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Frictionless Payments: what do we learn from Tap To Go?

Whether you are talking about a physical store or a webshop, one factor is essential in the payment process: customers want convenience. This means secure payment in a way that is as easy as possible. One retail store has understood this perfectly! What can we learn from cashless shopping at AH to go?

Ah to go kassaloos shoppen

You have probably bought once a coffee or a sandwich at AH to go, just before you catch the train on the way to work or another appointment. Fast shopping, that's what it's all about at AH to go. Still, a customer is on average 3 minutes or longer in an AH to go store. That can be faster, right? Definitely! Albert Heijn did so with Tap to go.

Did you already try Tap to go yourself? If not, then I’ll explain it briefly here. Tap to go is super fast shopping. Maybe you have seen the images from Amazon Go. Consumers who buy food & drinks on the go, simply by taking products and leaving the store. No cash register is needed. No employee. No queue. And no debit card. It may seem like something that can only be done in America, but our ‘old Dutch’ Albert Heijn introduces a similar - possibly even more efficient - innovation on high speed shopping. AH to go responds to two important trends in retail.

1. Customers want to pay without action

Losing time by waiting in the queue is a thing of the past. The payment process is no longer a reason for consumers to cancel their purchase.

2. Mobile is leading

Mobile remains growing and already plays an essential role in consumer’s lives. Approaching the consumer via mobile is the fastest route to payment. But how does Tap to go from AH work exactly?

Tap, grab, go

In the AH to go store the consumer scans electronic shelf cards. This can be done with the tape card or with a mobile phone. The scanned products are added directly to the digital shopping cart. Does he still want a healthy snack instead of that Mars? Then he returns the Mars and scans the shelf card again, which immediately updates the shopping basket.

Did he take all groceries needed? Then he simply walks out of the store. Standing in line at the checkout, or fulfilling the actual payment at the checkout is no longer necessary. After 10 minutes of inactivity in the shopping basket, the amount is deducted from the consumers’ bank account. The payment has been done fully automatic. Customers no longer have to do unnecessary actions in the payment process. Obviously, this is beneficial for the conversion!

How is this possible?

AH to go uses no less then 10 technologies from CM.com. I will not go through all of them, but I would like to explain a few of them.

Verify phone number

To make use of Tap to go, the consumer creates an account. He can easily do this himself. Upon registration, the mobile phone number of the user is verified via a One Time Password from the CM.com platform.

Verify account number

Of course, AH to go needs a guarantee that the specified account number exists, and belongs to the consumer. To check this, AH uses IBAN verification via CM.com. The consumer is asked to pay a transaction of € 0.01, with which the account number and ascription are verified. After that, the consumer can use Tap to go.

Automatic payment

The direct debit also runs through the CM.com platform. If the balance is too low, the collection is automatically repeated by our AutoCollect system. Through this automatic follow-up flow, the consumer is asked by SMS and e-mail to pay the specific amount directly and safely via iDEAL.

Customer Data Platform (CDP)

Albert Heijn always has insight into visitor data and purchases with the clear dashboard of our Customer Data Platform. On the platform, Albert Heijn can monitor exactly how many shoppers there are and what amount is being spent.

Why is this important for web shops?

Consumers have a desire for speed and convenience. This is the same for an online environment. AH to go has started with cashless shopping in order to respond to the needs of the consumer on the go. Due to the ease and speed of Tap to go, customers are tempted to come more often and thus spend more. In addition, customers will no longer pass through the store because it is too busy. Since there are no cash registers anymore, the queues belong to the past; and high speed shopping is guaranteed.

These learnings apply to both physical shops and webshops. Do you want to know how you can apply the innovation of AH to go to your store or webshop?

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