Magazine Article | April 1, 2005

Focusing On The SMR

Source: Innovative Retail Technologies

SMRs, the biggest segment in American retail, are finally getting their due.

Integrated Solutions For Retailers, April 2005
Ed Cleary

Integrated Solutions For Retailers has been covering small to midsize retailers (SMRs) and the retail solution vendors who cater to them for more than five years now. While the SMR space is one that's defined in many different ways, we identify retailers with less than $500 million in sales as SMRs. We understand there are many differences between a two-store, $1 million mom-and-pop-shop and a 200-location, $500 million enterprise. But the technology gap that once existed between SMRs is shrinking rapidly. In recent years, we've witnessed the migration of tier-one worthy retail solutions to retailers of all sizes. Even independent retailers are taking advantage of solutions like CRM (customer relationship management) software, gift and loyalty cards, and integrated POS and inventory management systems.

Big-Box Pressure Feeds Solution Demand
SMRs are demanding solutions in an effort to compete with big-box retail giants. The demand is being answered not only by large, well-branded solution providers moving downstream to seize a huge market opportunity, but also by a plethora of new, SMR-focused hardware and software vendors. This mid-tier of retail solution vendors is proving itself agile and creative in building feature-rich solutions for SMRs. We highlight examples of these solutions every month in our expanded case study section. We're also proud to present this SMR Solutions Supplement, which highlights a select few vendors and their approaches to the market they serve.

Integrated Solutions For Retailers Applauds SMRs
This is the third year in a row Integrated Solutions For Retailers will be the exclusive media sponsor of the SMR pavilion at the Retail Systems show. This year, we'll also be recognizing the creativity of SMRs and the solution providers they call on by presenting the Small To Midsize Retail Solution Awards. We're presenting awards to retailers and solution providers in four categories: Best In-Store Systems, Best Supply Chain/Logistics Solution, Best Loss Prevention/Security Solution, and Best Marketing/Operations Solution. These awards will be presented in the SMR Theater at the show during opening night festivities. If you can't make the show, which runs May 24 to 26 at Chicago's McCormick Place, be sure to watch for coverage of the winning solutions in an upcoming issue of Integrated Solutions For Retailers.

Rest assured that Integrated Solutions For Retailers will remain your best source for coverage of SMR solutions. As always, please share your success stories with us by contacting me directly at