Airship

Walmart and Target to test mobile checkout at part of holiday season

Tim Maytom

Two of the biggest retailers in the US are testing new mobile checkout systems in their stores as part of their efforts to improve the shopping experience over the festive season.

Walmart is expanding its 'Check Out With Me' service to every Supercenter store in time for Black Friday, while Target has recently launched its 'Skip the Line' mobile checkout service nationwide, and plans to have extra staff available throughout the store during busier days to help guide customers through the process.

Walmart first launched a pilot scheme for its Check Out With Me platform in its Lawn & Garden Centers back in April. The system, which saw store associates outfitted with cellular devices and Bluetooth printers, enabled Walmart customers to pay for large gardening goods without the need to bring them into store, saving them both time and effort.

From 1 November onwards, Walmart associates equipped with the Check Out With Me equipment will be present in some of the busiest areas of US stores, like the garden centre and electronics, to enable customers to bypass regular checkout lines. The retailer is hoping that the expansion will streamline the shopping process during the busy festive period.

"Every day we're committed to providing customers with the broadest assortment of quality products at great prices, but, during the holidays, we take that promise up a notch," said Steve Bratspies, chief merchandising officer at Walmart US. "I've never been more excited about what we have to offer this Christmas - more items than ever before and new brands that customers will be surprised to see from us, all at the pricces they expect from Walmart. And, with new convenieent ways to buy, we've never been in a better position to help our customers deliver for their families than this holiday season."

At Target, the retailer is deploying new mobile technology which will enable consumers nationwide to check out with Target team members anywhere in the store, bringing greater ease to the busy holiday season. During peak events like Black Friday, team members will be located in the busiest areas of the store, making use of the mobile devices created by the company's technology team.

"We know many of our guests look forward to our Black Friday deals every year, and today, they can start shopping and save big on some of the hottest items of the season," said Mark Tritton, executive vice president and chief merchandising officer at Target. "Combined with the unmatched easy ways to shop with us - including new mobile technology that allows guests to skip the line for an even more convenient checkout - we're confident guests will save time and money, and experience the joy of the season by choosing Target."