With stiff competition and continuous pressure of upgrading and staying ahead of the curve, retailers such as Future Group and Dubai-based Landmark Group are working on cashier-less stores.
Future Group has already started the pilot of cashier-less stores in 10 of its Easyday stores and is planning to roll it out in other stores as well.
Speaking at the India Retail Forum (IRF), Future Group chief executive officer Kishore Biyani said: “We already have 10 cashier-less stores operational and are planning to roll out in other stores as well.”
Future Group has set a target to be a trillion-dollar company by 2047, driven by technology that would capture consumer behaviour and data. Easyday stores are membership-based and cashier-less transactions will be done through an app wherein customers can scan the products they want to purchase on the phone and do the billing, a spokesperson of the company said.
Future Group currently has 1,000 Easyday stores operational, which range between 2,000 sq ft and 3,000 sq ft, across the country. Future Group is present in 26 states with over 2,000 modern trade outlets.
Biyani said technology reduces space, time and increases customer interaction. “Since we now know about the buying behaviour of the consumer, our factories will now plan their production based on the data,” he added.
Future Group is currently opening two small stores a day and will increase it to five small stores a day by next year which will help it understand the assortment that it should keep and the production that should be undertaken, Biyani said.
According to a PricewaterhouseCooper report released at IRF, 50% of all respondents use smartphones to complete payment at a brick-and-mortar store while 60% respondents only use credible websites while shopping.
Landmark Group is also working on implementing cashier-less transaction. Landmark Group (Dubai) director and board member Ramanthan Hariharansaid: “We are working on it and will take sometime to implement it.”
Facebook India industry manager (retail and ecommerce) Prateek Sinha said: “By 2020, mobile phones will drive the majority of all sales, but over 90% of these sales will still occur in stores.”
Mobile phones are increasingly reshaping the retail business with 2.2 hours per day mobile usage per young adult and 80% users using the internet on their mobile phones while watching TV, he said.
As mobile phones are disrupting business, media and experiences, its influences on sales are on the rise with increasing co-existence of offline and online retail. Influences of mobile on business indicate that a market size of $66 billion constituting 65% of branded sales. While 76% of mobile users explore products, 42% use it for transactions and purchases, Sinha added.
Biyani also said as India’s overall economy rises to $5 trillion by 2030, it will trigger the consumption economy to $2 trillion and the per-capita consumption of $2,000 will be a turning point. “I want to build into the biggest consumer business that the country has ever seen in less than 10 years with our own distribution. Everyone wants to be retired, but I don’t want to retire hurt,” he added.