With Shanghai already hosting staff-free convenience stores, the Chinese capital city of Beijing is following suit with the new 'Xiaomai' store. The CPG retailer in the YOU+ youth community center in the neighborhood of Suzhouqiao is entirely self-serve, without any live staff on site throughout the vast majority of operational hours.
In order to unlock the door and gain access to a Xiaomai store, consumers must register their social media profiles and scan their faces — this process ensures accountability and prevents theft. Once inside, shoppers can simply gather what they need from the thousands of available products and scan those products QR codes with their smartphones to put it into their virtual cart. Consumers can then make the purchase through their Alipay or WeChat accounts and exit with their goods.