How Tractor Supply Company Is Upgrading Its In-Store Experience
The US rural lifestyle retailer is using technology to transform its brick-and-mortar stores with speedier customer service and touch-to-pay transactions.
Today, when you can shop online and pay in just a few clicks – no checkout line required – you expect the same seamless experience when heading into a brick-and-mortar store.
That’s where technology comes in.
Tractor Supply Company, the largest rural lifestyle retailer in the United States, was looking to help its stores evolve to meet the growing demands for frictionless and convenient shopping experiences.
For Tractor Supply, supporting its customers is an important part of its legacy, as the retailer has been serving recreational farmers, ranchers and outdoors enthusiasts for more than 80 years.
By upgrading its suite of retail technologies for employees, Tractor Supply has been able to further its legacy of customer service by spending less time on transactions and more time building connections. Here’s how:
More efficient in-store shopping
By equipping around 2,000 of its stores with Honeywell’s handheld computers, Tractor Supply Company is now able to bring the checkout counter to customers. This means less time waiting in line and makes for an overall speedier shopping experience.
Take this scenario that brings many Tractor Supply customers into stores: the need to refill a propane tank, whether for grilling, camping or other outdoor activities.
With technology that lets employees serve customers anywhere in the store and facilitate touchless payment on-the-spot, the retailer was able to reduce the duration of an average propane tank refill by 93%, from seven minutes to 30 seconds.
Improved communication with customers
The messages that come after you make a purchase – a digital receipt, information helping you return or exchange your order, or estimated delivery or pickup times – are just as important as the shopping experience itself.
For retailers, having a sound system for communicating about customers’ order status is more important than ever to establishing and building loyalty. According to a 2021 survey from Narvar, 77% of shoppers who had a positive return experience with a new retailer said they would shop there again.
Tractor Supply Company turned to technology to help boost its communication with customers so they receive meaningful notifications about their order statuses and when their products are ready for pickup at a store.
Customers aren’t the only ones who benefit from convenient retail experiences.
The teams behind the counters, in the storerooms and behind the screen serving online shoppers need the right technology to meet growing demands for speed and efficiency.
That also means having systems in place to support employees with their technology.
By using Honeywell’s cloud-based operational intelligence software in its stores, Tractor Supply Company team members can get streamlined information about their devices, such as location and battery health, to ensure stores’ inventory of devices are charged and ready to go for a day’s work.
Tractor Supply said that with its technology upgrades across the operations, in addition to increasing speed of service, the retailer has improved inventory accuracy, strengthened its loyalty program, boosted employee efficiency and focused more on building customer relationships.
“We are empowering our team members and making their jobs easier so that they can better serve the Life Out Here customer with the solutions they need in a convenient way. This requires a technology platform that works as hard as they do,” said Robert Mills, Executive Vice President, Chief Technology, Digital Commerce and Strategy Officer at Tractor Supply.
Learn more about how technology is helping retailers adapt to changing consumer behaviors and provide memorable and more efficient shopping experiences.