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The Future of Retail: Electronic Shelf Labels Market Will Increase 10-Fold in Next Five Years

Oyster Bay, New York - 27 Mar 2017

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As retailers increasingly struggle to effectively match online pricing, digitize their physical stores, meet new order fulfillment models, and streamline the shopping experience, electronic shelf labels (ESLs) are gaining market momentum. ESLs will hit the mass market and accrue more than $4 billion in global revenues by 2022, finds ABI Research, with several big box retail deployments to trigger a domino effect in market growth over the next two years.

ESLs provide retailers with a significant ROI by streamlining paper/staff costs, reducing the risk of human error, cutting back on waste, and improving price perception. All the benefits can collectively affect retailers’ bottom lines by as much as 5%.

With multi-color graphic display prices falling, in-aisle promotion barriers are disappearing, with many major grocery chains in the U.S. and UK expected to roll out ESLs over the next three years. Germany continues to see a lot of activity with trials suggesting a strong pipeline of opportunity across the continent. Asia also represents huge opportunity, with the global industry watching to see if market incumbents can expand into these two markets despite increasing competition from local players.

While Amazon Go and its global effect on the retail technology market landscape is clear, the role that dynamic pricing plays in Amazon’s model remains less apparent. ABI Research anticipates that online pricing will become omnichannel pricing, which means in-store dynamic pricing will soon become a reality with ESLs playing a predominant role. In collaboration with BLE and NFC technologies, ESLs can track purchases as customers shop, allowing retailers to build apps that eliminate the need for queues and checkout processes entirely.

These findings are from ABI Research’s Electronic Shelf Labels: ROI Analysis and Market Opportunities report.