Walmart Black Friday: Stores limited to 20% capacity for 3-day event

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  • Walmart said Wednesday it would stagger the launch of in-store Black Friday sales across three days in November to avoid crowds.
  • It will also limit store capacity to just 20% during its Black Friday sales, Bloomberg reported.
  • The first Black Friday event will focus on toys, electronics, and home products.
  • The retailer will launch discounts online first, and then bring them to stores at least two days later, it said.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Walmart will split its Black Friday in-store sales over three days in November to avoid overcrowding, it said Wednesday.

It will also limit the number of Black Friday shoppers to just 20% of store capacity, Bloomberg reported.

The retailer said it would launch in-store sales events on November 7, 14, and 27, when stores will open at 5 a.m..

To avoid shoppers rushing to stores, Walmart is launching each set of discounts online at least two days early, it said in a press release.

It is also offering contact-free curbside pickup for online Black Friday orders.

The first Black Friday sale, starting online on November 4 and in stores on November 7, will focus on toys, electronics, and home products.

The second event will be for TVs, smartphones, and tablets. It will launch online on November 11, and in stores on November 14. 

The third event will offer discounts on a range of goods, from apparel to electronics. It will begin online on November 25, and in stores on November 27.

Walmart said it would separately hold its biggest phone sale event in-store and online on November 14, with deals on iPhones and Samsung phones.

Other deals available over the Black Friday period include an 42-inch UHD Roku TV for $88.

Read more: Retailers are struggling to attract seasonal workers for what experts

Creating Customer-Friendly Retail Stores With NLP

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Retail stores have seen tremendous growth in the past decade. So much so that we now have chain stores of retailers such as Ikea, Walmart and Target with each having numerous stores around the U.S. and the world. You might be familiar with the long, long aisles and multiple floors these stores span. But with increased scalability, specific issues also tend to grow.

One such area that we are going to focus on in this article is customer service and support at retail stores. From a business standpoint, more human resources are required if you have a large store. You need to ensure that there are attendees at every aisle and with the correct knowledge of the products. Even then, they might fall short for attending every customer during peak sales time, such as year-end sales or the rather infamous Black Friday sale. Additionally, the customer service representative might not be acquainted with complete knowledge of the products on display. This can make an already angry customer even more dissatisfied. But there is a solution to these challenges in the form of technology. Natural Language Processing (NLP). NLP solutions can act as personal assistants and help customers with their purchases. These tools can ensure that customers have a hassle-free, time-efficient, and unique shopping experience at your store. So how can we apply NLP in retail stores?

Applications of NLP tools

NLP tools can be implemented in various forms at retail outlets. They can be used as physical robots that can work as a human employee. Or they can be used as virtual assistants in the form of stationary screens that can be installed at multiple locations throughout the store. And their use is not limited to in-store. As most retail stores have an online platform, the

Apple To Ship Your Orders From Its Stores To Ensure Day-After Delivery

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KEY POINTS

  • Apple has around 300 retail stores in the United States and Canada
  • Apple’s operations team will decide where the order will be shipped from
  • The company is expected to announce new products Tuesday

Apple expects to deliver its products a day after receiving orders by shipping them directly from its network of about 300 retail stores across the United States and Canada, finding new ways to utilize its stores amid restrictions imposed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Apple informed its staff that customers who live within 100 miles of an Apple store will benefit from this strategy, Bloomberg reported.

The tech giant usually ships iPhones, iPads, Macs and other products from its warehouses or directly from China. Apple will use the United Parcel Service in Canada and FedEx in the United States to ship products faster.

This will not be an optional service and customers will not be aware when it happens. Apple’s operations team will decide which item will be shipped in what way.

Apple tested this system in July in some stores after they started reopening following the COVID-19 pandemic.

The company is pondering whether to turn some of its retail stores that remain shut, into online support and call centers. Some retail employees are already working as online support staff for the company, according to the report.

Apple is expected to launch a slew of new products including four new iPhones with 5G compatibility, a new iPad Air, new products in its audio range, and the first Macs with Apple’s own processors at its annual event on Tuesday. Apple will also unveil widely anticipated iPhone 12 models tuned to super-fast new 5G telecom networks in an update considered vital to the company’s fortunes. Some of Apple’s rivals have already launched 5G models.

Apple Event Apple’s Events website

Checkout free stores head to college (and soon to you)

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Philip Pavliger

A couple years ago Amazon’s checkout-free Go store made worldwide headlines and ushered in a new shopping concept. Now, as was inevitable, there are signs that checkout-free technology is proliferating and will soon be a reality in a location near you.

The latest example comes to us by way of the University of Houston, where an on-campus convenience store will become the first retrofitted, completely touchless and cashierless retail experience.

The emphasis on the word retrofitted is important here. Amazon Go stores were build from the ground up to interact atop a touchless infrastructure. But for the concept to proliferate quickly, existing stores will need to be retrofitted with the same technologies without undergoing a major overhaul. Amazon is selling its Go technology to other retailers, but there are other companies competing in the same market. The company behind the University of Houston store, Standard, thinks that’s where it will carve out a major customer base for itself. 

“Market Next is the first retail store in the world to be retrofitted for a 100 percent cashierless, checkout-free experience,” said Jordan Fisher, Co-Founder and CEO of Standard. “Our platform is the only system on the market proven to retrofit an entire retail experience. Innovative retailers like Chartwells use the AI-powered Standard platform to enable shoppers to grab any product they want and simply walk out, without waiting in line. We are excited to partner with Chartwells to deliver this groundbreaking technology to more locations around the country.”

Standard was early out of the gate in the autonomous checkout space. It was the first to open a cashierless store in San Francisco and was named “One of The World’s 50 Most Innovative Companies” by Fast Company. The company has raised $86M in funding.

The use of a college campus mirrors

Tally The Cute Shelf-Scanning Robot Is Coming To More Grocery Stores

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When you shop at a Schnucks grocery store, you may share the aisle with Tally the shelf-scanning robot. Made by Simbe Robotics, Tally is autonomous and scans shelves for inventory to make restocking easier. Schnucks is expanding its use of the robot to 62 locations, which will allow Tally to scan more than 4.2 million products every day.

“The real-time data Tally collects helps retailers like Schnucks ensure shelves are stocked, prices are correct, and the products customers are looking for are where they expect them to be. Amid the coronavirus pandemic, Tally has been crucial to Schnucks’ success. Tally has been able to keep track of inventory and replenishment, while simultaneously minimizing the amount of time workers need to spend in the aisles, keeping customers happy and workers safe,” Brad Bogolea, co-founder and CEO of Simbe Robotics, said.

Tally removes the mundane, often-dreaded task of manual inventory checking. It frees up 30 to 100 hours per week for teams to put down their pens and clipboards and focus on more important jobs, such as helping customers and keeping the store clean.

By using Tally, Schnucks has seen a 20% reduction in items being out of stock, and the robot’s inventory counts are on average 14 times more accurate than manual audits. Over the next two years, Simbe plans to roll out an additional 1,000 Tally robots to the retail industry.

“Since Simbe’s founding, we have approached Tally’s design with thoughtfulness to foster positive, valuable human-robot interaction for both retailers and shoppers. Tally operates alongside customers during regular business hours, so we have designed the robot to be keenly aware of its surroundings – and gave it great manners – always giving people the right of way and