Reaching out across offline & online sales channels through GS1 barcode numbers

Selling is no longer confined to physical retail outlets. With proliferation of online shopping portals, consumers today look up, evaluate and purchase products through a mix of offline and online selling channels. This enables them make better informed purchase decisions on variety, price and location at just a click of a button.

While five years ago, fbb (Future Retail’s fashion brand), sold its popular own brand merchandise  through its retail outlets only, it now sells them through its own shopping portal and that of several other leading shopping portals like Amazon, Flipkart, Myntra, Paytm, etc. This has very significantly enhanced market reach and accessibility to its wide range of apparel products.

To enable the above, fbb switched from using its proprietary barcode numbers to GS1 barcode numbers (EAN codes), which was a key requirement for listing products on multiple online shopping portals.  This also allows fbb to provide a lot more consumer related information about its products than what was possible earlier through offline sales channels, since its SKU data gets populated into GS1 India’s DataKart, the online national repository of information on retailed products and their attributes, linked through the GS1 barcode number.

DataKart also enables it generate and allocate unique barcode numbers to thousands of its products, without ambiguity and with the assurance that its products would get recognised and accepted since GS1 standards are the de facto product identification standards in retail worldwide.

“Internally, we no longer have to maintain and manage two separate supply chains for offline & online and we now have real time visibility to inventories and stock movements, whether selling through our retail stores or catering to requirements of multiple shopping portals.  This eliminates unnecessary effort and costs in managing our supply chain and logistics operations, while enhancing our ability to seamlessly meet requirements of today’s omni channels and ensure our product availability at all times to shoppers”, said Me. Alok Dharadhar,  Chief – Retail & Head, Business Processes at fbb

Through GS1 India’s ‘Smart Consumer’ mobile app which has been downloaded by thousands of consumers across the country, fbb now has the ability to reach out directly to consumers and market its own brand products, a lot more effectively through a scan of the GS1 barcode on our products.

The switch to GS1 barcode numbers has also helped it streamline and maintain a single coding structure for our entire range of products, which greatly simplifies its product item master management, ordering and supplies receipt operations.

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