Sainsbury’s launches till-free shopping

Sainsbury’s is trialling new scan, pay & go technology that will enable customers in one of its London convenience stores to pay for products in-store using their smartphone.

Billed by the grocer as a UK supermarket first, the new technology gives shoppers the option to grab their groceries and skip the checkout completely.

Using the latest version of the SmartShop app, customers visiting the Clapham North Station Local can use their smartphones to scan their shopping as they go and then pay for it through the app, from anywhere in the store, using Apple Pay.

Customers can already use SmartShop in 68 Sainsbury’s supermarkets but the retailer said the trial in Clapham will take this technology ‘to the next level’. It explained: ‘Instead of paying for your shopping at a designated till point, Clapham customers can pay for their basket even faster and from anywhere in the store.

‘SmartShop is growing in popularity with Sainsbury’s customers. There are over 100,000 SmartShop transactions and between 3,000 and 4,000 new customer registrations every week. With in-store contactless payments predicted to reach $2 trillion by 2020 – counting for one in three in-store transactions – the trial will offer customers another way to pay conveniently in-store.’

Sainsbury’s group chief digital officer Clodagh Moriarty said: “Technology and changing customer shopping habits have transformed the way people buy their groceries. Our teams are constantly working hard to bring new convenient shopping experiences to customers and we’re delighted to be the first grocery retailer in the UK to offer customers the ability to shop checkout-free. The latest version of SmartShop, with its new payment feature, will make it super-quick for customers to get in and out of the store for those that want to scan, pay & go.”

In addition to paying via the SmartShop app, the Clapham store will also have both self-serve checkouts and manned checkouts, for customers who might prefer to pay at a till. Sainsbury’s will use customer feedback from Clapham to develop and improve the experience, before testing the technology in different store types and locations over the coming months.

The SmartShop scan, pay & go app was developed in-house. It follows extensive research, development and user testing, including a trial at Sainsbury’s convenience store in Euston train station which allowed customers to use the SmartShop app to scan and pay for the three items making up a lunchtime meal deal.

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