NSTU NETI students created the world's first "smart price tags" which analyze consumer's behavior

30 May, 2019 09:25:00
"Smart price tags" created by NSTU NETI students change the prices automatically depending on demand, stock balance and other pricing indicators. The tags have a built-in geolocation system and require no additional staff. The program allows conducting in-depth analysis and monitoring consumer behavior. It can replace the marketing departments of small retail chains. On May 28, the first "smart price tags" began working at "Fasol'" store which is a franchise project of the world wholesale giant METRO. The development is in line with "NeuroNET" market, National Technology Initiative, in the segment of "Neuro-communication and marketing". 
The main advantage of the development is specifically created software that allows conducting in-depth analysis and pricing in the store. "The information received by the program is correlated with the data from the enterprise automation system (CRM), for example, with the "1C" software. After all information is synchronized, our program charges prices and displays the cost on the price tags", said Georgiy Zorin, the CEO of OOO "Vectortec", fourth-year student of Mechatronics and Automation Faculty, NSTU NETI . This analytical tool can either recommend or set the optimal price for the goods online itself taking into account the time, demand, stock balances, purchase price and shelf life of products. The price is changed online with the help of a special card and software that the students created in early March. Another important function of "smart price tags" is to determine the customers' traffic, age, sex and movements around the shop using the built-in Wi-fi module. The price tag calculates the distance to the smartphone's Wi-Fi module. After that, the data is processed and transferred to the analytic program. If the owner of the device is included into the loyalty program, their location can be easily determined. "Everyone knows that the shelves with milk and bread are usually placed in the farthest corner, because these categories of goods are always in high demand. Goods for pleasure, such as chocolate, are usually placed along the way. But sometimes these rules need adjustment. Our system allows displaying real data dealing with certain target groups movements around the shop in order to place products in the most profitable way. Additionally, buyers will no longer face the problem of mismatch of the price on the tags and at checkout counters. In everyday life almost all of us happened to take the goods from the shelf at one price, just to find a different, often higher price at the checkout. Such cases cause problems with queues, and everyone has to wait until some elderly lady double checks the price. Thanks to the "smart price tags" consumers will no longer have to wait for the store's employees to resolve such situations," Georgiy Zorin comments. Unlike foreign analogues, these price tags are easily placed. They require no expensive transceivers and specialists who would install the equipment. The first "smart price tags" are placed in "Fasol'" store at ul. Nemirovicha-Danchenko, 146/2. The students’ development is made of electronic paper, shelf frame, control module and is connected to the computer via wireless network. According to the authors of the development, the price tags will be about 30% cheaper than foreign analogues due to the unique engineering solutions. All electronic components are located on the shelf and hidden in a special unit. By reducing the total number of electronic equipment, the cost of "smart price tags" has decreased in comparison to the existing analogues. The development is in line with "NeuroNET" perspective market of National Technological Initiative in the segment of "Neuro-communication and Marketing". This market requires the development of technologies for predicting mass and individual behavioral effects based on neuro-and biometric data, as well as technologies for identifying emotionally colored locations for the formation of resourceful states and market decision-making. The team of "Vectortec" company developers consists of seven engineers, programmers and mathematicians, among them four students and graduates of Radio Engineering and Electronics Faculty, one student of Mechatronics and Automation Faculty NSTU NETI, a graduate of Department of Mathematics and Mechanics, NSU and one self-taught engineer. In addition to the "smart price tags", they have already created an autonomous system for dust monitoring, a personnel control system using local navigation and other developments in the field of wireless technologies. A team of startupper students who developed price tags are the residents of the network inter-university business incubator "Garage", which was opened at NSTU NETI in the beginning of April 2019. Reference: "Fasol'" franchise program is the second project in support of small and medium-sized businesses from METRO, which aims at developing a professional group of customers who own product stores.

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