IT services and solutions for retail and hospitality

  • 8 Dec 2014

Retail Assist Dictionary Week 3: IT Solutions

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Retail Technology is ever growing and changing and it’s with these changes that new terminology is evolving. We thought we would provide you with a useful Retail Assist dictionary so you can keep up to date with some of the most prevalent retail technology buzz words.

This week we will be exploring terminology that surrounds IT solutions, and this is the 3rd and final Retail Assist dictionary blog. You can see week 1 ‘International’ here and week 2 ‘On the Go Technology’ here.

Supply Chain: This is a network of businesses and contractors that work and coordinate closely together to manufacture, transport, distribute, and sell retail goods. Unlike a regular supply chain which is more of a linear process that follows a product from one phase to the next, an integrated supply chain is more collaborative and can entail joint product development, shared information, and common systems.

Merret is our supply chain solution that has been designed and constructed for today’s omnichannel age. Merret provides a complete end-to-end solution, with a single stock pool, allowing retailers to maximise trade across numerous customer facing systems.

Merret also provides a seamless shopping experience across all available channels whilst utilising a single stock pool, enabling customers to shop the brand, not just the channel.

Central Stock Pool: Merret stock management enables sophisticated, in-season management of product ranges. Merchandisers are able to effectively manage complex assortments, allocating and replenishing stock, by channel. Merret significantly reduces the complexity inherent in the omnichannel grading, initial allocation and replenishment processes.

Merret’s Weekly Sales Stock and Intake (WSSI), is a vital tool for in-season planning within stock management. The WSSI tool within Merret provides an accurate weekly position of sales, stock and planned intake, ensuring that crucial allocation, replenishment and pricing decisions are made, from up to date and correct information.

From the single stock pool vision, stock can be managed efficiently and effectively across multiple global retail channels.

Omnichannel: The next generation of cross-channel and multi-channel retail. Omnichannel means establishing a presence on several channels and platforms (i.e. brick-and-mortar, mobile, online, catalogue etc) and enabling customers to transact, interact, and engage across these channels simultaneously or even interchangeably, whilst receiving a consistent brand experience.

Omnichannel, for example, gives customers the convenience and flexibility to purchase an item using your shopping app, and then letting them pick up the merchandise in your store, plus allowing them to process a return via the website. It’s important to note that omnichannel goes beyond simply being on multiple channels or platforms. Just because you have a website, a mobile app, and a physical store doesn’t necessarily mean that you’re an omnichannel retailer. In order to truly be one, you must fuse all those channels together so they give customers a seamless and consistent experience.

Multichannel: This term refers to companies using multiple channels (e.g. social media, web and stores) to transact with their customers. Companies with this approach are adopting two or more channels to engage their customers; however, they are not necessarily joined up and focused on delivering a seamless or consistent message across multiple touch-points. It’s more around having a number of different channels in which the customer can shop, rather than joining these up across channels to fulfil an order.

Bricks-and-Mortar: Refers to retail shops that are located in a building, having a physical presence, as opposed to an online shopping destination.

Franchise: A form of business organisation in which a firm already has a successful product or service that the franchisor enters in to a business relationship with, operating under the franchisor’s trade name and within their guidelines. Some of the most popular franchises include; McDonalds, Starbucks and Subway.

Concessions: A business that is allowed to sell goods, food, or services on property owned by someone else, for example inside an airport or large department store.

If you would like any more information about Retail Assist and are interested to see how our IT solutions could benefit you then please visit our website: Or you can get in touch, via telephone: 0 115 853 3910 or email:

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