Digimarc Barcode Integration with Adobe Creative Cloud

Drives efficiency for retailers from package design to checkout

by Minson Chen

posted on 01-24-2018

As the retail industry braved the frigid New York winter to gather at NRF 2018 — Retail’s Big Show last week, leading global retail brands met with industry experts and explored the latest solutions from more than 500 exhibitors to discuss current challenges and the future of retail.

For an industry threatened by the convenience of online shopping, maintaining the cost of physical storefronts has become increasingly challenging. Traditional retailers are under pressure to streamline their store operations and engage customers in new ways. Enter Digimarc’s Barcode of Everything technology which represents the next generation of machine-readable codes that can have direct impact to a retailer’s bottom line.

Longtime Adobe collaborator Digimarc showcased technology that effectively enables retailers to easily scan anywhere on a product package or label for more efficient checkout. This means significantly higher throughput and reduced wait time for customers. In an industry like grocery, which operates at high volume and razor-thin margins, any improvement that drives incremental efficiency can be the difference between thriving in a competitive environment or just surviving.

This same technology is used to make it easier for customers to scan products or labels for in-store engagement. Retailers and brands can now engage more seamlessly with customers on their mobile devices when they are in the physical store, and offer digital coupons or additional product information at the point of purchase. In-store digital engagement through QR codes and other technologies have long been hindered by friction in the customer journey. Not having to line up a hard-to-locate QR code can only help drive adoption.

I visited the Digimarc booth at NRF last week and met with Dan James, director of product management, who gave me a hands-on demonstration. While I’ve never worked a grocery checkout, he encouraged me to try the scanning challenge — a race against the clock to scan all the items in the cart. Being able scan anywhere on a product package helped me more than double the speed of an average professional cashier scanning traditional barcodes!

My first time scanning grocery items for checkout. Thanks to Digimarc’s Ashleigh Fortune, senior product manager, for the pointers!

Made it on the leaderboard! 156 percent faster than the average professional checker thanks to Digimarc’s Barcode of Everything technology.

While the ability to streamline front-of-store operations for customers is impressive, Digimarc takes this to the next level by improving the back-end process of package design and production through their integration with Adobe Creative Cloud, which is used by product packaging design and production professionals at firms like Schawk, SGS, and WestRock. Below are the simple steps for a product package designer to apply Digimarc Barcode to their images in Adobe Photoshop.

Launch the Digimarc Barcode Plug-in from Adobe Photoshop CC. Image courtesy of Digimarc.

Set up a new Digimarc Barcode by specifying product data and desired web experience (if used for customer engagement). Image courtesy of Digimarc.

Select preferred method for enhancing package artwork with Digimarc Barcode. Image courtesy of Digimarc.

The Digimarc Barcode plug-in for Adobe Photoshop enables users to enhance images and artwork with Digimarc Barcode from within Photoshop. Digimarc Barcode is introduced into the digital art file prior to printing utilizing the Digimarc Barcode plug-in for Adobe Photoshop. The plug-in conveniently connects to a user’s account on the Digimarc Barcode Manager, allowing them to create and edit Digimarc Barcodes directly.

The value proposition to retailers and brands is to enable every surface of their packaging, labels, and printed materials to become machine-readable, rather than only the traditional barcode, with minimal aesthetic impact. This allows easier checkout, mobile engagement, and media identification.

The industry is rapidly looking to adopt and integrate new ways to operate more efficiently, reduce costs, and improve throughput. As retailers and brands continue to explore methods to improve the purchasing experience and automate the supply chain, Digimarc offers a means to accurately and reliably identify products by barcode scanners, mobile devices, and machine vision systems.

Integration with Adobe products enables Digimarc to provide functionality to production designers and prepress specialists within the tools they already use every day. Digimarc’s network of trained partners enhances package artwork for retailers and brands, but anyone with Adobe Photoshop CC can activate other visual content. To setup a free Digimarc Barcode Manager account, click here, then download the plug-in from the Help menu.

Digimarc’s most popular tools – including Digimarc Guardian for Images, which helps prevent unlicensed use of digital photos, images and other art using imperceptible identifiers to communicate ownership rights and track distribution, and Digimarc Barcode showcased at NRF this year – all seamlessly integrate with Adobe Creative Cloud to streamline workflow and team collaboration, helping brands and retailers thrive in a competitive environment.

Digimarc Guardian for Images is also integrated within Adobe Experience Cloud as part of the Dynamic Media feature set for Adobe Experience Manager, providing enterprise customers with all of the same benefits at scale.

Topics: Creativity, Industry, Retail, Digital Transformation, Future of Work

Products: Photoshop, Premiere Pro, Creative Cloud