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Self-service coin counters a great asset for new grocery operations

Self-service coin counters may be a useful asset for foreign grocers entering the U.S. market.

Among the assets a new grocery store should have is self-service coin counters. The machines can be a valuable asset to the store itself and savvy shoppers who keep change. The ability to convert loose change into cash through a ticket is a useful tool that can also lead to increased purchasing in-store. Grocers may want to demonstrate they serve shoppers' basic needs beyond selling products, and having counters can be an effective way to accomplish this. This is especially the case when the grocer has no prior presence in the U.S.

Foreign grocers can gain a lot through self-service coin counters

One grocer that will likely make a major impact on U.S. soil in the coming years is Lidl. Based in Germany, Lidl's approach is similar in many ways to competitor Aldi. It uses a very straightforward approach to grocery shopping: Items are stacked on the pallets they were shipped on, and customers shop off them. As a result, labor costs are low, which improves profit margins. Lidl also offers more branded items and locally-sourced produce.

Lidl intends to significantly expand in the U.S. in the coming years. While no stores have opened yet or have even been planned, the company is slowly building up its foundation behind the scenes, according to Supermarket News. The company announced a regional headquarters and distribution center will be built in Alamance County, North Carolina, located in the center of the state between the Greensboro and Raleigh-Durham metropolitan areas. With a distribution center in place, the grocer can open stores throughout the southeastern part of the country. The news comes after the company announced a new American corporate headquarters in Arlington, Virginia.

A foreign grocer like Lidl will likely need to make changes to better suit the American market. While no-frills shopping maintains a minimum scope in terms of what assets are on site, self-service coin counters could fit into the shopping model well. The machines are simple to use, and any person can operate them. They require little assistance from store employees at any point in the process. Shoppers can grab the receipt and get it processed into cash or store credit, returning money to the business. The low amount of overhead to operate the machine makes it an effective addition to any supermarket.

September 16, 2015