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Hy-Vee to introduce 'frictionless' shopping with new 'Scan & Go' system

Rochester’s four Hy-Vee grocery stores will soon offer a “Scan & Go” option that allows customers to scan items with their phone.

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Rochester’s four Hy-Vee grocery stores will soon offer a “Scan & Go” option that allows customers to scan items with their phone.
Contributed / Hy-Vee
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ROCHESTER – “Frictionless” shopping is on its way to Rochester’s Hy-Vee grocery stores with the introduction of a “Scan & Go” option that allows customers to scan items with their phone.

To use Scan & Go, customers download a Hy-Vee app to their smartphone and then use the phone’s camera to scan and pay for cans of soup, ice cream or even produce. On the way out, customers scan a QR Code at the Scan & Go bagging kiosk and then they leave with their groceries.

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“Hy-Vee’s Scan & Go service provides added convenience to busy customers who are ‘on the go,’” wrote Hy-vee’s Assistant Vice President of Communications Christina Gayman this week. “The initial rollout of our Hy-Vee Scan & Go checkout option begins next week at all four Rochester Hy-Vee grocery store locations.”

Scan & Go works with Hy-Vee’s Fuel Saver Rewards program and allows the use of digital coupons. However, print coupons can’t be used for this type of shopping.

For produce, customers weigh it themselves and scan a barcode on the scale screen.

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If a customer scans an alcohol or tobacco product, they will be flagged, and an employee will need to check the shopper’s identification. The system will also flag “a percentage of orders” for random review by employees.

Hy-Vee introduced this service at almost 50 Midwest stores this summer as a pilot program. The Iowa-based grocer is the latest in a string of retailers experimenting with this type of shopping that was first introduced at Amazon’s brick-and-mortar stores.

While it has gone well for Hy-Vee so far, another grocery chain, Wegmans, recently pulled the plug on a similar program due to “losses.” Wegmans rolled out its version of frictionless shopping in 2019.

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Jeff Kiger writes a daily column, "Heard Around Rochester," in addition to writing articles about local businesses, Mayo Clinic, IBM, Hormel Foods, Crenlo and others. The opinions of my employer do not necessarily reflect my opinions. He has worked in Rochester for the Post Bulletin since 1999. Send tips to jkiger@postbulletin.com or via Twitter to @whereskiger . You can call him at 507-285-7798.
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