SEATTLE - Recognizing that long checkout lines diminish sales (standing in line provides time for customers to overthink the necessity of the purchase they are about to make), Nordstrom has begun rolling out mobile point-of-sale (POS) devices throughout its stores (including some Nordstrom Rack Stores), allowing employees to check out customers from anywhere in the store, Forbes reports.
The modified iPod Touch devices includes a merchandise scanner and credit card slider, and also allows staff to check inventory for size or color alternatives, when requested.
Nordstrom deployed more than 6,000 of these devices throughout their 117 full-line stores, a greater number than its regular registers.
The devices, according to Colin Johnson, a Nordstrom spokesperson, are to help "provide a more technology enabled store experience."
In 2010, Nordstrom introduced WiFi into stores to "make it easier for customers to stay connected in the stores by using their mobile devices to shop and to compare and learn more about merchandise," Johnson said. The move laid the foundation for these new mobile POS devices, which are primarily used in the young women??s section and some men??s section.
When customers check out from a mobile POS, they sign for their purchase and enter an email address where they receive a paperless receipt.
Johnson said the ultimate goal of the mobile POS program is to "take care of [the] customer anywhere in the store. We don??t have to take you to the cash register, and instead, can do that right there with you on dressing room or when you??re trying on shoes ?" and then you??re on your way." He adds, "that kind of ability to increase speed and convenience is increasingly important."
Since implementing the program in the middle of last year, both the average number of items sold and the average selling price have increased. Johnson explained that the mobile POS is designed to provide a "faster and more convenient experience for customers and reduce the time it takes time for customers to check out," adding, "anything that can help that is beneficial."
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