Autonomous Checkout: Ginger Market @ SJSU

At San Jose State University, Ginger Market is a popular spot for students to grab snacks, beverages, and pre-made meals—so popular, in fact, that consistent crowds and lengthy lines were the norm.

With Compass Digital Labs looking to expand the Autonomous Checkout footprint, the Chartwells team at SJSU jumped on the opportunity to be the first Autonomous Checkout store in Silicon Valley and provide seamless checkout to their tech-savvy campus.

Making Checkout a Breeze

Since the campus hadn’t seen anything like Autonomous Checkout before, marketing was critical to ensure the new technology was clear to users and easily adopted. With pandemic restrictions limiting options for a typical launch event, it took a collaborative effort between Standard AI, Chartwells, and CDL to create an outreach strategy that would make the most impact. This included:

  • Spreading the Word: The promotional materials all contained the simple key message of “Check in with Boost. Shop. Carry Out.” which highlighted how convenient shopping at Ginger Market had become. A strong media outreach strategy helped broadcast the benefits of Autonomous Checkout even further.
  • Encouraging Seamless Adoption: People already using Boost had access to in-app announcements and walkthroughs on how to use the new technology. Preparing students for the upcoming product feature was critical in sparking inspiration to test out the innovative retail experience.
  • Embracing Student Ambassadorship: To establish familiarity with the new retail concept right away, several student influencers were chosen to test the new technology and show their classmates the benefits of using Boost to do their shopping. The students utilized their own social media accounts to promote the updated marketplace as well.

…It is very convenient after a long day to just grab a snack and go without having to worry about being in line. I just get my receipt after a few minutes and I’m pretty much good to go.

SJSU Student

Results

The Autonomous Retail launch was a massive success, with Ginger Market growing to become the most popular brand in Boost—in fact, even several local news stations took note. Students couldn’t wait to try out the high-tech new way to shop, with many in disbelief that something that felt so futuristic was right there on campus for them to enjoy. Within five weeks of launching Autonomous Checkout, we saw:

55%
of all Boost transactions at SJSU were through Ginger Market
14
Media hits, incl. 4 broadcast
+76%
Net Sales for Autonomous Checkout vs total Net Sales from the Village Market (#1 Boost brand from previous semester @ SJSU)
65%
of all Boost Brand Net Sales (combined, over one semester) made by Autonomous Checkout in 5 weeks

…With Autonomous Checkout, it’s going to be a quick go and grab and I think that’s going to be an attractive thing for a lot of people. Because who wants to wait in lines?

SJSU Student

Autonomous Checkout is redefining the way students perceive campus dining. This new technology transformed lengthy lines and unpredictable wait times into a quick and easy shopping that people can look forward to. Ginger Market guests now have the freedom to get what they want, on their own time.