Retail

Every business must have a hassle-free and fast billing process as it’s the last step in the customers’ journey. A smooth billing process helps you increase customer satisfaction and may help you drive them towards your business again. 
A well-oiled billing process reduces customer wait-time and takes customer safety and security into account. The billing checklist helps you create and monitor the appropriate operating procedure for your billing mechanism at your store.

In the retail industry, the billing process has to be smooth and secure. A bill should not be printed without the presence of the customers for safety and security reasons. When a bill is printed in front of the customer, the chances of discrepancies are reduced.
1. Introduction
A billing checklist in the retail sector ensures minimum customer wait time, maximum engagement from customers, and efficient store and staff management. In addition, it results in increased customer satisfaction and customer loyalty.
2. Process
Billing counters have become more critical in the post-pandemic world, with new rules and protocols coming into the picture. The trend of contactless deliveries, cashless shopping, and social distancing has made billing counters an essential aspect of the entire retail shopping experience. However, if a bill gets printed without any customer being present, this shows negligence on the store’s part while also implying customer dissatisfaction.
Billing counters are best operated from a cloud-based system in the pandemic world. Give customers access to scanners and mobile applications to utilize cashless payments and contactless shopping experiences.
The consumer experience starts when they enter the store and ends with the billing experience. If customers shops from a store, then billing experience & time become a critical touchpoint. If a customer has to wait for a longer duration, it makes him impatient, and he often leaves the store without purchasing anything. On the other hand, if the billing experience offered is quick & smooth, the shopper exits the store with a positive brand image.
3. Dos
a. The billing process must be easy & quick.
b. Availability of multiple billing counters to handle high footfall & peak sales is essential.
c. Inform the customer of the available schemes, membership cards, loyalty points & ways to redeem them.
d. The clerk at the counter must give the total number of items, discount, and final bill amount confirmation before bill finalization.
e. Hand over the hard copy of the bill to the customer.
f. Make sure you have ample change at each counter.
4. Don’ts
a. Do not use complicated software.
b. Do not ignore the training of the staff.
c. Do not talk to customers rudely.
d. Do not forget to explain to the customers the return policy, discounts, and coupon offers.

While the billing process is taking place, a staff member should always assist the customer. Even at self-check-out counters, customers could require a staff member’s assistance. In addition, a bad billing experience may negatively impact a customer’s perception. It is therefore imperative that the customers’ billing process is smooth and hassle-free.
1. Introduction
Customer engagement plays a significant role in the brand image. Therefore, an attentive staff member should be present at the billing counter at all times to assist the customer with their payments or other such inquiries. Failure to do so can negatively affect the establishment and may even discourage customers from revisiting the store.
2. Process
Many times, it is the counter attendants who are the primary people to interact with the customers. They should greet the customers politely and perhaps, exchange a few pleasantries and then diligently go about scanning and ringing up the items that the customer wishes to purchase. If there is no staff member present to tend to the customers’ billing, then chances are, it may reflect a poor image of the professionalism of the establishment. Such an incident can also cause anxiety and frustration for the customer, especially if they are in a hurry to go somewhere. Hence, the retail industry must give proper training to its employees regarding good work ethics and social/moral etiquette.
3. Dos
a. Ensure that the cash counter attendant should be present, attentive, and accommodative towards the customers.
b. Make sure that employees are appropriately trained as that will contribute to the efficiency of the services provided to the customer.
4. Don’ts
a. Do not make the customer wait unnecessarily, especially if all they want to do is ask a simple question or have their payment done.
b. Do not react adversely if a customer gets frustrated for having made them wait. Instead, be calm and patient and try your best to resolve any issue that they have raised.

Pilferage is a common concern in the retail industry. The employees should not open cash till without the presence of the customers. If any such activity is detected, it should be reported to the concerned authorities immediately to avoid any sign of potential theft.