Improving The Retail Checkout Experience | Worldlink Integration Group | Vector isometric low poly store queue management system, queuing system ticket terminals, seats for customers, and queue displaysHow long does it take for your customers to go through checkout once they’ve selected all their items?

Most retailers would agree that the customer experience is the foundation of the modern retail environment. The industry quickly moved from price-oriented to experience-driven, with less than a decade for most retail brands to catch up. This spelled doom for some, but others are able to thrive in these conditions.

If you are among the many retailers adapting to the rapid pace of the industry, you should first set your sights on a better checkout. Not only is this one of the simpler areas to improve, but it’s also among the most important. A majority of your customers will leave your store if lines are too long or if the process is too slow. In addition, customers are actually willing to pay more for a faster checkout.

Here are a few simple ways to make your checkout a seamless and short experience for your customers.

Self-checkout kiosks for self-directed shopping

Self-checkout received a poor reputation in its infancy, with its confusing interface and lack of nuance a frustration only taken in absolute necessity. However, this is no longer the case. Kiosks that allow customers to check themselves out allow companies like Kroger to reduce checkout times to just under 30 seconds.

In addition to saving costs on staff and reducing errors in transactions, self-directed checkouts make the process seamless between finding items in the store and checking out. Traditional conveyor-belt checkout lines don’t have to be phased out entirely, but implementing a few kiosks into your IT framework can help keep your customers “in line.”

Training to make your team more efficient

For those on your staff who will be operating registers or tablet POS systems, it’s not enough to simply teach them the system’s mechanics by the book. An efficient team demands nuance and experience that only comes from engaged employees who understand how to use your POS system fully, and make their own jobs easier.

Utilizing learning management system (LMS) software is a start, but eliciting the engagement you need to have consistent results means ensuring that employees engage with the material as well. Having employees work with an LMS from the outset, as well as offering training through more interactive touchpoints, can help bolster your team’s confidence with your POS.

A faster network means faster checkout

This one could come across as obvious, but it is an aspect often overlooked and in need of a refresh. Local networks are the lifeblood of a fast IT system overall, and with increasing needs for the network to be capable of integrating the IoT, retail stores need a powerful and fast network more than ever.

The best way to go about upgrading your network is to work with a qualified partner to assess your current network and to work with your IT team to replace the weak links. This ensures that you have an accountable, dedicated team to work with your systems and configure your network independently of the day-today burdens your in-house team experiences.

Modern POS systems are capable of much more

It is still the case that newer systems tend to simply be faster. By Moore’s Law, your company’s upgrade to new POS technology every few years dramatically increases the efficiency of the entire system. Antiquated software and slow machines are two holdups in the checkout process that any retail employee can tell you about. Refreshing your systems before that happens ensures that you can keep up with customer demand.

We also already know that mobile POS systems are becoming more popular in retail environments, and it’s becoming clear that mobile payments can help reduce checkout times. In addition, having a diverse number of options for checkout can help avoid awkward situations between customers and staff if a card is declined or if they simply forgot their wallet.

Beyond a more efficient checkout

If you are not confident in the speed and efficiency of your current checkout process, we can help you in any one of these steps outlined. We have experience in implementing new POS systems, upgrading and configuring networks, installing kiosks, and offering any number of IT solutions to mid-sized retailers.

If you are interested in making your checkout process easier for both your customers and your employees, contact us today to find out how you can #WinWithWorldlink.