THE STORE OF THE FUTURE IS HERE: MOBILE SELF-SCANNING FOR A COMPLETELY UNATTENDED SHOPPING EXPERIENCE
Retailers with omnichannel and innovation strategies are focusing their attention to the mobile as the primary touchpoint. Through the mobile, not only the relationship with customers has higher fidelization potential, but Retailers can deliver services and enable new and customised shopping experience, seamless from online to instore and viceversa.
Customers are attached to their personal device, but as the latest researches indicated, even if buying online is a growing trend, they do not renounce to the search and selection of products in the store, especially for what concerns the food sector.
How to combine these two needs and make available the digital experience instore for the customer ?
Mobile Self Scanning service is the answer.
Mobile Self-Scanning is the digital shopping process consisting in scanning the barcodes of the products using the device’s camera, and adding them into the digital shopping cart. Even if it could seems just a switch from physical Self-scanning to the mobile, there are several additional advantages for customers and retailer that deserve to be underlined.
To the benefits related to the introduction of traditional Self-Scanning stations:
- less queue at the cash desks,
- increase the value of the average receipt,
- reduce the time spent inside the shop,
…there are others arising directly from the personal mobile device:
- these technologies on mobile version remove the customer’s contact with shared hardware, particular sensitive need in the post-pandemic.
- By using their mobile customers can get more information about the products, connect shopping lists, obtain discounts and personalized coupons based on their preferences, and even receive alerts regarding ingredients and allergens.
- Through the use of Mobile Self-Scanning retailers can collect additional data from their customers. In fact, it is possible to integrate the tool with various Mobile features and services, enriching general marketing actions (e.g. awareness, engagement, acquisition and conversion).
- The introduction of Mobile self-scanning in small stores, where there is not enough space for self check-in and check-out hardware infrastructure, can be the optimal solution for retailers.
The ways wherewith Retailers decide to redesign the purchasing process in the Self version are in fact diversified according to the spaces, hardware and software infrastructures available.
The Mobile Self-Scanning can also be provided through a dedicated App or integrated into a brand App that also includes other services, such as the store finder, flyers, loyalty card, rewards catalog, coupons and shopping list.
Mobile Self-Scanning services can be presented:
- as Hybrid, integrated with other technologies inside the store. The customer creates and manages his cart with his device but completes the payment operations at the traditional cash desk or self check-out desk;
- or as totally Digital, where payment is also performed inside the mobile device using a dedicated digital wallet, with high security level.
The digital form is the most complete and reliable choice for the store of the future. Similarly to the Amazon Go model, it gives a complete opening for the customer loyalty The customer, once inside the store, actives his service with a digital check-in, selects, scans and adds the products; at the end he pays with a few simple taps always using his device, leaving the shop without any interaction with the staff and totally bypassing the code. The customer receives an exit code and his receipt in digital format directly on his mobile. The experience is frictionless and unlike AmazonGo it does not require the introduction of cameras and RFID sensors, therefore much more convenient in terms of investment for the Retailer.
Looking at the system infrastructure, it is really agile and easy to implement: just a virtual POS is required in the store for both modalities. The server allows the receipt’s registration and keeps track of the shopping activity. Also the promotional data both on single product and on the entire shopping amount is returned and made visibile into the app interface. The same server hosts the typical control algorithm of Self-Scanning for random rereadings. No major investments are required in terms of network infrastructures, it is possible to use the services already present in the stores.
The digital transformation of the store with Mobile Self-Scanning follows totally the paradigms of omnichannel and Mobile first. Now is the right time to make this service available for your customers and bring your stores in the next generation. The future is now!
Technological and communicative consistency: the mobile app for retail
In the process that retailers put in place to gain the trust of their customers, the mobile app can certainly be considered the primary supporting channel.
It is perhaps unnecessary to remember how much the use of mobile has become an integral part of the daily life of all of us. The ease of use of mobile compared to desktop applications has succeeded in bringing users of all age groups to the tool, independently of their level of technical knowledge.
A research by Osservatorio.net published last March shows that in 2021 smartphones will become the first channel for online purchases, with 51% penetration in the Food&Grocery sector.
The recommendation when starting a Mobile App project is to consider the entire physical and digital communication context within which the brand presents itself and not to develop an app separately from the rest of the ICT systems.
In fact, this channel must respect the criterion of consistency and be in total coherence with all the other touch points that the brand displays, both in store and online.
Consistency is to be achieved from a technological point of view: customer services are digitalized and included within the App that, integrates them into the entire ecosystem as a new front-end, shares the customer's story with all the other tools.
Technological consistency is strongly connected to the structural choices that the retailer makes for the management of its database. A unified cloud-based platform allows managing, in a stable way, a single view of the customer and in a flexible way the different contact points, in order to map all the possible interaction and purchase journey.
Consistency is also achieved with a work of graphic and verbal alignment. Colors, icons, ideograms, words and messages that are used in the classic digital or paper flyer, on the website, on displays and totems in stores, must be take up and reinterpreted in a specific key for the mobile tool, within a user experience that is unique for that tool.
Once the technological and communicative consistency is achieved for everything related to the database and digital services shared with other channels, it is possible to provide a personalized experience to customers with services useful for their purchases shopping lists, product information, prize catalog, coupons and promotions, dematerialized card with account statement and digital receipt.
Then expand the portfolio with additional features, making the most of those potentialities that, due to the specific characteristics of the mobile medium, make the mobile app a unique and indispensable tool.
- Geolocation, to guide customers to the store but also, inside the point of sale, to the product.
- Proximity Marketing, to communicate to your customers when they are near specific purchase areas or perform a specific action.
- Scanning of barcodes, QR codes and tags for augmented reality, with the smartphone camera.
- Gamification related to reaching scalable goals and objectives to drive engagement and purchases.
To complete the purchase process, the mobile app is certainly the ideal channel to integrate the digital payment tools that the retailer has enabled on its circuits. Automating the checkout phase is probably the most ambitious process for most brands. Once the customer has established trust and familiarity with the mobile app, a tool that they use and from which they receive benefits, they will look for nothing more than to be able to set up their payment tools there as well. A real digital wallet where not only credit cards but also gift cards and other forms of electronic wallets can be stored.
Konvergence has developed KWallet, the Mobile App for Retail, modular, customized and integrated within the existing ICT ecosystem.
Contact us for all the details!