Since Square was able to broker a deal with Starbucks to get their payment platform in use at their coffee shops, all has been fairly quiet for the mobile payment giant in terms of acquiring new big ticket contracts. However, that all changed recently when Square and Whole Foods got together to talk about integrating Square Register as their cash register engine for everywhere in the store except the checkout lines.In 2013, Square released a new piece of hardware called Stand that was crafted specifically for larger retailers like Whole Foods who wanted a professional looking and durable POS stand without the price and expensive setup fees. As the two companies appear to have made a deal, it also looks that investment into the Square Stand technology is beginning to pay off.
Though the deal will not put Square Register at every checkout line, it will put them at every other kiosk throughout their stores including the sandwich counters, juice and coffee bars, pizzerias, and beer and wine bars. This move is aimed at making the checkout experience much faster and easier for customers who in some cases had to stand in line with their sandwiches at the checkouts in front of the store with the grocery shoppers or wait for clunky push-button style registers at kiosks in a given department. All of these transactions will now be handled using Square Register on their Stand hardware instead.
While this move will make it faster for the customers going through the Square-powered checkouts, it should also cut down on the lines at the main checkouts that were cluttered with some of these customers as well. In theory, the move will not only make it a better experience for some of the customers, but all of them. Whole Foods did an estimated $13 billion in sale during 2013, so Square is anxious to get the program up and running and Whole Foods is excited to be a leader in the mobile payment revolution that is growing every day.
While Whole Foods has plenty to gain from this deal, Square comes out as the clear winner overall. Not only will they make transaction fees on a good chunk of the purchases at Whole Foods, but they also get another big name business on the chalkboard that is using their payment systems. It is also another step forward for Square Wallet since customers at the grocery vendor will be able to use it to pay for their items even faster. Lastly, Whole Foods even agreed to be a “laboratory” for new Square products and test them ion a real-world environment. Though it serves their interests to help Square create a better product, it is clear the Square is getting perks across the board with this latest deal.