a wide range of industries. Companies are becoming increasingly aware of the potential negative ramifications of counterfeit parts with altered serial numbers being sourced and distributed in the supplier networks. These substandard parts can escape detection and be deployed in areas such as vehicle and aircraft spare parts and maintenance. Poor product quality, deterioration of the brand, and concern for consumer safety pose a very real threat. Counterfeiting can affect a company’s revenue and do incalculable long term damage when a substituted product is associated with a brand causing system downtime or even critical system or product failure. The costs associated with counterfeit parts just in the automotive and aerospace sectors are estimated to be in the hundreds of millions. Companies look to Intermec for labeling solutions that can ultimately protect their products and their brands.

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Wristband Formatting Best Practices

Posted March 19, 2012

Key Considerations for Improving Patient Care

Bar coded patient wristbands are an excellent way for medical centers to improve the safety and quality of care while meeting industry mandates. To gain the most benefit, the information provided on the wristband must afford easy readability, and deliver the right information in the right way. Healthcare personnel who are starting to look at a patient ID solution need to know the key considerations of patient wristbands from a formatting perspective. This is especially crucial during the first 30 days of looking at a patient ID solution.

Like any technology or process, following proven best practices helps ensure a smooth transition to deployment and beyond. The purpose of this white paper is to help healthcare IT staff launch the right wristband system with the right format. Proper wristband formatting makes it easier for nurses and clinicians to perform patient care tasks so that there is no need for workarounds. The result is improved efficiency and quality of care—medical staff is more productive, there are fewer chances for errors, and nurses can provide more focused attention to their patients.
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RFID and Your Privacy— Myths and Facts

Posted March 19, 2012

Businesses and consumers today are asking, “Does radio frequency identification (RFID) invade the public’s right to privacy?” With any emerging technology, this is certainly a valid question to ask. And now is the time to answer that question.

Fact is RFID has become a critical technology for a wide range of industries—from the supply chain, through manufacturing, all the way to the retail store and beyond. The return on investment (ROI) RFID delivers comes from reducing the time and labor required to track assets and materials, decrease losses and theft, improve maintenance operations, and streamline efficiency through better asset availability and utilization.

Even though RFID offers unprecedented value, some people have viewed RFID as a threat to privacy. However, like any wireless technology, including cell phones, wireless networks, and Bluetooth connections, RFID devices provide remote readability. In theory, any technology that relies on radio frequency (RF) is inherently insecure. As a result, businesses and legislative bodies continuously seek ways to understand and lock down wireless security issues, while protecting the public’s privacy—and RFID is no different.

This white paper presents the facts about RFID and dispels the myths that RFID is invasive to privacy. The discussion that follows provides an overview of RFID, the primary consumer privacy concerns, and measures that are currently or that will soon be in place to protect businesses and consumers from misuse of this
vital technology.

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Puritan Bakery Expedites Each Customer Delivery with Mobile Solution

Posted March 19, 2012

Route Drivers, Accounting Team Complete Work Faster

Touting “the best buns in town,” Puritan Bakery has served Southern California since 1938. The continuously family-owned and -run company delivers fresh hamburger buns and breads daily to restaurants, fast food stands and coffee shops, including many of the area’s iconic establishments. Now serving more than 1,000 customers, Puritan attributes its growth and longevity to quality products and superb customer service.

Challenge

Due to the short shelf life of bakery products, Puritan bakes and delivers its breads each day based on customer demand. All customers must have their orders in by noon the day preceding delivery.

Although Puritan delivery drivers used mobile devices previously, they were not integrated with the main office. That meant order changes given to drivers in the field were not received until drivers returned from delivery routes.
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How POS Receipts Build Sales And Loyalty

Posted March 19, 2012

The coupon revival continues, and the source of those most often redeemed might surprise you.

According to the Annual Topline U.S. CPG Coupon Facts Report for Year-end 2010, released by NCH Marketing Services, Inc., marketers distributed 332 billion coupons for consumer packaged goods last year, marking the largest singleyear distribution of coupons ever recorded in the United States. Those coupons redeemed totalled $3.7 billion in savings for consumers. Fueled by frugal recession-weary shoppers, coupon usage has climbed from 63.6% in 2007 to 78.3% in 2010, according to NCH.

Most of those coupons distributed — a full 90% — came in the form of free-standing inserts, according to Inmar, the company that handles the bulk of coupon processing in the U.S. But retail marketers take note — that’s not where the leading growth in redeemed coupons lies.
Checkout coupon redemption rates grew 39% in 2010, faster than freestanding insert coupons, digital promotions, shelf-pad, and in-ad coupon offers. Indeed, coupons printed on receipts enjoy a redemption rate that’s three times higher than that of direct mail and newspaper circular-based receipts. Bob Carter, president of promotion services for Inmar, says the data his company is gathering tells us that consumers are still looking for deals, but appear to be less motivated to seek out and redeem out-of-store offers.

The ability to leverage receipts to communicate brand awareness, promotions, coupon offers, and other forms of customer engagement is not new. Consumers’ enthusiastic return to interest in that messaging certainly is.

The consumers who are most enthusiastic about coupon redemption might surprise you as well. Assumption might lead you to believe that the lowest income households are the heaviest coupon users, when in fact it’s your best customers who seek them out and cash them in. Coupon usage in 2010 was dominated by households with incomes greater than $70,000, with 38% of what Inmar labels “super heavy” users and 41% of “enthusiasts” coming from that demographic. Households with income of more than $100,000 drove coupon growth in 2009.

Finally, lest you think the coupon craze has come and gone, the latest figures show coupon redemption was up 4% in the second quarter of 2011 compared with the same period in 2010.

As in-store couponing goes, nothing beats the receipt. Modern, powerful software tools allow endless and easy customization of designs and parameters on receipts, such as targeted offers to customers who meet specifi c purchase thresholds. Chain-store retailers can even create store-specifi c messaging and offers, enabling location based messaging that’s custom-fi t for the demographics of their consumers.

The writing is on the wall — if you’re not promoting special offers on your register tape, you’re missing a powerful opportunity to delight customers and drive repeat traffic.

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Honeywell Retail 2D

Posted March 19, 2012

Today, retailers face a new connected customer that expects a seamless and customized shopping experience across different channels, from websites to mobile applications to in-store. This new technology-empowered shopper uses the Internet and a smartphone to search, compare, evaluate, and buy products and services, and most importantly, to engage and interact with retailers in order to get tailored offers.

To meet their customers’ expectations, leading retailers are investing in new technologies and tools to capture and analyse customer behavior and align their offering with customer demands, especially in stores, where customers still make most of their shopping decisions. In-store staff needs to be empowered with new mobile solutions which improve their productivity, while helping them connect with their customers and provide personalized service.

Thanks to these new tools, retailers can capture, connect and embed the two critical dimensions of today’s retail strategy in their processes: customer insight and product information. This is what we in Honeywell call Retail 2D.

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Star Micronics’ Printers Certified with XERA POS Software

Posted March 16, 2012

Three Printers Gain Certification from Aldelo

Star Micronics America, a leading worldwide manufacturer of point of service printers, has announced that three of their printers are now certified with Aldelo’s XERA POS.  After an extensive certification process, Aldelo has certified the TSP100, SP742 and SP500 point of service printers from Star Micronics.

Specifically designed for all fine dining, table service, and quick service operations, XERA POS is a hospitality point of sale software that embodies the latest user interface look and feel with intuitive screen workflow. The combination of the Star printer and Aldelo software is ideal for virtually any hospitality environment.

Star’s TSP100 is the first all-in-one receipt printer and offers a high throughput of 22 receipts per minute (RPM). The TSP100 is wall mountable to create more counter space and offers the revolutionary futurePRNT receipt design software.

Star’s leading impact printers, ideal for kitchen use have also been certified for XERA POS. The SP700 is an impact printer that is built specifically to work in environments where heat and humidity can erode the type on the kitchen order. It is a fast, two-color printer that offers crisp, easy to read type for quick viewing. In addition, Star’s legacy impact printer, the SP500 has also been certified. The SP500 is an excellent solution for food service and kitchen applications. It also boasts a high speed and can print 4.2lines per second at 40 columns.

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Leveraging Mobile Printers to Streamline Route Accounting and DSD Operations

Posted March 16, 2012

Automating route activity provides benefits both in the field and in the office by reducing the labor and time needed to enter data and process paperwork. Mobile printing is an essential element for delivering and enhancing these benefits in route accounting and direct store delivery (DSD) operations. Supporting route activity with mobile printing lets drivers generate accurate, updated orders, invoices, delivery receipts, and other documentation to review with customers to ensure correctness and efficiency.

Mobile printing provides a series of quality improvements and efficiency benefits that department managers often overlook, but can have a significant impact on the bottom line. This white paper will:

  • Describe uses for mobile printing in route accounting and DSD applications
  • Provide return on investment (ROI) examples that show the financial benefits of mobile printing
  • Demonstrate how mobile printing processes can improve distribution, billing, and customer service operations
  • Detail how on-demand thermal printing can reduce expenses
  • Provide an overview of mobile printer and wireless communications options for route accounting and DSD operations

The pages that follow show how route delivery and sales staff can take advantage of mobile printing to make more deliveries each day while improving the accuracy of each transaction.

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