A poor checkout experience is one of the main reasons consumers stop shopping with a particular store or brand.
Along with bad customer service, it’s up there as one of the biggest annoyances.
Which makes sense when you think about it.
The checkout should be the easiest part of the shopping process.
Your customer has gone to the trouble of browsing your store, finding what they want, and now they’re ready to give you money.
So why make it hard?
Plus, a good checkout experience can help up the transaction value of a purchase with the right impulse purchases put in the right place - and it can help increase the lifetime value of a customer.
If they enjoyed shopping with you, they’ll keep coming back.
So how exactly can you improve your in store check out experience (and the shopping experience in general) to earn more customer loyalty and make more money.
Have a simple shop layout
People always talk about the need for a simple and easy to use e-commerce website, and the same goes for in store.
If you have a cluttered and unorganised shop, people won’t want to go in.
If you give off a good first impression with your shop layout, you’re more likely to make a sale.
The layout of your shop should be simple so it’s easy to find things.
It should also follow a sensible route around the store towards your pay points.
More than 67% of customers have said they’ve walked out of a store because they couldn’t find what they were looking for - so it’s an issue you need to deal with.
There’s nothing worse than having to walk round a shop for ages trying to find the checkout when you’re ready to pay.
If you have better signage throughout your store, it’s easier for people to find what they’re looking for.
Whether it’s the toilets, the changing rooms or where you pay, make sure it’s clear to customers where things are.
We know it’s successful because it’s been reported that 60% of businesses found a 10% increase in sales when they invested in updated signage.
Make the store more accessible
When creating a physical store, many businesses focus on getting as many products in as possible to boost sales, but this doesn’t always have the desired effect.
75% of disabled people have left stores or been unable to complete a purchase due to poor accessibility.
If you don’t have measures in place such as wider walkways and lower desks at the checkout, you could be losing out on lots of potential customers.
Having these measures in place will increase your profits and improve your reputation, as it shows you care about the customer experience.
Use examples to entice multiple purchases
Have you ever been clothes shopping and noticed mannequins dressed up in outfits made up of the clothes around it?
This is a very popular sales technique to encourage customers to buy multiple items.
For example, if you like the look of a top in the display and see it worn with a pair of jeans on the mannequin, customers are more likely to buy both items if they see them together and think they look good.
Clothing mannequins used in this way can increase sales from anywhere between 10% and 35%, so make sure you style them regularly.
This is also done a lot in shops that sell electronic items.
If there is a display for the newest macbook, it’s likely supporting tech is around it, like chargers and external hard drives.
Having items grouped together convinces shoppers they need them all to complete the look or boost their new laptop.
Use technology to your advantage
Just because a customer has come to your store, doesn’t mean you can’t still make good use out of your website.
We’ve all been through the experience when we find something we like and it’s not in our size or we can’t find the right colour.
Technology helps fix this.
For example, having a QR code next to the physical display can let customers find an item online that isn’t available right in front of them
Using the code they can check online availability and even order off your website while in your shop.
Plus, because they’re actively looking for that particular item when they’re doing this, they’re more likely to buy it.
Offer multiple payment methods
It goes without saying that it’s important to offer various payment methods for the customer to choose from.
Having a pay station that accepts cash and has a countertop card machine seems to be the norm, but what else can you do to improve the checkout experience for the customer?
Portable card machines allow customers to pay for items directly where they find them.
These would be handy in shops like Apple where the item is brought to the customer, rather than them having to look for it themselves.
They’re also seen regularly in cafes and restaurants so diners don’t have to go to a set paypoint before they leave.
Having options available isn’t just good for the customer, it’s also beneficial for the business.
Having things like contactless and digital pay available, payments will be a lot quicker, meaning you can get through large queues during busy periods with ease.
There’s evidence that shows customers will spend 12-18% more if they’re paying by card, which retailers should take advantage of.
This is because the customer can’t ‘see’ the money like they would if they were to pay with coins and notes.
So by offering more payment methods, you can increase your overall profit.
Put smaller purchases nearer the tills to encourage impulse purchases
Did you know that impulse purchases makeup around 80% of sales?
This proves to retailers they need to take advantage of this, and be mindful of where they put their products on the shop floor.
Your shop layout may not seem like a big deal but it is very important when it comes to encouraging your customers to spend more.
For example, it was found that customers are 30% more likely to pick up an item if it’s at the end of an aisle than in the middle, especially if it has a reduced price.
A lot of beauty shops have mini versions of their bestsellers or current offers near the tills to entice customers into trying something new and in turn, increase the overall sale.
This is a great way to make more money, as customers will see these lower prices and add them to their basket.
Keep your equipment up to date and train staff regularly
Customers can get frustrated if equipment fails when they’re trying to make a purchase.
To prevent this from happening, make sure you test and update your equipment regularly.
This includes card machines.
By having a contactless card machine, you’re opening yourself up to card and digital payments.
If you keep up to date with the latest payment technology, you can set the benchmark for other businesses and provide options for your customers.
Alongside this, you should train your staff so they know how to use any equipment or technology you have or how to fix it if anything goes wrong.
Improve the retail checkout experience to boost profits
Every business wants an advantage and a way to increase sales and profits, especially when there’s competition.
Most of the ways to increase sales don’t need extra investment.
It’s just about making the retail checkout experience, and the general shopping experience more convenient for customers.
Simple and affordable things you can add are signage and card machines that offer various payment methods.
Handepay can provide a range of card machines that you can use, whether it’s a stationary contactless machine, or a portable one, you’re guaranteed to find the one for you and your business.
Get in touch now to see how much you can save by switching to Handepay.