Milestone in the digitization of the sales area
Munich, September 2021 – The numbers jump around as if bewitched – an electronic price display is a familiar sight at a filling station Things are different in the construction materials business: here the “good old” analog price sign still dominates, and that even though electronic price labeling could be equally beneficial for the trade and customers alike. The construction materials area of BayWa is moving forward as a pioneer. In the course of a pilot project, two locations of BayWa Baustoffe have tested the changeover to electronic price labeling with resounding success so that the conversion work and new construction that are under way can make use of this. Another 70 BayWa Baustoffe locations have already signed up for the changeover for 2022. The time-consuming work of replacing labels by hand has been done away with thanks to automatic price updating using electronic labels. This means that there are no longer any discrepancies in the labels on the goods and at the checkout. And that is not all: whether it concerns the localizing of goods or the optimizing of replenishment – the smart digital signs can also be useful in many other respects.
The example of BayWa Baustoffe is not only a trend for the future within this sector, but also serves as a school within the company: two locations of BayWa Technik are going into the trial phase and the agricultural section is also sounding out the possibilities. According to Mike Wanke of BayWa Baustoffe, the advantages are obvious: “All the new prices can be uploaded to the electronic labels in real time – the price displayed at the checkout and the on the shelf where the goods is identical at all times and without great effort. This saves irritation, reinforces trust on the part of customers, frees up capacity for customer support and, last but not least, has a positive effect on the gross profit.” As the Key Account manager for “Digitization”, Wanke is responsible for the project and is pushing forward digitization of the sales areas as a whole. The electronic labels also offer the option to communicate additional information such as the BayWa BauGesund-Siegel, (Healthy Construction Seal), special sales, promotional actions and old struck-through prices.
Price sign with potential
“Flexibility, just as the trade needs it, and the option for further digitization of the sales area” , outlines Marcus Daik in his function as head of sales area management for the sectors of agriculture, construction materials and technology at BayWa the potential of the project. “Electronic price labeling is the gateway to more digitization: we are creating the basis for this so as to be able to start with the next step.” More digitization lies in further options for using the labels such as employee mode, QR code/NFC and flashing LEDs: employee mode opens up a second level when the label is switched over to reveal important internal information concerning the article such as the current inventory of the item, inventory label, quantity on order, figures for special sales, etc,. Customer reviews, product information or individual customer prices can be displayed via a QR code/NFC. Flashing LEDs can make it easier for the customer to find the product, and also putting away by the staff.
Made to measure
BayWa obtained support for the introduction of digital labels from IT service provider Nagarro ES,, which in turn makes use of the Smart Digital Labels for the leading vendor worldwide, SES-imagotag . Nagarro ES developed a special app so that the products and the digital labels could be matched with the aid of BayWa’s own MDE devices (MDE = Mobile Data Entry): in addition to the electronic labels all additional subsystems such as the checkouts and MDE devices are supplied simultaneously with the current sales prices and master data from the SAP Material Management system. Once the product and the associated electronic label have been matched to one another, it is possible to react flexibly centrally and without great effort to market and pricing trends for the relevant branch. While the two pilot operations are till being changed over by the teams from BayWa, in future a task force will be sent out to handle the digitization of the sales area quickly and smoothly while business carries on as before.
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