During a recent trip to one of the nation’s big department stores, the following exchange was overheard:
Cashier: We can’t use a gift card and a credit card on the same machine. So I need to process the gift card from our mobile register.
Me: Ok, sounds good.
Manager [seeing what’s happening]: Can we process gift card transactions on mobile now?
Cashier: Yes. We just have to process it on two registers.
For those not engrained in the mobile industry, this conversation could have gone easily unnoticed. For the rest of us, this was quite telling and here’s three things it revealed:
Investing in the employee experience can improve the shopper’s experience.
While taking care of the shopper is particularly important, the store employee is an equally important part to the experience. Enabling cashiers to complete transactions without having to stand behind a counter or to look up inventory without leaving the shopper’s side can all contribute to a positive shop visit. In other words, don’t only think about what’s the next app for the shopper; ask yourself what’s the next app or feature for the store employee too.
Mobile Point of Sale is no longer enough.
At this point in the game, it is simply not enough to just have a mobile point of sale system. The ability to transact gift cards on mobile is a single feature on a long term roadmap that needs to adapt to the shifts in retail, for the long term. Prepare your retail strategy for success by focusing on the long term and designing a solution that can adapt with your business.
Make sure your mobile PoS is not a P.O.S.
Creating a mobile PoS system can take a variety of forms. There are some great companies our there that provide licensed versions of their payment processing solution and then there is always the option to create your own mobile PoS. Creating your own mobile point-of-sale can have its benefits — mainly being able to customize the system to match how you want your business to operate and employees to think. Just make sure it will play nice with your existing IT infrastructure, and if not, have a plan to work around it. Most importantly, pay attention to your employees just as much as you would your customers. Don’t create something that is more of a pain to use than their current solution. Create employee applications that you know they will want to use and enable them to take care of your customers.