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How to Increase Checkout Speed Using Retail Mobile Wallets

Retail checkout is currently plagued by endless inefficiencies, but there are emerging technologies that leverage retail technology to get shoppers in and out of the store and on their way in record time. Retailers have tried mobile POS, self-checkouts, and “just walk out” scenarios, but the reality is that the typical checkout process today is less than ideal and can leave shoppers feeling like they are stuck waiting in line again. Fumbling with cash, signing up for physical loyalty cards, and fishing a store-branded credit card out from the bottom of a purse are bound to be things of the past as retailer mobile wallets become ingrained within retail systems as digital solutions for loyalty and payments.

For a moment let’s imagine the most ideal checkout scenario that completely eliminates payment friction: after the shopper finds what they want and need, they are able to pay and walk out of the store within just a few moments. No long line to stand in or taped over credit card machine that makes it unclear whether they should insert a card, swipe it, or even tap it.

To say the least, the best checkouts take customer experience into account. What customer behaviors have the retailers witnessed that can feed into a new checkout scenario? As shoppers are incentivized to download and engage with a retailer’s app, that can be leveraged to further the relationship with the shopper. Not to mention, facilitate secure and seamless payments that keep control and customer data in the retailer’s own payment ecosystem. Standing in queues is simply not the future of retail and a number of technologies are working side by side to make sure that shoppers can pay and get on with their day via faster checkout experiences.

Faster Checkout via Retailer-Owned Mobile Wallets

Retailer mobile wallets have the ability to enable this simplified checkout experience and shoppers are well on their way to full adoption. In fact, 67% state they’ve downloaded a retail app. The next hurdle is explaining the benefits so that shoppers fully understand the positive impact the retailer-owned mobile wallet embedded into the store-branded app will have on them. And this rapidly expanding market is lucrative, as mobile payment apps are slated to be worth about $14 trillion by 2022.

Mobile payments are on the rise, as Mobile Payments World expects 56% of consumers to use them by 2020. That includes shoppers that pay through mobile wallets offered by the handset provider and even ultrasonic payments within retail apps. And some retailers are already getting a headstart, as over a third (37%) of merchants already offer mobile payments at the POS and 31.4% either will offer it soon or will increase their mobile payment offerings. With this surge in mobile wallet adoption, credit card and cash usage is forecast to decrease.

How Ultrasonic Payments Work

Currently, mobile payments involve tapping a customer’s smartphone on the payment device or waving it in close proximity. This means that they have to fit in with legacy checkout models, requiring shoppers to line up and get rung up as usual. Ultrasonic payments take a vastly different approach. Instead of being a new version of the same old checkout scenario, it opens up the possibility of payment at a distance or within a specific zone.

As Amazon has demonstrated, it’s possible to turn payment on its head and mimic the seamless eCommerce transactions customers have grown to love in brick-and-mortar stores. With ultrasonic, shoppers can save their credit and debit cards in their retailer-branded mobile wallet and send encrypted card information straight to the retail POS using just sound and software. Depending on the checkout scenario desired by the retailer, this could mimic a “just walk out” experience in which multiple customers tap a button in-app to pay for their items within a certain zone in the store resulting in a faster checkout experience for shoppers. Alternatively, a shopper can authenticate their identity and verify their payment in a one-to-one payment when being checked out by an associate anywhere in the store, at curbside pick-up, or BOPIS transactions.

The encrypted payment token the customer sends is then decoded and the information is used to process their payment. This sends a verification to the consumer and the retailer (in one-to-one scenarios) to verify that the payment went through. With this feature enabled in a retailer-owned wallet, it has the ability to lock in with loyalty rewards and personalized offers based on the comprehensive purchase data gleaned from shopper habits creating an opportunity to own the payment moment.

And the speed of service isn’t the only benefit of employing retail mobile wallet payments. Others include taking ownership of the look and feel of payments, monetizing the moment with customer data using recommendation engines, having full insight into what shoppers are browsing and buying in-app, logging all activity for loyalty purposes, and keeping the customer within your branded ecosystem even at checkout.

LISNR’s ultrasonic technology allows retailers to bypass the friction of long lines and create seamless and secure payment scenarios with better fee structures that ultimately result in a faster checkout experience for shoppers. We can do this because our many-to-one payment solution increases the throughput capacity of checkout experiences with the ability to detect and transact at a distance, which results in less time wasted for customers standing in line. With NFC transactions accounting for only 38% of total mobile transactions, LISNR is poised to standardize its payment method as a card present solution to capitalize on the fastest growing segment in mobile payment—retailer-owned mobile wallets.

Contact us to learn more.