As consumers continue to prioritize the ways in which they spend their time, processes and services that simplify menial everyday tasks have become an even greater asset across nearly every industry—especially when it comes to retail. With retail, we’ve seen the simplification process take place over time—first came online ordering with home delivery, next came self-checkouts, and now retailers across the country are diving into the world of ‘buy online pick-up in-store’ options, commonly referred to by the acronym BOPIS.
The ‘buy online pick-up in-store’ trend is still in relative infancy, but consumers are quickly jumping on board. In fact, a recent Forbes article highlighted that such orders in the United States have grown by nearly 250% for large retailers. This shouldn’t come as a surprise, though. While today’s consumers are all about convenience, many still hold tight to the value of the in-store experience—making the BOPIS solution the best of both worlds.
While there’s no disputing the impressive rate at which BOPIS solutions are growing in popularity and the convenience they bring, automated smart lockers take it one step further—offering a convenient, easy-to-use, order pick-up and drop-off solution for retailers of all kinds. Designed for indoor or outdoor use, retailers can utilize smart lockers to distribute their BOPIS orders while also reducing in-store congestion, lowering overhead costs, increasing availability, and improving customer service.
Reduce In-Store Congestion
One of the most common reasons why consumers opt to forego the in-store shopping experience is to avoid long lines and congestion, especially around the holidays when many consumers are in shopping overdrive. For those who choose to buy online and pick-up their order in-store, automated smart lockers mitigate those annoyances entirely. When retailers utilize automated smart lockers for their BOPIS orders, shoppers are able to place and pay for their order online, so when they arrive in-store all they have to do is scan or enter their code and retrieve their order.
Lower Overhead Costs
While some BOPIS solutions still require that a shopper approach the checkout counter to retrieve and/or pay for their order, automated smart lockers are entirely as their name implies—automated. Once a store employee places a shopper’s order inside the automated smart locker, the rest of the process is entirely unattended. As a result, retailers are able to increase their overall order and inventory output without having to worry about increasing their overhead costs.
While some shoppers take the BOPIS route to avoid long lines and crowded stores, others prefer this method for the convenience factor. A highly versatile retail solution, automated smart lockers can be designed for indoor or outdoor use, enabling shoppers to securely pick their order up before a retailer opens their doors for the day or long after they have closed them at night.
Improve Customer Service
Not only do automated smart lockers make the order pick-up process quick and easy for those who chose to utilize them by ordering online, they also improve customer service and customer satisfaction for all shoppers visiting that particular retailer. By eliminating the need for retail associates to handle more menial tasks, like walking into the storeroom every time a customer arrives to pick-up their online order, automated smart lockers enable those associates to fill a more service-oriented role—helping customers find what they’re looking for and answering questions. Not only does this improve the rate at which shoppers’ needs are met, it also helps the retailer and their associates build rapport with their customers.
Despite the fact that retail has become increasingly digital, it’s clear that consumers still value the in-store experience. ‘Buy online pick-up in-store’ solutions, like automated smart lockers, are helping to bridge the gap between the two—effectively transforming the face of retail and improving the customer experience along the way.
To learn more about Meridian’s automated smart lockers and smart locker software solution visit https://www.meridiankiosks.com/solutions/automated-smart-locker-system/.