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SAS Enhances Family of Pricing Optimization Solutions to Boost Retail Performance

January 18, 2012

A provider of business analytics software and services, SAS has announced enhancements to its SAS Merchandise Intelligence suite designed to take the hassle out of retail processes like forecasting demand and adjusting local pricing. These enhancements are going to improve a retailer’s ability to tailor prices to individual stores and shopper profiles, and be better aligned with brand strategies, SAS said in a press release.

In addition, SAS said that in 2012, more software will move onto its High-Performance Computing platform. In addition, a new pricing optimization solution, SAS Markdown Optimization, will join SAS Regular Price Optimization and SAS Promotion Optimization solutions on the SAS High-Performance Computing platform.

Just like any other business environment, the retail industry has become extremely competitive due to rising costs, extreme consumer sensitivity to price, and a need to stay profitable despite challenges. A demand-based pricing strategy can help retailers gain an edge over their competitors. The pricing optimization solutions from SAS are designed to help companies integrate demand-based pricing system into their overall pricing strategy.

The retail industry has been utilizing optimization technology since the early 2000s. Two solutions from SAS pricing optimization software suit -- High-Performance Retail Forecasting and SAS High-Performance Revenue Optimization -- have been designed to simplify forecasting of all phases of the pricing life cycle, so that the process of demand-based local pricing becomes significantly less time-consuming.

“Retailers maximize returns with optimization technologies. Retailers have been investing in optimization systems since the early 2000s and have realized significant top-line and margin benefits as a result of these investments. Retailers are now looking at the next generation of these technologies to build on their existing capabilities, including price, promotion, size and marketing optimization. Technology providers like SAS are at the forefront of this trend. We believe retailers are eager to implement the next generation of optimization systems given the strong track record of optimization technology on their P&L,” managing director of Retailing Team at Citi Investment Research and Analysis, Deborah Weinswig, noted in a statement.

According to SAS, the combination of its Regular Price Optimization and SAS Promotion Optimization solutions with SAS Markdown Optimization will allow retailers to set, adjust and analyze prices at the SKU-store level to maximize sell-through and revenue. SAS for retail also helps retailers more efficiently plan size, assortments and space usage.

The company also reportedly will make few enhancements to the SAS customer insight and merchandise intelligence portfolios in 2012. This is expected to improve customer engagement and speed up merchandising decisions.

SAS High-Performance Revenue Optimization is available for on-site in installation as well as on an on-demand basis.

Few months back, SAS reported that new sales of SAS Customer Intelligence solutions are up more than 25 percent worldwide. This growth, according to the company, was driven by demand from marketing organizations for analytic solutions that help them better understand and engage with customers to attain profitable outcomes.

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Madhubanti Rudra is a contributing editor for ContactCenterSolutions. To read more of her articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Tammy Wolf