Self-service payments have been gathering pace for many years, but this has now accelerated. In the mobility sector, for example, do-it-yourself payment is everywhere. You’ll find self-service at fuel stations, electric vehicle (EV) charge points, car parks, and on public transport. Now, the self service method is expanding in other commercial arenas, including retail and hospitality.
Self-service checkouts booming in retail
Major retailers, particularly supermarkets, are rapidly scaling the number of self-checkouts in their stores. In fact, a report released in May 2020 estimates the global self-checkout systems market will see a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 13.8% between now and 2026.
Self-service checkout minimises queues, which in turn improves customer experience and maximises sales. Self-service technology also allows retailers to add more checkouts without increasing labour costs or using up valuable square metres in theirstore. It also enables smarter on-screen personalisation when a customer scans theirstore card or another identifier. Cashless payment also expedites payment, because customers aren’t rummaging around for change.
And self-service goes further than unattended kiosks. “Scan & Go” apps eliminate checkouts completely, allowing customers to scan barcodes and pay on their mobile device. Until recently, this hadn’t gained traction in Europe, but Coronavirus has boosted uptake. For example, in Germany, Penny has rolled out Scan & Go to 100 stores, and in the UK, major retailers are seeing increased usage – and are banking on the technology’s continued long-lasting adoption.
Micro-markets and self-checkout stores offering 24/7 convenience
Round-the-clock “in-store” shopping is now possible with micro-markets. Traditionally situated nearby offices and workplaces, micro-markets are now going mainstream in Europe. For example, Tegut has launched an automated micro-market facilitated by app-based and Girocard payments, and Carrefour Polska launched their Express “digi-store” format in Warsaw.
These micro-markets are one part of a growing vending industry, set to see a CAGR of 1.3% between 2020 and 2027. Moreover, vending has shifted into exciting and unfamiliar territory, with retailers like H&M and brands like Yves Saint Laurent testing machines for beauty products.
Self-service in hospitality is just getting started
The hospitality and restaurant sector is on its way to become the mainstay for self-service payment solutions. McDonald’s is a well-known example, having rolled out self-service kiosks globally – for customers to order their food and pay with a contactless card, PIN, or digital wallet. And the self-service concept has been adopted by independent restaurants as a preventive measure to limit interaction during Coronavirus, often via QR codes, and web-based mobile ordering with digital payment – all done from the table.
Hotels are also embracing self-service, often to streamline the check-in and check-out process for their guests – and to offer 24 hour availability without increasing staffing costs. But the potential goes further, with guests being able to book door-to-door transport, operate in-room comfort or entertainment systems, order upgrades, refreshments, and concierge – and pay for any of these services seamlessly using their own mobile device.
“The big brands are driving the self-service technology revolution in retail and hospitality, and this will change consumer expectations when they shop with small businesses.”
Sales Lead Vending at CCV
“The big brands are driving the self-service technology revolution in retail and hospitality, and this will change consumer expectations when they shop with small businesses. Now, the industry must continue to help smaller independent businesses make the switch and adapt to these demands. We’re already seeing plenty of exciting developments in this area.”
Learn more? Read about 2021 Payment Trends in our CCV Pulse
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