COMMENTARY

5 reasons why retailers should embrace BOPIS

5 reasons why retailers should embrace BOPIS

Photo by iStock.com

By Georgianna Oliver, founder, Package Concierge

The back to school shopping season drives over $27 billion in retail sales, according to a Deloitte report. And while the online channel continues to grow, consumers are exploring new ways to make shopping even more convenient. Research shows the Buy Online Pickup In-Store (BOPIS) option is responsible for nearly 30 percent of online retail revenue. That’s why retailers need to maximize this movement to propel back-to-school sales .
 
The popularity of BOPIS is a perfect way for retailers to marry the best of both the online and in-store experiences to engage with customers, and the right BOPIS fulfillment system can make the difference between success and setback. Amazon has a reported 2,000+ digital lockers and it is estimated that by the end of this year, 40 percent of the U.S. population will have access to a Walmart pick-up locker. 

Here are five areas for retailers to focus on when it comes to BOPIS:

1.   Convenience is king: In our world where instant gratification tops all else, today’s consumers expect a new kind of convenience when shopping, so progressive omnichannel retailers must adopt BOPIS to accommodate changing demands. A recent study shows two-thirds of shoppers say multiple fulfillment options influence their willingness to complete a purchase.
 
2.   Cost cutting:  BOPIS allows consumers (and retailers) to save shipping fees, while also expediting last mile fulfillment. Avoiding shipping fees was listed as the top reason customers like BOPIS, so it’s critical for retailers to offer a frictionless customer experience that also helps them save money.
 
3.   Vision quest: Retailers need to ensure customers can view store-level inventory when  making an item selection. Shoppers today want their merchandise ASAP, and they’ll likely only consider items that are in-stock and ready for pickup, otherwise they’ll go to another retailer to find it.
 
4.   Don’t forget fulfillment: BOPIS doesn’t work if retailers don’t have a clearly stated fulfillment promise that they can consistently deliver on. Many retailers are meeting the expectation of availability within two hours for items in stock. Retailers must make their BOPIS process convenient AND quick. BOPIS falls short if consumers experience friction with fulfillment — standing in line to retrieve an order is a satisfaction killer.
 
5.   Lock it up: Simple and secure fulfillment can ensure a positive BOPIS experience for consumers and retailers. During the busy back to school season, it’s crucial that retailers capitalize on the increased traffic by providing shoppers with a seamless and pleasant transaction process. Research shows nearly 80 percent of BOPIS shoppers will make an additional purchase while at the store, and a happy customer buys more.


Topics: Customer Experience, Supply Chain


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