After years of soggy inflation and a long reign by Japan's tightfisted shoppers, businesses are adopting new methods to lift prices, from artificial intelligence to simple packaging tweaks.

Despite many rounds of stimulus, policymakers have failed to jolt households out of the deflationary mindset that followed the 1990s property crash, which meant businesses refused to raise prices for fear of losing customers.

Demand-based dynamic pricing, however, has allowed some Japanese retailers to discretely bump up prices without triggering the kind of customer backlash seen in more blatant attempts at repricing in the past.