Amazon officially opened their cashier-less Amazon Go store to the public this week. This cutting-edge store functions more like a smartphone extension than a dash and grab convenience store. Amazon Go is described in this way:
To enter the Amazon Go store, customers download a smartphone app and scan a QR code to open a glass turnstile. Those shopping in a group scan the account holder’s phone once for each person entering and sensors will associate them with that account. From there, machines take over, watching the items plucked from shelves and adding them to a shopping cart. Shoppers are billed once they leave and if there are any mistakes or the customer isn’t happy with an item, you push a “refund” button to have that item removed from the bill. Shoppers don’t have to return an unwanted item to the store to get a refund.
Amazon tested this concept for the past fourteen months with their employees, but after working out the kinks, they feel that their first-of-its-kind concept is ready for the public.
These kinds of advancements shouldn’t be a surprise to the brick and mortar retailer. Online retail continues to dominate, and service providers and service-related products are losing ground to apps and other options (Warby Parker anyone?). Now, online is becoming a pseudo-retail hybrid leaving the local business owner not knowing which ground to take.
The real question is, “What does the service provider/retailer do if these types of hybrids grow?”
The answer is to do what you can do best.
Hire only quality employees and equip them to…
Provide the absolute best customer service because online and cashier-less stores can’t do that.
Sell a quality product and make transactions as seamless as possible.
No matter what you do, doing nothing is not an option.
Gordon Duncan/ProSight Success
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Gordon Duncan is an award-winning educator, salesman, teacher, manager, and writer. He has taught in the public school system, lobbied for school's accreditation, managed eye clinics, led sales' teams, and also publishes books on theology, church, and culture.