Peak Design Improves its Customer Service and Checkout With Shopify POS Go

Peak Design's retail store in SoHo, New York City

In 2010, Peter Dering took a four-month trip around the world, and realized how cumbersome it was to lug around a big camera and equipment. Upon his return, he quit his day job, and spent 10 months designing Capture, a device that makes carrying a camera easier and more enjoyable. With the launch of its first product, Peak Design was born.

Today, the brand sells around the globe online via its Shopify website, and in-person through wholesale partnerships and stores in New York, San Francisco, and Japan. 

At its shops, Peak Design’s staff offer shoppers guided assistance and help find solutions for their needs. However, with a stationary POS setup, it was impossible to offer this level of service without running back and forth between the showroom floor and checkout counter. This created bottlenecks at checkout and congestion in stores.

To make its store experience more fluid, Peak Design switched to POS Go, Shopify’s handheld, all-in-one POS device. Since upgrading its point of sale hardware to POS Go, Peak Design’s staff have enjoyed: 

  • Engaging with shoppers and look up product availability anywhere in the store
  • Transacting without running back to the cash register 
  • Having all the tools they need in the palm of their hand 

Challenge: Congestion at the checkout counter 

Before switching to POS Go, Peak Design relied on a POS setup at its checkout counter consisting of an iPad and card reader. But a stationary checkout went against the mobile service customers wanted.

“Our products are very hands-on, so typically our gear experts have to walk customers through our offering and show them how features work,” says Mark Wang, Peak Design’s Head of Business Technology.

After this presentation, customers would have to go to the checkout counter to pay. Since staff could only transact in one place, stores experienced major bottlenecks. “When the store is busy, people want to check out fast,” says Mark. “At high peak times, bottlenecks became stressful because you can sense everyone just wants to pay and get on with their day.”

A stationary checkout also meant staff could only access product pricing, check inventory availability, and view customer purchase history in one place. If more than one customer needed any of the above at the same time, staff had to wait for their colleagues to finish using the POS system.

We needed POS hardware that was truly mobile and let staff look up product information and serve customers anywhere in the store instead of just at the checkout counter. That flexibility would improve store workflows and our customer experience.

Mark Wang, Head of Business Technology, Peak Design

Solution: Accessing product information and accepting payments on the showroom floor with POS Go 

The opening of Peak Design’s New York City store prompted Mark to reconsider the brand’s POS hardware. With the goal of consolidating all the tools and software they need to run the store and serve customers, Peak Design opted for POS Go. 

With POS Go, staff carry the device and can use its barcode scanner to quickly pull up a product and see its price, availability, and other critical information anywhere in the showroom. “One of the big benefits of POS Go is that staff can scan the product when they’re talking about it,” Mark says. “As the customer walks around, staff can look up product details and add items to their cart as they go. It’s like having a personal shopping assistant.” 

Beyond creating a seamless shopping experience for customers, POS Go makes it easier for staff to keep tabs on inventory. “We can quickly see what’s in stock, which is pretty nice, especially at our larger store where the inventory is farther away,” Mark says. “It’s easier to see if we have stock on hand, and how much is left.”

Another useful POS Go feature is its integrated card reader. Staff can accept payments directly through the device, rather than needing a separate reader. “Before, we were walking around with an iPad and a card reader stuck to the back with tape, which looked a little bit unprofessional. Having everything consolidated in one handheld device is a welcome upgrade.” 

Instead of having to wait for the POS system at the checkout counter to free up, POS Go consolidates everything we need to quickly and efficiently serve customers in one device.

Mark Wang, Head of Business Technology, Peak Design

Results: Faster store checkout and better customer service

With POS Go’s integrated barcode scanner and card reader, it’s easier and quicker for staff to serve customers and complete checkouts. They can seamlessly give each customer personalized attention, and a streamlined checkout experience. 

“Having a mobile checkout with POS Go has increased productivity and transaction speed,” Mark says. “Staff can just scan a product, add it to cart, and they’re all set. We don’t have to walk back to the checkout counter, which is phenomenal.” 

Another way POS Go has improved the customer experience is by facilitating ship-to-customer order fulfillment. Customers can buy something in-store and have it shipped to their home address.

“Our international customers really appreciate that we offer ship to home fulfillment. Oftentimes, they don’t want to carry an item around with them all day, or the purchase won’t fit in their carry-on. But now that’s not a blocker. We can just ship the order to their home,’” Mark says.

POS Go makes it easy to give each customer personalized service without creating congestion at checkout. It makes life easier for staff, and customers feel those benefits, too.

Mark Wang, Head of Business Technology, Peak Design

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