Costco is making it easier for members to shop in its stores, and it could help it to win over millennial shoppers
- Costco announced in a Thursday Instagram post that shoppers in the US and Canada can now register for a digital membership card.
- In the past, members were required to present their card either upon arrival at the store or at the cash register.
- This move could be an effort to appeal to a younger generation of tech-savvy shoppers.
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Costco members now have the option to go cardless.
The warehouse chain announced in a Thursday Instagram post that customers in the US and Canada can now sign up for a digital membership card on its app. In the past, shoppers were required to carry their membership card and present it either upon arrival at the store or at the cash register.
A spokesperson for Costco did not immediately respond to Business Insider's request for comment, but a customer service representative confirmed on Instagram that this service is only available to customers in the US and Canada at present. Moreover, shoppers who are filling up with Costco gas will still be required to show a physical card.
The news comes almost a year after Costco announced that it was rolling out Apple Pay, Google Wallet, and Samsung Pay to all of its US stores, something that its main competitor, Sam's Club, has yet to do. These new services help to make a Costco membership more appealing for younger, tech-savvy consumers, which is important as the retailer looks to bring in the next generation.
Warehouse clubs' core customer is typically older.
"It's generally someone with a family and a house," Sucharita Mulpuru, an analyst at the research firm Forrester, said in an interview for The Washington Post's "Will millennials kill Costco?" piece last year.
These stores are now tasked with adapting their shopping experiences to appeal to a new generation of shoppers who are buying houses and starting families but were brought up shopping on Amazon.
"Costco has been one of the least digitally forward companies out there. This segment has had its head in the sand when it comes to competing with Amazon," Mulpuru added.