Paper till receipts set to be replaced by ‘confirmation emails’
Paper receipts are likely to be abandoned by most major retailers within five years, with customers having confirmation of their purchases emailed to them, industry experts are predicting.
Instead, major chains including Tesco are looking into setting up a paperless receipts system, similar to one already used by technology giant Apple in its stores.
Under the proposals, shoppers will have confirmation of their purchases emailed to them instead of printed.
Former Tesco chief executive Lord MacLaurin, who has invested in a firm called Paperless Receipts, said: “Why, when most transactions are recorded digitally, are retailers still printing on paper?
“They are environmentally damaging and onerous for the consumer to store safely.”
Paperless Receipts has raised €585,000 from private investors, is backed by computing firm IBM and is in talks with major retailers including Tesco.
Its system differs from the one used by Apple in that the electronic receipt is emailed to a dedicated web address – which the customer can access – rather than the shopper’s general email inbox.
Managing director Andrew Carroll said: “Within five years, 60 to 70 per cent of retailers will offer e-receipts in the UK.
“When receipts are emailed to you, your email inbox gets cluttered up with receipts instead of your pockets. What we offer is a centralised repository for all receipts.”
He added that he believed younger consumers, who are already comfortable with making payments using electronic devices such as mobile phones, would be first to adopt the new trend.