LCI Editorial Board | Video report by P. Gallaccio, T.Leproux, P. Rousset, L. Koceir, P. Godefroy –
No more queues when it’s time to pay. That is the promise of the new concept that Carrefour is testing in a store in the 11th arrondissement of Paris from Thursday. Like anywhere else, the customer chooses his products. But at the time of payment, it is enough to stand in front of a tablet that then displays the content to be paid directly.
Goodbye, therefore, the scanning step on exit. The health of the basket is checked on the screen and the payment is made in contactless mode, directly on the tablet, or when paying automatically.
To make this possible, in every department, under every product, the store has installed scales, they are the ones that detect the slightest movement when a customer checks out or returns an item. “If I take two tablets, the scale will weigh two tablets. If I return one, he will know I only took one tablet, so the tablet will be in my virtual basket.”, details Elodie Berthuizott, CEO of E-Commerce, Data and Digital Transformation for the group.
Additionally, 60 cameras, from walls and ceiling, monitor a customer, via technology developed with California startup AiFi, as soon as they enter the store. “For 50 square metres, that might seem like a lot. But that’s what allows us to get 96% reliability. Because by getting different shots we are able to make all the cases a bit complicated – when customers are holding their arms, when customers are close very far from each other – to get baskets made in real time and in a fair way”Miguel Angel Gonzalez Gisbert, Director of Technology and Data at Carrefour Group explains.
And if the customer has any doubts, four employees take turns to advise him but also to restock the shelves. If this experience opens its doors on Thursday morning, dozens of stores of this type from other brands are developing in France to reduce the time spent at checkout. “In the face of e-commerce where you can buy with just the click of your couch, the business has to interact. For that to meet expectations, ‘I don’t want to waste time in the store, I want to go fast’”, confirms Yves Puget, director of the LSA magazine devoted to mass distribution news.
Other brands are pushing innovation even further. In Croix, in the north, the Auchan store has neither a cash register nor a salesperson. Simply leave the store with your products and all you have to pay with an app linked directly to your bank account. “We take our product and go there and in fact, we don’t even feel like we’ve gone to the store”The client testifies. These models are inspired by twenty such supermarkets developed by Amazon across the US, and most recently by Aldi in the UK.
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