Retail IT

Retail IT news, trends, analysis and practical advice

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Can mobile save the mall? Yes, but not how you think

In a world where shopping malls are losing customers by the escalator-load to more convenient and deeper-inventoried digital options, one mall in a lightly populated Nebraska town is making some impressive progress in getting its...

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Coke's movie theater trial shows beacon potential

Retail beacons have huge potential, but it can only be met when chains move beyond seeing beacons solely as tiny ad broadcasters. Coca-Cola is starting to get creative about beacons, with a trial in Norway movie theaters to not merely...

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Bloomingdale's gift card glitch illustrates lack of oversight

Bloomingdale's major gift card glitch illustrated two huge retail IT security issues. First, human approval of gift cards can avoid some big problems. Second, chains have almost no meaningful system for dealing with such glitches.

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Target troll proves it’s all or nothing with corporate social media

It's imperative for companies to closely monitor their social-media accounts, for security, reputation and other reasons.

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Silicon Valley's 'pressure cooker:' Thrive or get out

People working in Silicon Valley may cry at their desks and may be expected to respond to emails in the middle of the night, but that's the price to work for some of the most successful and innovative tech companies in the world,...

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Using clues to move paper coupons to mobile

Printed coupons and mobile devices are as far apart as Bitcoins and silver dollars. One company that's been specializing in bridging the gap sees the answer in not looking at any one element and instead layering.

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The best and worst performing retail mobile apps — but no reasons why

Nowhere is more customer feedback needed than with mobile apps. What works? What do you like? What is needed that isn't there? And, most critically, why do you like or hate whatever you like and hate? A report crossed my desk the...

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Beacon technology: Download our free PDF

In this free PDF download, you’ll get a top-level overview of beacon technology -- what it is, and how beacons use Bluetooth low energy (BLE) wireless links to communicate with mobile devices. In the enterprise, there are several...

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Target gets smart about beacons

Although there are many pros and cons to Target's initial beacon deployment, the retailer has revealed some clever twists to beacon-powered programs. The further — and more creatively — a retailer gets away using beacons as...

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Traction Watch: Smart decisions lead Touch of Modern to $100M in sales

In 2012, the e-commerce site Touch of Modern was just beginning to see growth on its daily sales of unique products. Just one year later, it was approaching $20M in sales and by 2014 it more than doubled that revenue. Today, Touch of...

Why ARE those IT guys so slow, anyway?

This pilot fish gets an assignment to fix a broken electronic display at a big-box retail store, and he has two hours allotted to get it fixed. Not a problem -- except for the bureaucratic oversight.

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Target joins the beacon bandwagon with trial in 50 stores

Target, the nation's second-largest discount chain, is testing beacon technology in 50 of its stores, joining a growing number of retailers that hope to attract customers with timely deals sent to their smartphones and smartwatches on...

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Google's in-store traffic predictor

In its ongoing effort to become a force for good for its brick-and-mortar retail clients, Google has rolled out a traffic prediction element within its search. The feature appears to leverage POS data so that Google visitors can see...

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The real message behind Walmart's supplier pricing memo

Walmart has sent a memo to its suppliers reminding them that they need to comply with labeling laws, "emphasizing that the amount inside a package matches what is printed on the outside." At a glance, the memo seems perfunctory. But...

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Amazon's drone zone effort is the perfect retail domination play

Amazon has proposed that a large section of the sky be declared a drone zone, a chunk of airspace where only high-end, autonomous drones would be allowed to fly. The filing proposes specific standards for such drones, in a clever...

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Pepper the robot aspires to be a salesman

Despite its powerful AI boost, SoftBank's humanoid robot is still limited by basic challenges.

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Amazon envisions drone superhighways in sky

Amazon envisions integrating drones into the skies above our cities, proposing drone superhighways that would crisscross the sky and enable thousands of unmanned vehicles to fly at high speeds under completely automated control.

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Can networked lighting find you a great parking spot?

The future of retail IT is not going to be in pulling in new data. It's going to be in finding the best ways to integrate all of those data sources to generate new opportunities. One of the best — and potentially wackiest — examples...

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