Is your click & collect operation causing in-store chaos?

22-11-2017 |

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Increasing the value of click & collect as a channel is not solely about building long-lasting customer relationships and providing convenience. To be truly successful, retailers also need to address its impact on store operations and front-line staff.

 

Some of the in-store click & collect challenges that need to be addressed did not exist just a matter of years ago, so it’s perhaps not a surprise its growing popularity has caught retailers off guard. Look at Starbucks, for instance – customers who order and pay ahead via the coffee chain’s mobile app are now finding themselves queuing in stores because the ‘time-saving’ service has become so popular.

 

If retailers aren’t already considering the following operational issues related to click & collect, it’s now time to do so, to cut out the chaos:

 

How much space should be put aside for storing click & collect items?
Are staff armed with the appropriate click & collect technology?
How can click & collect be more efficient during peak trading?

 

All too often, issues with the in-store collection experience arise from the fact retailers have neglected click & collect technology. Even if they have systems in place, the rapidly growing popularity of this fulfilment method may mean that current in-store infrastructure simply cannot cope with the volume of orders.

 

Reality check?

 

IMRG research suggests click & collect customers expect to wait three minutes or less for their purchase when in-store, but the reality of the service is significantly different. The typical queuing and waiting time is three minutes 17 seconds for medium-sized retailers and seven minutes 31 seconds for larger players, according to a study by Doddle.

 

The impact on store operations can be significant, especially at peak trading periods, with front-line staff left to deal with disgruntled online shoppers and unnecessary crowding damaging the customer experience. Serving the growing number of click & collect customers successfully does not need to take over store operations – it can be achieved using very small areas if store ops have embedded the right technology.

 

Calming the operational chaos

 

In order for operational teams to make click & collect a more efficient, profit-driving activity, greater attention needs to be paid to the reality of today’s customer experiences. Conducting operational audits, gauging customer feedback and analysing the effectiveness of current click & collect systems are ideal methods for improving store encounters.

 

Crucially, store managers and associates require the correct technology at their fingertips to successfully complete the job at hand, and they do not require vast space dedicated to the service. Operations teams can turn to Powered by Doddle to help them audit their space and existing facilities.

 

Ultimately, click & collect shouldn’t be chaotic; it needs to enhance convenience for customers and stores alike.

 

Find out how Powered by Doddle allows retailers to become operationally efficient.

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