7-Eleven begins trial of store with no cashiers
Convenience stores that rely on technology instead of cashiers to keep things ticking over might sound like a futuristic notion, but there are a number of such concepts being tested around the world. 7-Eleven is the latest to enter the fray, today announcing a trial of a new store in Texas that will be unstaffed with customers left to their own devices.
The store is located at 7-Eleven’s headquarters in Irving, Texas, and will be available only to the company’s employees, with a view to rolling it out to the general public if things go well.
Instead of the traditional clerk, the customers use a smartphone app to handle all their shopping, with algorithms and “predictive technology” tracking individual customers and their purchases, before offering a detailed receipt in the app after they walk out the door.
This works in a similar way to Amazon Go, a convenience store that also relies on a smartphone app and opened to company employees in 2016. A convenience store in Shanghai called Wheelys, which opened in 2017, is another example of this approach. 7-Eleven hopes to introduce customers to the idea a little further down the track.
“Introducing new store technology to 7-Eleven employees first has proven to be a very productive way to test and learn before launching to a wider audience,” says Mani Suri, 7-Eleven senior vice president. “They are honest and candid with their feedback, which enables us to learn and quickly make adjustments to improve the experience. This in-house, custom built technology by 7-Eleven engineers is designed for our current and future customers.”
Source: 7-Eleven via PRNewswire