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A Chicagoland grocery chain incorporated Rice Lake Retail Solutions’ Ishida Uni-9 scales to reduce errors and add a marketing edge.
KD Market is dedicated to fresh, beautiful food. Faced with hot or cold, prepared, prepped or grill-ready ethnic food specialties, customers shop the glass case-lined perimeter of KD Market for Eastern European cuisine. Not available elsewhere with this level of quality or variety, KD Market offers Polish, Russian and German regional delicacies as well as American fare. Excellence carries through to the scales, as well. In KD Market’s newest store, Chicago POS Systems installed Ishida Uni-9 scales to reduce pricing errors, enable easier pricing updates and display sophisticated product marketing.
Located in Mt. Prospect, Illinois, KD Market is one of four stores of its kind. Three other KD Market predecessors are located in the greater Chicago area, but this newest store is the grocery chain’s crowning achievement. Born out of KD Market’s popularity as well as a desire to fulfill customers’ growing appetite for culinary adventures, the market exceeds customer expectations for old-world quality. Along with a full, convenient selection of grocery staples, it also provides a contemporary shopping ambiance that consumers associate with the finer things in life.
Proactively building resilience to market share loss that grocers experience due to growing online grocery competition, KD Market plays its strengths to secure customer loyalty. When grocery stores lose business to online ordering, it is usually due to dry goods sales. It is easier to order oatmeal or almonds online than it is to order milk or lettuce. The natural edge KD Market has over giant dry-goods distributors is its focus on fresh foods. It combats competition by replacing portions of the inner-store, where dry and canned goods are typically shelved, with fresh foods. This expansive, fresh-perimeter approach to store layout has a direct effect on customer perception of the facility and on sales. With a full view of fresh food from every vantage point, customers feel assured they will eat well from this store, so they return—sometimes more than once per day!
When highly perishable products move into the center store, it is critical that inventory turns fast enough to avoid the threat of shrink biting into those hard-won, labor intensive profit margins. In retail, profit margin performance is not only managed for the entire store, but also by department, category and individual SKU. Each SKU, no matter how insignificant compared to the overall sum of tens of thousands of store SKUs and their achieved margins, contributes to overall store margin performance.
At KD Market’s Mt. Prospect store, nine of Rice Lake Retail’s Ishida Uni-9 price computing scales provided the retail scales needed to facilitate product movement and data management of its gorgeous food. Tom Grzesiak, in charge of purchasing and integrating retail technology for KD Market stores, worked with Chicago POS Systems for a PC-based retail scale solution capable of network connectivity for remote system management.
Not only are PC-based scales able to perform all of the price-computing and labeling tasks necessary for regulatory compliance and customer communication, they can be programmed centrally from one location. When product data is managed centrally, all PC-based scales connected to the same network use the same data. This reduces the number of mis-takes as well as the amount of labor spent programming and rekeying data so PLUs, SKUs and prices match on each piece of equipment for staff throughout the store.
Chicago POS Systems’ installation of Uni-9 price computing scales has also made certain management duties easier for KD Market. Not only are these scales user-friendly, sometimes cutting staff training down to one hour, but they have the expansive memory and versatility needed to serve many retail functions. The seven-inch graphic touchscreens can be programmed so category leaders show prominently on the screen. Older models of retail scales not featuring touchscreens are more susceptible to dirt, water and grease ingress into the scale’s keys, which can cause electronic malfunction requiring scale replacement.
According to Grzesiak, benefits of the Uni-9s include fewer miskey entries, less over and undercharging, increased staff checkout speed and accurate inventory assistance. These scales generate data ranging from staff performance stats and product sales data captured from delivery to sale. Every night, production data gets pulled from each scale comparing what was dispensed and sold. Movement and shrink reports as well as theft indicators are all advantageous to managers trying to track swiftly moving and perishable products. When a problem does arise, the source can easily be traced with the Uni-9’s reporting functions.
The Uni-9 has an added marketing edge. Capable of showing videos, slideshows and advertisements, the Uni-9’s seven- or 12-inch screens can graphically market product pairings, shopping suggestions, cooking instructions or recipes. Management can centrally coordinate or isolate these marketing tools to scales in selected store areas to match department themes and featured items. This proactive approach to customer support matches KD Market’s store setting perfectly. Beautiful tiled walls, concrete finished floors, stainless steel fixtures and spacious aisles provide customer comfort. This allows them to better take in product suggestions and learn from extraordinary food offerings. Mirrored ceilings reflect the bounty below: dumplings, pickled beets, blintzes, paczki, prune-stuffed pork roast, horseradish-laced beef loin, Hungarian stew with onions and peppers, veal stew, smoked meats, sausages and fish, aged cheeses, herbed luncheon meats, oily olive medleys and much more!
Rice Lake’s Ishida WM-Nano tabletop wrapper can be found in a small stainless steel and tiled back room adjacent to one of the meat counters. Grzesiak demonstrated how it helps the meat department, wrapping continually as truckloads of beef, pork, poultry, seafood, kielbalsa, bratwurst, smoked sausage, even chicken feet, come in daily.
KD Market in Mt. Prospect is a neighbor-hood store: simultaneously a gourmet and salt-of-the-Earth market worthy of the most hard-working hungry shoppers. It is abundant with such a generous and taste-tempting fusion of Eastern European-styled delicacies that you may even consider making this neighborhood your own!
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