The NAMA Show 2021– Ninety percent of people used unattended retail as much or more during the pandemic according to a recent survey by Cantaloupe, Inc. (Nasdaq: CTLP) (“Cantaloupe” or the “Company”), a digital payments and software services company that provides end-to-end technology solutions for the unattended retail market. However, according to the survey, younger consumers were the most likely to increase usage during that period. Twenty-three percent of respondents between the age of 18-34 said that the pandemic increased their usage of unattended retail, compared to 18 percent of 35–54-year-olds, and only 4 percent of respondents over 55 years of age.
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The Future of Unattended Retail (photo: Cantaloupe, Inc)
Nearly half of consumers who increased usage in unattended retail during the pandemic cited speed (49 percent), social distancing (49 percent) and convenience (47 percent) as reasons for the increase. Sixty-eight percent of those respondents noted in the survey it is important to have a touchless option post-pandemic.
“We learned a great deal from the pandemic, particularly the resiliency of unattended retail which was tested to its core,” said Sean Feeney, chief executive officer, Cantaloupe, Inc. “As we look ahead, it’s clear that consumers like unattended retail, it’s very sticky, and our software and payments platform opens the door to many sales channels for our operators. How we continue to evolve the industry to keep pace with the expectations of consumers must also factor in what is important to younger shoppers. Having diverse payment options, being able to buy nontraditional items and ensuring the data security of payments should be top of mind for every operator now.”
Forty-one percent of respondents who purchased an item through an unattended channel in the three months prior to the survey said unattended options make them more likely to shop in a retailer’s other channels in the future.
Other findings include:
Range of Payment Options Important to Younger Shoppers
While debit and credit are the most preferred payment method overall (67 percent), nearly one in five respondents (19 percent) noted preferring cash, and 12 percent preferring payment apps like Venmo, Google Pay and others. Interestingly, among those respondents between 18-34, 25 percent prefer cash. This compares to only 11 percent of participants 55 and over.
Shoppers More Interested in Purchasing Health & Beauty and Clothing from Vending Machines than Two Years Ago
Eighty-two percent of consumers have some interest in purchasing non-traditional items from a vending machine, and the increase has grown significantly since 2019, the time of the last survey. Clothing showed the greatest two-year increase with 70 percent of respondents interested in purchasing these items now, versus only 55 percent in 2019. Health and beauty showed a significant increase as well with 71 percent in 2021 versus 64 percent in 2019.
The Speed of Unattended Retail Greatest Driver to Increased Usage
Sixty percent of respondents (versus 49 percent in 2019) noted the speed of unattended retail was driving usage overall with 45 percent of respondents noting that not having to talk to a store employee and having shorter lines were also key drivers (compared to 35 percent in 2019, respectively).
Worth noting, however, is that while a growing number of respondents said that improvements in data security were driving usage (18 percent in 2021 versus 10 percent in 2019), this is especially likely among younger consumers. Thirty percent of 18-34-year-olds say that data security is a driver of usage, compared to only 12 percent of respondents age 35-54 and 6 percent of older respondents age 55 and over.
More than Half of Respondents Use Unattended Retail At Least Once a Month
Of those who purchased products through unattended retail in the three months prior to the survey, 37 percent said they continue to make purchases through unattended once per week, with 19 percent purchasing once a month.
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Cantaloupe’s findings are based on the results of a U.S. consumer survey by CITE Research which targeted samples of more than 2,000 census-based U.S. adults each balanced by gender, geography and age group, fielded from June 1-8, 2021. The survey was completed through proprietary sample sources among panels who participate in online surveys.
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About Cantaloupe, Inc.
Cantaloupe, Inc. is a software and payments company that provides end-to-end technology solutions for the unattended retail market. Cantaloupe is transforming the unattended retail community by offering one integrated solution for payments processing, logistics, and back-office management. The Company’s enterprise-wide platform is designed to increase consumer engagement and sales revenue through digital payments, digital advertising and customer loyalty programs, while providing retailers with control and visibility over their operations and inventory. As a result, customers ranging from vending machine companies to operators of micro-markets, gas and car charging stations, laundromats, metered parking terminals, kiosks, amusements and more, can run their businesses more proactively, predictably, and competitively.
All statements other than statements of historical fact included in this release, including without limitation Cantaloupe’s future prospects and performance, the business strategy and the plans and objectives of Cantaloupe’s management for future operations, are forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. When used in this release, words such as “may,” “could,” “expect,” “intend,” “plan,” “seek,” “anticipate,” “believe,” “estimate,” “guidance,” “predict,” “potential,” “continue,” “likely,” “will,” “would” and variations of these terms and similar expressions, or the negative of these terms or similar expressions, as they relate to Cantaloupe or its management, may identify forward-looking statements. Such forward-looking statements are based on the reasonable beliefs of Cantaloupe’s management, as well as assumptions made by and information currently available to Cantaloupe’s management. Actual results could differ materially from those contemplated by the forward-looking statements as a result of certain factors, including but not limited to the incurrence by Cantaloupe of any unanticipated or unusual non-operational expenses which would require us to divert our cash resources from achieving our business plan; the uncertainties associated with COVID-19, including its possible effects on Cantaloupe’s operations, financial condition and the demand for Cantaloupe’s products and services; the ability of Cantaloupe to predict or estimate its future quarterly or annual revenue and expenses given the developing and unpredictable market for its products; the ability of Cantaloupe to retain key customers from whom a significant portion of its revenues is derived; the ability of Cantaloupe to compete with its competitors to obtain market share; the ability of Cantaloupe to make available and successfully upgrade current customers to new standards and protocols; whether Cantaloupe’s existing or anticipated customers purchase, rent or utilize ePort or Seed devices or our other products or services in the future at levels currently anticipated by Cantaloupe; disruptions to our systems, breaches in the security of transactions involving our products or services, or failure of our processing systems; or other risks discussed in Cantaloupe’s filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. Any forward-looking statement made by us in this release speaks only as of the date of this release. Unless required by law, Cantaloupe does not undertake to release publicly any revisions to these forward-looking statements to reflect future events or circumstances or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events. If Cantaloupe updates one or more forward-looking statements, no inference should be drawn that Cantaloupe will make additional updates with respect to those or other forward-looking statements.