St. Louis-based Schnucks Markets Inc. and Instacart will expand their omnichannel partnership by deploying Caper Carts, Instacart’s smart carts, in select stores.
Caper Carts can identify items as they are added to the cart using computer vision and artificial intelligence, allowing customers to bag as they shop, skip the line and checkout on the cart from anywhere in the store.
Instacart’s Caper Carts will first deploy at select Schnucks St. Louis stores this fall, with a broader planned rollout later this year following successful initial deployments.
“As a third- and fourth-generation, family-owned grocer, we’re always thinking about how we can best serve our customers while also driving the digital transformation of the grocery industry. As part of that effort, we’re proud to deepen our partnership with Instacart and further bridge the gap between in-store and online shopping for Schnucks customers,” said Chace MacMullan, senior director of digital experience.
“We believe the future of grocery will lean heavily into personalization – whether it’s achieved through in-store smart carts or by providing the best possible e-commerce experience for our customers. We aim to make customers feel like each shopping experience was custom-made for them, and we’re excited to take another big step forward with the rollout of this pilot of Instacart’s Caper Carts.”
For the first time, select Caper Carts will feature a bottom rack for bulky and heavy items. In addition to the Caper Carts that automatically detect items as they are placed in the cart, Schnucks will also be testing a Lite version where customers can manually scan items before placing them in the cart.
The carts can be wirelessly upgraded with new features and are the only smart cart on the market to offer stacked charging so that they do not have to be plugged in individually or undergo labor intensive battery swaps.
Customers will also be able to use their Schnucks Rewards account with the Caper Cart, giving them access to clipped promotions and deals from the weekly circular.
Schnucks began its partnership with Instacart in 2017 to introduce same-day delivery, and has since deployed a number of Instacart Platform technologies to digitize its stores and serve its customers, including:
- E-commerce: Schnucks customers can shop online through the Instacart App or Schnucks owned-and-operated e-commerce properties, powered by Carrot Connect. Available on the Instacart App, customers can also use their EBT SNAP benefits online.
- Carrot Ads: With Carrot Ads, Schnucks is using its e-commerce presence to create new revenue streams and highlight consumer packaged goods brands to more customers.
- Eversight: By digitizing its operations, Schnucks is able to use Instacart’s Eversight pricing and promotions solution to optimize in-store pricing in response to real-time conditions and deliver valuable promotions for customers.
- Carrot Tags: With Carrot Tags’ pick-to-light functionality, order pickers can tap an item on their mobile phone to have the corresponding ESL flash, making it easier to find items on the shelf.
“We’re proud to partner with Schnucks on their rollout of Instacart’s Caper Carts, which bring together the best of online and in-store shopping to spearhead their digital transformation and create a truly convenient and personalized experience for customers,” said David McIntosh, VP and general manager of connected stores at Instacart.
“With this launch, Schnucks is building on their current Instacart-powered offerings across e-commerce, ads, electronic shelf labels and more – redefining in-store shopping and checkout for customers.
“At Instacart, we’re committed to developing new and innovative technologies that help retailers seamlessly create a unified commerce experience, and are excited to work with Schnucks to reimagine the future of grocery together.”