One of the convenience store chains in Poland has just introduced hybrid, also called dual, cash registers in its outlets. They can be used both as traditional cash registers and self-service checkouts (SCO). This is a very good solution for small and medium-sized shops, which have gained importance during the pandemic. Providing self-service allows them to offload increased traffic more quickly.
Hyperlocal and convenience are among the key retail trends that have emerged from the pandemic. The former means that smaller shops, located in close proximity to consumers, offering products to the local community rather than commuters for larger purchases, have gained in popularity. This is reflected in the data – hypermarket revenues from grocery sales have fallen by 7%, while smaller shops have increased by several per cent.
Consumers, who are increasingly using online shopping, are also keen to get through the shopping process as quickly and easily as possible. Often without having to stand in line and interact with a cashier. The convenience of shopping is very important to them.
Today’s busier, smaller shops that want to provide their customers with a convenient shopping experience and the best possible customer experience can benefit from dual checkouts. To use them, they do not need to change the arrangement or remove traditional checkout stands. All they need to do is implement special software on the devices in use, then switch to SCO mode, turn the screen to face the customer and make the scanner available. All this is done very quickly and comfortably.
With the implementation of a dual checkout, the shop can cope more efficiently with increased traffic. Employees, who often have other duties in addition to checkout, can attend to them in peace without having to worry about annoying customers by not being available.
The hybrid cash register is also an answer to the difficulties entrepreneurs have in finding employees. What is more, it will also help to relieve traffic on non-trading Sundays, when the shop can only be operated by the owner or someone from his family.
Of course, when operating the cash register in self-service mode, the assistance of a shop assistant may be necessary. For example, when buying alcoholic beverages (although it is also possible to do this remotely from a second cash register), or when giving change if the possibility to pay in cash is made available.
However, there is no doubt that the implementation of a dual checkout is an improvement in shop operations and provides convenience and a better customer experience for customers.