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Gap sees growth from mobile point-of-sale integration

With the introduction of a mobile point-of-sale system in 20 percent of its stores, Gap believes that this expansion will bring higher mobile engagement and sales.

In its Q4 earnings report, Gap reported an increase in mobile integration among its stores and recommitted itself to investing fully in its mobile offerings. The brand is likely to see higher engagement numbers and more mobile transactions in the near future.

“So number one, we believe that as a multi-brand portfolio, we have a structural opportunity to exploit some places for experience that we have not exploited historically,” said Art Peck, CEO of Gap, according to a transcript from SeekingAlpha. “Today, we have a loyalty program that is single tender and connected to our credit card.

“We are in the process right now of building out a multi-tender multi-brand loyalty program that will deliver a rich, mobile-delivered experience for our customer,” he said.

Mobile POS
In the modern digital era, more and more retailers are turning to mobile as a way of modernizing their shopping experiences.

In addition to loyalty apps and mobile advertising, many brands are now turning to mobile as it is used within the store as a shopping companion.

Some brands have made use of mobile as a tool for its employers as well as customers, letting them quickly look up pertinent information through a mobile device and even finalize a sale on the store floor instead of at a cash register.

These mobile point of sale systems have been a significant boon to the retail industry.

In its Q4 2016 earnings call, Gap explained how it has expanded MPOS coverage in its stores to 20 percent of all U.S. locations in 2016.

This number represents Gap’s commitment to mobile as a force for smooth and seamless in-store customer experiences.

“If you go back to Old Navy’s Q4, what you see is a really exceptional sales over traffic spread,” Mr. Peck said. “Not insignificantly, this was driven by the fact that we have deployed across many Old Navy stores the mobile POS which also has the ability to do stock checks, to do check inventory levels, to open credit cards, et cetera, and what we’re seeing is when a sales associate has this, it changes fundamentally the way they interact with our customers in a very positive way.”

Mobile retail support
MPOS is clearly worth the investment to Gap, who extolled its virtues across its subsidiary brands.

The company is committed to continuing this investment. Look out for more mobile integrations from Gap over the next fiscal year.

Using mobile as a retail supplement is poised to grow even more in the rest of the industry.

Sam’s Club and Amazon have both been pushing the new “grab and go” style of commerce, where customers scan their phones and just take whatever they want off the shelves (see story).

But even brands who are less committed to such drastic measures are likely to get in on the action, including Kohl’s, which has been working on a slow but steady mobile transformation (see story).

“We have many opportunities ahead to position the company for long-term growth, while keeping our attention focused on operating discipline,” said Teri List-Stoll, executive vice president and chief financial officer for Gap.