Mobile ID scanning is an essential tool for modern retail operations. Retail teams can deploy this technology to rapidly and securely scan information from identity documents with inexpensive smart devices, including common smartphones. Fast, accurate ID scanning enables more convenient, friction-free shopping experiences for consumers buying or collecting age-restricted items, easy app onboarding for retail staff, and much more.
To get you started with ID scanning software on smart devices, let’s review how this technology works, some of its core applications in retail, and how you can quickly integrate this solution with your existing or upcoming mobile retail apps for employees and consumers.
How does mobile ID Scanning for retail work?
Mobile ID scanning is a solution that combines multiple technologies, including barcode scanning, optical character recognition (OCR), and NFC (Near Field Communication). Together, these technologies transform any camera-equipped smart device into an enterprise-grade scanning tool capable of reading and parsing the text, Machine Readable Zones (MRZ), PDF417 codes, and biometric RFID chips that feature on different types of identity documents.
OCR software is particularly useful in the context of ID scanning for retail. Optical character recognition allows even the most basic smartphones to read any alphanumeric code typically found on passports, driver’s licenses in certain countries and some national ID cards This data is then parsed into a standardized format that can be easily queried by your app, allowing workers to check the ID of customers or individuals in the supply chain in seconds. OCR software also empowers retailers to read accompanying text on packaging labels when their barcodes are damaged in transit—enabling more consistent and reliable delivery and tracking, too.
Applications of ID Scanning software for retail
ID scanning software has several valuable applications for the retail industry, including the following:
1. Age verification for controlled goods
Many controlled goods (such as alcohol) require retailers to verify the age of consumers before completing the transaction. This verification process must be simple, contact-free, and accurate to ensure buyer safety and satisfaction—and avoid serious legal and financial consequences. That’s why leading retailers are implementing ID scanning software into their mobile checkout and self-scanning apps.
With mobile ID scanning, it’s easy for retailers to confirm the age of any buyer before purchase, and even store a record of the age verification for compliance. Driver’s licenses issued in the USA or Canada can be checked by simply scanning the PDF417 barcode on the back, or by using OCR technology to scan the regular text on the front of the license, the technology allows for the accurate processing of virtually any ID card.
This technology shift for age verification allows your retail enterprise to create new, innovative customer experiences to stand above the competition with supreme convenience. For example, by adding Scandit ID scanning to their self-scanning app, retailer Valora can confirm the age of any buyer entering their unmanned store, empowering them to sell controlled goods safely and securely!
2. Employee App onboarding
ID scanning software can also be integrated into retail employee apps for fast and seamless onboarding. New workers can simply scan their identity document to confirm relevant details, like their status as a registered driver. This feature is especially useful when onboarding large numbers of new or seasonal workers, such as during Christmas or Black Friday.
Thanks to OCR software, it’s even easier for employees to quickly and accurately sign up with retail apps. New staff can scan the text on their driver’s license (or other ID documents) to record personal information and complete in-app forms—reducing manual data entry, typing, and human error in the process.
3. Age verification for customer Apps
Mobile retail shopping and loyalty program apps are invaluable tools that allow retailers to reward loyal customers, deliver personalized offers, and create more flexible shopping experiences for buyers. ID scanning software makes the tedious onboarding process for these customer apps effortless, driving better user adoption and engagement.
As above, OCR technology lets app users input their personal information near-instantly by scanning their ID. All data extraction and processing is completed directly on the consumer’s device, ensuring absolute security and data privacy. Adding ID scanning to your consumer-facing retail apps ensures that the onboarding process is simple, avoids human error in data entry and mitigates frustration, which translates to improved usage and profitability.
Adding secure ID Scanning to your retail Apps
As a leader in computer vision technology, Scandit helps retailers across the globe implement secure ID scanning for their mobile apps. Our flexible ID scanning software turns any consumer or employee smartphone into a high-performance scanning device, capable of parsing the text on the front of ID cards, machine readable zones and barcodes from almost any identity document.
Our ID Scanning Software makes it simple to add ID scanning to any retail native app. This award-winning data capture solution offers the fastest and most accurate barcode scanning performance on the market—and is compatible with over 20,000 mobile device types. Scandit SDK-powered apps on Android and iOS allow retail staff or customers to directly scan identity documents for near-instant verification.
We include an ID scanning code sample with the SDK—as well as a FREE 30-day test to help your retail team get started.
Connect with us if you have any questions about the Scandit solution for retail ID scanning, or how you can use our technology to transform retail workflows and create better customer experiences.