4 Powerful Ways Your Grocery Store Can Cut Costs (Cold Chain Management + More)
Margins are historically thin for retailers like grocery stores. That’s why cost savings are imperative.
However, this can’t come at the expense of quality, especially when customer satisfaction and loyalty are so dependent upon product quality.
In this blog post, you’ll learn how you can reduce expenses and generate greater cost savings for your grocery store.
1. Reduce Food Loss with Proper Cold Chain Management
Retailers, especially those in the food and pharmaceutical industry, lose millions due to poorly controlled supply chains.
However, there’s also a lot on the line when food isn’t properly stored. A poorly controlled supply chain can lead to serious illnesses and even death, leading to costly liability and poor press.
But cold chain management offers a solution. This sort of solution includes temperature and humidity sensors in distribution centers, warehouses, refrigerator trucks and retail stores, closely monitoring the temperature of the environment in which food is stored, reducing the loss of food along the supply chain by up to 30%.
Here’s how it works:
- There’s an app that allows you to configure the sensors as well as a dashboard that displays the data. The result is a map that easily identifies when the temperature is poorly controlled, highlighting products that are at risk of being damaged.
- Installation can be done in seconds.
- You can also use a cold chain management platform to monitor cold-chain logistics in different stores at the same time and in real time. Better yet, this is done in a unified platform, integrating all the data from warehouses, vehicles and stores into a single platform.
2. Reduce Downtime: Managed Services (Radios as a Service)
Two-way radios are the very core of how retailers communicate. However, while they play an imperative role in day-to-day operations, they’re also an investment, whether you are expanding your fleet or upgrading.
That’s why many retailers, businesses and organizations are moving toward Radio-as-a-Service (RaaS) to reduce their technology costs.
Traditionally, retailers own the hardware (i.e. their fleet of two-way radios). While this may be a suitable option for some, it means that you have to manage the hardware (and accrue the maintenance costs) as well as miss out on technology upgrades that would be better suited to your operational needs.
RaaS turns your technology into a manageable expense. You don’t own the hardware but it offers the following benefits in the form of just a low monthly fee:
- Built-In Scalability. With RaaS, you can add to your fleet whenever you need more radios.
- Reduce Technology Expenses and Costly Downtime. Do you know how much downtime is costing you? A recent report from IDC found that the average cost of unplanned downtime is $1.25 billion to $2.5 billion. RaaS includes timely repairs and hardware replacements so that operations continue without as much interruption as possible as well as 24/7 support for mobile and portable radios and a 5-10 year maintenance agreement that manages end-of-life and end-of-service.
- Covers the Cost of Upgrades. Upgrade your communications without added cost.
- Better Network Security. Outdated encryption technology can put your operation at risk. Since RaaS covers the cost of your upgrades, it means you’ll always be protected.
Some RaaS plans, such as the one we offer here at ROCK Networks, also include a battery, speaker mic, a case for portables as well as a free battery replacement in year three.
3. Speak to Your Suppliers
When it comes to cutting costs, every retailer should be speaking to their suppliers/vendors on a yearly basis.
Having a conversation about how to lower costs, such as buying a larger volume of stable items or substituting a similar product for one that’s lower cost are all potential ways that your supplier may be able to reduce costs.
4. Dive Deeper Into Your Data to Optimize Operations
Data can offer a lot of valuable insights into how effectively your operations are functioning.
However, not all data is as valuable as others. Traditional footfall counters and other similar systems don’t provide the depth of data that you need to make a powerful impact.
Research published in the IBM Journal of Research and Development shows that understanding customer behaviour using indoor location analysis leads to improved user experience and ultimately increased revenue.
In a nutshell, positioning cuts costs improves operations, and allows you to capitalize on opportunities that can improve operations with data like unique versus repeat visitor counts, dwell time by zone or customer journey can allow you to optimize operations and save costs.
A solution like Inpixon, for instance, can optimize your retail store in the following ways:
- Optimize staffing levels based on visitor trends by the hour, day week or season
- Reduce maintenance and repair costs
- Get accurate view costs for in-store advertising and display boards
- Discover new marketing opportunities based on customer behaviour
Wrapping it Up
With thin margins, grocery stores have to do everything they can to keep costs low. From cold chain management to negotiating with suppliers and digging deeper into your data, you can save your grocery store thousands of dollars this year.
Looking for more information on how your grocery store can save costs? Contact us today at 1-877-721-7070 or contact us online here.