Automating the Checkout Zone
costs are generated
at the point of sale.
Between Customer Satisfaction and Cost Optimization.
The checkout is an experience shared by all shoppers. They shop and then stand in line to pay. For retailers, on the other hand, it is a process that ties up substantial financial and human resources. In fact, around 24% of all branch process costs are generated at the point of sale. This level requires a good balance between customer satisfaction and cost optimization. But it is a balance that is not always achievable. If too many POS (Glossary) lanes are open and not used efficiently, retailers groan. If too few are open, shoppers moan. Whether it is a regular shopper or a walk-in, one thing is certain: everyone is equal at the checkout. But maybe not for long.
As the retail industry strives to optimize POS-specific costs and increase customer satisfaction, it is increasingly turning to automated checkout systems (Glossary) , which allow customers to register and/or pay for their goods themselves. Although automated checkout solutions can reduce personnel costs substantially, the mere switch to self-service does not always achieve the desired effect of shorter waiting lines and thus higher customer satisfaction. Most shoppers still need more time to manage their own checkout than they would if assisted by a trained clerk. This is now changing thanks to new automated checkout systems that are individually tailored to various store formats and customer structures.