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What is Click and Collect (And How Does it Work?)

by Andrew Fanner,
May 28, 2024
what is click and collect
what is click and collect

Table of Contents

When it comes to online shopping or ecommerce, businesses need to be in a constant state of evolution to meet customer expectations. One innovative service that’s gained remarkable popularity is click and collect services, which offer cost-saving advantages, convenience, speed, and a personal connection for both retailers and customers.

What is Click and Collect and In Store Pickup?

Click and collect (or click collect), also known as buy online, pick up in-store (BOPIS), allows consumers to shop at their convenience from their homes and collect their online purchase at nearby physical locations.

Click collect has been integral to addressing growing consumer demand for instant gratification and convenience, benefiting both consumers and retailers by driving revenue, reducing delivery costs, and offering a high-profit channel.

Online shoppers find Click and Collect convenient and time-saving as it saves time and eliminates delivery costs.

Click and collect’s hybrid approach to shopping blends the convenience of shopping online with the advantages presented by physical stores.

With such a setup, customers can shop from the couch or on the move through digital platforms and select items in store. Consumers save on shipping costs and decreased waiting times. It also benefits the store – more sales and less congestion from customers on busy days.

How Does Click and Collect Work with Online Shopping?

Click and Collect’s implementation in retail store operations is quite simple, but the collect process has to be organized efficiently to be effective for consumers and the brand. It generally operates like this:

  1. Order Online: Your customers browse your eCommerce offerings, add items to their carts, and make payments using your website or mobile app. Then, they tell the system they want their purchases to be same day Click and Collect at checkout and state their collection point.

  2. Order Processing: Your central warehouse or designated local store processes online orders. You’ll need a really strong inventory management system in place to both make sure the product is available and is pulled aside for pickup.

  3. Notification of Customer: Your customer should receive an email or SMS after their order has been fulfilled and is available for pick-up. It should include a reference number and instructions for collection at the store.

  4. In-Store Pickup: Your customers can head straight to your designated Click and Collect kiosk or priority check-out lane and your store’s staff can verify the details of the order using confirmation emails or order numbers. The pickup location is crucial as it ensures a smooth and efficient process for the customer. Then, they’ll provide the merchandise to the customer.

  5. Post-Pickup Services: Many retailers enhance Click and Collect by adding on additional services at the point of pickup, like gift wrapping or even trying out products in-store to ensure satisfaction before taking them home.

Store employees play a vital role when it comes to managing click and collect orders. They are responsible for notifying the customer, collecting the ordered items from inventory, preparing the items for pickup, and handing over the items to the customer. Overall, it’s like elevating the familiar in store experience but removing the hassles the come along with it.

Retailers Offering Click and Collect Service

Many leading retailers globally have successfully integrated same day Click and Collect services into their business models, seeing substantial benefits:

  • Large Supermarket Chains: These stores offer Click and Collect to provide customers with an efficient way to shop for groceries and receive their curbside pickup without the hassle of navigating aisles and waiting at checkouts.

  • Electronics Retailers: Often selling more high-value items, these retailers use Click and Collect to provide added security for both their stores and customers, ensuring products are not lost or damaged during shipping.

  • Fashion and Apparel Stores: These retailers benefit from additional sales when customers come to pick up items and end up shopping for more.

Each retailer custom-tailors the Click and Collect experience to suit its products and customer base, often integrating with sophisticated transportation management systems (TMS), like those offered by TransVirtual, to streamline their operations and enhance customer service.

in store fulfillment click and collect

Click and Collect Benefits for Store Employees, Retail Locations, and Customers

Click and Collect presents a lot of benefits from both the retailer’s perspective and that of the customer:

  • The model eliminates the uncertainty and wait involved in shipping and affords customers the satisfaction of enjoying goods immediately after ordering. This convenience increases customer satisfaction and loyalty as shoppers appreciate the flexibility and speed of the service.

  • As it cuts traditional shipping routes by using stores as hubs, you’ll save quite a bit on logistics when your customers choose Click and Collect. This not only improves profit margins but also offers customers free collection, an attractive alternative to paying for delivery.

  • You’ll potentially see more store traffic and a better potential for upselling. This boosts your overall sales and allows you to cross-sell products directly.

  • Your inventory management will improve as you keep closer tabs on inventory and be able to reduce overstock and understock scenarios. You’ll also gain more accurate demand forecasting and better resource allocation.

  • Click and collect also plays a role in optimizing store operations. It increases foot traffic, boosting cross-selling and impulse purchases for those shopping in store, and improves inventory management with real-time updates.

    It also saves costs through lower shipping expenses and fewer returns while providing valuable customer insights for targeted promotions. By centralizing order collection, stores minimize the risk of lost or damaged items, ensuring a reliable shopping experience. Additionally, click and collect differentiates retailers from competitors, reduces environmental impact, and offers scalability.

Embrace the Future of Retail with Click and Collect Services

Click and Collect can help you enhance your customer experience while improving your overall operational efficiency.

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