The NFRN has partnered with Jisp and Scandit to give convenience store owners the chance to offer customers a shopping app that allows them to compete with the multiples.

The Jisp app, which began a trial with selected NFRN members in June, enables scan & go shopping instead of queuing at tills, provides home delivery and click & collect functionality, and opens up new opportunities for digital engagement.

 It is powered by Scandit’s computer vision technology, which turns everyday smartphones into powerful barcode scanners. With support from the NFRN, the intention is to roll out to 500 independent retailers by the end of the year, so convenience stores can now deliver competitive and frictionless Scan & Go shopping.

Shopping app

Cheshire retailer Steve Archer has been trying out the app’s scan & go capabilities at his Hightown Convenience Store in Congleton. Shoppers can download the app and start their shop by scanning a QR code located on Jisp’s Payment Pod located at the store entrance. They then scan items as they move through the store and scan the displayed QR code at the Payment Pod a final time to complete the purchase.

“Local retailers have played a significant role in serving their communities during lockdown. The fact that our customers will now be able to simply scan and go in my store means that we can offer our customers an even safer environment,” he said.

“This technology levels the playing field. My store will be offering something that has previously only been available at the big supermarkets. So now we can show people we are positively enhancing our offering and it allows my little shop to compete with the big boys.”

Read more: NFRN trial with shopping app Jisp goes live

The Scan & Go experience rivals the speed and convenience of contactless, self-service options available at larger retailers. The service is expected to increase footfall and total basket value, and will help convenience store owners serve more customers, faster.

The app will give retailers a direct, one-to-one digital relationship with their customers. It also gives convenience stores the ability to market themselves outside of the store, strengthening the customer relationship, loyalty and retention. For example, they can hold weekly quizzes for repeat customers through their smartphones, advertise events happening in their local communities and offer unique deals and offers through the app.

“What we appreciate about the app is that it gives our members immediate digital access to their customers,” said NFRN national president Stuart Reddish.

“Commerce has been moving increasingly online for many years, and the impact of Covid-19 will only accelerate this. The larger players have usually had the advantage when it comes to resources, but the Jisp app will empower us to digitise and provide a more modern customer experience. Shoppers can pay quickly and easily and, in the post Covid-19 environment, this will satisfy their preferences for not handling cash.”

Paul Davis, vice president of sales at Scandit, added: “Independent retailers have always understood the value of convenience, but providing it has become harder in today’s digital-first environment. However, by embedding high-performance scanning technology into a mobile shopping app, stores can deliver the fast, frictionless service their customers have come to expect.”

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