Today we're talking about the rise of click and collect. If you're an e-commerce founder, you know that click-and-collect is becoming more popular than ever, and it's important to get it right if you want to stay ahead of the competition and keep your customers happy.
Click and collect, also known as buy online, pick up in-store (BOPIS), is one-way retailers meet this demand. It allows customers to place an order online and pick it up at a physical store location, often within hours of placing the order. This has become an attractive option for customers who want to avoid shipping fees, receive their purchases faster, or have more control over when and where they pick up their items.
As an e-commerce founder, it's important to understand the rise of click-and-collect and how it can benefit your business. According to a study by Statista, 47% of UK consumers use click-and-collect services, which is expected to continue to rise. With so many consumers already on board, getting click-and-collect right is crucial if you want to stay ahead of the competition and keep your customers happy.
In this article, we'll dive into the top 5 steps to get click and collect right and provide real-life examples from Digitally Native Vertical Brands (DNVBs) like Chilly's Bottles, Typology, and Gymshark to help guide you along the way. So, let's dive into the top 5 steps to get click and collect right.
Step 1: Understand Your Target Audience
First things first, you need to know your audience. Who are they? What do they want? It's safe to say that customers are already on board. But how can you improve their experience? That's where understanding your audience comes in.
Look at the data to see which products are most popular for click-and-collect. Do your customers prefer in-store pickup or curbside? Once you have this information, you can tailor your strategy to meet their needs.
Let's start with Chilly's Bottles, shall we? This UK-based company knows its audience and caters to their needs perfectly. They offer a click-and-collect option, making it easy for customers to purchase reusable water bottles without waiting for delivery. They also offer curbside pickup at their London store, catering to customers who want a contactless pickup option.
Another great example is Typology, a French skincare brand that offers click-and-collect at their Parisian concept store. They've made it easy for customers to reserve their items online and provide real-time updates on the status of their orders. They also offer a self-service pickup option, where customers can use a code to access a locker and retrieve their purchases. This has helped to streamline their operations and provide a smooth pickup experience for customers.
Step 2: Choose the Right Click and Collect Model
Now that you know who you're targeting, it's time to choose the right click-and-collect model. There's in-store, curbside, locker pickup, and more.
The obvious example is. Warby Parker, a US-based eyewear brand, has figured it out. They offer click-and-collect at their retail stores, making it easy for customers to reserve their frames online and providing real-time updates on the status of their orders. They also offer a try-on at-home program, allowing customers to try on frames before purchasing. By offering multiple pickup options and a convenient try-on program, Warby Parker can provide a more personalized experience for their customers.
Step 3: Optimize Your Website for Click and Collect
Once you've chosen your model, it's time to optimize your website for click-and-collect. You want to make it easy for customers to find the option, understand the instructions, and reserve their items. Make it crystal clear, and use technology to make it as smooth as possible.
Next up, we've got Gymshark, a UK-based fitness apparel brand. These guys have optimized their online shopping experience for click and collect, making it easy for customers to find the option, understand the instructions, and reserve their items. They offer multiple pickup options, including curbside pickup at their partner stores, catering to the needs of their customers. According to a report by eMarketer, 90% of consumers said click-and-collect availability was important when purchasing online. Gymshark is tapping into that demand perfectly.
Step 4: Ensure Smooth Operations
Having efficient and effective click-and-collect operations is crucial for success. That means training your staff, and solid fulfilment processes, using technology like mobile devices and inventory management software, and having a smooth process for customers to pick up their orders. Take some tips from other e-commerce companies that have done this right.
When it comes to efficient and effective click-and-collect operations, Lululemon is a great example. The athletic apparel company offers curbside pickup at select locations and has streamlined the process with mobile check-in and a designated pickup area. They also provide customers with clear instructions and real-time updates on the status of their orders through their mobile app. Lululemon can enhance the overall customer experience and increase customer loyalty by making the pickup process as smooth and convenient as possible.
Step 5: Communicate Clearly with Customers
Lastly, communicate clearly with your customers throughout the click-and-collect process. Send confirmation emails, pickup reminders, and real-time updates so they know what's happening. Personalise your messages and use automated systems to make it easier for you and your customers.
ASOS, a UK-based online fashion retailer, provides another example of clear customer communication. ASOS offers a click-and-collect option through their partner stores, and they keep their customers informed throughout the process. Customers receive email notifications and text message alerts when their orders are ready for pickup, and they can also track the status of their orders on the ASOS app. This level of communication increases customer satisfaction and trust in your brand.
In conclusion, click and collect is here to stay, and e-commerce founders need to get it right to stay ahead of the competition and meet their customers' needs. By understanding your target audience, choosing the right model, optimizing your website, ensuring smooth operations, and communicating clearly with your customers, you can create a seamless and personalized click-and-collect experience that will keep your customers coming back for more.
As we've seen from the examples of Gymshark, Chilly's Bottles, Warby Parker, Typology, and Sephora, there are many different ways to implement click and collect successfully. By taking inspiration from these brands and staying updated with the latest trends and technologies, you can create a click-and-collect strategy that works for your business and your customers.