We’re still getting used to beeping our own groceries at the self-serve checkouts. And now Coles has gone and put the cat amongst the pigeons and has introduced brand new self-service checkouts and customers are pretty divided on the new machines.
The all-new self-service checkouts have been rolled out in many of the supermarket’s flagship stores, with the big difference being that it includes a conveyor belt system, making it accessible for trolleys as well as baskets.
Trolleys Are Not Welcome…Until Now!
Up until now, if you even try and maneuver a trolley towards the self-service line, be prepared for lots of dirty looks. It’s a basket-only zone. Which can prove pretty inconvenient when you have a trolley brimmed with groceries, a screaming toddler and every manned checkout queue is a mile long.
But with the new belted self-check-outs trolleys are now welcome.
The New And Improved Self-Service Checkout
The basket shelf of the check-out machine has been lowered so that smaller trolleys can fit over the top. Just like the existing self-serve outlets, these new ones can also weigh fruit and veggies, scan Flybuys and include shopping bag holders.
So these new machines sound like an improvement to me. But any kind of change always comes with some push-back and Coles has copped all kinds of flack for having the audacity to improve the self-checkout experience for its customers.
Lots of Love
Many shoppers posted their opinions of the new checkout experiences. Some gushed about the new machines.
“It’s just beautiful,” exclaimed one.
“This will make the self-serve checkouts a better experience, not having to ram/cram groceries into tight spots”, said another.
“Love it. Much prefer packing my own bags because they never do it right,” added another customer.
I WON’T Use It!
But many others used the news of the new self-serve checkouts as an opportunity to rant about the whole concept of being able to pay for your groceries yourself.
The main gripe that shoppers had was that the new machines were “taking jobs from people”!
“Young kids looking for part time work, will have nowhere to work soon because everything will be self-serve. I would rather see people employed than go through a self-serve checkout,” moaned another.
You Need To Pay Me To Use It
“I won’t use them. I don’t work for Coles. Employ someone. It’s called customer service. Plus I’m an invalid pensioner and find this very difficult to do,” said one irate customer.
“I’d also expect a discount for doing someone’s job,” said another.
Coles has responded to the debate reassuring shoppers that they will “always have team members available to help customers on our main lane check-outs, (but) for those who prefer self-checkout we are modifying the machines to make them more convenient to use.”
Woolworths Is Making Its Own Advancements
Meanwhile, Woolworths has also introduced some changes to their self-service checkouts. The supermarket has added a new hi-tech feature built in to the scanner mechanism so that when you weigh fresh produce, the intelligent system recognises the item based on its shape, colour and size and then that particular product will appear on the screen.
So if you put an apple on the checkout machine, it will recognise that it’s an apple and will display a variety of apple types on the screen so you can pick the correct one.
A Woolworths spokesperson said it makes the self-serve “that little bit faster” as well as improving the accuracy of product selection for shoppers.
Do you use the self-service checkouts at the supermarket? What do you think of the improvements Coles and Woolworths are making with their self-service machines? Tell us in the comments below.