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El Rancho Market drives sales with white label mobile self-checkout

The retailers are taking advantage of FutureProof Retail’s new white label Mobile Checkout application. The app enables shoppers to walk into a store, scan items as they are placed in the cart and then push the “check out” button once their shopping is done to pay via a smartphone, credit or debit card or Apple Pay.

“Mobile self-checkout starts with the same basic premise of the kiosks: Save staff time, free up store space and cut down costs,” said Will Hogben, co-founder at FutureProof Retail. “Mobile goes even further than kiosks do here: Since shoppers are using their own phones the kiosk hardware costs are completely eliminated and shoppers never have to wait for a machine to free up.

“Beyond the cost and space savings mobile checkout boosts sales: Being on the shopper’s phone allows retailers to advertise specials to customers at home, and make relevant product recommendations while shoppers are in the aisles,” he said.

“Finally, the phone allows increased loss prevention control vs. self-checkout kiosks, which shoplifters target for the anonymity.”

Purchase history
FutureProof Retail’s Mobile Checkout app addresses the in-store shopping experience from start to finish.

El Rancho Market and California Fresh Market can brand the app as their own, helping the retailers build relationships with their customers by providing a fast, convenient shopping experience that they hope will drive loyalty.

The app collects users’ personal data upon sign-up, tracks purchase history and provides product suggestion in real time based on other products scanned.

The app is currently testing a new Specials functionality in beta that is designed to drive revenue for store owners. With this functionality, a store’s specials are shown on the user’s mobile home page and ranked by personalized recommendation based on the customer’s previous shopping history.

Customers are also able to browse and save their favorite deals ahead of time at home. When they are ready to check out, the user will be reminded of any deals saved that have not been scanned for purchase.

Solving problems
While grocery retailers have been experimenting with various forms of self-checkout for some years – with varying degrees of success – the Mobile Checkout app is a good example of how mobile promises to solve some of the problems with other approaches.

“There are two major self checkout challenges that are opposed to one another: Security and convenience,” Mr. Hogben said. “Kiosks are very limited in their ability to provide either as they can only process one person at a time, and their security system must assume an anonymous shopper.

“Mobile flips this on its head: The phone provides outstanding identity verification and encourages shoppers’ best behavior while eliminating the throughput problem,” he said. “We’ve spent the last nine months tuning our patent pending security processes at El Rancho and California Fresh Market and believe it’s the key element to judge a mobile checkout solution by.”