Walmart’s Sam’s Club rolling out Scan & Go Fuel

Stewart Samuel
Program Director - Canada
@RetailAnalysis

Date : 17 September 2020

Following a pilot programme, Sam’s Club is rolling out Scan & Go for fuel purchases.

National roll-out by the end of the year

Scan & Go has been hugely popular with Sam’s Club members, with usage increasing significantly since the start of the pandemic. Member adoption rate has doubled over the past 12 months. The retailer is building on this with a mobile pay-at-the-pump experience than brings together the convenience of contactless payments and fast service. The company plans to launch Scan& Go Fuel in 70 Sam’s Clubs initially, before a full roll-out to all 518 clubs by the end of the year.

Source: Sam’s Club

How it works

Accessible within the Sam’s Club app, customers access the service by selecting the Scan& Go icon, scanning a QR code at the pump, selecting the method of payment and begin fuelling. A receipt is emailed once the transaction is complete. This has the potential to be developed into a pay ahead programme. Several companies, including BP, enable customers to pre-order coffee, food and pay for fuel from their cars. Car manufacturers are also equipping some new vehicles with the capability to pay for fuel from an infotainment screen.

Front-end focus

Improving the checkout experience continues to be a focus for Walmart across the business. Currently, it is testing a new cashier-free concept within one Supercenter, where the traditional lanes have been replaced with an open area lined by checkouts. While each station can operate as a self-checkout, the retailer also offers a full-service experience. Cashiers in the store have transitioned to a new ‘host’ role to support customers. As part of the launch of the Walmart+ membership programme, Walmart has made Scan & Go available as one of the perks of the service across its stores. This follows-on from two major tests of the technology that did not move to a roll-out. However, the pandemic is likley to have spurred the retailer's interest and customer usage of this technology, creating the conditions for another push at Walmart.

COVID-19 accelerating retailer progress

More broadly across the industry, we expect to see further innovations at the front-end, with several key developments over the last few months. These include Circle K’s partnership with Standard Cognition, the launch of the Amazon Dash Cart and Giant Eagle’s pilot with Grabango. The pandemic has accelerated the plans of many retailers to introduce a cashier-free, or contactless, checkout and payment experience.

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