If you’ve ever sat through a long checkout line, you definitely understand how frustrating it can be. Less-than-enthused employees, slow internet, or busy stores can cause checkout lines to be much larger than they should. While waiting in line can be agitating, finally arriving at checkout only to find that computers are down (or the employees could care less) is equally, if not more irritating. If your business is experiencing a lengthy, inefficient checkout process, you could be losing precious customers and sales. Here’s how you can improve your checkout process to maximize customer satisfaction and keep those lines moving!
Give Employees Incentives to Perform Better
One of the worst checkout mistakes that businesses make is staffing an employee at the register or POS that could care less about their job, or the customers they’re serving. We get it, working in retail isn’t the most spectacular job on the planet, but serving customers certainly has its own rewards.
As a manager or business owner, it’s important to remember that employees form the backbone of your company, and create a very human representation of your company’s values and practices. Having the right employees in the right place can make all the difference.
For example, if you know that Jake is very slow at checkout, it’s probably best not to staff him there until you can find a way to improve his speed. Staffing your most personable and friendly employees at checkout not only ensures that lines will keep moving, but that customers will experience a friendly atmosphere when they’re paying for their products or services.
Trust us when we say that the customer is always watching. Your customers have specific expectations when visiting your place of business, so it’s vital to the company’s success to adhere to a standard of service. Training employees on the equipment, as well as better customer service practices, and offering incentive programs for performance, can help ensure your employees perform well and keep everything running smoothly.
Get a New POS System
POS systems can make all the difference in the speed and efficiency of your checkout process. An older, bulky cash register won’t run nearly as fast as some of the more modern, portable POS systems available. These systems make checkout a breeze while also collecting vital customer information to help better tailor marketing efforts and create a more personal connection with your shoppers.
Connecting with your customers goes far beyond just improving your checkout process. By establishing a personalized connection, you’ll gain valuable insight into how they think and shop, as well as what their favorite products or services are. With this kind of information at your fingertips, you can create customized marketing campaigns, offer specific promotions and coupons, and much more.
With your new POS system, you can even have employees walking the sales floor while holding the POS in their hands! Mobile terminals make the checkout process non-stationary, so you don’t have to worry about lines. You can perform a checkout right on the sales floor, which also helps with upselling or adding more items to the sale.
POS systems come in many varieties, from Apple-specific software to Android and Apple-friendly version. The best POS software for Android and Apple depends on the specific needs of your company, but overall, introducing a new POS system should help maximize your space and keep those checkout lines moving.
Reorganize Your Store’s Space
You’d be amazed at how much some simple reorganization can benefit your store and your checkout process. By ensuring there are signs to direct customers to checkout, as well as creating a sort of “funnel” with aisles, you’ll be able to effectively drive customers to the checkout while exposing them to impulse buys along the way.
If your store seems too crowded, checkout lines will only help to add to the anxiety of the crowded space. Freeing up some room and reorganizing things is a great way to make the store a more peaceful atmosphere, as well as improve the flow of lines through checkout.
Try Self-Checkout Options
Self-checkout kiosks are becoming popular in major retail and grocery chains across the country. Stores like Wal-Mart and Target have adopted these self-checkout lanes to improve traffic flow and make the checkout process as simple as possible for the customers.
A self-checkout lane eliminates the anxiety associated with standing in long lines and waiting to interact with the sales associate. In fact, in a recent study, it was found that 73% of customers would prefer a self-checkout kiosk to a manned checkout counter. That’s quite a large percentage of customers, and certainly not a statistic you’d want to disregard.
Self-checkout can help cut down on costs as well, by eliminating the need to have a cashier at every point of sale. Combined with great POS software, you’ll be well on your way to running an efficient, automated storefront with easy checkouts and no long lines!
Improving your checkout process will help customers feel better about shopping at your store. They’ll know that long lines are a thing of the past and that your POS system is modernized and completes transactions quickly. Building a reputation for simplicity and efficiency is a must for any modern retailers. So next time you see a long line in your store, consider the tips we’ve presented for turning your store into an efficient sales machine.