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Understanding If RFID Technology Will be the Future of Retail

Radio frequency identification (RFID) and its capacity to phenomenally revolutionize the retail sector have been in news recently. Those who are yet not sure what RFID does, it utilizes the electromagnetic fields to track the merchandise. With RFID, the retailers know the location of their stock through every point of the supply chain – starting from the warehouse to the store.

Even though the retailers have been going by well with the barcode system, they decided to switch to RFID inventory management because unlike barcodes, the RFID tags can be read when they are not in the line of sight. This means a product can be found without manual scanning. That is amazing!

But how fast the retail establishments are actually implementing this particular technology? Can RFID ever be the future of retail? To know, please check out the rest of the discussion right now.

A Slow Start

Given that RFIDs let the retailers enjoy unmatched visibility into the inventory, you would think it is used by many industries. But, RFID unfortunately had manifold false starts. In 2003, Walmart announced at a conference in Chicago that they need their hundred suppliers to have RFID tags. At that time, it appeared to be a substantial shift in the retail landscape. Many thought RFID would be the next huge thing – it still has not been fully adopted by the way.

There were a couple obstacles – the initial version of RFID was pricey. For relatively cheaper products like laundry soap or paper towels, using RFID tags meant sure shot loss. The success of the technology then also relied on other suppliers. They needed it as a mere supply tool.

Significant Changes

The scenario now is obviously not same as it was decades ago. Various modern-day companies have started realizing that RFID can improve user experiences. Thanks to RFID, the retailers get real-time data from any place, and deliver this data to the consumer through either representatives or in-store devices that enable one to browse products virtually.

For the consumers, this means enjoying complete access to product information and not wasting their time on the out-of-stock products. For the retailers, this means high sales volume. The stores such as Macy’s reported about 20% more sales after adopting RFID technology.

Other huge advances are near. All the eyes are now glued to Amazon. After this retail giant acquired Whole Foods, it is anticipated that RFID will be introduced to all grocery stores in similar capacity.

Bottom Line

While it is possible for RFID to alter the entire outlook of retail, it is still unclear how quickly this technology will be adopted by industries all across the globe. For the wireless retailers who wish to remain relevant under all circumstances, RFID can offer employees exact product and inventory information, thus, enhancing the customer journey to the greatest extent.

Although it is necessary to note that smaller retailers would not invest in RFID unless of course if they have a large volume. However, as several business organizations develop progressive omnichannel techniques, RFID can certainly keep both the ecommerce platforms and the larger brick-and-mortar stores profitable.

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