How to set up a successful click & collect service in your store

The betterRetailing team talks to retailers about the challenges and benefits of offering grocery and parcel collections

Click and collect online grocery ordering

While the coronavirus pandemic increased demand for grocery click & collect services, for years customers have been used to collecting other online orders in local stores. From picking up a pair of shoes to a bag of groceries, the reason for the growth of collect-in-store is the same. Shoppers are seeking more convenient ways to purchase that match their busy lifestyles.

While many retailers have started offering a grocery click & collect service, some that have tried out both parcel and grocery click & collect have since decided to abandon the services because they simply weren’t generating the critical mass of sales to make the stress and effort worthwhile.

“Dealing with the sheer volume of parcels and delivery times can be challenging,” admits Aman Uppal, from One Stop Mount Nod in Coventry. “But the benefits are huge.”

He, like other retailers, sees it as a useful tool for attracting new customers, even if the service itself isn’t bringing in much profit directly.

“The store is offering an extra service to the local community,” says Kirti Patel, from Londis Ferme Park Road in London. “It’s not taken off that much at the moment, but we do have customers who use it regularly. We don’t see ourselves getting much added profit out of it, but it’s definitely something that retailers should try out because they might get more customers coming through the store or their existing customers might start using their store more often.”

Even if you’re not actively selling your own products on a click & collect basis, the service itself will bring people into your store, where the right offer can generate further sales. “They come in to collect or return a parcel, and that’s giving them an extra shopping mission,” says Uppal. “It’s helped us sell other niche products in our store.”

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