Building click & collect into your app can be easy

Creating a click & collect app, or building click & collect capabilities into your existing app, can make the retail process easier, more efficient, and better for customers.

Customer happy about his favourite retail store having click and collect app

Click & collect is an important trend in retail, and it’s not going anywhere.

Click & collect and curb-side retail skyrocketed during the pandemic for obvious reasons. But many retailers were already shifting in this direction: In 2019, 48% of retailers offered customers the choice between delivery and click-and-collect pickup, and almost one-quarter of retailers in Australia offered click and collect as early as 2015

 

More: click & collect statistics that prove it’s here to stay

 

It’s clear that click & collect will outlast the pandemic. For many retailers, implementing a click & collect strategy is a no-brainer. But implementing it can be a challenge, and there are risks if you do it wrong. 

Creating or purchasing a click & collect app, or building click & collect capabilities into your existing app, can make the process easier, more efficient, and better for customers and employees. 

Here’s everything you need to know.

 

Why do you need an app for click & collect?

Click & collect is a simple concept, but executing it can be a complex operation. Implementing click & collect via a manual process or an app with limited capabilities can cause big problems. 

If you don’t set up and implement your click & collect app correctly, it can cause long queues, poor customer experience, additional work for staff, and even lead to customers abandoning their inventory at the store. 

Nearly two thirds of customers say they would switch retailers because of a poor click & collect experience. Meanwhile, when the click & collect handover process is implemented well, it can boost revenue and improve customer experience. 

 

What makes a good click & collect app? 

A good click & collect app will have portals for both customers and employees. Although apps are not totally necessary for customers (they can shop via a web browser and receive their notifications via SMS), mobile apps allow for a more seamless experience. 

A good click & collect app will offer customers features like:

  • Scheduling pickup windows, which helps manage store traffic and wait times by limiting the number of people who can pick up at a certain time. 
  • Push notifications when the order is ready.
  • Clear instructions for pickup via push notification.
  • Automatic check-in via geotagging when approaching the store.

For employees, a good click & collect app provides:

  • Notifications to retrieve inventory for an order prior to the customer’s pickup window.
  • Notifications when customers are en route and have arrived, with specific location details.
  • Reminders that ensure order completion and customer satisfaction. These may be in-app messages that remind staff to hand over all items in the order, to fetch items from a different location (such as groceries in temperature-controlled storage), or to check customer ID for age-restricted items. 
  • Mobility that frees them up from using valuable space at POS terminals.

 

 

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Store pickup apps: build or buy? 

Retailers that decide to invest in click & collect apps have three general options:

Build it from scratch. 

Pros: You can build your app to the exact specifications you require. No one else will have an app quite like yours. 

Cons: Software development is expensive, takes a long time, and requires specialised knowledge. You will also have to own all the updates, support, and security — a big ongoing cost. 

Buy a standalone solution.

Pros: A standalone store pickup app will be less expensive, and require less of your time and effort than building an app from scratch. 

Cons: This option will not provide a seamless experience for customers, who won’t want to switch back and forth between apps for shopping and collecting.

Buy a click & collect solution that integrates into your existing app.

Pros: You don’t have to worry about any of the development, and you’ll provide a seamless experience for both customers and employees.

Cons: Obviously, this option is only available if you already have a retail app. 

 

Boost business and customer retention with a click & collect app.

As consumers increasingly demand click & collect options, retailers are going to need to provide them. 

Localz offers a click & collect solution that integrates into your existing retail app to give customers a seamless experience. If you don’t already have a retail app, our solution offers separate standalone portals for customers and employees that can be white-labeled with your branding. 

Best of all, Localz will do all the development heavy lifting for you.

 

Download the free guide to improve contactless collection experience and streamline operations this peak season