Shoppers crave convenience, that’s the reason retailers are finding new ways to sell online and make use of their physical stores efficiently as a center for attainment and ultimately delivering the products at a much faster pace, that’s where BOPIS comes in. BOPIS stands for Buy Online Pick Up In Store. The use of offering BOPIS has gained momentum in recent times, as shoppers are interested to buy online due to lack of time to invest in conventional purchases in the stores. It allows the retailers to combine online and offline experience to attract customers, alongside offering more convenient plans to shop.
In a study conducted by Fisher,” 90% of the online shoppers who were surveyed stated that high prices for shipping and home delivery that will take a longer duration than two days will prevent them from completing an online purchase.” Which is why BOPIS is the perfect option for shoppers as it lets them buy online and pick up in-store without the need for shipping charges or wastage of time.
How does BOPIS work?
If a brand wants to offer BOPIS to their customer, they need to have an online as well as physical presence. Just online presence or just offline presence won’t be sufficient for having a BOPIS facility for their customers. The process of BOPIS is pretty straight forward, before the online check-out completion the customer chooses the shipping option for picking up from the physical store. When the products are ready, shoppers will get a notification/alert and can pick up their order any time the store is open.
In real-world scenarios, BOPIS works in a few different ways . The first scenario is when the shoppers choose the product and store location for pick up, the shopper will then receive order updates regarding the item in stock at the store. In this situation, a store associate receives the order, prepares the order for pick up, the customer comes and picks up the order. Check the below image for better understanding
Second, curbside pickup. In this shoppers choose the product and store location for pick up, store associate receives the order, prepares the order , shopper will then receive order updates regarding the item in stock at the store . Customers park the vehicle in designated parking spots, store associates will verify the order and will load in the vehicle. Check the below image for better understanding.
What are the requirements that a retailer needs to fulfil to offer BOPIS?
Now that we have an understanding about BOPIS and its process, let us now understand the requirements the brand needs to fulfil in order to implement BOPIS. There are three requirements for successfully implementing BOPIS.
- Online platform for ordering: In order to offer BOPIS, a brand should have an online platform for taking orders, be it an app or a website . The platform should be able to connect the online and offline channels, it should be able to provide a real-time inventory visibility to create an enhanced customer experience.
- Brick and mortar : Brands should have at least one Brick and mortar in order to let sellers pick their products, brick and mortar refers to a physical presence of the brand. It can be a building or any other structure.
- Inventory Visibility: In order to successfully implement BOPIS, brands need to have complete a visibility over inventory, which lets shoppers know the status of their purchase, for example, if the product is available in the seller’s desired outlet or if the product is hardly available then sellers should be aware of that information.
Benefit for retailers for opting BOPIS
Few of these benefits may not be immediately visible but it’s worth understanding.
- Return Management: According to a study by Forrester “around 86 per cent of customers expect to be allowed to return online orders in the store” which makes it difficult for the brands to handle return and refund. BOPIS enables consumers to inspect the product before exiting the store, which decreases the chances of product returns.
- Reduces shipping costs : A well thought out BOPIS framework can reduce the cost compared to conventional retailing. Retailers can use their physical stores to fulfill their ecommerce orders, which can reduce the cost of shipping as customers will pick up the order directly from the store, this process will help the seller in achieving better cost-efficiency.
- Reduction in shipping time: In today’s competitive world, having a well-planned shipping management system gives the organisation a competitive edge. According to the report of Walker Sands, “The Future of Retail 2019″ which says that around 35% of consumers say that shipping the next day is a key to get them purchase online more frequently , while 39% of consumers say that same-day delivery would make them more likely to shop online and 20% of the consumers are looking for a two-hour(or less ) delivery”.
- Smoother Checkout: Optimising the checkout process is one of the crucial tasks for e-commerce businesses to grow revenue and deliver an exceptional online customer experience. By using BOPIS customers can create orders, process checkout, select pick-up stores, make payments and view order activity in real-time, thereby making customers’ purchasing experience smooth and convenient.
- Increased Sales: As per Doddle Press Release to Retail Dive, 2019, “85% of shoppers said that they had made additional in-store purchases when they visited stores to pick up what they have bought online.” As BOPIS allows customers to make purchases from online platforms and pick-up products from any store they want, and when customers see different products available at the store, this in turn increases foot traffic to the store. It has been many years since sellers wanted an option that would increase brands visibility and sales, and BOPIS is the way to go.
- Speed: In today’s digital era, customers don’t like to be kept waiting for their orders, and if they have an option available for the fastest delivery then shoppers will opt that. That is the main advantage of BOPIS, as it enables buyers to easily place the order online and pick up the product within a matter of hours.
- Notification: Times have changed now, shoppers can now receive push notifications based on their geographical location. This technology enables the shoppers to track the product details and to choose any store for pick-up which are nearby to them.This process makes the shopping process more simplified than before.
In today’s competitive world, brands should consider BOPIS as an evolutionary shift in traditional e-commerce. Customers expect brands to cover their needs of fastest shipping, and enhanced personal experience irrespective of the channel that they use, which makes it difficult for brands to satisfy the ever increasing demands of the customer. BOPIS lets the customer experience the brand in their own personal way, this allows shoppers to feel as if the store was just made for them.