Myths thwart RFID ROI in retail, says Zebra

Over half of European companies believe that RFID will never be commonplace in the retail supply chain, according to research carried out by Vanson Bourne on behalf of Zebra Technologies.

According to Rod Rodericks, managing director, Zebra EMEA, this low confidence in RFID is due to confusion as to how and when the technology should be applied. The hype that heralded the arrival of this technology has created many myths which must be dispelled if companies are to realise the value of RFID investment. Tales of unimpressive trials where these labels have been used inappropriately such as tracking individual items in store are undermining the potential ROI when used in the right context.

30 per cent feel if it catches on at all, it will be later than 2008 when RFID becomes commonplace in the retail supply chain.

The research also revealed strong regional variation regarding confidence in the technology: 83 per cent of French and German companies felt that RFID will never become widespread in the retail supply chain. 

Confidence was considerably higher in the UK with only 7 per cent of organisations holding this view.

The European Labelling Study 2006 surveyed 127 companies in the UK, Germany and France to explore European businesses attitudes to barcodes, RFID and other labelling technology.

Retailers and suppliers need to take a step back and properly evaluate their labelling strategy taking into account all the possibilities such as 2D barcode labels rather than simply reaching for RFID, according Rodericks. Only by deploying smart labels in the right situation will firms unlock the value RFID can bring to the bottom line.


About Zebra Technologies
Zebra Technologies Corp. (Nasdaq: ZBRA) delivers innovative and reliable on-demand printing solutions for business improvement and security applications in 100 countries around the world. More than 90 percent of Fortune 500 companies use Zebra-brand printers.
A broad range of applications benefit from Zebra-brand thermal bar code, smart label, receipt, and card printers, resulting in enhanced security, increased productivity, improved quality, lower costs, and better customer service.
The company has sold more than five million printers, including RFID printer/encoders and wireless mobile solutions, and also offers software, connectivity solutions and printing supplies.
Zebra Technologies Europe Ltd, headquartered in the United Kingdom, provides product and speciality label sales and support, including oversight of offices in Benelux, France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Spain, Sweden and the United Arab Emirates.

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