Are consumers and retailers ready to go all-in on shop-and-scan tech?
Ask consumers what they dislike most about shopping in stores and checking out will be at or near the top of list. In most cases, speed (i.e., lack thereof) is the primary reason so many are unhappy with the process.
According to a survey this summer conducted by Harris Poll for Digimarc Corporation, 88 percent of adults in the U.S. want checkouts to be faster. Retailers have tried a number of different ways to speed the checkout including using a queue system with an employee directing shoppers through the front-end, self-checkouts, associates using tablets and the deployment of sensors to adjust lanes in operation.
Another option, which has been around for a number of years but has yet to be used broadly, is the use of hand-held scanners. Now comes word that Kroger has decided to expand a small pilot that puts personal scanners in the hands of shoppers.
According to a report by The Enquirer, Kroger has decided to test its “Scan, Bag, Go” system at 15 stores in the Greater Cincinnati area. The grocery chain operator, says the newspaper, has been tinkering with the technology by providing shoppers with personal scanners going back to 2009. The twist in the current system is making it possible for shoppers to download an app and use their own mobile devices to shop and then check out.
“Customers tell us they love scanning and bagging and seeing their grocery bill while they shop,” Keith Dailey, a Kroger spokesperson, told The Enquirer.
- Digimarc Survey: 88 Percent of U.S. Adults Want Their Retail Checkout Experience to be Faster – Digimarc
- Kroger tests mobile app to speed checkout – The Cincinnati Enquirer
- Kroger loses some wait – RetailWire
How likely is it that shop and scan devices or mobile apps allowing consumers to use their own devices will catch on in a significant way at retail in the next five years? What are the impediments to adoption? What do you see as the opportunity?