Even the tiniest retail business can benefit from using barcodes to streamline their operations. The latest barcode scanning technology used in many rugged smartphones and tablets can help retailers with their inventory processes. This is one of the most efficient ways to improve productivity and reduce costs.
Traditional scanning technology, according to experts, is not evolving fast enough to meet the changing needs of retailers. As a result, services are not provided fast enough to meet demands. On the other hand, mobile devices are constantly changing. In fact, one of the biggest changes is the availability of rugged smartphones in the market. By combining barcode scanning technology with rugged mobile devices, retailers may be able to solve their ever-expanding inventory management pain points.
The Importance of Barcode Scanners For Retail Operations
Barcode scanners are devices that read barcodes and decode information from barcodes. Barcodes are a series of vertical lines, often printed on a label, that represent data about a product or item. Barcode scanners use a laser or camera to read the barcode, which is then decoded and translated into readable text.
In retail operations, barcode scanners are essential tools for a variety of tasks, including inventory management, pricing, and checkouts. They allow retailers to quickly and accurately collect data about products, which can be used to improve efficiency, reduce errors, and save time and money.
Advantages of Scanning In Retail
One of the key advantages of barcode scanners is their ability to sort and classify products based on their barcode type. There are several types of barcodes, including UPC A and UPC E (Universal Product Code), EAN (European Article Number), QR codes (Quick Response), and more. Each barcode type has its own format and function, and barcode scanners can easily identify and categorize products based on their barcode type.
Barcode scanners can also be used to scan barcodes online, using apps or web-based tools. This allows retailers to access product information and manage inventory remotely, without the need for physical access to the products. This can be especially useful for retailers with multiple locations or large inventories.
What are Rugged Devices?
In our previous blog, we explained what rugged devices really are. To put it simply, rugged devices are more than the robust tools that you might think they are. Today’s rugged devices are advanced, versatile and extremely functional.
These are Android or Windows devices that are made to withstand harsh environments. They are created to meet key benchmarks like IP ratings. Conker’s rugged devices are made with the latest operating systems such as Android and Windows 10. Furthermore, a built-in barcode reader allows your employees to easily scan, save, and send data.
Choosing Barcode Scanning Technology For Retail
Improve Scanning Efficiency And Reduce Costs
The retail industry typically faces difficulties in keeping up with accurate inventory management. Businesses need to ensure that perishable products or those that have a limited lifespan, must be updated with the correct information at all times. Any waste of products can cause retail companies huge losses. In fact, a study by the Food Marketing Institute, says that an average grocery store has only a 1.2 percent profit margin after taxes. As a result, any unnecessary waste due to missed expiration dates can lead to a huge drop in turnover.
Furthermore, manual inventory can be extremely time-consuming and requires extensive manpower. This means errors can become commonplace. Any error in manual physical counting can lead to problems like excess inventory, incorrect orders, profit loss, and misdeclaration of out-of-stock items.
Having reliable and versatile scanning technologies is one method supermarkets can use to increase the efficiency of their physical counts. Many retailers are now scanning inventory with app-enabled mobile device cameras. The Conker SX50 2D with a built-in barcode scanner is an example of a robust device that retail stores can use for their businesses. This rugged Android smartphone is equipped with the top operating system, as well as a dedicated barcode scanner that can help you easily scan QR code and other types of codes.
Mobile barcode scanning technology has a lot of value in an industry where even little improvements in inventory management may make a major difference in the bottom line. Allowing employees to complete physical counts more efficiently can help retailers save money as it allows workers to focus on higher-value duties.
Improve Flexibility and Durability
Mobile rugged devices are a good choice versus traditional barcode scanners. This is because aside from their barcode scanning capabilities, these rugged devices are also flexible and come with a powerful operating system. Inventory management solutions are also less expensive and require little training as most individuals are already familiar with them. Through tools such as a rugged barcode reader, users can ensure that files and documents are properly saved in the right places.
Why Rugged Devices Are A Better Choice?
Compared to a regular consumer-off-the-shelf (COTS) device, rugged devices are known to last longer and perform better even in the most demanding environment. In a retail grocery store, barcode scanners need to be consistently used. They are exposed to high-traffic areas where the chances of falling or breaking are common. Using a rugged smartphone device with built-in scanners can help ensure downtime is reduced.
Consumer devices rely on the built in camera to scan barcodes where as specialised rugged devices with integrated barcode scanners have high performance scan engines that can read barcode faster and more accurately in varying light conditions and with challenging contrast. Some devices can scan at long range.
Device breakdown losses can easily get out of hand for small to medium retail grocery operations. Therefore, while you may pay more initially with rugged devices, this hardware is more beneficial than regular devices in the long run. It’s important to understand the value of a comprehensive rugged device warranty.
Now a new trend is also starting with an increasing number of retailers adding wearable scanning solutions to their rugged device infrastructure.
Android or Windows OS
Today, there are a wide number of choices, including a choice between some of the most reliable operating systems in the market. When it comes to the operating system, it is important for retail grocers to see which one works best with their inventory management software.
Conker offers a range of rugged devices which operate either on Windows or Android. For Windows you can check out the popular and reliable Conker NS6, offering users a full Windows 10 operating system.