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Adding to Amazon’s growing list of innovative shopping technologies, the online retailer has launched Dash Cart, a smart grocery cart created to provide an efficient and contactless shopping experience for consumers.
How Does Amazon Dash Cart Work?
Designed for smaller-scale grocery trips, Dash Cart uses a dynamic set of tools, including “computer vision algorithms” and “sensor fusion,” to instantly identify and calculate prices for every item placed in a consumer’s grocery cart. In order to use Dash Cart, a consumer must scan a QR code from the Amazon mobile app, begin shopping and exit the store through a “Dash Cart lane” when their grocery trip is complete. The total payment is processed and charged once the customer exits the grocery store. Dash Cart will be available for shoppers this year at the forthcoming Amazon grocery store chain - a separate entity from Amazon Go and the retail giant’s nearly 500 Whole Foods stores - with the first location opening in Woodland Hills, California.
Additional features include Dash Cart’s recognition of shoppers placing products back on the shelves, should they change their minds about purchases, and the access to personal shopping lists, on which consumers can rely on Dash Cart to check off items once they are placed inside the shopping cart. The Amazon Dash Cart will flash a white light to let the shopper know the grocery item is accounted for, and an orange light to alert the shopper if the item was not properly recorded.
Can Dash Cart Help Amazon Stand Apart From The Crowd?
Amazon is no stranger to the seamless shopping innovations, launching Amazon Go in 2018 to provide consumers with a checkout-free experience. Dash Cart, however, arrives during unprecedented times in the grocery industry, as consumers are seeking contactless shopping options more than ever before, leading many major brands to launch easy, grab-and-go alternatives.
According to GroceryDive, both Walmart and Sam’s Club have prioritized seamless and speedy checkout experiences as of late, noting Walmart’s plans to include its “Scan & Go mobile checkout program” in the brand’s much-anticipated loyalty program, Walmart+. Sam’s Club, on the other hand, has reportedly been trying out “a computer vision component that automatically recognizes products using customers’ smartphone cameras,” notes GroceryDive.
While new and improved shopping experiences will likely continue to enter the grocery scene, Amazon has the opportunity, through Dash Cart, to gather insightful consumer data to improve and personalize its consumers’ shopping experiences, creating satisfied and loyal customers in the long-run.
How Does The Launch Of Amazon Dash Cart Reflect The Growing Trend Of Touchless Checkout Options Amidst The Ongoing Pandemic?
The current pandemic has created an evolved retail environment, as the need for social distancing has shifted consumer behaviors toward self-service options in order to access everyday necessities. As a result, consumers expect brands to continue innovating and utilizing the customer data they’ve accumulated to create personalized offers and seamless shopping experiences.
“When you use digital tools in-store, you’re meeting customer needs for information and selection,” said Howard Cohn, Senior Vice President at Sutherland (a digital transformation company). “Whether you’re highlighting a virtual assortment, or locating the nearest product, you’ll have a better chance of improving your overall conversion rates because customers won’t leave unsatisfied.”
The brands that will win in the retail environment of tomorrow are those that can successfully identify shoppers’ changing needs by leveraging consumer insights, delivering a seamless, personalized buying processes, investing in innovative technology, and, overall, reflecting the “new” image of in-store shopping.
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