WAXAHACHIE — For those tired of the long lines at big-box retailers, Walmart in Waxahachie is providing a new, handheld way to shop.
Consumers can now skip the dreaded checkout line and scan as they go with Walmart’s new “Scan and Go” technology.
“It’s a very busy store, and we work very hard to make sure we don’t have long lines, but it’s very challenging,” expressed Josh Aston, store managers at the Walmart in Waxahachie. “So this gives us another tool to help our customers, and we’re adding ways to take care of them.”
Located on North Dallas Highway, the shopping center officially launched its new addition to the shopper’s arsenal with the ‘Scan and Go’ system on Friday, August 4. The downloadable application can be used either through one’s smart phone or a Walmart issued hand scanner. Both options allow a customer to scan an item’s barcode while they shop.
“At the end, click ‘finish’ and scan a QR code on any of the self-checkout registers and it’ll total your whole purchase,” Aston explained. "Or if you link a credit card straight to your ‘scan and go’ app on your phone, you can purchase it straight from your phone and not even go to your register.”
“Then you’ll get a bar code, and you’ll still have to go through the front end of the store, and an attendant will scan it and then you’re done - and you don’t even have to touch a register,” he included.
And how do the customers feel about the new device offered?
“I think it’s pretty cool,” expressed Mattie Shepherd, a Friday afternoon Walmart patron. “It makes shopping easier because you can actually see what your total is before getting up to the register. You can scan, and it’ll show your purchases of everything and then what your total is, so you can keep track of what you’re spending and I think that’s cool.”
“The big thing is, for me, is that I’m shopping and I’m like, ‘I need this or this,’" jumped in fellow shopper Caleigh Lackey. "I’m starting to budget, so I’m only getting things that are necessary. So if you’re on a budget like I am, then I think it’s perfect for that.”
“It works fine,” added Mandy Weir about using the new system. “I use the self-check line anyways, but I don’t think it’ll appeal to an older generation because a lady I talked to lately was like, ‘No, I have a dumb phone, and I’m not picking that up in the store.’”
“It appeals more towards the younger generation, absolutely. It's kind of like ‘The Jetsons,’” she chuckled.
Although the technology option may not be for everyone, Aston addresses a recurring question among customers.
“Some are concerned about the cashiers, but we’re not getting rid of the cashiers,” Aston confirmed. “Some of the customers don’t want the technology, so we still have cash registers and cashiers to take care of them."
“It’s about providing customers with additional options to shop,” he affirmed. “It allows customers to shop how they want and gives them back some time. Nobody wants to wait in line to purchase stuff, and if you choose to use this technology, then you won’t have to wait.”
In addition to the handheld update, Aston pointed out a giant orange tower resting directly in front of the store.
“We call it the ‘Pickup Tower,’” Aston clarified. “So for customers that choose to order things online and have it shipped to the store, (they) pay no shipping. Traditionally, if you ordered online to come to the store, you’d have to walk to the back of the store to our service counter, wait for someone to come and retrieve your order and then leave.”
“It wasn’t the best experience. But now, the order comes to us, and we load it into this giant robot, and you can come in and scan the barcode on your smartphone or the printout of your order, and it looks you up and delivers your order,” he articulated. “We put it right at the front of the store where you can be in and out in 20 seconds if you want to.”
Though the “Pickup Tower” is installed, its opening date will be on August 11.
With shopping carts fitted with scanner holders, the new pickup tower, and nearly 100 hand scanners ready for use, Aston went on to say that the Waxahachie location is the first in Ellis County to combine both technologies in one store.
“There’s not anybody else around here, Walmart-wise, that has this,” Aston stated. “Different parts of this program have been tested in different stores, and this is one of the very first, if not the first, that is putting it all together at one time in the same place.”
“The only other one I know of is in Fort Worth,” he noted.
As the updates are in progress, Aston is thankful to his community for the consistent support that allows the Waxahachie branch to offer the new technology options.
“We’re able to do things like this and roll out new stuff because of the tremendous following in this community, and we appreciate it greatly,” Aston concluded.
To connect with Walmart, visit walmart.com or call (972) 937-3460.