With a drastically changing retail landscape full of new innovations and shopping experiences, now is the time for grocers to create their direction for the future to not only deliver shopping experiences customers expect but create new shopping experiences they’ve never seen before.
No matter what size your grocery store is, you have the power and opportunities to optimize your store operations while providing a variety of shopping experiences and methods for customers that will keep them coming back. Here’s what you need to know to make your grocery stores succeed in the digital era.
Your Retail Technology Shouldn’t Hold You Back
Consumers’ definitions of what makes a great shopping experience is constantly changing. To get ahead and stay ahead, grocers need to understand the experiences shoppers want and deliver them. Whether your shoppers are looking for contactless payment, mobile shopping, curbside delivery, in-store ordering, traditional checkout, self-checkout or any other shopping or payment method, you need the flexibility to scale and evolve.
When your technology is adaptable and scalable, you don’t have to incur the cost of ripping and replacing your entire technology infrastructure down the line when it’s time to implement new systems, peripherals, or advanced technology. A broad range of retail technology designed with the future in mind can make that possible:
• Traditional, attended checkout: With reliable, flexible point-of-sale systems and receipt printers, you can deliver fast, personal experiences that many customers find familiar and comfortable.
• Customer-driven self-checkout: Helps you better allocate associates to assisting customers elsewhere in the store and gives shoppers who want it privacy and control over their checkout process.
• Kiosks: Enable a complete self-service experience anywhere in the store and creates new opportunities for retailers to engage shoppers in-store with other options such as deli and bakery ordering.
• Mobile Operations Management: Improve the efficiency and visibility of your operations with virtual lane monitoring, real-time transaction status, easy intervention management, and dashboard activity tracking.
Technology Should Be Designed for the Grocery Environment
So what should you look for when selecting these solutions? Convenience, flexibility, and durability. Self-checkout is an expanding technology as it continues to improve and address the concerns shoppers have during checkout. With advancements likes produce recognition to avoid the uncomfortable feeling finding your items or selecting the wrong one, or new larger setups for self-checkout to accommodate larger basket sizes and associates helping to bag, self-checkout is evolving to deliver the experiences shoppers actually want and making them more comfortable in the process.
Beyond convenience, it is also critical to make sure the technology used in grocery stores features a retail-hardened design. Generic office-grade or consumer-grade hardware repackaged for a retail environment just isn’t tough enough for grocery stores. Your technology needs to be retail-hardened; designed to handle spills, lint and dust, vibrations and impacts, and constant cleaning so you can keep your lanes open for your customers.
A Top-Notch Services Provider is Key
A robust services plan can mean the difference between long lines of frustrated shoppers and customers breezing through checkout and interaction points. The best service providers are an extension of your team, trusted partners who take the time to understand your business, goals, and strategy and use expertise to guide you where you want to go.
From deploying new self-checkout solutions to routine day-to-day tasks or even comprehensive wall-to-wall maintenance, partnering with a service provider helps ensure that your systems maximize your operations to benefit your business and your customers.
Act Today, But Plan for the Future
With the right retail technology, you will be equipped with the solutions you need today to deliver the experiences your customers expect. You’ll be prepared to adapt and add to that technology without redoing your entire infrastructure.