What you'll learn
- What Click & Collect is and how it works
- Why Click & Collect is such a popular fulfilment option
- How Click & Collect benefits retailers
- The top 5 things every retailer should consider when setting up a Click & Collect strategy
What is Click & Collect?
Rapidly becoming a preferred collection method for shoppers, Click & Collect allows a customer to purchase products online and pick them up in person, usually from the store or a central collection point like a warehouse.
Designed to give customers more options and control over how they purchase and receive products, Click & Collect has become a critical fulfilment option for retailers who have implemented an eCommerce integration along with their retail management system to meet customers needs.
How does Click & Collect work?
Incredibly simple for both shoppers and retailers, Click & Collect is set up on a retailers’ eCommerce website or app and gives customers the option to purchase the item directly online and pick it up from a store closest to them.
The key feature for Click & Collect is that the store has a point of sale system that integrates with their eCommerce website and feeds in real-time inventory levels for each physical store. This means customers have the confidence of knowing the stock is available to pick up, and retailers can sell in-store stock through multiple channels.
Why has Click & Collect risen in popularity?
Shoppers are increasingly choosing Click & Collect as an alternative fulfilment option for three main reasons:
To save money on delivery costs
45% of shoppers choose Click & Collect to avoid home delivery charges; it gives them the instant gratification of online shopping without having to pay extra for delivery when they can simply pick up their goods instead.
For quicker fulfilment
37% of shoppers choose Click & Collect so they don’t have to wait for their goods to arrive. While eCommerce players continue to improve fulfilment speed and offer same-day delivery, waiting a few days for goods to arrive is still the norm for online orders. With Click & Collect, however, the goods should be available to pick up from their selected store on the same day, or from early the next day if a retailer has optimised their inventory processes.
For more reliability
Click & Collect gives customers the peace of mind that their order is safe — they know it’s being kept in the store, instead of onboard a courier service. It also allows customers to dodge the dreaded ‘we missed you’ card, where an item is returned to the warehouse or an inconvenient collection point.
How do retailers benefit from Click & Collect?
On top of offering customers convenience, having a Click & Collect strategy also allows retailers to offer customers with different buying habits convenient purchasing and fulfilment options and giving retailers several benefits to capitalise on.
More opportunities for in-store purchases
Driving customers to bricks and mortar stores increase up-selling and cross-selling opportunities for staff in-store. When customers visit a store to pick up a Click & Collect purchase, they’re more likely to revisit and make ongoing purchases with the same company.
Being able to meet customers needs across both online and in-store channels drives customer retention, overall trust, and brand loyalty. With customers buying habits increasingly spanning multiple channels, consumers prefer brands that will offer them multiple methods of browsing, purchasing and receiving their products.
Unfortunately, almost 20% of consumers experience problems when ordering online and picking up in-store. It’s important to consider the factors involved in this type of order fulfilment, to ensure the experience is a positive one (and can drive a return for the business!)
Launching a Click & Collect strategy: top 5 things for retailers to consider
Before you jump online and try to launch your Click & Collect strategy, it’s important to consider the factors involved in this type of order fulfilment and ensure customers have a seamless experience ordering from your website and picking up in-store.
1. Where will orders be fulfilled from?
There are a few different Click & Collect fulfilment options that can be used to ensure there’s stock available for shoppers and each has its own pros and cons. It’s important to first weigh up your fulfilment options, and choose the best one for your business.
- A) Picking from store inventory for instant pick-up. Once an order comes in, staff select the product from the existing store inventory and have it ready for customers to pick up straight away. It’s the most cost-effective, and the fastest method, as it requires no shipping of products between stores. However, retailers must have an extensive range available across their stores, and accurate inventory management to be sure of what each store holds.
- B) Transferring from store to store. If products aren’t available at a chosen store, retailers can easily ship them in from the nearest store. This method includes shipping costs to transfer products between locations, but give customers a potentially greater range of products to choose from if a product isn’t available in the store closest to them.
- C) Shipping from a distribution centre. If an item isn’t available in any store, retailers have the option of shipping it from the distribution centre. This method is useful if new stores are still establishing their inventory, yet want to offer Click & Collect as a way to remain competitive. However, come with shipping costs that retailers need to consider.
2. How fast can will your pick-up timeframe be?
Retailers need to communicate clearly to customers what inventory will be available, and when. Customers need transparency of what store the stock is available in, and when it’ll be ready to pick up before purchasing, or they run the risk of making unnecessary trips, wasting time and losing trust in a retailer.
3. What staff training will you implement?
Staff must be well-equipped to deal with Click & Collect orders, and well-versed on the protocols of what to do. Upskilling your staff on how to up-sell and cross-sell to increase a customers’ basket size is an essential part of increasing your average sales amount and overall revenue.
4. How clear are your instructions to the customer?
It’s important to take care in choosing the right messages to send out to the customer at the different stages of their order. Customers don’t want to be flooded with unnecessary emails — but they do need to be kept in the loop about the next steps, and when they can collect their purchase. It’s a good idea to map out what your communications will be before setting up Click & Collect.
5. What happens when orders aren’t collected?
Though this doesn’t happen too often, it’s still good to have a protocol in place for uncollected orders. Think about what the set time limit will be for customers to collect their orders, and make this clear to customers as soon as you can. If this time limit expires, plan to issue a refund and clearly communicate this to customers as well.
Launching a seamless Click & Collect strategy with the right retail management system
Looking to future-proof your retail business and ensure you’re providing customers with convenient, seamless purchasing and fulfilment options? Retail Express’ omnichannel retail management system and eCommerce integrations allow you to integrate your inventory between channels and implement a reliable and effective Click & Collect strategy for your business.
Book a personalised demo with one of our retail experts today to be taken through how you can leverage a Click & Collect strategy and integrate your eCommerce with your owned stores to unlock your business’ full potential.