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Vendor Spotlight 12-18-12

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Best and Worst of Retail in 2012 part 1

By Adam Creamer
Agilence, Inc.

2012 was a roller coaster of a year, especially for retailers. The fact that we saw a crippling superstorm and record Black Friday weekend sales in a three week span shows just how volatile the year has been. Even with all of these ups and downs the retail industry, as always, pulled through. As 2012 comes to a close I looked back on the year that was and came up with the best and worst of retail in 2012. It is, of course, in list form because everyone loves a good list this time of year. The items covered range from hard facts to interesting observations. Some of it is serious and other parts are meant to be funny, and the entire list is subjective. That being said someone is bound to disagree with me, so I suggest making your own list. It’s a nice way to review the year, and it can help you plan for 2013. The list will be revealed over the next four days, so keep checking in for additions! Today focuses on mobile technologies. Read part 2, part 3, part 4

Best: Mobile

Mobile can mean many different things in retail, so what was the best about it? Almost everything. The year started with many retailers creating apps for every major operating system, if they haven’t already. This has allowed customers to compare items and even shop on the go. Another mobile technology retailers have jumped on this year is QR codes. This technology has been out for years now, but retailers are utilizing them more often. Whether QR codes are used to provide a coupon code or to actually buy the product, retailers are realizing the power of QR codes. Mobile technologies aren’t just being utilized for customers either; mobile work stations, mobile POS, and mobile
big data applications are all starting to be used by retailers, and that is a very good thing.

Worst: Credit Card Scams

I’m not talking about the typical skimmers or identity theft out there, I’m talking about mobile credit card scams involving card readers. Mobile credit card readers – such as the intuit goPayment, Square, or the PayPal here – are amazing for small businesses, but there is a glaring issue with them. The problem is it’s not that difficult to deposit the money from a transaction into a personal account. Say you own a small retail outlet and utilize one of these readers; someone off the streets can easily imitate an associate and complete a transaction with a customer. The biggest scam I have heard of so far involved the Square reader. A man who taught martial arts at a gym set up his square reader to deposit transactions directly into his personal bank account, not the gyms. Over 10 months he racked up $42 thousand before being caught.


All of us here at Agilence would like to wish everyone a Happy New Year! We hope that 2013 continues the resurgence of the economy and the growth of retail. And as always,
allow us to keep an eye on your stores in the new year.

Derek Rodner
VP, Product Strategy
856-366-1200 x500


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