As European high streets begin to reopen, retailers including Decathlon, H&M and Footlocker are using technology to make their stores as contact-free as possible.
Sports goods retailer Decathlon is rolling out MishiPay’s smartphone payment solution in 81 stores in Germany. It is already live in Berlin, Munich, Cologne, Schwetzingen and Plochingen.
Customers scan and pay for items using their smartphone, which automatically disables the RFID security tag to allow them to exit the store.
This will help to minimise contact between customers and store staff, including meaning that customers don’t need to use store hardware.
Decathlon Deutschland’s leader of store digitisation, Stefan Hertkorn, said: “We are always looking for innovative ways to improve the in-store experience for our customers, and we have found that they are really enjoying using the MishiPay app.
“What’s more, the solution has clear customer benefits in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic; enabling shoppers to use their own device for the entire shopping journey instead of needing to touch store hardware, and eliminating the need to wait at a checkout.”
Meanwhile, H&M and Footlocker are amongst retailers that are testing a new solution from Philips called PeopleCount.
The display screens can be programmed to provide customers and staff with information about a store’s capacity and how full it is, advising customers whether it is safe to enter or not.
These updates can be broadcast via a traffic light system of red, yellow and green and allowing doors to be automatically programmed to not open if the store is too full.
Joseph King, senior director of Philips Professional Display Solutions, North America, said: “North America and the rest of the world are in the midst of unprecedented circumstances. COVID-19 has caused us to think twice about engaging in ‘normal’ activities like going into work or going to the grocery store so we can protect the population’s health and reduce the burden on our frontline workers.
“As we navigate this ‘new normal’ of social distancing and decreased personnel and customers in stores, the collaboration between digital signage and technology has never been more important.”
In the UK, Dunelm has introduced a click and collect service which allows customers to order goods online and have them dropped outside their car.