Monday, February 16, 2009

The Coolest RFID Tag Ever

OK, that may be a bit over the top, but Ed Holcomb from VRF Holdings sent me an ePaper hang tag, and I have to say, it looks really good. Mine doesn't have the antenna in it, but the whole shebang is real, and it takes your average RFID handheld reader to get it going.

Price changes at the shelf are the last manual step in a pricing process that is increasingly sophisticated. It's problematic enough for grocery, with promotional price changes that run in the hundreds every week, but as I can personally attest with my near-bouts of carpal tunnel after pricing entire racks of apparel for markdown, it's at least as bad, if not worse for apparel.

If the industry is going to get smarter about pricing, we're going to need to get smarter about our price tags. This is a pretty cool step in the right direction.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

You Can Too Use Loyalty Card Info to Help Consumers

I just got an automated phone call from Costco, alerting me to the fact that the Detour energy bars in my cupboard have been impacted by the peanut recall/salmonella alert. We had actually already scoured our pantry for peanut things, but for some reason it just didn't compute that those bars might be impacted - we were looking mostly for kid snacks with peanut butter in them.

Not only was it great that Costco actually used my purchase history to do something useful for me, but they did it literally just in time - I called my husband to let him know, and he had one of those bars in his briefcase. Costco even gave me the website info I needed to get replacements from Detour (since those things are pretty pricey).

So, don't tell me you can't do useful things for consumers with the information you collect on them. Do you know how much I appreciate Costco right now? That call was worth at least another year on the membership...