Why Should The Retail Industry Use Electronic Signatures?

Global retail sales are expected to reach 26.7 trillion USD in 2022, up from 23.6 trillion USD in 2018. Retailers are doing business on a much bigger scale due to globalization and numerous trade agreements between the marketplaces and the governments.

Rapidly growing business activities in the retail industry mean bulk-hiring employees to attend to the huge footfall of customers in retail stores and managing the supply of retail products. This repetitive process generates tonnes of customer & supplier-based documents like sales receipts, sales orders, supplier forms, & a lot more. The traditional paper-based document signing process presents multiple challenges to the global retail industry, including high costs, procedural delays, lack of transparency, and security concerns.

Electronic signatures help address all the concerns by moving from paper-based to paperless documentation, improving customer and retail brand experience.

Types of retail business where you can use electronic signatures:

eCommerce store – Fully customized responsive online store that speaks to your customers and showcases your products.

Discount store – A retail store that sells products at a lower price than most of the other retail stores

Warehouses – They are used by manufacturers, importers, exporters, wholesalers, and transporters located on the outskirts of cities, towns, or villages.

Supermarket– A self-service shop offering a variety of food, beverages & household products.

Departmental stores – They are large-scale retail stores that deal in selling gods under one roof and single control.

Convenience stores- They are small retail businesses that stock everyday commodities like groceries, snack food, confectionery, etc.

Specialty stores – A specialty retail store focuses exclusively on a few product categories instead of retailers who sell a wide variety of consumer items.

Integrating electronic signatures in retail business

Retail businesses can integrate electronic signatures easily in their workflows by following these steps:

  • Download the eSignature application from the technology partner’s webpage
  • Open the app interface & upload a document for eSignature
  • Enter the email of other people to decide who receives the document
  • Type the message for email recipients to explain the document agenda
  • Draw, write or upload your signature using the eSignature interface
  • Click “Send” to share the documents on specified emails
  • Document stakeholders receive the signed documents by email

Opportunities in the retail industry for delivering more value with electronic signatures

Developing a flexible workforce

The retail industry requires additional staff to serve customers during holidays and other noteworthy events. As a result, they frequently need to hire quickly, even more so during the peak season.

For example, a large clothes retailer requires seasonal workers, which is challenging to secure in the temporary work industry. As a result, the hiring process must be accelerated from job posting to onboarding.

Electronic signatures eliminate the need for the contract signing, a substantial obstacle to the onboarding process. Employers and contractors benefit from quicker employee onboarding by increasing business responsiveness, thereby positively impacting customer experience.

Accelerated Supply chain

Nowadays, the retail industry is characterized by constant change, shorter product lifecycles, and uncertain demand. Supply chain agility demands the freedom to improve processes across supplier, logistics, and customs networks.

How to ensure supply chain agility?

Retail businesses can digitalize the supply chain using digital signatures. The technology helps by speeding up requisitions, approvals, and supplier contracts.

Great products require supply chains that enable businesses to enhance their services and consumer experiences.

Signing any form remotely

Every transaction in the retail sector needs some form of agreement. Here are some common types of paperwork used in the retail industry which can be signed by electronic signatures:

  • Recruitment contracts
  • Concession documents
  • Order invoice
  • Supplier application forms
  • Sales quotation
  • Purchase order invoice
  • Delivery notes
  • Sales return
  • Sales receipt
  • Sales order

Case Study


Krispy Kreme is a famous doughnut company with over 100 stores in the UK and almost anywhere in the British Isles.

The Pain Points

Contract Management: Keeping track of new employee contracts was difficult as they had more than 2000 employees in hundred stores.

Slow recruitment process: The recruitment procedure was slowed down using paper-based documentation requiring multiple signatures and validation.

Lowering overall costs: For a company of the size of Krispy Kreme, the expenditures associated with stamps were quite substantial. Contracts for new hires, as well as contract changes as positions changed, contributed to the expense.


Easier employee contract search: Login to the eSignature solution and search for any employee contract, which is easier than paper copies.

Create new contracts: Electronic Signature is used for creating new contracts, amendment contracts, and any change in employment.

Save time on recruitment: The ease with which documents can be sent and received is remarkable. There is no wait, and employees are quickly integrated into the work culture, saving time on general recruitment.

Cost-cutting: Electronic signatures have significantly reduced costs by eliminating the requirement to deliver pre-stamped documents.

Why should the retail industry use electronic signatures?

Using electronic signatures has numerous benefits for the retail industry. Here are some of them:

Eliminate paperwork: Electronic signatures eliminate unnecessary paperwork for inventory reconciliation, staff timesheets, and printed receipts in retail, benefitting both the customer and the retailer.

The business saves time by guaranteeing that all information is readily accessible and searchable digitally, decreases storage expenses and space required to hold papers, and eliminates continuing expenditures associated with printers, ink, and paper.

For consumers, digital receipts offer greater convenience than paper receipts. Few customers appreciate the concept of carrying paper receipts, sorting and saving them at home in an era of digital wallets.

Improve customer experience: Customer experience is a top priority for many organizations. Research says that 80% of customers are more likely to purchase from brands offering personalized experiences to them.

Many clients dislike dealing with enormous stacks of paper agreements, contracts, warranties, and bills. It is annoying, time-consuming, and inconvenient. In this case, an electronic signature is beneficial as it improves the customer experience during the purchasing process saving enough time for customers to focus on other important tasks.

Save money: An important research by a leading news source states that an average US office spends USD 80/year on paper per employee, and 50%-70% of the office space is dedicated to filing and storage of documentation. Another study says that American companies spend an estimated USD 20 on labor costs to file a document, USD 120 on finding a misfiled document, and USD 220 to reproduce a lost document.

You can see that the cost of handling & reproducing a document multiplies after the document storage stage.

One significant way the retail industry can reduce the overall costs is by investing in electronic signatures solutions. The technology helps retail businesses in cutting costs related to document storage, security & management.

Save time: Electronic signatures in the retail industry are beneficial to everyone involved: suppliers, clients, and employees alike. It is possible to complete authorization more quickly due to the availability of documents and supporting resources in real-time. Employees will have more time to dedicate to listening to the demands of clients and suppliers as a result of this change.

Minimize hand-to-hand contact: Digital signatures eliminate the need to print, sign, and scan the document before giving it to the other parties, hence minimizing time spent in person for managing every document. Employees can always electronically sign and return the papers, and there is no physical touch between them at any stage during the process.


Electronic signatures have huge scope in the retail industry. When cost-cutting is more critical than ever, a simple investment in technology to enable paperless transactions can revolutionize retail productivity.

Along with cost and time savings, it has immense potential to enhance the customer experience, satisfy the expectations of the environmentally-conscious consumer, and assist the retail sector in reducing its environmental imprint.

Posted by Lunar Pen

Leave a Reply