Times are changing… or maybe it’s more appropriate to say times have already changed. The easy days of having the pricing function be side task in a retail organization are over; price is more important than it has ever been.
The economy seems to have un-expectantly jumped up and slapped retailers in the face, and knocked them back a few steps, a little dose of reality; but they are back fighting even stronger after gathering their wits. Nobody was prepared, nobody saw it coming, nobody wants it to be here, but it is here, so we have to deal with it. Higher unemployment, lower wages, higher medical costs, higher fuel costs; money is tight. Consumers are looking at the price they are paying for products, and you need to be looking at those prices as well; it is very important.
For decades retailers have had very friendly and somewhat naïve customers, life has been good, no need for them to watch every penny spent…. Well, times have changed. Consumers are more aware of product prices than they probably ever have been in their entire life; retailers have not had to deal with this in the past. Add that in with the proliferation of discount retailers, and it makes running your business much more difficult than it ever has been. To compete in today’s retail environment, it is imperative to have a sophisticated tool to help you out. Full lifecycle pricing analytical tools are now part of the mainstream arsenal of tools retailers can use to be successful; you can’t survive without it.
Price optimization technology has come to be a mainstream technology that has been around for over a decade. There are hundreds of successful installations in use today, helping to implement retailers pricing strategy in a better fashion than if done via Excel sheets, with simple margin management, or by matching competition. Retailers who have not taken the time to investigate today’s pricing technology are missing a critical opportunity to change with the times.