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How to get the most out of your retail scale

How to get the most out of your retail scale


When weighing front-of-house in a shop in order to calculate the price of an item, a retail scale is required.

When scales are used to calculate prices based on their weight, they need to be Trade Approved.

Businesses in industry and retail may be subject to checks at any time by Trading Standards officers to ensure they are weighing accurately and that the customer is not being misled – so all Marsden retail scales have Trade Approved status.

When you’ve found what you need, and ordered – using this helpful buyers’ guide for guidance – you will want to make the most from your purchase. And this blog post is here to help.



How PLUs can be used to speed up processes

Retail scales are full of functions designed to make weighing and calculating a price easier.

Our retail scales – such as the Digi DS-781 – allow PLUs (Price Look-up codes) to be programmed in. This means that you can pre-programme many of your items and they can then be accessed in a single button press – which improves the speed of service for your customers and saves you having to remember or manually work out every single price.

For example, if you have a price per 100g for bananas, you can input this price into the retail scale, and when the code (or button) set for bananas is entered when you have bananas on the scale, the display will show the exact cost for the bunch, based on the cost per 100g.

To set PLUs, first place the item on the scale and press the ‘M’ button three times to enter Preset key setting mode. Press ‘Preset 1’ to display the current PLU code and press ‘C’ to clear this value. You can then enter your chosen price using the numeric keys and press ‘*’ to confirm the value. ‘M’ returns you to normal weighing mode. Now, whenever ‘Preset 1’ is pressed, this unit value will be displayed - usually as price per 100g or per kilo. With that item on the scale, you’ll get an exact price based on the weight.

Further information is given in the user manual which you will receive when the scale is ordered - alternatively these can be downloaded from this website.



Retail scales are portable

Marsden retail scales are also powered by battery, so can they be used anywhere - and therefore be placed in a convenient place to speed up your processes. This makes them ideal for market traders and for when you’re selling based on weight at events away from your shop.



How Tare can help with weighing small items

Price computing scales are also great for weighing items that are small in size.

Using the Tare function, you can place your items into a bowl - like the vegetable scoop we sell as an optional extra for retail scales - and the scale will still provide an accurate weight reading. This is because the function deducts the weight of the bowl or scoop from the total weight, leaving just the weight of the item.

It also means that small food items can be transported in a container and not be handled until after the weighing process is complete. Saving on time, as well as having potential hygiene benefits.



Washing down the scale keeps it hygienic

When your retail scale is coming into contact with a large amount of food items daily it has the potential to become unclean and even unhygienic.

But not if you choose a waterproof option. The DS-781SS is IP68-rated, so it can be used to weigh items like fish or meat and it can also be washed down after use. This makes the DS-781SS the scale of choice for fishmongers and butchers shops. You can find out more in this case study.



Stable indication for use in windy conditions
Stable indication icon on retail scales

Retail scales have a stable indication function which will notify you on the stability of the display.

For example, if the scale is used outside in windy conditions the stable indicator will show whether or not the display is showing a reliable weight reading not affected by wind, or other elements. To ensure your retail scale's reading is steady and reliable ensure that the Stable icon (pictured) is showing on the screen.

This is not to be confused with the spirit level, which indicates whether the scale is level.



Battery power for use anywhere

The Digi DS-781 and DS-781SS are powered by replaceable batteries. This feature makes the scale ideal for market traders as it means it can be taken and used anywhere.

Compared to rechargeable batteries which need to be charged via the mains when they run out of power - a replaceable battery can be switched at the point of use.


To browse Marsden’s full range of retail / price computing scales click here. For more information about any of our scales, call us on 01709 364296 or contact us here.