Many small business owners put a lot of time and effort into the look and feel of their store, as the appearance of their business can attract new customers and improve the overall customer experience. However, one area that small business owners tend to overlook within their business strategy is the checkout experience. Customers nowadays are always in a hurry and experiencing a negative checkout process, whether due to the customer service they received from an employee or the speed of a transaction, can affect their decision on returning to your store again.
Have Well-Trained Employees
The first step to creating an efficient checkout process starts with the staff. Making sure your staff is trained well on both products and problems that may arise, such as issuing a refund or operating the POS system, can make or break the experience for a customer. If the employee takes too long processing a transaction, the customer may become impatient, get out of line, and instead leave the store.
A survey conducted by Harris Poll and Digimarc discovered that 88% of adults in the U.S. want their in-store checkout experience to be quicker. The same study also noted that half of shoppers said long lines and slow checkout times were their top two complaints. 61% of shoppers also said they wished employees were more focused on human interaction instead of just scanning items.
Another important aspect of having a seamless checkout experience is with the equipment that is used. Having an outdated POS system can significantly slow down the checkout process, causing not only disgruntled customers but also frustrated employees.
Small business owners can remedy this issue by upgrading their POS system, which will result in faster transaction times and improve productivity. Having the capability to process more transactions will allow small business to see exponential growth in sales and be able to serve more customers quicker. Modernized POS systems additionally have advanced security measures and technological features that outdated systems lack. This can protect you as a small business as well as your customers from potential cases of fraud.
Mobile payments are one of the fastest growing methods consumers are now using to make purchases. In fact, eMarketer predicts that by 2019 the total value of transactions done through a mobile wallet at an in-store terminal will reach $210 billion, which is up from $8.7 billion in 2015. For small businesses, this presents the perfect opportunity to begin accepting mobile wallet transactions, such as Samsung Pay, Android Pay, and Apple Pay®, and also begin creating their own mobile app for their business.
“Every one of the top 11 issuers of credit and debit cards by the end of next year will have their own version of Pay,” said Richard Crone, chief executive officer of Crone Consulting LLC. “Same for retailers. The big losers are going to be the ones with nothing.”
The checkout process can be a great way get personal and connect with customers. With that in mind, small businesses should start making it a priority to improve the checkout experience. By having a team of well-trained employees, upgraded in-store payment processing equipment, and integrating mobile payments, small businesses will improve their overall business strategy and continue gaining loyal customers.