The blockchain technology has come a long way over the years, from being associated only with cryptocurrencies during the initial stages to now being put to critical applications in various industries. In a nutshell, blockchain is a digital record of transactions and data that are chronologically linked. Here, all the data is available to view in real-time using the distributed ledger technology. This means that any updates or changes made in the network can be seen across the network and makes it possible to see the full history of a product and its components. One of the key factors that make this technology difficult to hack is that these blocks of data cannot be edited or deleted in any way, making it a secure alternative to the current digital data. In recent times, several top players across industries have been analyzing the blockchain technology applications for their sector. In this blog, we have discussed some of the key applications of blockchain technology in retail.
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Applications of Blockchain Technology in Retail
The authenticity of products has been a major concern for retailers, especially to popular fashion houses in the luxury segment. Today convincing knockoffs of their products are easily available at lower prices which eventually reduces the exclusivity of the items. Using blockchain technology in retail, data can be tracked from the sourcing of materials to customer purchases. This will guarantee customers that what they’re buying is genuine and confirm authenticity. Blockchain technology will also help curb the theft of expensive items and resale of stolen goods by tracking the ownership of the items.
Customers can easily see data and information from every point in the supply chain using the chronological product story that blockchain provides. For instance, if a supermarket was selling a blueberry muffin, the blockchain data would not only be able to tell where and when that muffin was made and by who, but the data from the individual ingredients can also be tracked. This means the retailer can ensure the confectionary company providing the muffin is using ingredients that have been ethically sourced and are fresh. Blockchain technology applications in retail allow complete transparency between retailers and customers giving the retailer the ability to prove that products are responsibly and ethically sourced. This will add a new level of trust to the brand-customer relationship.
Transact Using Cryptocurrency
One of the key blockchain applications were known to be for transacting using cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. Blockchain technology in retail will assist retailers in accepting cryptocurrency payments. Moreover, the digital records created will also help streamline the returns and refunds process. Purchase of high ticket items such as cars or other luxury products can also have their ownership tracked and verified to reduce the resale of stolen goods.
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Shipment and Logistics
Blockchain technology in retail will make accurately tracking shipments easier than ever before. By using blockchain technology, every logistical stage of a product’s journey will have information on who handled it, where, and when in real-time. This will result in fewer lost and damaged goods. This technology will also prove to be highly useful in monitoring the health and safety requirements and contamination of food products by tracking temperature and air conditions at all times through the shipping journey.