The “click and collect” delivery method for online shopping has been available in convenience retail in many areas of the world for several years now, with varying degrees of popularity. However, the year 2020 and its cohort of disasters triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic has inexorably accelerated the process for retailers globally.
Click and collect has been a way for some so-called “non-essential” businesses to maintain a little bit of activity.
This sales channel has multiple benefits for retailers and shoppers alike, and some merchants who implement it will quickly understand all the advantages and probably be tempted to perpetuate it well beyond when the health crisis is completely over.
Here are the virtues of this distribution method that was quickly introduced to small businesses and the complete guide to set it up with the WiziShop ecommerce solution.
What is Click and Collect?
The term “click and collect” or “click & collect” was originally coined by British retailer Argos in the year 2000.
Today, click and collect has become a generic term designating a purchasing method in its own right. It’s also known as “in-store pickup,” “curbside pickup,” or “buy online, pick up in store.”
Its principle? Shoppers place an order on an ecommerce site (they “click” to order online) and go to the physical point of sale to pick up their product (they go to “collect” their product).
In this sense, it’s an “omnichannel” approach to commerce, i.e., one that relies on both digital and traditional retail.
How does Click and Collect work?
On the retailer’s end, they need to put their offer online, that is to say on their own website.
The customer makes their selection, buys the product online, and collects it directly from the physical point of sale.
The merchant is responsible for informing the customer by email or telephone of the availability of the product and the appointment times available to collect it. The payment is made either online or at the time of the pickup.
Some retailers also offer the option of a traditional delivery to the customer’s home or a collection of the order in a local relay.
This is a bit of a detour from the principle of “collection,” but in these complicated times, anything is good for boosting business...
Turnkey solutions for online stores designed to manage the click-and-collect service are multiplying and are perfectly accessible to small businesses, solutions like the WiziShop platform.
The e-shop is set up so that once validated, shoppers’ orders are transmitted to the store.
The merchant then prepares the order while the customer is alerted and informed of its status.
This type of solution has the advantage of being synchronized with the management of retailers’ physical stores.
This optimizes inventory management, facilitates the processing of customer requests, provides order history, etc. Other features, such as online payment, can remain optional.
What are the advantages of Click and Collect?
The click-and-collect service clearly responds to the latest behaviors of consumers and customers: offering even more flexibility, ease, and speed in the act of purchase...
For the company, it’s a way to do the following:
- save money on deliveries,
- stand out from its competitors,
- generate traffic on the point of sale thanks to the internet and mobile commerce,
- make customers discover store’s different products more quickly and easily,
- expand its buyer audience,
- optimize stock management by benefiting from a medium-term visibility of the products that are going to be withdrawn in store,
- learn the omnichannel strategy to improve the customer experience, and
- build customer loyalty.
The benefit of Click and Collect during lockdowns
With lockdowns and stay-at-home orders being in place globally for much of 2020 and even part of 2021, many businesses, both small and large, considered “non-essential” by governments, were forced to temporarily close in the hopes of keeping COVID-19 numbers at bay.
What a blow to the morale of bars and restaurants, but also to small businesses which, for some, were already struggling.
Nevertheless, many of these government announcements included an important addendum that stated that although closed businesses wouldn’t be able to receive the public, they would still be able to operate for the activities of deliveries and order collections.
Thus, governments encouraged, in an official and generalized way, the use of click and collect by businesses everywhere.
This measure helped to lessen the economic blow of the closures for retailers and other businesses in several ways:
- It accelerated the process of digitization of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), helping with ecommerce growth.
- It maintained a minimum amount of economic activity for physical stores.
- It limited the discontent of these so-called “non-essential” businesses.
It’s clear that this mode of operation has allowed many businesses to continue to sell and even to expand their customer base, while guaranteeing health security.
Online payments and collections on appointment have also made it possible for stores to prevent lines in front of the door and, therefore, physical contact with customers.
For all of these reasons, it’s likely that the click-and-collect service will be a part of the future of ecommerce, even after COVID-19 is no longer a concern.
How do you set up Click and Collect on WiziShop?
To configure the click-and-collect service for your WiziShop online retail business, nothing could be easier!
Here’s the complete guide, step by step, to offer click and collect on your ecommerce website:
1. Go to the “Configuration” tab (click on the cogwheel), and click on “Add a delivery”
2. Select “Click & Collect”
3. Then fill in the “Click and Collect” title field and add a description. For example: “Pick up your order in store at (store’s business address)”
4. Select your country and indicate the postal code(s) corresponding to the cities near your store. For example, if your store is in Nashville, Tennessee in the US, you might enter: 37203;37204;37205;37212;37215...
5. Change the calculation method to “This shipping option is free” and enter the number of days to prepare the item. If it’s already ready, you can say “1,” meaning that the customer can pick it up the next day.
That's it! The “Click and Collect” delivery method is now operational on your WiziShop store.