As a small business owner, you probably put a lot of thought into the design and appearance of your store. The overall look and feel of your business can heighten the customer experience if done properly and help reflect your overall brand. However, one aspect that small business owners seem to overlook is the checkout experience. Customers these days are impatient and having a negative checkout process, whether it is due to the speed of transaction or the customer service received from an employee, can greatly affect their decision to return and shop at your store. 


Here are some beneficial ways on how to create a seamless checkout process: 


Use Modern Technology
Using an outdated POS system could definitely slow down the service you extend to customers, causing not only slower transaction times, but also frustration for both employees and the consumers. Small business owners can fix this problem by operating a modern POS system that will improve productivity and produce faster transaction times. By processing more transactions, businesses may see growth in sales, as they are able to serve more customers in a quicker manner. Likewise, a modernized POS system has tighter security measures and advanced technological features than out-of-date equipment. This can protect you as a merchant as well as your consumers from incidents of fraud. 


Mobile payments have become an increasingly popular method that consumers utilize during check out. According to the “Consumers and Mobile Financial Services 2015” report, 39 percent of all U.S. mobile payment users made payments using their smartphones in 2014. 


With the popularity of mobile payments on the rise, small businesses should make sure they offer and are prepared for mobile wallet transactions, such as Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, and Android Pay. In order to process these transactions, merchants will need to upgrade their equipment to NFC-enabled terminals. 


Consumers may have a higher tendency to return and make purchases at your store by offering their preferred method of payment. Likewise, mobile payments are quick and easy to process and allow you as a small business owner to help the next customer in line faster. 


Train Your Staff
Perhaps one of the top ways to create a seamless checkout experience starts with the employees. Making sure your staff is well informed, friendly and knowledgeable with all products and issues, such as how to operate the POS system or assist with a refund, can either make or break the overall experience for a consumer. If a transaction is taking too long for an employee to process, customers may change their mind and instead get out of line and leave the store to buy what they need elsewhere. Informed and likeable employees will not only profit your business, but will also be able to assist customers competently. 


“Checkout is the last opportunity a retailer has to make a positive impression on a shopper. Asking customers to endure a lengthy wait to process and pay for their order can spoil what may have otherwise been an enjoyable shopping experience,” spoke Larry Logan, CMO for Digimarc. 


Offer Alternative Ways to Get Your Receipt
Several stores now offer the option for customers to receive their receipt beyond the traditional printed receipt. Walmart can send customers their receipts via text message, which is convenient as customers instead utilize their phone for returns and don’t have to keep up with a paper receipt. Likewise, Lowe’s has the capability to e-mail receipts if customers prefer. Presenting a variety of receipt options can boost the checkout experience as customers can receive their receipt by their preferred method. 


When properly done, the checkout process can be a great way to connect and get personal with consumers. By using modern technology for your POS systems, accepting mobile payments, training your staff well, and offering alternative ways to get a receipt, your small business will be able to expedite the checkout time and create a great checkout experience.