Sam’s Club expands Scan and Go solution

Dan Berthiaume
Senior Editor, Technology
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Sam’s Club wants to make it easier for consumers to shop its stores — and have items shipped to their homes.

The warehouse club chain, a subsidiary of Walmart, is piloting a new delivery feature for its in-store contactless, “Scan & Go” mobile payment solution that it debuted in 2016. The new pilot enables shoppers to place direct-to-home orders in the aisle by scanning merchandise included in the program. With one digital transaction, customers can purchase an item and schedule delivery, usually within three to five business days. The new feature, called Scan & Ship, is integrated into the Scan & Go solution in the Sam’s Club app. 

Scan & Ship is designed to offer an immediate in-store solution for items that require large vehicles to transport such as playsets, patio furniture, mattresses, large TVs, and grills. Customers can also use the feature to select alternate colors and sizes unavailable in the store. 

According to Sam’s Club, positive user reviews indicate that many customers enjoy the Scan & Go feature, which expanded to all Sam’s Club fuel stations in 2020. The retailer says the Scan & Go adoption rate increased 43.5% year-over-year in the first quarter of 2021.

Currently, three locations are participating in the pilot, including the Sam’s Club Now Dallas-based innovation lab, to allow the retailer to gather customer feedback and modify functionality within the app before scaling to additional locations. Scan & Ship is the result of an internal program called the Innovation Jam, which encourages associates to collaborate and develop prospective retail technology solutions during a two-day, sprint-like event.

In addition to piloting Scan & Ship, Sam’s Club launched a new feature at all stores in July 2021 that gives customers who don’t currently have the Sam’s Club app an opportunity to demo the Scan & Go feature without having to download it, using instant app software. This enables customers to initially try Scan & Go without taking up storage on their devices.

The feature uses Near Field Communication (NFC) technology and only requires scanning a QR code to begin use. The demo, which allows customers to key in a payment option, can be used for purchases up to three times before a message prompts the user to download the Sam's Club app.

“We challenge ourselves every day to develop and execute convenient solutions that disrupt the warehouse model and provide additional value to our members,” said Tim Simmons, senior VP and chief product officer at Sam’s Club. “Just like Scan & Go, Scan & Ship gives members greater control of their shopping experience. It’s exciting to see our team develop and launch the Scan & Ship pilot so quickly, and it’s got great potential to deliver the ultimate omnichannel member experience across our entire chain.”

Sam’s Club operates nearly 600 stores in the U.S. and Puerto Rico.