Winnersh, UK, October 28, 2002 – Symbol Technologies, Inc. (NYSE:SBL), a global leader in mobile data transaction systems, has announced that the Coop Estense Hypermarket in Modena, Italy, has implemented the largest single installation of the Symbol Portable Shopping System™, which lets shoppers avoid long checkout lines by scanning items for purchase as they are selected.
By using a self-pay option, consumers avoid the entire cashier checkout process, greatly reducing the time of a shopping trip. Some 300 Symbol handheld scanning computers are being used by shoppers in the Modena store. The Modena system is the latest installation in Symbol’s mobile commerce initiative to improve the shopping experience by using technology such as hand-held computers and wireless data networks to enable direct interaction between retailers and consumers as they shop.
“After handling issues such as Y2K and adoption of the Euro, European retailers are once again focusing on customer service,” said Adam Petrovich, vice president, mobile commerce, Symbol Technologies.”
“More than 550 European food stores, including 11 Coop Estense supermarkets, now use the Symbol PSS. Other major food retailers in Europe, North America, Asia and Australia are either using or planning to deploy Symbol in-store mobile commerce solutions, which offer significant competitive advantages to both food and non-food retailers and can generate incremental revenue,” Petrovich added. The lightweight and easy-to-use PSS handheld incorporates a bar code scanner, four function keys and a small display. Its use is intuitive to the user; it lets the shopper keep a running total of purchases, add and delete items from their shopping list and receive product information and interactive messages.
Petrovich said, “The PSS handheld is easy to understand and easy to use. Pioneering retailers such as Coop Estense are revolutionizing the shopping experience, offering time-saving convenience and fun while building shopper loyalty.”
At the Modena Hypermarket, PSS shoppers have the choice of paying at either four express checkout lanes or two self-pay stations where they simply scan a bar code to charge purchases to their loyalty card. The Symbol IEEE 802.11b wireless LAN enables the system’s real-time consumer interaction and the self-pay options.
Waiting Time Diminished for Large-Basket Shoppers
PSS offers retailers a way to reward their large-basket shoppers by speeding up the shopping/checkout process. At traditional retailers, shoppers with few items benefit from access to express checkout lanes.
Coop Estense indicates that loyalty card customers typically spend 50 percent more than other shoppers. “Salvatempo (Coop brand for PSS) is seen as a true member service, and therefore a means of gaining added customer loyalty,” Ermanno Cavazzuti, Coop Estense Supermarkets Division Director said. “The chief goal of introducing PSS in the Hypermarket was to speed up shopping.”
“Customers save an average of more than 20 percent of total shopping time by using Salvatempo,” Cavazzuti noted, adding that the Italian term Salvatempo translates to “save time” in English. Significantly, store data shows that approximately 30 percent of all store sales go through PSS.
“At the moment, we use Salvatempo to send very simple messages to consumers as they shop – for instance, store opening hours or Sunday openings, messages on current promotions and so on,” explained Cavazzuti. “Going forward, the system may allow us to send promotional messages to customers precisely when they are located in front of a particular product.”
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