Integrated ecommerce explained
What does the phrase "integrated ecommerce" actually mean in practice?...
The customer places their order remotely, items are corralled and collated, and the customer visits a physical establishment to collect them. As ecommerce patterns shift and societal needs change, the advantages of BOPIS are becoming more accessible and relevant to smaller and medium-sized B2C online retailers. To understand why this model could be a really good option for you, consider these seven reasons why your business should go BOPIS.
In the current crisis, minimising the number of people who you interact with as part of your retail process can be very valuable. Couriers, by the nature of their work, contact and connect with dozens of different people every day. Even though social distancing and masks are helping, having the option of a less contaminating way to sell your goods can be very valuable right now. BOPIS cuts our the courier middle man, meaning one less vector for COVID-19.
If your store has a BOPIS option, and your customer is within reasonable distance they can collect their purchase in a matter of hours, not days. Sometimes delivery times mean that a customer experiences buyer’s remorse even before they have physical hold of the item. A BOPIS option allows the customer to have what they want right now, in a way that is a much cheaper alternative to same-day delivery.
Different customers have different requirements when it comes to convenience. Some will appreciate delivery windows, but others will be much more pleased by a BOPIS option. Waiting for a parcel delivery at home can become extremely tedious and frustrating, especially if person has several out-of-house errands to run. BOPIS allows them to arrive and collect their items exactly when they want, and fit this journey into their wider tasks for the day.
Online businesses are often seen as distant entities without any true connection to the geographical space they occupy. BOPIS can really help you ground your operation and what it offers as a pillar of the local community. Having people physically see your setting, know where you are and what you are about in person, is a powerful tool to tell the world about your company. BOPIS leads to excellent marketing opportunities and many avenues of advertising. Not all businesses may see their connection to local image as key to their overall strategy. For those that do, BOPIS is a great choice.
Many customers like to physically see and feel the product in their hands before purchasing it. BOPIS technically doesn’t allow for that, since they’ve already bought it, but given that the customer is physically present in your store for collection, it doesn’t matter. If, upon seeing it, they decide they don’t like it, returns can be arranged quick and easily there and then. This gives the customer an increased sense of confidence in the service, making them more likely to use you again in future. BOPIS allows for the kind of intimacy and quality customer service that many sellers can find it difficult to provide.
Having a customer physically come into your establishment is a whole other level of potential marketing. Surrounding them with visions of other products, other services, other brands that you offer, the ideas and potential goes on and on. Complete control of a full three-dimensional space in the ‘real world’ allows for marketing potential of a kind many ecommerce retailers can only dream of. BOPIS makes that possible.
BOPIS makes it much less likely for any of your customers to experience the ‘not-in-stock’ disappointment that can often strike those visiting a physical world retail establishment. With an ecommerce store that is fully up-to-date with all the contents and quantities of every item you have on offer, you and your customers can be guaranteed that they know exactly what’s available.
BOPIS allows for some of the very best B2C customer interactions. However, to make it truly possible for your business you will need a strong end-to-end software solution. Your stock tracking, your WMS, and your ecommerce platforms will all need to speak to each other in the same language, and very quickly. Talk to OrderWise about how our software can connect all these systems, and much more besides, to make your business into the best version of itself that it can possibly be.
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