Today’s intricate supply chains can result in both untimely and inaccurate information. Both of these outcomes can hurt a retailer’s bottom line. For independent outlets, especially, overall cost reduction can be the difference between profitability and failure. Competing with larger retailers means taking advantage of every possible opportunity to streamline the supply chain.
This places data visibility and usability at center-stage for independent retailers. Thankfully, the new Scan-Based Trading (SBT) builds on technological advances in recent years - enabling retailers to make better decisions around inventory, logistics, and merchandising, while streamlining B2B payment systems. Let's take a look:
Better Supplier And Retailer Relations
Centralized data is key to empowering both suppliers and retailers. Historically, both sat on a wealth of business insights, yet lacked the tools to integrate and take advantage of them. Scan-based trading creates an ideal environment in which to address data integration challenges of the past.
For retailers, missing out on revenue due to stock shortages is simply unacceptable. Scan-based trading systems give you access to real-time data on inventory items that are out of stock, or are going to be out of stock soon. Also, any excess inventory can be identified, marked down, or moved to another outlet.
Suppliers, on the other hand, are missing out on sales if their business process involves waiting for a retailer to tell them they’re out of stock. With SBT, orders on soon-to-be-out-of-stock items are automated, giving vendors ample opportunity to plan, store, and route products more cost-effectively.
Better Data Availability = Better Business Insights
Centralized data gives retailers and suppliers greater visibility into key touch points. Suppliers, for example, can use sales data fed from retailers' POS systems to pick up on trends in product consumption. These insights can be segmented according to product, outlet location, or other parameters. Suppliers can identify successful retailers and merchandising strategies to help under-performing stores improve. This type of collaborative approach creates a win-win situation for both parties.
Data can also inform logistics to map delivery routes more efficiently. Fewer trips and smarter delivery management means less vehicle maintenance and fuel costs for suppliers, and reduced cost of merchandise for retailers.
Process Automation Means Resource Optimization
Labor and time are valuable commodities. Compiling reports manually is a low-value task that eats away at resources. Instead of having business users sift through unstructured inventory and billing data, reporting is automated within the SBT system so users can derive value immediately.
For every out-of-stock product, a sale is lost. Stock orders and other processes can be automated according to retailer business rules. Retailers are able to configure everything from approvals and orders to payments, thereby avoiding key staff repeating time-consuming tasks on a weekly basis.
On-The-Spot Issue Resolution
When digital supply chain data is centrally stored, both retailers and suppliers have access to the same information. This closes loopholes, allows for immediate and amenable issue resolutions, and fosters long-standing supply chain partnerships. For example, if a supplier questions a lack of POS Sales (and payment) for a specific UPC, sales and delivery/credit data can be analyzed at the individual store level, by day. This granularity helps to not only identify potential causes, but also simplifies any corrective measures that need to be taken.