Mobile POS Checkout Enhances Customer Experience
Customer satisfaction in retail operations is based on multiple components, including brand availability, size inventory, sales staff knowledge and overall ambiance of a store. One of the more annoying aspects for customers, although a positive indicator for retail owners, is standing in line waiting to check out with the merchandise. Retailers might be surprised to learn just how many customers have simply abandoned their purchases because the wait was daunting.
Mobile POS (point of sale) could well be the option that would remove that barrier to purchase. Sales staff with hand-held POS technology can help retailers make customers happy and maximize staff productivity.
On-line retailers are not so affected by this “stand in line” scenario. In fact, so many consumers are used to the instant order/checkout process of on-line shopping that the waiting times in a brick-and-mortar store become more magnified. It’s an issue that has been addressed by multiple POS providers, including Hewlett Packard. Their product moves the point of sale from behind the counter to the floor.
In a recent news release, HP announced its ElitePad Mobile POS Solution, which allows businesses to meet customer needs anywhere in the store with mobile POS and assisted selling capabilities. The new mobile solution integrates into a retailer’s existing IT infrastructure.
The prepared statement quotes the company’s Anneliese Olson: “Consumers expect the same personalized experience they get online or on their mobile device in a retailer’s brick-and-mortar store. …Store managers and associates are empowered to move the sale from behind the counter, giving them the ability to assist the customer right on the sales floor for immediate customer satisfaction.”
The HP system was designed to scan and encrypt data, making it easier for staff to engage customers and close a sale quicker. Additionally, there are stability and usability features, such as a hand strap to alleviate grip fatigue, and an optional secondary battery to operate the equipment longer. It includes enterprise-class security, and is powered by Intel® Atom™ in a Windows® 8 tablet.
Another company offering MPOS is eMobile POS, a POS system for iPhone, iPod and iTab. The company promotes their product as stand-alone POS or as a means to integrate with leading business systems such as QuickBooks, SAP, Microsoft Dynamics/RMS and others.
CrossView also offers this technology. Their product offers an adjunct to the traditional POS and connects in-store sales associates to all facets of the retail enterprise – internet, call center, mobile and social media, inventory and fulfillment.
Javelin Strategy and Research released a report in mid-April that found mobile POS technology could be taking over traditional “cash register” payments. According to the study, 92.6 percent of total retail dollar volume in America is still storefront based, but how those companies accept payments are changing. Javelin estimates that mobile POS could expand payment card acceptance by up to 19 million businesses, which could account for up to $1.1 trillion in annual new-card payments.
Security, as a concern, and convenience, as a positive, should factor in to the selection by a retailer of which MPOS to select. Javelin said this technology “will change the way Americans think about the shopping experience.”
MPOS infuses retail sales with urgency and interaction, helping sales staff to engage, maintain and close customers through handheld devices. They offer a cost-effective, analytic and easy to implement alternative to cash registers, helping retailers manage better while giving the consumer convenience and speed. The future of retail may well be in mobile point of sale.
For more information about the HP announcement, see this link.
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