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As retailers continue to reopen or cautiously fuel their current and constrained operational flows, a new method is being steadily adopted and explored to gain consumer attention with this new wave of hybrid consumption. BOPIS or “Buy-Online-Pickup-In-Store” or “Achat-EnLigne-Pickup-En-Magasin”, introduces a hybrid / omni-channel experience for buyers and retailers. Consumers can order items online and then choose to pick them up at a physical store, both for lower shipping costs and for convenience. This gives buyers more control because they can better plan their pickup, knowing exactly what is in stock.
Many retailers add BOPIS to their offerings and services and then they have found that there are both short and long term benefits. Faster service is an important point to analyze in this situation. Many customers will opt for BOPIS in order to be able to make their purchases more efficiently. Customers can reduce lead times when the retailer also offers the option to process their payment upfront.
Getting out of quarantine
With lockdown and quarantine situations putting consumers in very unusual situations, normal shopping is not the easiest task to complete. When ‘normalcy’ can resume, BOPIS will likely stick around and turn into real person shopping experiences. There are many additional benefits to this creative shopping method that can help retailers for years to come.
Upsell Processing: When items are delivered to customers normally, there is no real opportunity to increase sales when it comes to additional offers. It was found that 85% of BOPIS users purchased additional items when arriving at the store to collect their products.
Promote clearer brand experiences: Retailers are able to ensure a better understanding of their branding. BOPIS: Those who hire external logistics companies to manage their shipping capabilities, are unable to oversee the customer service features that are provided by the courier. Using BOPIS, retailers can manipulate this response and organize actions that put their customers first. Sometimes this delivery information does not meet standards for timeliness or quality, as this processing is beyond their reach and control.
Personalization of Services and Offers: If a regular shopper is scheduled to pick up and retailers are able to have knowledge of this data, these customer service consultants could likely greet them by first name and offer additional benefits for brighten up the experience … customers keep coming back for more. It helps customers know they are being considered.
Some common questions, which come to the minds of retailers and consumers, include the following thoughts:
- When will the transaction be ready to be picked up?
- Are employees ready to handle the flow of BOPIS orders?
- Will customers know how and where to collect their purchases once they are there?
- How are they going to pay?
- Where to park?
- Will they even need to leave their vehicle?
- Are inventory numbers telling the truth?
- Are customers aware of the BOPIS offer at least?
Monitoring queue management capabilities
The management and picking of orders help complete the BOPIS algorithm. When it comes to making sure the item is in stock, strategically planning the right people to make the curbside pickup line work properly, perfecting this choreography is very essential. When orders can be placed in chronological order, customers can have a painless and rewarding experience as they walk through the queue system, without having to leave their cars.
Calibrating the order fulfillment with the customer’s location can help the retailer keep track of the whereabouts to let them know how the process needs to go efficiently. It would be very beneficial for stores to know if a customer arrives early or is a little late. Over time, the data collected from these appointments may reveal patterns that will further reveal patterns of precision management, execution and pickup planning. Invest in queue management. Waiting with BOPIS can actually save you a lot of time in this modern world of retail.