It’s something that every brick-and-mortar retail now knows: In-store technology is key to increasing foot traffic and customer engagement in an increasingly online industry.
Hardware, software and electronics company NCR Corporation is a world leader in consumer transactions technologies. Founded in 1884, NCR has some 130 years of history enabling retail and, more recently, the financial industry and services space.
Today, NCR produces self-service kiosks, point-of-sale terminals, ATMs and barcode scanners, among other products. NCR’s latest offering, the FastLane Mobile Shopper, is the logical next step for self-checkout and physical store transformation, said Dusty Lutz, VP of NCR’s Store Transformation Solutions Group.
“Many stores are on this journey with NCR,” Lutz said, “which is — how do we create a better shopping experience when the shopper chooses to go to they physical store?”
The FastLane Mobile Shopper allows consumers to scan and price items as they shop from their smartphone, via iOS or Android mobile app, or on a hardware device that the store provides. By scanning a barcode at checkout, the user can transfer their order over to a payment terminal.
“If they have some other exception they need to be handled — like an age check on a bottle of wine — we have a host available to come over to take care of it,” Lutz said. “They’re in and out of the store very easily and quickly.”
With the FastLane Mobile Shopper, customers are able to scan as they shop and track each item’s price and a running total of their basket. This increased pricing visibility helps shoppers on a budget, ups consumer engagement in-store and also works to benefit on the retailers’ end, Lutz said.
“Often, when people are on a budget, they’ll under-buy,” he said, “to ensure they don’t go over. But with the Mobile Shopper, they’re updating their total on the device, seeing exactly what they’re getting. The shopper will buy more because of that visibility.”
NCR’s FastLane Mobile Shopper connects to a store’s legacy point of sale, gaining access to the pricing and promotion information. This allows the technology to provide live product information as the shopper goes about their shopping trip.
The FastLane Mobile Shopper can also link to customers’ shopping lists, bringing up items on their lists as they physically enter an aisle.
“As you’re walking,” Lutz said, “it can show the items in aisle five that are on your list that you need to pick up. Then, when you go to aisle six, it brings up the items you want in that location.”
Retailers can also leverage NCR’s technology to offer additional information and promotional content in real time, based on the customer’s current location.
“If a customer is in the cookie aisle, then we know they like sweets,” Lutz said. “The store can offer them an impromptu promotion, influencing the buying decision right there in the aisle.”
NCR is currently engaging with a number of retailers worldwide on introducing the FastLane Mobile Shopper into their locations, Lutz said. Globus Hypermarket, a major European supermarket chain, was one of the first NCR self-checkout customers in Russia. Now, it’s the first FastLane Mobile Shopper customer.
“We’re helping retailers create new consumer experience innovations,” said Lutz, “to better engage the consumer and improve the productivity in running that business. The Mobile Shopper is a great example of both.”