Why Buy Online, Pick Up in Store is Important
Consumers in the current COVID-19 retail landscape have adopted a new(ish) way of shopping: buy online, pick up in store (BOPIS). We say newish because this trend has been around for years, but it seems tailor-made for the social distancing scenario we find ourselves enveloped in. Today we’ll discuss the importance of offering this shopping option to your customers—perhaps now more than ever.
Given today’s heightened anxieties over being in public, BOPIS is a no-brainer. In fact, one report we read noted that “BOPIS orders increased 208%” during a period at the beginning of the COVID-19 stay-at-home mandates. Limited interactions with store staff and other customers is quite the lure for folks who either need a retail fix, or just want to grab necessities like groceries and medicine.
No shipping fees. No wandering around the store, desperate to find what you need among endless shelves. Instant returns. Fast service. There’s no question that BOPIS offers shoppers the convenience they crave when making a purchase. With proper inventory management and a great ecommerce platform, making a purchase online also streamlines the process of digging through racks of clothing to find the right size, or searching high and low for a particular item that’s shelved in the wrong place. The legwork of finding and bagging a BOPIS order is put on your staff, who are far more likely to be familiar with your store’s layout than any shopper.
It Drives Foot Traffic
Keep this one in your back pocket for the day we can all eventually shop in-person, mask free. Offering BOPIS is a great way to get people into your brick-and-mortar location. There’s the obvious reason for this, which is the need to actually retrieve the purchase. But shoppers are also more likely to make additional purchases if they are physically in your store, surrounded by merchandise. A study we found noted that 49% of customers who used BOPIS made additional purchases while snagging their orders.
To keep your BOPIS strategy running smoothly, it’s important to have a few key things in place. First, you’ll need to advertise the option properly, both on your website and in-store. Your online checkout is a great place to market this. You’ll also want to set up automated digital tracking methods such as email and text messages, so customers can know exactly when their order is ready. And finally, make sure your store has clear signage advertising where customers should go to pick up their merchandise. The lure of BOPIS is its convenience—so take the guesswork out of navigating your store. Customers will thank you for it.