With the constantly changing conditions of 2020, businesses and brands are looking at new ways they can keep adapting while giving customers a greater level of autonomy and choice through their offerings.
While often easier for a business, mail or courier delivery is not always the first choice for many customers. Shipping costs can add up and delivery times may not be convenient. For example, if you needed a quick replacement for your work-from-home headphones, you can’t wait 5 – 7 days for a delivery if there was an easier, same-day alternative.
Despite increased restrictions, adding a Click and Collect service for your business can improve your customer experience and give you a competitive edge over competitors. According to our friends, retail engagement experts and specialists in large-scale Click & Collect operations Localz, it is also fast becoming a delivery norm for many retailers. Their clients have seen a 100+ lift in collections since March, with further research indicating that 80% of consumers will continue with collections into the new year.
RELATED: Read about how Click and Collect no longer “nice to have” for retailers by retail engagement specialists Localz.
What is Click and Collect
In the early days, Click and Collect simply meant ‘Buy Online and Pick Up in Store’ (BOPUS), or Click to Brick (C2B).
The blended concept of purchasing online with the immersion of the bricks and mortar was a clever way for physical retailers to ease the move towards ecommerce. Offering Click and Collect gives customers greater access and control about where and when they can pick up items in store that they bought online by solving two key issues:
1. Buying online – the inability to see, feel and test the product
2. Buying in-store – inventory mismanagement
Essentially, it became a ‘meeting-in-the-middle’ between buying in-store and online.
How Click and Collect works
Your customer simply chooses the option while going through the check-out and picks the closest available location for delivery.
As a supplier or seller you have three options to ship the items for collection:
- Nearest stores/franchisees where the customer can pick it up
- Different business or brand who holds Click and Collect shipments (supermarket, post office)
- Designated parcel pick-up point or 24/7 locker
Then, notify the customer when the package is on its way, any issues with fulfilment or timing, and when it is delivered and ready to be picked up.
Why use Click and Collect
Besides its simplicity, there are a number of reasons why your business should consider the notion of introducing Click and Collect as a delivery option:
- Speed and convenience
For both your customer and you as the seller. Being able to buy online, and pick-up immediately or within a day or a few hours is a time-saving advantage over mail or courier drop off. In addition, given the amount of diverse pick-up points from local supermarkets to the local post office, the convenience for many customers – even those without a car – exceeds that of a missed package.
While it may require more man hours, set-up and some expenses to begin with, over the long-term the inclusion of Click and Collect will actually lead to greater profits. In part, because more customers will likely buy with you as this is their preference when purchasing goods online but also because statistics have consistently shown that customers buy more when they pick-up. An American consumer study by Doddle proved that a whopping 85% of consumers make additional purchases when picking up their goods in-store.
Delivery fees can be costly for both businesses and consumers. Engaging in a Click and Collect alternative an provide greater affordability on purchases compared to home deliveries.
Giving customers back the ability to choose in a during a time of restrictions and lockdown may not seem much on paper but may go a long way in your customer’s mind.
- Contactless delivery
Keeping in mind that we may be adhering to COVID-19 restrictions for a while yet, Click and Collect provides a safer and more convenient way for customers to get their online orders with contactless delivery.
Recently, Aussie-based hardware supplier Bunnings had to close its doors temporarily due to continuing COVID-19 outbreaks in the community. Realising that many of their customers preferred picking up tools over delivery, they launched their Drive & Collect pick-up option for online purchases.
When customers come to pick up, they don’t have to leave their car. Bunnings attendants will simply load your car for you ensuring a purely contactless pick-up service.
RELATED: Find out how SMS automations can help you keep abreast of Contact Tracing measures.
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Important statistics on Click and Collect
- 50% of customers make additional unplanned purchases when they come into the store to ‘Click and Collect’ their purchases.
- 45% of Australian shoppers want to avoid home delivery charges so choose Click and Collect.
- 37% of Australian shoppers find Click and Collect more convenient than home delivery.
- 70% of US consumers plan to continue online shopping after pandemic, and 57% of those intend to order online and pick up good at local stores.
- 200% growth forecast for UK’s Click and Collect market by 2025.
- 90% of online shoppers saying high delivery fees and lengthy delivery times will stop them from making an online purchase.
- According to Localz, nearly 25% of Click and Collect orders utilise crowdsourced delivery drivers.
Who is using Click and Collect
For Australian retailers and ecommerce businesses, adding a Click and Collect service as a delivery mechanism for purchases will only enable greater reach and sales. Many other businesses are cottoning on this strategy due in part to COVID restrictions including:
– Grocery stores/supermarkets – Due to high demand in some areas of Australia, supermarket deliveries have been restricted to those with disabilities or in need. Regular consumers are turning to Click and Collect as safe alternative to getting their groceries. The big supermarkets such as IGA, Coles Online, Aldi as well as Dan Murphys all now have Click and Collect offerings. Australian supermarket giant Woolworths uses Localz’s Click and Collect technology within its customer and store attendant app to allow for faster and customer-focused experiences, including a contactless drive-up option without having to leave their car.
– Retail – It’s no surprise that some of Australia’s biggest physical retailers such as Lincraft, Spotlight, IKEA, Kmart, T2, Bunnings, BigW, Footlocker, Rebel Sport, Officeworks, Mecca have all embraced the power of Click and Collect.
– Pharmaceutical/Medical – Given the infectious nature of the disease, being able to pick up your prescriptions or emergency medications without having to go in-store or wait a few days for delivery is another fantastic reason why Click and Collect works. Chemist franchisees such as Priceline and Chemist Warehouse have Click and Collect offer through their online store.
– Ecommerce-only stores – With pure online retailers like ASOS and Ebay leading the way, ecommerce players are jumping on the bandwagon when it comes to the added advantages of Click and Collect. There’s no need for physical locations with ecommerce collection point providers like Doddle, PUDO and Parcelpoint providing a network of pick-up points for businesses and consumers.
Is it worth adding to my store
Overall, yes but it may depend on a few things.
I have a physical store!
Absolutely, if you’re unable to open or are currently restricted.
A few considerations to think about. Given that many businesses are shut or must adhere to contactless exchanges and contact tracing methods, ensure that you have ample space or a designated Click and Collect area for customers.
Bunnings was easily able to carry out contactless delivery as they have large parking lots in or around their warehouses, however this may not be the case for your store. If you’re inside of a shopping centre, or on a busy street, this may be more difficult. It will also depend on the frequency of purchases – if you’re a furniture store, you will likely not deal with as frequent pick-ups as a pizza joint.
I’m online only!
If you’re a pure-play online seller, Click and Collect is still an option but you may have different challenges to overcome. Because you do not have a physical presence, your options are more limited in where customers can pick-up their purchases. There are ways around it such as through the use of local government businesses or other platforms.
National mail carrier Australia Post offers ecommerce sellers a Click and Collect solution by allowing parcels to be delivered to over 3000 mail locations across the country including 24/7 parcel lockers or local post offices. Parcelpoint is another ecommerce seller solution, which is a network of local convenience stores, pharmacies and service stations that allows sellers to designate local delivery, pick-up and return locations.
Enhance C&C experience using SMS
Though more and more businesses across the board are on the uptake with Click and Collect offerings, they may be limiting themselves with how customers are notified when it comes to tracking, delays and confirmations for collections.
The reliance on specific tools or one tool alone to get through to customers is outdated. Email inboxes are beyond cluttered so it’s no surprise that customers are missing these all-important alerts that their purchases are ready for collection. Give your customer the choice on how they’re alerted as well by adding extra communication channels such as SMS to be sure they pick up their purchases.
SMS, after all, has:
- 98% open rate
- 8x the response rate of email
- 61.5% (4.78B) mobile phone users in the world today
- 90% of SMS message are opened within 90 seconds
- According to our friends at Localz, customer engagement through SMS or customer app, ranges from 80-90% for some retailers
Given the immediate nature of Click and Collect purchases, SMS’s almost instant cut-through from an uncluttered ‘inbox’ will add greater eased and speed to customer communications.
Here are some use case examples:
SPECIAL NOTE: All [XXX] within the templates are custom parameters which allow you to fit in personalised data from your customer database. For more on this, visit our support article.
- Order confirmation/time estimate for collection
Hi [NAME], thanks for your order: [ORDER]! We estimate it will be ready for collection on [DATE] from [LOCATION]. We’ll send you an email and SMS as soon as its ready. Thanks!
– Shipping updates/Order delayed
Subject: Order delayed: [ORDER]
Text: Hi [NAME], sorry but part of your order has been delayed. Please refer to our email for further details or call us at [PHONE NUMBER]
– Order ready/Collection pick-up
TEMPLATE: MMS & MLP
SMS: Hi [FIRST NAME], your order [ORDER] is now ready to be collected! Click here: [URL]
MLP: Your purchases are ready for collet! Hi Wally, we have [ITEM 1] [ITEM 2] [ITEM 3] Is this correct? If so, schedule a time to collect. No – contact us OR Set time to collect.
– Change to order/items unavailable
TEMPLATE: SMS Automation
SMS (1): Hi [NAME], some items in your order: [ORDER] could not be found for collection. We can: (1) find a substitute or (2) refund you. Reply 1 or 2 to proceed.
SMS (2 if 1) Thanks Jill. Sorry for the inconvenience.
SMS (2 if 2) We are happy to process your refund. Your refund will take between 8 – 10 business days. Please contact us at [PHONE NUMBER] if you have not received it by then.
- Thanks for collecting
SMS: Hi [NAME], thanks for collecting your Click & Collect order: [ORDER] from [COMPANY]. Have a wizard day! [DEPARTMENT]
– Collection reminder
Hi [NAME], here’s your friendly reminder that your order [ORDER] is now ready to be collected from [ADDRESS]. Thanks!
Add SMS to your Click and Collect service now!
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Final thoughts, further reading
Now we’ve got you excited about the many profit opportunities Click and Collect can bring you, is it time you find out how to add it to your current ecommerce toolkit? Make sure you check out part two for our full methodology – How to get started with Click and Collect (plus SMS).