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Retail round up – November 2006

November 2006 retail roundup – including RFID, Sensis Consumer report, Book reviews and Payment Card Security


Book Review – What Great Retailers Do

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Author: David Jenkin

David Jenkin begin his retail as a career as a sales assistant and worked through a variety of roles to end up regional chief executive and director of the Myer Emporium. Since then he’s created his own consultancy firm, and been involved in retail development and strategy at many levels. This book presents what he’s learnt from a life in retail, covering everything from that first retail concept to customer service, staffing, leadership, retail myths and trends, and marketing. Drawing on examples from a wide range of local and international retailers, such as Gloria Jeans, Zara, The Body Shop and Bakers Delight, Jenkin imparts his wisdom for retailers of any size.

Publisher: Baraka House Publishing

RRP: $34.95

Available from bookstores or www.whatgreatretailersdo.com.au


Preparing for Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) Technology

As the adoption of radio frequency identification (RFID) technology moves closer, the Department of Communications, Information, Technology and the Arts (DCITA) have issued a publication so businesses can be prepared and make wise choices in the implementation.

Getting The Most Out Of RFID: A starting guide to radio frequency identification for SMEs looks at what RFID actually involves, and what it could mean for the retail and supply chain industries. Areas covered include getting the most out of RFID, what role it can play in inventory and supply chain, and addresses the hype surrounding the technology.

For a copy visit www.dcita.gov.au/ie


Sensis Consumer Report  – Consumer Concerns

The latest Sensis Consumer Report shows consumers remain confident, even though rising petrol prices and interest rates are proving a concern.

Almost half of those surveyed were confident about their financial prospects for the coming year. “While there has been improvement in consumer confidence since the June survey, it is 12 percentage points down on this time last year,” says report author Christena Singh.

Rising interest rates were the biggest factor behind consumer concern over their financial prospects, followed closely by rising petrol prices, inflation, and wages not keeping up.

With respondents asked to rank concerns about a wide range of topics, the price of petrol came in at number one, scoring eight out of 10, says Singh. Other big concerns included the Middle East crisis and the increased cost of living.

Looking ahead, consumers don’t have a lot of faith in Australia’s economic climate. “Thirty-six percent of Australians think the economy will be worse in a year’s time,” says Singh.

Looking at consumer confidence across the states, Northern Territory scored as the state with the highest confidence, with residents in New South Wales and South Australia ranked as the least confident.

Payment Card System Security

New research by Visa has shown half of all merchants in Australia are not aware of their obligations regarding protecting customers’ personal financial information and the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS).

While payment card providers have promoted the PCI DSS created by Visa and Mastercard for some years, only 49 percent of those merchants surveyed were aware of it.

The PCI DSS is a set of industry-wide requirements and process supported by every major international payment card system. It includes 12 basic requirements such as installing a firewall, protecting stored data and encrypting transmissions of cardholder data across public networks.

However, while Australian merchants may not know the protocol, 77 percent of them ranked protecting cardholder data as their top concern, followed by card fraud and identity theft.

“Merchants are very aware of the significant risks to their businesses and reputation if customer data is mishandled or they fall victim to the growing threat posed by computer hackers,” says Bruce Mansfield, executive vice president of Visa Australia and New Zealand. “But the latest research tells us that we have a long way to go to educate merchants on what is required to protect cardholder data.”

Mansfield says the vast majority of merchants were willing to comply with global data security standard once they understand the benefits, and Visa and Mastercard are set to conduct an education campaign of seminars and workshops aimed at encouraging merchants to strengthen their security standards.

The full standard can be viewed in the ‘account information security’ page at www.visa.com.au


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