Sam’s Club Now: A cashier-less shopping experience is coming

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Sam’s Club is planning its first cashier-less location as it tries to play catch up in the mobile-first retailing race that’s being won by Amazon.

RELATED: What Amazon Go’s cashier-less grocery means for customer service

Dallas is the first test ground for Sam’s Club Now

The warehouse club that’s owned by Walmart is readying a Dallas location for a new concept called Sam’s Club Now, according to a blog post.

The new store won’t feature any cashiers at all; rather, shoppers will use a Sam’s Club Now app on their phone to do everything from locating items in the aisles to scanning them to tallying up the final bill and paying.

But just because there won’t be cashiers, it doesn’t mean you won’t be able to find help in aisles. Staffers referred to as “Member Hosts” will be on hand to “serve members better and faster.”

sam's club now member host
Sam’s Club Now

You’ll also be able to use the app to place and pick up an order within an hour.

At just 32,000 square feet, Sam’s Club Now will be only a quarter of the size of a traditional Sam’s Club. The new concept will have a focus on produce, meat and alcohol.

The futuristic store will make use of computer vision, machine learning, artificial intelligence and robotics, among other technologies, to drive innovation in some really novel ways.

For example, electronic shelf labels will instantly update prices on the fly and more than 700 cameras will help “manage inventory in new ways and optimize the layout to make shopping effortless.”

And if you’ve ever fancied your giant cart a tall ship sailing the ocean blue, Sam’s Club CEO Jamie Iannone makes the following promise:

“We also have plans to use augmented reality to transform members’ digital carts into pirate ships. Or maybe you’d prefer a rocket? More on that soon!”

Still, Sam’s Club is fighting from behind in its efforts in this brave new world of retail.

Kroger’s Scan, Bag, Go app is live in about 400 stores, with more coming on board all the time. And Amazon is widely expected to open up to 3,000 cashier-less Amazon Go stores by 2021.

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Theo Thimou About the author:
Theo has co-written several books with Clark Howard, including the New York Times #1 bestseller Living Large in Lean Times. As a single widowed parent of two young children, he strives to bring unique savings tips to men and women like him who must face life without their spouses. He can be reached at [email protected]
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