LAKELAND, Fla. — Publix Super Markets here is testing coupon verification software in 70 stores that will verify that a shopper purchased an item for which a coupon has been scanned at the checkout.
Currently, Publix cashiers can scan manufacturer coupons but have to manually check that discounted items were purchased. Publix and competitor coupons are currently processed manually and not scanned.
The test, started in mid-February, will be continued for another month or two before next steps are determined, said Publix spokeswoman Shannon Patten. “Our goal is to expand this new coupon validation software to all stores,” she said. “These changes will assist our cashiers in being more efficient and accurate when helping customers.” Publix operates about 1,032 locations.
Most POS systems process coupons by scanning the bar code and reading the “family code,” which represents the products to which the coupon can be applied. The systems then check to see whether one of those products was purchased before redeeming the value on the coupon.
Publix plans to introduce its first formal coupon policy in a few weeks.