It wasn’t that long ago that shopping was a single-channel experience. If a customer needed something, they purchased the item at the store, checked out at the register and took their receipt at the end of the transaction. However, disruptive technology like mobile commerce has opened new channels that have transformed the entire retail experience.
Mobility and the Modern Shopper
Mobile commerce is expected to hit an all-time high in 2017, according to the retail analysts at eMarketer.com. The website estimates that this year, more than 95 million Americans will make at least one purchase on a smartphone and an even higher number – 165 million people – will use their smartphones to research and compare products. Retailers have been working to adapt to shopper’s new preferences by optimizing their websites for mobile, introducing new store apps, and offering cross-channel purchasing options.
Although the competition from online-only retailers is fierce, big data has helped brick-and-mortar retailers learn more about their customers’ habits and preferences. Online shopping is highly personalized, so physical retail stores are working to provide a similar experience by gathering information about their customers via social media, traffic counts, and loyalty engagement, but big data has helped them to better predict trends, develop targeted marketing campaigns, engage customers across channels and generate a higher level of customer loyalty.
Mobile Commerce’s Impact on the Receipt
Disruptive technology like mobile payment platforms will continue to emerge and gain popularity and the number of purchases made using smartphones will soar. These innovations have transformed the way we shop and pay for purchases, but it’s also had an enormous impact on another staple of a payment transaction: the receipt.
Many retailers require receipts for returns and exchanges, but disruptive technology has changed the way we think about receipts – how they are printed and issues and what information they include. A customer who opts for the mobile checkout to avoid waiting in line still expects to be given a receipt, and Star Micronics’ printing and receipt apps along with wireless printers make this possible.
The SM-T300i, for example, is a popular wireless printer with an ultra-rugged design, perfect for busy restaurants or retailers and other harsh work environments. Printing is possible via practically every mobile device using Star’s newest app PassPRNT, which enables printing from an iPad®, iPhone®, iPod touch®, or Android™ device. Star’s cloudPRNT, is an innovative technology enabling users to print to Star printers directly through a cloud service.
Although it’s easy to lose track of paper receipts – whether they are crumpled on the floor of the car or shoved into a pocket, electronic receipts are easy to organize and access later. Star Micronics’ AllReceipts™ is a free, cloud-based digital receipt application that allows users to store and manage receipts on their mobile device. Customers just have to scan the QR code at the bottom of the receipt using the app.
Disruptive technology like mobile payments and big data have changed the way people shop as brick-and-mortar retailers work to compete with the highly-customized experience that online-only retailers can provide. Receipts are still expected with every purchase, so this technology has been forced to evolve as shoppers prefer mobile checkout and paying with their smartphones. Star Micronics offers an arsenal of options for retailers seeking wireless solutions for receipt printing, so customers can receive their receipts and organize them the way they are most comfortable.