Insights

The Two Things to Know About Grocery Store Price Checkers

By Aila Staff

September 12, 2019

Grocery stores have been using price checkers to meet regulations and help customers find prices for well over a decade. But, to walk down an aisle in many grocery stores is to see that very few advancements have been made in how price scanners are used, how they’re presented and how they perform. 

In-aisle price checkers go by many names— barcode price scanners, price checking terminals, price check kiosks, and so on. Regardless of what you call them, there are two key things grocers need to know about price checkers to deploy them effectively while meeting regulations.

There are two things that grocers need to know about today’s price scanners if they want to have a successful deployment.

1. A single-use price checker is a missed opportunity

Imagine your smartphone could only run one app. Now imagine that app was from 2007 and that it didn’t work most of the time. This is the current state of price checkers in many grocery and department stores throughout the U.S. 

In today’s world of rapid app development and consumer devices that can be turned into enterprise-grade scanners, there is no reason that grocers should have to rely on outdated technology for their stores.

In-aisle price checking on Aila’s Interactive Kiosk at Big Lots

Aside from simply scanning and showing accurate pricing information, in-aisle kiosks can be used for a range of value-producing interactions. 

Product information

Today’s shoppers are increasingly judicious about the food they eat. Food packaging now provides more information about the contents than ever before, but two-thirds of shoppers are still reaching for their phones to learn more. 

Grocers can provide additional details with an enhanced price checker. Dietary restrictions, points, sourcing, sustainability and more can all be shown alongside pricing information.

Recommendations

Ecommerce giants like Amazon and Netflix each rely on personalized recommendations to satisfy customers and increase sales. One way to achieve this in-store is by providing product pairings or taste quizzes in-aisle, at the point of decision.

In-aisle product recommendations at Giant Foods on Aila’s Interactive Kiosk.

When shoppers scan the barcode on a grocery item to check a price or learn more about that product, they can also quickly see variants on that product, recommended meal pairings, and more with an enhanced price checking kiosk. 

2. There are laws governing grocery store price checkers

Pricing accuracy

Grocery store price scanners are regulated on a state-to-state basis. Just under half of all states have some form of pricing regulation on the books. Of these, eight states have mandatory item pricing: Arizona, California, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Mexico, and New York.

In-aisle price checking on Aila’s Interactive Kiosk at Metro Canada

Massachusetts, for example, requires that grocery stores and department stores with food sections have one price scanner every 5,000 square feet. 

Accessibility laws

Price accuracy laws are only half of the picture when it comes to regulating grocery store price checkers. The other key consideration for grocers is the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). 

The two key areas of the ADA that may apply to kiosks are the rules around protruding objects and wheelchair accessibility

Aila’s Interactive Kiosk is used by leading grocers for price checking, deli ordering, and more.

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