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More Retailers Continue Rethinking Self-Checkout Policies

Five Below is yet another retailer to recently announce its changes to its self-checkout strategies in store.

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Five Below (Philadelphia) has joined Target (Minneapolis) and Walmart (Bentonville, Ark.) in announcing its plans to alter its self-checkout strategies, as reported by VMSD.

During a call regarding its 2023 fourth quarter earnings, Five Below outlined its new policy regarding self-checkouts, which includes reducing the amount of self-checkouts, adding attendants to oversee self-checkouts, implementing receipt checking and hiring guards. Though Target didn’t explicitly state that its move to reduce the number of self-checkouts was due to theft, Walmart and other retailers like Dollar General (Goodlettsville, Tenn.) have been open about the hope to deter theft with these policy shifts.

Other retailers like Costco (Issaquah, Wash.) and Safeway (Pleasanton), to name a few, have also begun rethinking self-checkout with Safeway in San Francisco doing away with self-checkout lanes altogether.

The Covid pandemic caused a boom in popularity for self-checkout options as BOPIS (buy online, pick-up in store) and curbside pick-up became the norm. In a recent study, Gen Z was found to have the overwhelming preference of using self-checkout in store, while boomers, millennials and Gen X’ers prefer to interact with a sales associate and/or use a “traditional” checkout lane.

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