Hold the phone! Self-scanning is driving customer loyalty

We love using our mobiles as we shop. Supermarkets, our favourite clothes shops, homeware stores and entertainment venues – where we go, our mobile phones go.

In the highly competitive sector, many retailers see mobiles phones as the future for reimagining loyalty programmes and in-store customer experiences. But for that to happen, there needs to be seamless interaction between the customer’s phone and the retailer’s technology. And that means scanners have to be up to the job.

Cards are being left behind

We are moving towards a cashless society and wallets are going digital. Worldpay research in 2017 on UK mobile payments reveals year-on-year growth of 328%, with an estimated £975 million spent over 126 million in-store transactions. Those figures were achieved with only 24% of people in the UK using a mobile wallet(1). Rapid growth is predicted to continue, with mobile payments/e-wallet transactions at point of sale likely to overtake credit card use in the next couple of years. This means fewer of us will be carrying a wallet stuffed with credit and debit cards. Similarly, it follows that consumers won’t want to carry countless different loyalty, membership and rewards cards, which are bulky and unexciting. Therefore, these programmes are becoming app-based with digitised cards, and this is where scanning technology comes in.

Separation anxiety

In order to redeem coupons and offers or show an e-receipt, the customer needs to hand their loyalty ID to the checkout assistant. We didn’t think twice about handing over a cheap, plastic card. But people feel nervous about handing over their phone to get their electronic loyalty ID scanned. Phones can be worth hundreds of pounds. If the cashier drops it and it breaks, who pays? Also, there’s the awkwardness of a call or picture message arriving mid-transaction. This is a barrier to the uptake and potential of app-based loyalty schemes. And if customers aren’t comfortable, they’ll shop somewhere else.

Not recognised – please try again

Nothing spoils an instore experience quicker than reaching the checkout and finding the scanner can’t read your mobile screen. That tempting money-off code is suddenly a total fail. Or you miss out on the points you’re due. This kills loyalty fast. Nobody wants an embarrassing moment at the checkout. And today’s customers aren’t slow to take to social media to name and shame. For the retailer, it means missing out on valuable customer data and sales, and queues grind to a halt if things need to be keyed in manually.

Datalogic turn scanning woes to scanning wows

Times are tough on the high street. Physical stores are looking for ways to enhance the customer experience, keep people coming back and boost spending. As a global leader in automatic data capture and process automation, Datalogic knows the importance of technology that brings customers and retailers closer together. Right now, Datalogic is helping forward-thinking retailers upgrade to the latest scanning technology to create new mobile-driven customer experiences. For resellers, there’s a buoyant market to tap into.

Keep them loyal with 2D image scanners

Consumers are keen to go digital with loyalty and reward cards. There are a host of mobile apps such as Stocard, CardStar, FidMe, Stampt that digitise cards. They’re simple to use. Snap a photo of the barcode from each loyalty card and it’s turned into a digital barcode which you show in store. The issue is – old POS scanners that use laser technology simply cannot scan any barcode from any smartphone. Many retailers are yet to upgrade, but there’s good news for them. With Datalogic’s cutting-edge 2D scanners, it’s fast and painless. Typically, there’s no need to change the POS system. It’s just a case of swapping out the POS scanner or adding an extra customer-facing scanner at the checkout. This simple change brings lots more loyalty-building options into play for retailers, making redemption instant and effortless. Big names are already on board and proving it works.

Scanners enable self-shopping via smartphone

Waitrose was the first retailer to offer self-shopping to all MyWaitrose customers via their smartphone. Then it became the first UK supermarket chain to roll out a new customer-facing scanning solution to all its stores, empowering customers to complete a shop without handing over their phone. To make this process frictionless, data had to pass from customer’s mobile phone to Waitrose point of sale systems by means of a scanned barcode. The success of this investment rested on the flawless performance of the scanner. Step forward the Datalogic Gryphon GFS4400 scan engine.

The wait is over

These capable scanners are securely installed just under the pin entry device (PED) at each of Waitrose’s manned checkouts nationwide. This lets customers keep hold of their phone, whether scanning their MyWaitrose ID from inside the app, e-coupons or the barcode for their entire shop. This extra scanner speeds up the checkout process too, as apps, paper coupons or plastic loyalty cards can be scanned concurrently alongside items in the customers trolley or basket. Customers using the scanner have the reassurance of Datalogic’s patented ‘Green Spot’ technology, which omits a green light as well as audible confirmation when a barcode has been successfully captured. By quashing customer concerns, loyalty programmes can be used to their full potential – an advantage to customers and retailers alike.

Capitalise on the digitised card trend

The shopping experience is definitely being transformed and it’s set to continue. With more retailers exploring in-store WiFi and NFC technology to beam digital coupons to shoppers as they wander the aisles, the importance of mobile-friendly scanners is only set to grow.

To find out more about how Ingram Micro can support you with Datalogic scanner sales, get in touch. Contact us on 0371 973 3000.

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SOURCES

(1) https://www.merchantsavvy.co.uk/mobile-payment-stats-trends/

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