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6 Retail Checkout Counter Ideas for Higher Sales & Happier Customers

Nobody likes waiting in line. But if they have to, at least give them the best experience possible.

Although online shopping is booming and has been for several years, retail stores still attract many consumers who enjoy physically shopping and meeting with friends for some retail therapy.

You might think that a retail checkout counter is where customers pay for their products. This is true, of course — but it’s much more than that. Sometimes it’s the first point of contact a customer has with employees. It can be the visual representation of your brand. And it can be a place where customers find deals, gifts, and other things that leave a lasting impression.

After reading this blog, you’ll have ideas to transform your checkout counter and delight your customers so they keep coming back and increasing sales.


Boost Sales and Delight Customers With These 6 Retail Counter Checkout Ideas

E-commerce stores are constantly trying to improve the online checkout experience. The main aim is to make the checkout experience frictionless and easy. With excellent experiences online, customers want the same level of service in-store, too.

Retail checkout counters are no longer just where customers complete their purchases. They’re a chance to enhance your brand, encourage impulse buying, and set the mood.

Retail point of sale (POS) systems are changing how customers check out. From BOPIS (Buy Online Pick up In-Store) to transaction speed, a modern and sleek POS makes your retail checkout counter look more appealing and improves functionality.

You can implement these retail checkout ideas in just about any store to create an inspiring and customer-driven shopping experience. If you don’t evolve and modernize your checkout experience, you’ll fail to meet customer expectations and potentially lose business.



1. Make it Attractive

If customers are looking for your checkout counter in-store, you want to make it easy. It should stand out. Once they find it, what do you want them to see if they're waiting in line? A dull display with no warmth?

It’s much more appealing to have a well-lit, warm, and inviting checkout counter. Depending on your business, how can your checkout counter represent your brand? For example, a store that sells exclusive whiskeys might have a rustic and minimal aesthetic. Conversely, an electronics store might have a more modern look.

To represent your brand, you could have a TV or customer display to reinforce your brand and products or display messaging that resonates with your customers. Display your uniqueness and make your checkout counter memorable with art and plants that might boost the mood of your customers.

Lastly, you might have online catalogs set up on your checkout counter for shoppers to browse products you might only stock online.


2. Encourage Impulse Buys With Smart Ideas

The space near your checkout counter is perfect for encouraging impulse buys. Customers have already decided to buy from you, so why not introduce products that complement a customer’s purchase to increase average sales and order value?

Impulse buys are an advantage for brick and mortar stores, with 80 percent of consumers making their impulse purchases in store rather than online.

Some great ideas for impulse buys are:

  • Gift cards
  • Travel-sized products
  • Seasonal products
  • Food and beverages
  • Gum

Think of things customers can buy on their way out. If they’re on brand, even better.

Impulse purchases don’t only need to be complimentary items. A modern POS system can track customer trends and help you stay informed about top sellers. You could make impulse buys and upsells more visible with signs, placing them near top sellers, and bundling them together to leverage the data you collect.

You might also make recommendations to customers with vibrant displays and clever messaging. ‘People also bought,’ ‘Highly rated,’ and ‘Most wished for’ are great examples.


3. Think Like Your Customers

With customers wanting a seamless experience between online and in-store shopping, there are creative ways you can marry the two and deliver a connected shopping experience.

BOPIS and curbside pickups are convenient and speedy ways for customers to shop. If your store can offer same-day order fulfillment, you’re better equipped to compete with online retailers.

Even though COVID-19 is less prominent today, some customers won’t feel comfortable shopping in-store. BOPIS is a great way to show them that you care about their safety. Customer and employee safety also extends to your checkout counters. It’s still a good idea to have hand sanitizer and encourage visitors to maintain a safe distance from other people.

The human element of shopping in-store is still essential, however. Interacting face-to-face with customers enables your employees to develop relationships with customers and help solve problems they might have in a helpful way.

Lastly, with inventory management integrated with your point of sale, you can be sure products are in stock in your store if they search online first.


4. Alternative Payment Methods Speed up the Checkout Process

Debit and credit cards are still the most popular payment method, but digital wallets are catching up. Since 2020, 59 percent of survey respondents have started using or increasing their digital wallets.

Faster payments mean more customers in and out of your shop. 12 percent of consumers said they’d consider shopping elsewhere if a store’s checkout lines were too long. A modern POS system allows for multiple payment options, including cash, credit card, check, debit card, EBT, and mobile pay.

Contactless payment technology also allows for a fast, secure, and sanitary checkout experience, keeping customers and employees safe.


5. Start Thinking About an Advanced POS System

Modern POS systems are modern and sleek. They look better and are more compact, so you can do more in a limited space and present a clutter-free and aesthetically-pleasing counter.

A modern retail POS system includes a touchscreen computer, cash drawer, barcode scanner, pinpad, and receipt printer. But there can be a variety of hardware and software add-ons to improve the customer experience, from customer displays to mobile inventory.

Advanced POS systems function quicker, and there’s less waiting in line with advancements like customized hotkeys and less looking up SKUs and PLUs. With mobile inventory management, employees don’t need to leave the shop floor to see whether items are in stock.

Collecting customer feedback and details is crucial to building a mutually-beneficial relationship with your customers. Depending on your information, you might see online order and browsing history, wish list items, and shopping preferences. The more touch points you have, the better.

The more a customer visits your store, the more you can delight them. You might reward them with coupons, punch cards, loyalty programs, and promotions, which you can highlight at your checkout counter.

Related Read: 3 Tips to Find the Best Retail POS Software for Your Store


Implement These Retail Checkout Counter Ideas and Start Seeing the Benefits

To tie it all together, marry modern aesthetics with a modern POS system to make your customers’ shopping experience something they will remember. The benefits are clear; a faster and streamlined checkout experience for your customers and employees, and a chance to show your brand in its best light. 

If you’re looking for a modern POS system and feel overwhelmed with the options, or maybe you’re unsure which features you need for your business, here are two steps to help you decide:

Step 1: Get the Retail POS Buyers’ Guide to see what other features a modern POS system can provide.

Step 2: Schedule a customized demo. Our team can show you the ins and outs of our retail POS system and how it enhances the customer experience.



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