By Jeff Baskin | Chief Business Officer
Four years ago you would have had a tough time finding a VP/Director of Off-Premise, VP/Director of Delivery Services, or even a Chief Digital Officer at many major retail brands. Now, individuals with these titles are pivotal to the success of every major retailer, grocer, and restaurant chain. Prior to Covid, BOPIS, curbside pickup, and same-day delivery were growing steadily, but over the last year, growth for these fulfillment options has exploded. Brands decided to invest heavily in building the technology to make the digital ordering process as simple as possible for customers and as efficient as possible for staff. Here are four reasons why investing in an enhanced off-premise solution is a necessity:
It’s critical to make investments in technology that allow you to meet your customers where they want to be. Convenience and speed of order delivery are two of the most important factors that consumers consider when choosing where to eat or shop. If your stores aren’t able to provide the best experience, then your customers will look elsewhere. Not only will the right technology help your stores sustain revenue, but it will help increase revenue as lower wait times are directly tied to repeat visits. Demand for BOPIS and curbside solutions show no sign of slowing down, in fact a recent survey showed that 95% of those who used curbside pickup during Covid plan to continue doing so in the future (Retail Dive, 2021).
Restaurants, retailers, and grocers that had enhanced off-premise solutions in place prior to Covid were able to flourish, while those that didn’t were forced to quickly put together a manual solution in order to survive. With the current labor shortages and in-person dining and shopping beginning to open up, some brands are deciding that they don’t have the bandwidth to focus on off-premise orders. They’re missing a huge opportunity. Utilizing an enhanced location-based off-premise solution allows employees to do more with less. Providing in-store staff with real-time location updates and an accurate ETA for customers and delivery drivers allows them to be proactive when fulfilling an off-premise order, rather than reactive. Staff are able to prepare orders just in time for the customer or delivery driver’s arrival, giving them time to tend to in-store guests as well. An enhanced off-premise solution dramatically increases staff efficiency, meaning fewer employees can manage more orders.
With the digital ordering market as competitive as it is, it’s important to find ways to differentiate your business and retain your customers. A recent study showed that over 75% of customers have tried new brands, places to shop, or methods of shopping since the beginning of the pandemic (McKinsey, 2021). This means that the modern digital consumer is no longer as strictly loyal as the traditional brick and mortar consumer once was. With this in mind, it’s critical to build customer loyalty by focusing on execution of service. Consumers will be loyal to whichever brand makes the end to end purchase experience as easy and fast as possible. From ease of ordering, to speed of pickup, to accuracy of order, every step needs to be perfect. Create an easy to use loyalty program with clear rewards and make it easy for customers to remember to use loyalty, and you’ll never lose a customer.
The almighty dollar. Data from businesses around the world shows that off-premise check/basket sizes are consistently an average of 25% higher than those of in-person shoppers (Shopify, 2020). Furthermore, in the 2020 holiday season, retailers that offered curbside pickup grew their sales by 36% more than those that did not (MediaPost, 2020). It’s clear that off-premise orders are a significant potential source of revenue and implementing an enhanced solution is key to maximizing that potential.
Ordering curbside pickup, in-store pickup, or delivery existed long before Covid, but the past 18 months have fundamentally changed consumer preferences and made it essential to have a best-in-class digital experience for success. Customers are now conditioned to order online and get it immediately, whether it be curbside, BOPIS, same-day delivery, locker pickup, drive-thru pickup, or even via drone delivery. It’s no longer an option to forgo investing time and resources in your brand’s ordering and fulfillment experience – customers won’t hesitate to shop elsewhere.
Flybuy Pickup is transforming the industry and helping some of the largest restaurant chains, retailers, and grocers provide their customers with a state-of-the-art off-premise experience. Flybuy brands see average wait time reductions of 80%, order volume increases of 22%, and customer satisfaction ratings of 99%.
The Rise of Curbside Pickup: Best Practices for Retailers, Retail Dive, https://www.retaildive.com/news/the-rise-of-curbside-pickup-best-practices-for-retailers/599931/
US Consumer Sentiment and Behaviors During the Coronavirus Crisis, McKinsey & Company, https://www.mckinsey.com/business-functions/marketing-and-sales/our-insights/survey-us-consumer-sentiment-during-the-coronavirus-crisis
Black Friday Cyber Monday 2020: An Analysis of Over $5.1 Billion in Sales, Shopify, https://www.shopify.com/blog/bfcm-data
Online Sales Hit $181 Billion Globally in First Two Weeks of December, MediaPost, https://www.mediapost.com/publications/article/358812/online-sales-hit-181-billion-globally-in-first-tw.html