The only thing more exhausting than doing grocery every month is waiting in long queues to get to the cashier and clear payments. Right? Well, this isn’t something to worry about anymore because stores with self-checkout lanes are here to save your day! You can use the store app to scan the products, see the bill and pay online without any employee help. 

Stores with self checkout allow customers to scan the products themselves, see the bill on the screen and then pay online. Some of these options include Kroger, Target, Fred Meyer, Walmart, and Lowe’s. The technology is new and therefore, presents certain errors but there is no doubt that self-checkout lanes are here to stay!

Are There Stores With Self Checkout Lanes?

Not all stores, local and big retailers, in the US have introduced self-checkout lanes yet but it can be said that the technology is now found at more outlets than it was a couple of years back. Those who want to experience it themselves should visit the following stores: 

  1. Walmart
  2. Kroger
  3. Target
  4. Fred Meyer
  5. Amazon Go
  6. Lowe’s
  7. Meijer
  8. Publix
  9. 7-Eleven
  10. Costco
  11. Food Lion
  12. Albertsons
  13. Safeway
  14. The Home Depot
  15. IKEA
  16. BJ’s Wholesale Club
  17. Dollar General
  18. Hy-Vee
  19. Giant Eagle
  20. Winn-Dixie
  21. Hannaford
  22. Sam’s Club
  23. HEB
  24. Save Mart Supermarkets
  25. ShopRite
  26. Mariano’s
  27. Raley’s Shoppers
  28. Whole Foods
  29. Shoppers
  30. Lagerhaus
  31. Take&Go

Please note that Whole Foods, Costco, 7-Eleven and Dollar General offer self checkout lane in limited locations only. Sam’s Club, Public, HEB, Kroger, Giant Eagle and Meijer have self checkout service in apps as well.

Why Are Some Stores Avoiding Self Checkout Service?

I was personally excited to try out Target’s self-checkout lanes when they were first introduced. I also thought that grocery stores with self-checkout lanes would be quite useful since they can considerably cut back the time needed to pay for the purchase.

Well, at least until the service started bombarding me with errors like “wait for assistance”, “items in the bags are invalid” etc.

These errors are not common but they do occur and, ultimately, you have to seek guidance from the staff to complete payment at the checkout. 

The reason why most stores avoid self-checkout service is because it presents a challenge to customers as well as to the company. The machines are costly, often break down or have software issues and clients are not used to this mode of payment yet making it more time-consumers than traditional checkout lanes.

Inappropriate self-checkout service has also been linked with an increased number of walkaways. Imagine someone getting only a couple of snacks and then checking out through these lanes. If there are any issues with the payment, the buyer would prefer to leave the items instead of getting back in the cashier-operated lane especially if it’s crowded.

Another issue is often presented with products that have faulty barcodes. The cashier would still need to walk in and enter the code manually. No point in getting in self-checkout after all?

Is Self Checkout Useful?

If this technology is so unloved, why are big retailers endorsing it, one after the other?

The truth is that, despite its shortcomings, self-checkout has a lot to offer. The minor glitches in the system can be overlooked when considering the bigger picture i.e. reduction in crowding over traditional checkout lanes, quicker payments for clients, and automated shopping overall.

There is limited data to support that self-checkout paces up the process.

The stores that have not yet opted for it, however, are concerned with the fear of missing out on something that may enhance buyer satisfaction. 

Interaction-free checkout also became popular amidst the Covid-19 pandemic years when the customers were glad to know that they could, somehow, avoid coming in contact with the cashier and employees.

Why Are Some Retailers Rethinking Self Checkout Service

Even the best stores with self-checkout are reconsidering this facility. What seemed like a great way to reduce shopping time and provide users with an excellent experience is turning out to be awful.


Some of the prominent stores that have either reversed self-checkout or plan to do so shortly include:

  1. Dollar General
  2. ShopRite
  3. Walmart
  4. Costco
  5. Target
  6. Booths
  7. Five Below

The reason is that over the past few years, customers have been dissatisfied with the facility and the backlash has been growing. Booth’s Managing Director, Nigel Murray, also shared, “Our customers have told us this over time – that the self-scan machines that we’ve got in our stores … can be slow, they can be unreliable and they are impersonal.”

Customers have repeatedly faced purchase confirmation issues when shopping via self-checkout lanes. For example, if someone plans to buy alcohol, the process will be stopped since someone needs to step in and confirm that the buyer is of the right age. 

The lanes are also losing credibility because of theft. Although the latest technology includes cameras, scammers are still getting away with more than just candy bars. According to one report, 15% of Americans admit to stealing from self-checkout lanes an average order of $60.

Before You Go!

Businesses thrive over customer satisfaction. Why do you think BNPL instant approval websites have become so popular? They provide clients with a sense of control and “win” over contemporary methods of shopping. The same can be said about self-checkout lanes!

Some stores give most cash back in addition to providing self-checkout service. Don’t forget to read about these before you leave! You can also explore how to shop online and pay with a checking account if you are not in the mood to do in-store grocery this month.

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