The Dallas Morning News reports that Kroger is bring human checkout personnel back to a store in the area that it converted to all self-checkout three years ago.
“We listened closely to customer feedback and made the decision to convert back to hosting staffed checkout lanes at this store,” John Votava, a Kroger spokesman, tells the paper.
Some context from the Morning News:
"The location at 4142 Cedar Springs Road converted to all self-checkout in Feb. 2021 and it was the only one among the grocery chain’s 2,700 U.S. stores trying out the idea … Some stores have modified their self-checkout areas for purchases of fewer than 10 or 15 items. Target last year started testing 10 items or fewer checkout lanes in stores saying it wasn’t about theft but it was intended to speed up the process for shoppers who want to use it. H-E-B has put limits of 10 or 15 or fewer items on its self-checkout lanes … Walmart experimented with an all self-checkout Supercenter in Plano, creating this huge circle of checkout lanes with employees corralled in the middle watching and ready to assist shoppers. The self-checkout area was installed in 2021 and the idea was ditched within months."
- KC's View:
My position on this has been clear and consistent. To the best of their abilities, unless it is at odds with their broader value proposition, it makes sense for stores to offer both staffed and self-checkout. I am at a loss to explain why during the last half of 2023 there was a rush of negative stories about self-checkout, usually featuring the same talking heads saying how problematic they are.
FYI … once again in 2024 I am programming and facilitating the Technology innovation Track at the National Grocers Association (NGA) Show in Las Vegas, on Sunday, March 10. One of our sessions will feature new research from Acosta, in which we will release proprietary findings about how consumers view various supermarket-related technologies, including self-checkout. I've seen the early results, and it is safe to say that I've been surprised by some of the results, and I think you will be, too. I hope you'll join us.