The global pandemic has caused numerous retail stores to close down and participate in social distancing and isolation to prevent the spread of COVID-19. After months of lockdown, retailers have come up with ways to reopen and get back to selling their products without having the risks of face-to-face interactions. Fortunately, for retail shops, figuring out a way to continue business operations with contactless methods is way more straightforward compared to businesses like salons or dental clinics.
However, a long list of safety and health precautions that they need to implement to pursue these operations and use options such as in-store or curbside pick-ups. Though retail stores have already done this in the past, the pandemic has heightened its relevance and demand in the retail industry.
In-store and curbside pick-up services
Through in-store and curbside pick-ups, retailers can allow their buyers to order products and goods online and collect their purchases at the physical store or a location near it. This gives customers a cheaper and more convenient way of receiving their items instead of the expensive and lengthy shipping process. This concept is not a new method for some retail shop owners. However, not a lot of people acknowledge its existence. It is also similar to drive-through fast-food chains and restaurants where you can go and get your food without leaving the comfort of your car.
This process is possible through the concept of “Buy Online, Pick-up in Store,” otherwise known as BOPIS. This can also apply to curbside pick-ups. Now that lockdown measures are being strictly reinforced, every retailer and consumer has shifted to online shopping. It is ultimately safer for everyone.
Benefits of using these methods
Multiple benefits come with in-store and curbside pick-ups, which is why every retailer should consider applying these methods to your business operations. The pandemic has encouraged businesses to adapt to the new normal, which is one of the perfect ways to do so.
Primarily, the process of in-store and curbside pick-up services is immensely faster than traditional shopping methods. Along with this, customers have gradually become more demanding when it comes to getting the products. Consumers have now become tired of waiting for their packages to arrive through shipping and delivery. Fortunately, in-store and curbside pick-ups allow them to get their hands on their items as soon as possible.
These options can also prevent any unfortunate instances such as damage to the products when they go through the shipping and delivery process. Most of the time, products will get minor or major damages while in transit. Having in-store or curbside pick-ups can ensure the safety of the products and the satisfaction of the customers. This is pivotal since surveys show how 79% of consumers would not purchase from a business again after getting damaged items.
Since retailers have established an online presence for their businesses, customers can now easily access information regarding the products and services that they offer. Payment methods are also made more convenient as it will only take one click through e-wallets, etc. This allows customers to avoid wasting their time by physically looking around and waiting in line. The entire process of buying their desired items will no longer be a stressful experience for your customers. It can also primarily benefit the elderly and individuals with disabilities. Through curbside pick-ups, a staff member can deliver the product to their cars.
But most of all, this reduces the risk of customers getting exposed to the virus. Having in-store and curbside pick-ups can help minimize social interactions with potential positive patients of COVID-19. Since every country and city is going through a pandemic, being in their vehicles’ confines helps them feel much more secure and safe. About 90% of customers have admitted that curbside pick-ups were much more convenient.
In-store and curbside pick-ups are here to stay
It is safe to say that these trends will still be present even after the COVID-19 pandemic has ended. This option is beneficial to both sides of the party. For customers, it offers them a fast and convenient way of shopping. Meanwhile, retailers can save more by avoiding the additional fees that come with delivering each product to different homes. Though the benefits of curbside pick-ups have been brushed off in the past years, the pandemic has encouraged retailers to recognize its multiple advantages. As it will take time to fully recover after the pandemic, having retailers incorporate in-store and curbside pick-ups will ensure the safety and lives of their staff and their customers.