Supermarkets are an essential part of our communities, serving customers rain or shine. Supermarkets and their dedicated employees have also been there for us during the major disruptions of the last two years, including supply chain constraints, the volatility of inflation, and even labor shortages.

Although they are already known for their reliability, supermarkets are also beginning to embrace many of the innovations and advancements of the digital age, using retail technology to improve customer experiences and streamline operating costs.

From mobile-enabled delivery services to robust self-service equipment, technology is beginning to take off in the supermarket space.

So what is next for supermarket technology in 2022 and beyond? Here are some of the key trends to watch:

Trend 1: Embracing Digital Platforms for Customer Engagement

Like many other businesses, supermarkets are beginning to understand the value of personalization, loyalty programs, and customer engagement.

For example, supermarkets are introducing apps that connect customers and their buying habits with promotional products and sales. Not only does this retail technology help build loyalty, but it also drives profits, builds growth, and streamlines costs. In fact, one 2020 industry survey reported that 86 percent of millennials said a coupon discount could persuade them to switch stores. Additionally, 45 percent of respondents want to receive personalized suggestions based on their order history.

Similarly, supermarkets are finding that newspaper ads and paper coupons are now a relic of the past. In fact, in 2022, it is projected that nearly 80 percent of all coupon redemptions will occur via mobile devices.

Retail technology trends like these have led to customers' interactions with supermarkets through mobile devices to grow 14 percent year over year.

Trend 2: Adapting to Variable Labor Markets

As the labor market continues to fluctuate, putting variable demands on logistics, inventory management, and store coverage, supermarkets are looking for ways to balance customer service with efficiency.

One solution has been introducing new ways for customers to handle transactions on their own via self-checkout kiosks. According to a study from Forrester Consulting, 97 percent of U.S.-based supermarket shoppers view long lines as a deterrent. However, 65 percent of those shoppers are willing to use self-checkout machines if staffed checkout lines are too busy.

On the business side, these systems are secure, reliable, and intuitive, allowing supermarkets to focus staff where they are needed most. Self-checkout kiosks can also:

  • Reduce shrinkage by reducing opportunities for theft and miscounts.
  • Eliminate the chance of counterfeit bills being accepted.
  • Keep cash secured, tracked, and audited within the machine.
  • Automate the cash-counting process to make it more cost-effective.

Trend 3: Maximizing Hybrid Payment and transaction Technology Ecosystems

Finally, we are seeing customers become increasingly comfortable with alternative ways to browse, shop, and check out. In addition to self-checkout, there is continued growth in contactless payments and online orders.

According to an RBR report, global shipments of self-checkout terminals increased 52 percent in 2019, with that growth driven by the U.S. market, including food retailers.

Additionally, online grocery sales will surpass 20 percent of the overall U.S. grocery retail market in the next five years. Once received, grocery stores will fulfill 75 percent of these online orders via curbside pickup, which relies on apps to track and coordinate orders.

Future-Proof Your Retail Technology

Although it is difficult to predict the retail technology trends that will shape tomorrow’s supermarket operations, a trusted and experienced services partner will bring the stability your business needs to thrive.

Burroughs has been in the business for more than 135 years, providing full lifecycle management support, nationwide service delivery coverage, and experience managing over 200,000 cash automation, self-service, ATM, smart safe, and cash recycler devices.

Want to learn more about how you can future-proof your supermarket’s retail technology with the right mix of proactive support and full lifecycle management solutions?

Then make sure to review our Technology Ecosystem page!