Click & Collect: the secret weapon of physical retail
One of the consequences of the pandemic has been the birth of new online consumers and those who made their first purchases online a few months ago are now great experts who look for the best options before making a decision.
Speed of delivery is a priority for 66% of online consumers looking for fast and free delivery. This is the effect Amazon has had on consumers and when delivery times are too long, nearly half of omnichannel consumers will shop elsewhere, according to a McKinsey study .
Home delivery from a distribution center in one or even two days requires tight cycle times and optimal synchronization of the various parts of the supply chain. Competing with giant eCommerce companies can incur high costs and inventory management complications from having to hire last-mile solutions or new warehouses to get closer to consumers.
How can traditional retailers compete with the giants in fast online order delivery? They have a secret weapon: their stores
The hidden power of physical stores
According to Mckinsey, Click & Collect is presented as “an attractive alternative to express delivery” and we fully agree. What’s more, Click & Collect has an advantage that fast deliveries do not have: its flexibility.
Retailers can take advantage of the inventory they have in their stores to make hyper-fast deliveries with the added benefit that the customer can pick up their order whenever they want – even ordering on the way to the store and picking it up without waiting.
For this to work well, we have to take into account different variables so that the customer experience is perfect while maintaining the profitability of the service.
Despite the fact that stores are an ace up the sleeve of retailers, it must not be forgotten that their storage capacity will always be less than that of a large distribution center. Finding the balance between what the store needs for itself and online sales that choose a Click & Collect in that specific location, it is not an easy task.
When considering this type of service, special care must be taken in how to manage the references between warehouses and stores. This is complicated when you have a very large catalog or one that varies by store or area.
In the previous blogpost we talked about the obstacles that retailers have encountered when implementing a Click & Collect system due to not having a technological platform that was prepared for it.
That is why it is so important to have an omnichannel platform specialized in retail that allows you to gain inventory visibility throughout your network of stores in real time. This will help you not only manage the availability of your products, but also improve your supply chain operations and make it easier for your pickup teams to pick up from the store.