Tesco is trialling ’scan and go’ technology to enable customers to pay for groceries via the retailer’s Scan Pay Go smartphone app.
Tesco’s Amazon Go-like move is live in its Express convenience store at its own Welwyn Garden City HQ. The retailer is using 100 staff members to test the app’s utility in the purpose-built brick-and-mortar store. The Top500 Elite retailer’s employees are able to pay for the supermarket’s items by scanning the barcode of a product, which is then added into a digital basket and automatically processed as a payment.
Tesco says that the Express store is also being used to examine shoppers’ reaction to the cashless world.
The Tesco chief executive, Dave Lewis says that the new technology is a quantum leap that could be launched across the retailer’s chain. However, there are some technical issues to consider, not least whether people would simply leave the store without paying for an item.
“The technology exists to do it, but does the customer behaviour support it?” says Lewis. “If the margin is 2-3%, you don’t need to lose very much to make it unprofitable. In our stores in central London, Manchester and Birmingham, lunchtime queues are a problem. Anything we can do to speed that up will be a benefit for customers.”
The move marks a continuation of the checkout-less trend that was initially introduced by Amazon Go store in Seattle. Sainsbury’s, Co-op, and Budgens in the UK and MediaMarktSaturn in Austria have also jumped on this bandwagon as they attempt to engage customers with new tech and deliver faster shopping experiences.
But, what do consumer actually think about this sort of change in retail ettiquette?
In an attempt to examine customers views on checkout-less shopping, Paysafe surveyed 5,056 consumers in UK, US, Canada, Germany, and Austria.
The study paints a mixed picture, with 56% of global respondents saying that the concept of a checkout-free store sounded “too risky” to use, or that they would need to know a lot more about it before feeling comfortable using it. On the…