Thanks to the pandemic, customers now have high expectations for their online shopping experience. They expect to be presented with multiple options, whether it's payment methods or delivery choices.
One of the most popular delivery options customers seek is local pickup. It's fast, convenient, and offers people a chance to avoid paying for shipping. At least 59% of shoppers are interested in the “Buy Online, Pick Up in Store” option.
But what do Shopify businesses gain from offering local pickup options? This article will discuss the advantages of implementing Shopify local pickup for online orders.
What is Local Pickup?
Local pickup, also known as curbside pickup, click-and-collect, and buy online - pick up in store (BOPIS), is a delivery option where customers can collect their orders at a nearby location. Businesses set up collection points, usually at their own stores or an affiliated retailer, and customers can pick up their items when convenient for them.
Many customers prefer local pickup to delivery because they can get their order quickly and save on shipping costs.
Benefits of Local Pickup for Shopify Businesses
Enabling local pickup can bring several advantages to Shopify retailers. Here are the best ones:
1. More Foot Traffic at Your Store
Local pickup can be a great way to drive more foot traffic to your store. By offering Shopify store pickup, you are giving customers the convenience of shopping online and then picking up their purchase in-store. This encourages customers to visit your store rather than having the items shipped directly to them.
When shoppers come into your store for local pickup, they have the opportunity to browse other products and services that you offer. You can use this as an opportunity to engage with them and provide customer service that will encourage them to return in the future.
Local pickup also provides you with an opportunity to upsell customers on additional items. You can use this as a chance to show them products that they didn't know were available online or in-store, increasing the likelihood of additional purchases.
2. Fewer Returns or Exchanges
When customers can inspect an item firsthand before purchasing, they are less likely to feel as though they made a mistake or be disappointed with their purchase once it arrives.
Moreover, local pickup gives customers access to knowledgeable staff that can answer any questions and provide assistance if needed. This eliminates potential issues such as not understanding how a product works or what size best fits them.
Local pickup also eliminates any potential issues with shipping that may lead to returns or exchanges.
For example, if a customer’s order is damaged in transit due to inadequate packaging by the shipper, they may be forced to return it for a replacement or refund. However, when customers pick up items in person, there is no risk of damage during shipping and thus fewer chances of them needing to return or exchange their product.
Finally, local pickup allows customers to experience the product and form an emotional connection with it before purchasing. This can help reduce buyer’s remorse and make them less likely to return or exchange the item after taking it home.
3. Increased Chances of Impulse Buying
Local pickup increases the likelihood of impulse buying since customers can pick up their purchases right away. And unlike an online purchase where you cannot see the product before it arrives in the mail, local pickup allows customers to view the product before they commit to purchasing.
Customers can also take advantage of any sales or promotions that may be happening at that time and interact with store personnel who can provide additional information about products and services.
This encourages customers to make spur-of-the-moment decisions based on what's available right then and there. Research shows that 85% of shoppers who had used the BOPIS method made additional, unplanned purchases.
Additionally, because customers don't have to worry about shipping costs or wait time, they may be more likely to purchase items they wouldn't have otherwise.
4. Save on Shipping Costs
Local pickup can help businesses save on shipping costs by eliminating the need for packaging materials, labels, and postage. Additionally, it removes any additional fees associated with courier services, such as insurance or tracking numbers.
The cost savings are especially beneficial for small businesses that may not have established relationships with major couriers yet or don’t have access to discounted rates due to their size. By offering local pickup as an option, they can still offer competitive prices while simultaneously keeping overhead costs down.
5. Increase Customer Loyalty and Repeat Purchases
By offering local pickup, businesses can create an instant connection with their customers, as they are providing them with a convenient and personalized experience that many online shoppers don't have access to.
Aside from the convenience factor, local pickup allows customers to get a more personal view of the business and its products.
When you come in for local pickup, you can see firsthand how the product looks before purchasing it or ask staff members questions about it. This builds trust between the customer and the business, leading to increased loyalty and repeat purchases.
Furthermore, with local pickup, customers can benefit from discounts and offers unavailable to those who purchase products online. These incentives encourage customers to return for future purchases.
How to Add Store Pickup and Local Delivery to Your Shopify Store
Local pickup can be enabled on your Shopify store through the main dashboard. You can set your store’s preferred pickup location and define associated fees. You can also add local delivery as an option, allowing customers to have their order delivered directly to their door instead of having to pick it up themselves.
However, local pickup through Shopify alone can be challenging to manage and requires manual tracking of all pickups. This can be time-consuming and error-prone. To make local pickup easier, you may want to consider using the Shopify Store Pickup app by Amai Digital which helps streamline the entire process by:
- Automatically emailing customers when their order is ready for pickup
- Letting customers choose a designated pickup time
- Managing all pickups in one place
- Handling the entire process, from payments to customer notifications
Challenges Associated with Shopify Local Pickup
While local pickup offers many benefits, there are still a few challenges associated with it. You will need to address these challenges to make local pickup work for your business.
Increased Customer Expectations
When customers opt for local pickup, they expect convenience, speed, and accuracy. This can be a challenge as customers expect a quick turnaround time from the moment they place their order until they arrive to pick it up.
If this process is not seamless, customers may become frustrated and are less likely to purchase with local pickup again.
Additionally, customer expectations for accuracy regarding their orders being correct when picked up must be met. Fail to do this and your customers will be disappointed and may choose to shop elsewhere next time.
Meeting these customer expectations requires extra vigilance from the business owner or staff member responsible for fulfilling orders to ensure that all details are accurate and that pickups occur quickly and efficiently.
Inventory Management Issues
Inventory management issues can be a challenge associated with local pickup. This is because it requires the business to have an accurate and up-to-date inventory of items that customers can pick up locally.
This includes having enough products in stock for customers to choose from, as well as knowing exactly where each product is located in the store or warehouse.
Additionally, businesses must ensure that any inventory they are selling online is also available for local pickup. If not properly managed, this could lead to customer dissatisfaction due to out-of-stock items or long wait times while an order is fulfilled.
Finally, businesses need to ensure their staff can access real-time inventory data to help with customer inquiries and ensure that orders are fulfilled quickly.
When customers come to pick up their orders in-store, businesses must have enough staff on hand to handle the influx of customers. This means that employees must be available at peak times or when orders are ready for pickup. The staff's preparedness is integral in solving customers' problems. It comes from the hiring stage when you ask the right questions at the interview in the food industry, the food service interview questions help HR managers onboard staff who will be able to handle the customers' issues later.
Additionally, businesses must also ensure that they have enough staff trained in customer service and are knowledgeable about the products being offered. This will ensure that customers receive the best possible experience when picking up their order.
There should be a system in place to notify staff when local pickup orders are placed so they can be ready when customers arrive. Otherwise, employees may be unable to keep up with the demand and customers might have to wait for their orders. Ultimately, this will lead to an unsatisfactory experience.
Local pickup can be a great addition to your Shopify store. Not only does it provide customers with more convenience, but it also has the potential to benefit your business in several ways.
From increased foot traffic at your store, to cost savings on shipping and fewer returns or exchanges, local pickup is an excellent way for you to improve the customer experience while giving yourself a competitive edge over other online stores.