In the fast-moving world of retail, business owners are increasingly experimenting with novel purchase models to continually improve the customer experience. In recent years this has meant offering everything from overnight delivery options to buy now, pay later schemes such as After Pay and Oxipay.
Most recently, many consumers have taken to a new purchasing system known as BOPIS. In the following article, we look into BOPIS and examine exactly what it is about this fulfilment model which seems to appeal to so many online shoppers.
What is the BOPIS model?
The BOPIS model allows online shoppers to purchase their items online but pick up their purchases in store and at their convenience. What’s so great about picking up
purchases in store, you ask? Well, doing so can save the customer valuable money that would otherwise be incurred as a delivery fee at checkout.
What’s more, the BOPIS model also benefits the retailer too. Having customers come in store to pick up purchases provides another opportunity for sales, and research suggests that more often than not customers coming in for pick-ups will also make additional purchases while in store. Read more about how retailers benefit from the BOPIS model.
Convenience versus Experience
One thing is for certain when it comes to customer satisfaction – in our fast-paced world, what consumers want most of all is convenience. In fact, a recent JDA survey found that while many customers still prefer to shop in stores, they do not expect an “experience” while doing so.
Rather, convenience was the most important part of the shopping process for consumers surveyed. This may explain why the percentage of participants using the BOPIS system has increased by 35% since the first JDA survey back in 2015: 50% of respondents said they used BOPIS in the last 12 months.
While recent trends in consumer demand seem to indicate that online shopping is preferred among many consumers, brick-and-mortar stores are not quite redundant. According to JDA, 46% of respondents said they prefer to shop online, meaning a significant portion still preferred in-store shopping.
Clearly, there is a mixture of preferences among consumers, with some preferring online shopping against visiting physical stores. Considering this, the BOPIS model offers a great balance between both – and shoppers can use it as it suits their lifestyles, schedules and needs.
As Jim Prewitt, VP of Retail Industry Strategy at JDA says, “No longer the only channel for shopping, brick-and-mortar stores are still a key cornerstone for a quick and easy shopping experience and the facilitator for popular fulfilment options, like BOPIS.”
Retailers should take note of these fulfilment trends, and ensure they are meeting the purchasing demands of their customer base. By offering the BOPIS model at checkout, consumers can choose whether they’d like to spend a little more for delivery or save on the extra cost by picking up their items in person. In addition, BOPIS provides additional opportunities for upselling in store – a win-win for everyone.
Article by Melanie Chan in collaboration with our team of Unleashed Software inventory and business specialists. Melanie has been writing about inventory management for the past three years. When not writing about inventory management, you can find her eating her way through Auckland.