In a coup for mobile payments firm Square, the company has announced a partnership with Whole Foods Market.
The deal, Square’s first with a national grocer, will see “select” Whole Food Market stores offer customers an easier way to make payments via its mobile Square Register and software.
By making Square available in sandwich counters, juice and coffee bars, pizzerias, and beer and wine bars, Whole Foods said it will help shoppers skip the main checkout lines and reduce the time it would otherwise take to pay in those areas.
Seven Whole Foods Markets already use the iPad-based Square Stand in Austin, New York City, Florida and the San Francisco Bay Area.
“Together with Square, we’ll deliver options to expedite checkouts, and we look forward to developing new concepts to further simplify and improve grocery shopping,” said Walter Robb, co-CEO of Whole Foods Market.
Among other big customers, Square has a major partnership with Starbucks which uses Square payments technology at its stores.
Testing new mobile concepts
Square said that several of the Whole Foods Markets will serve as “lab stores” for testing new ideas designed to enhance customer service. The high end grocer would seem like a good testing ground for new technology given its digital-savvy customer base.
Whole Foods Market says it has over 700 social media channels and the brand posts about 1,000 messages per day and reaches more than 7 million followers on Facebook and Twitter combined.
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