Recently a large, national drug chain has made the news for allegedly charging customers higher prices at the register than displayed on shelves. In fact, the attorney general of one state filed a civil lawsuit against the chain, calling their actions “a pattern of false and misleading advertising and pricing schemes.”
Not to take sides here — charging above the stated price is bad business, without a doubt. But is this a result of deception or faulty data management?
Grocery and drug chains can process up to 7,000 price changes a week. There’s a lot of room for human error in that figure. Sale tags can remain on shelves after expiration, multiple tags and signs can confuse the customer, and inaccurate or untimely data could be incorporated into the tag file.
Not all shelf tag and data management programs are created equal, and in-house solutions may be particularly at risk. Barcode technology alone has not eliminated human error, as evidenced by FDA-enforced scan audits that have, in severe cases, resulted in class-action suits. What’s a retailer to do?
Only an integrated approach that fully exploits data technology can achieve optimum data integrity and compliance. By comparing each store’s tag print file to its price transaction file, Bacompt can perform multiple cross-check reports that alert you to pricing discrepancies and timing of removal, replacement, and price-change execution.
Specific data integrity enhancements include:
• Batch execution summary
• Missing tag and unmatched tag reports
• Tag discrepancy alerts which include:
— Items in deal
— Pack / size
• Items marked for deletion, unauthorized tags, and seasonal items lists
• Expiry lists
• Unusually priced items
All reports are store-specific, with side-of-aisle information. More importantly, they are designed to empower you, the retailer, with information that can maximize the integrity of your pricing program — from advertisement, to shelf, to checkout. Don’t risk customer dissatisfaction, and don’t risk a lawsuit. Ask if your tag printing and data management solution is providing you with this level of detail. If not, we’d be happy to talk to you about it.