Home » Sam’s Club Evolves Scan & Go App, Merging Digital And Physical

Sam’s Club Evolves Scan & Go App, Merging Digital And Physical

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Bentonville, Arkansas-based Sam’s Club is piloting new Scan & Go technology that explores an additional way to seamlessly get merchandise from a club location to a member’s front door. This pilot program, called Scan & Ship, is integrated into the retailer’s Scan & Go feature within the Sam’s Club app.

It will allow members to place direct-to-home orders in the aisle by scanning merchandise included in the program.

Scan & Ship offers an immediate in-club solution for items that require large vehicles to transport such as playsets, patio furniture, mattresses, large TVs, grills and more. It also gives members an opportunity to select alternate colors and sizes unavailable in the club. Scan & Ship allows the member to buy it and have it delivered to their desired destination – usually within three to five business days – with one digital transaction.

The new feature demonstrates opportunities for the Sam’s Club app to mature and evolve alongside member shopping behaviors. The Sam’s Club app experienced tremendous growth last year with 9.6 million downloads, according to AppTopia, almost twice as many downloads as competitor apps, and it boasts a 4.9 app store rating. Positive user reviews indicated that many members enjoyed the Scan & Go feature, which expanded to all Sam’s Club fuel stations in 2020 and saw a 43.5 percent adoption rate increase year-over-year in the first quarter.

“We challenge ourselves every day to develop and execute convenient solutions that disrupt the warehouse model and provide additional value to our members,” said Tim Simmons, SVP and chief product officer at Sam’s Club. “Just like Scan & Go, Scan & Ship gives members greater control of their shopping experience. It’s exciting to see our team develop and launch the Scan & Ship pilot so quickly, and it’s got great potential to deliver the ultimate omnichannel member experience across our entire chain.”

Currently, three locations are participating in the pilot, including Sam’s Club Now — Sam’s Club’s Dallas-based innovation lab — to allow the business to gather critical member feedback and modify functionality within the app before scaling to additional locations.

“Scan & Ship is the result of an internal program we’re really proud of called the Innovation Jam, which encourages associates to collaborate and develop prospective retail technology solutions during the two-day, sprint-like event,” said Vinod Bidarkoppa, SVP and chief technology officer. “Scan & Go has been such a success story for us, and Scan & Ship is a fantastic extension to all of the great innovation we already have in place.”

From the evolution of its app to its tech innovation lab, Sam’s Club continues to be hyper-focused on digitally integrated clubs that deliver convenient, mobile-first experiences.

The brand has experienced a great deal of success by focusing on technology innovations, not only with Scan & Go but the accelerated expansion of Curbside Pickup – both cited as attractive benefits to membership and the brand’s growth last year.

In addition to piloting Scan & Ship, the retailer launched a new feature at all clubs in July that gives members who don’t currently have the Sam’s Club app an opportunity to demo the Scan & Go feature without the commitment of downloading the Sam’s Club app onto their devices using instant app software. The approach gives members the chance to initially try Scan & Go without taking up storage on their devices.

“We know that once our members use Scan & Go they love the convenience it provides and are 90 percent more likely to use it again, so our team worked to design a solution that gives members an opportunity to test drive the feature and experience the benefits firsthand,” Bidarkoppa said.

The feature uses Near Field Communication technology and only requires scanning a QR code to begin use. The demo, which allows members to key in a payment option, delivers on the experience of contactless shopping and skipping the traditional checkout line. It can be used for purchases up to three times before a message prompts the members to download the Sam’s Club app to use Scan & Go.

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